Buick's Avista Concept Seriously Pissed Off Some People at GM: Report

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
buick s avista concept seriously pissed off some people at gm report

You remember the Avista — the sexy concept coupe unveiled by Buick at the North American International Auto Show in January (before being spirited away forever)?

Apparently, several people at General Motors weren’t happy that the concept’s shapely flanks and lithe profile saw the light of day, despite favorable reaction from the media. According to an uncorroborated source at GM Inside News, the Avista’s arrival was a blow to the team behind the Chevrolet Camaro.

GMI‘s source appeared on the website’s forum, and won’t reveal the actual source of their information. It’s known that the tipster wasn’t involved with the project. (Though his/her forum moniker — “Z284ever” — implies plenty of Camaro enthusiasm.)

The source claims the Avista was never supposed to happen, and “upper management” types were steamed after its release into the wild. Why the acrimony? It could be because public enthusiasm centered on a concept with no production plans, and not on another vehicle, the source implied.

Other forum posters rightfully point out that unloved concepts don’t just show up on a stand in the Cobo Center without the automaker’s approval. Clearly, there’s more to the story — if indeed there was backlash to the Avista, those voices were overruled. Rumors claim that recently retired GM design head Ed Welburn (who introduced the concept at NAIAS) could have something to do with the concept’s brief public fling.

If the backlash originated from the Camaro camp, it’s easy to understand. A restyled Camaro bowed for 2016, and a concept with no plans for production would take away its spotlight (and possibly humble its designers). If built, the Camaro and Avista would exist in the same segment, competing against each other.

But enough speculation. GM is staying tight-lipped on the claims, so the true story likely won’t be told until someone writes a tell-all book about their career. As for the Avista, most reasonably people gave up hope of seeing it go into production long ago.

Buick communication manager Stuart Fowle told GMI, “We don’t comment on future products as you know, but we’ve never suggested that the car does or does not have future plans.”

[Image: General Motors]

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  • Nrd515 Nrd515 on Aug 07, 2016

    If they built this, and the trunk was usable for anything, and it was priced sanely, it would get me into a Buick dealership for the first time since the Grand National was cancelled. The Camaro design team should be forced to look at this car daily to see what a good looking version of their car could look like.

  • 415s30 415s30 on Aug 07, 2016

    I would never want an ugly redneck Camaro, that is the first modern Buick I have looked upon favorably.

  • The Oracle Good news is that based on the model years many of these have already been junked or experienced terminal engine failure.
  • Lou_BC I'm confused, isn't a Prologue a preview? This would be a preview of a preview.
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