By on September 4, 2009

GMI claims The General has yanked Buick Allure badging in favor of the the US-market LaCrosse moniker—after an unknown number of 2010 Allures have been sold. GM is apparently offering to rebadge already-sold Allures as LaCrosses. Why the jerking around? It seems GM is no longer scared of the LaCrosse name in Canada. Why they waited to change their mind until cars were on lots and in driveways is anyone’s guess. Throw another log on the LaCrosse launch bonfire of vanities. [Hat Tip: Richard Chen]

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16 Comments on “Canadian Buick Identity Crisis, eh!...”


  • avatar
    dejal

    “Why the jerking around?”

    Funny.

    “Hey Ma, the coach says I’m so good at LaCrosse that he’s going to give me special one on one coaching!!!”

  • avatar
    iceracer

    C’est magnifique! We look forward to seeing Le Buick Whack Off.

  • avatar
    Daniel J. Stern

    Oy. What’s their thinking here? Perhaps they’re trying to become a target of comedic barbs on “This Hour Has 22 Minutes” or something. If there’s one thing Canadians resent, it’s being treated as though there’s no difference between them and Americans. And especially French Canadians resent anything that even vaguely hints at ignorance or dismissal of their language or culture.

    I’d take an easy shot at the durability of North American GM products as I predict the collectibility of a super-rare unrebadged Canadian Allure in a couple decades, but even the Vega and the Chevette and the Citation have their devotees.

  • avatar
    YotaCarFan

    Changing the name midyear and offering to rebadge already-sold cars makes GM come across as sloppy and amateurish — not smart for a company attempting to improve its image.

    As an American who doesn’t speak French, I prefer the name “Allure” over “LaCrosse”. The word means something logical w.r.t. the product, and having a car named after a ball game seems silly. Another Buick model name that is unappealing to me is “Lucerne” – it reminds me of milk, since its a common brand of milk in the US.

  • avatar
    amac

    I agree, Allure is a better name. It’s still being advertised as such at buick.ca – I wonder how long it will take them to update their site.

    Lucerne makes me think of milk too. What happened to great names like Electra and Riviera?

  • avatar
    GrandCharles

    Another thing, in french, la crosse also means THE HOAX. One famous expression is *est-ou la crosse* as in were’s the catch. If they badge it like that here, it will mean that irony have no frontier…

  • avatar
    gmbuoy

    Lutz, who is perfectly fluent in French thought the difference in names was a waste of money. And since he is now in charge of world wide marketing he gets to make that call.

  • avatar
    Daniel J. Stern

    Uh…yeah, gmbuoy, I’m sure Mr. Lutz thanks you for issuing a “because I said so” on his behalf.

    (He may well be fluent in French, but evidently not in Quebecois. The two are only very slightly similar.)

  • avatar
    MadHungarian

    This is a bummer. The Allure was just about the last of the differently named Canuckmobiles around. It was always fun to go north of the border and find Pontiac Laurentians, Acadian Beaumonts, Meteor Rideaus (Rideaux?), and so on.

  • avatar
    v7rmp7li

    Good strategy

    Buick become Lexus Killer.(Japanese rival)
    Cadilac become BMW, Audi, MB, Bentley Killer.(Europe rival)

    Buick need to be a Asian vehicle. (quite, comfort, relaible quality, good fuel economy) one of the reason is their best selling place is China.

  • avatar
    mattstairs

    I never understood Buick’s infatuation with French sounding names.

    LeSabre (RIP), LaCrosse, Lucerne, Enclave, Rendezvous (RIP), etc.

    Is a French name supposed to conjure up some luxurious image? We all know the French produce the world’s best cars. Nothing against Renaults, Peugeots, and Citroens, but, um, yeah, not so much.

    If I were Buick, I would have dumped LaCrosse in favor of Allure.

    The best part of this is the “Bring your ’10 Allure in to be rebadged as a LaCrosse.” Did Fritz sign off on this? I thought he was no fan of rebadging.

  • avatar
    fincar1

    I always got a kick out of the Canadian names for cars. Don’t forget Mercury, Fargo, and Maple Leaf trucks too.

    The Meteor and Monarch always seemed to me to be Fords and Mercurys with crazy-looking grilles and side trim. Pontiac Parisiennes were Chevies with Pontiac front clips and Canadian Dodges were Plymouths with Dodge front clips.

    I saw a beautiful 1957 Pontiac Parisienne on Craigslist a few weeks ago – it looked like your average Chieftain 2-door hardtop until you saw the Chevy 6 engine.

    There were once McLaughlin Buicks…I understand that some of them were quite nice cars.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    Well, in case we have forgotten that certain words have cultural significance in some languages and none in others…there’s the case of Citroen, which translates loosely to “lemon” in the U.S.

    Of course, that was truth in advertising.

  • avatar
    stars9texashockey

    Allure is to Buick as La Femme is to Dodge.

  • avatar
    Seth L

    Reaching: at least the havent switched to alphanumerics?

    It’s all I’ve got.

  • avatar
    Bridge2far

    LaCrosse vs. Lexus ES350 review by Dan Pund of Edmunds might give us a clue as to why GM is proud to display the LaCrosse badge. Pund writes “LaCrosse is an embarassment for Lexus.”

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