Parlez-vous francais? Yeah, we didn’t think so, either. Neither does Buick, apparently, so it looks like the automaker is going back to naming its biggest car after a Greek goddess.
After years of cars carrying names names for its full-size cars like Park Avenue, LeSabre, and Lucerne, Buick looks like it’s abandoning those names for something we can all get behind: The revival of the Buick Electra nameplate.
Recently, General Motors applied to re-trademark the Electra name, the name Buick once held only for its top-level full-size sedans throughout the 1960s, ’70s, and ’80s. After the Electra name faded out in the early 1990s, Buick renamed its full-size flagship sedan the Park Avenue, a name which only helped cement its image as an old people’s car company.
In China, the brand has become more dynamic, serving an affluent, young clientele in its biggest market. Buick is also hosting an ever-younger crowd of new owners in the U.S. The name Electra sounds more exciting, and we’re betting Buick is hedging that customers will think the same thing.
General Motors has a pretty good track record with using names it trademarks on production vehicles. We’re wondering what the next car to use the famous name could be, assuming the automaker goes through with using it. While it would make sense to put on the back of a plug-in of some sort, we think the traditionalists at the automaker will shy away from that kind of application.
Instead, with the resurgence of full-size, rear-wheel-drive sedan talk around the General with the Chevrolet SS sedan making its debut for 2014, we think Buick may take a more conservative approach and follow suit, placing the Electra above its LaCrosse. Buick sells a full-size luxury sedan in China based off the Australian-market Holden Statesman that will share its platform with the SS. It’s called—surprise of all surprises—the Buick Park Avenue (shown above). And that works in China. We think if Buick brings such a car to the U.S., it’ll have to undergo a name change. Buick Electra sounds just right to us.
Source: Automotive News (Subscription required)