This Is How GM Design Head Ed Welburn Envisions a Buick Pickup

this is how gm design head ed welburn envisions a buick pickup

Would Buick consider producing a pickup truck? Now that the brand’s lineup has been fleshed out to include sedans, SUVs, and a convertible, what’s stopping General Motors from adding a Buick-badged variant to either its midsize or large-truck portfolio?

According to Ed Welburn, who oversees global design for GM, there’s a simple answer.

“No, I don’t see it,” Welburn said, wincing. “Wow. I haven’t gotten that question from anyone.”

At that point we expected silence, as it’s not if anyone is clamoring for a Buick pickup truck, despite a market that’s moving toward softer pickups that err on the side of comfort and convenience — but Welburn went on.

“If we did a Buick, it would be totally different than the GMC [Canyon], that’s for sure,” he said. “It would be an interesting design project to do it. I can envision it, but I can’t see doing it for production. If you’re not going to do it for production, I wouldn’t put any energy into it.

It wouldn’t be the first time that GM tried to produce a pickup truck with car-like features, as the SSR ( remember that one?) emerged under Wilburn’s eye.

He acknowledged that the front fascia of the Avista is going to be the new face of the brand for the near future, and mentioned that the Enclave makes a fine substitute for a minivan in the lineup — just in case we were going to ask.

Our version of a Buick pickup truck would skew toward elegant roughness, more of a lifted Avista with a lengthened rear deck. And we’d toss in the 2.8-liter diesel, for good measure.

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  • SoCalMikester SoCalMikester on Mar 24, 2016

    someones missing a niche by not making an el camino/ranchero variant. theres gotta be some pent-up demand for it somewhere, enough to at least make it worthwhile for maybe a 5yr generation.

    • See 2 previous
    • 28-Cars-Later 28-Cars-Later on Mar 24, 2016

      @Pch101 ... any color as long as it's black.

  • GoFaster58 GoFaster58 on Mar 24, 2016

    I'd rather see a new Riviera. Build it so it's not outrageous a overly priced. The Crossfire and Solstice were nice cars but overly priced. Same for the last Thunderbird.

  • Snickel Fritz I just bought a '97 JX 4WD 4AT, and though it's not quite roadworthy yet I am already in awe of it's simplicity and apparent ruggedness. What I am equally in awe of, is the scarcity of not only parts but correct information regarding anything on this platform. I'm going to do my best to get this little donkey back on it's feet, but I wouldn't suggest this as a project vehicle for anyone who doesn't already have several... and a big impressive shop with a full suite of fabrication/machining/welding equipment, and friends with complimentary skillsets, and extra money, and... you get the idea. If you don't, I urge you to read up on the options for replacing anything on these rigs. I didn't read enough before buying, and I have zero of the above suggested prerequisites... so I'm an idiot, don't listen to me. Go buy all of 'em!
  • Bryan Raab Davis I actually did use the P of D trope, but it was only gentle chiding, for I love old British cars of every sort.
  • ScarecrowRepair The 1907 Panic had several causes of increased demand for money:[list][*]The semi-annual shift of money between farms and cities (to buy for planting and selling harvests)[/*][*]Britain and Germany borrowing for their naval arms race[/*][*]San Francisco reconstruction borrowing after the 1906 earthquake and fire[/*][/list]Two things made it worse:[list][*]Idiotic bans on branch banking, which prevented urban, rural, and other state branches from shifting funds to match demands. This same problem made the Great Depression far worse. Canada, which allowed branch banking, had no bank failures; the US had 9000 failures.[/*][*]Idiotic reserve requirements left over from the Civil War which prevented banks from loaning money; they eventually started honoring IOUs illegally and started the recovery.[/*][/list]Been a while since I read up on it, so I may have some of the details wrong. But it was an amazing clusterfart which could have been avoided or at least tamed sooner if states and the feds hadn't been so ham handed.
  • FreedMike Maybe this explains all the “Idiots wrecking exotic cars” YouTube videos.
  • FreedMike Good article! And I salute the author for not using the classic “Lucas - prince of darkness” trope, well earned as it may be. We all know the rap on BL cars, but on the flip side, they’re apparently pretty easy to work on (at least that’s the impression I’ve picked up). On the other hand, check the panel fits on the driver’s and passenger’s doors. Clearly, BL wasn’t much concerned with things like structural integrity when it chopped the roof off a car designed as a coupe.