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General Motors expected to dump Pontiac
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The U.S. largest automaker General Motors Corp. is expected to announce Monday its decision to kill the Pontiac brand as part of a tougher restructuring plan being overseen by the government, reports from Detroit said Saturday.

GM has started reaching out to Pontiac dealers ahead of a public announcement about the brand's future, when the automaker likely will also outline permanent plant closures, more job cuts and a tougher offer to bondholders to slash the automaker's 28 billion U.S. dollars in unsecured debt.

According to the Detroit News, GM plans to notify members of Congress on Monday morning and has scheduled meetings with a few members of Michigan's delegation about plants to be shuttered.

In a restructuring plan rejected by President Barack Obama's autos task force last month, GM proposed shrinking Pontiac into a niche brand with one or two models. But the task force wants GM to cut deeper and faster, prompting the decision to eliminate Pontiac, which leaves the automaker with four core brands: Chevrolet, Cadillac, Buick and GMC.

GM, which received another government aid of 2 billion dollars on Friday, also is eliminating or trying to sell its Saturn, Saab and Hummer brands.

GM is racing to restructure and reach money-saving concessions from the United Auto Workers and bondholders ahead of a June 1 deadline imposed by the Obama administration. If GM cannot reach deals, the automaker could be forced into a Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing.

(Xinhua News Agency April 26, 2009)

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