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We're just a couple of days away from rear-ending 2010, so like all major media outlets, we thought we'd take a break from real reporting (don't worry: nothing's happening) and look back at some of 2009's notable moments.
It was an...interesting year for the auto industry to say the least, and we've seen a lot of changes, both in the U.S. and abroad. Some of the losses have been painful, but in the end, we're hopeful that they'll spur growth and development down the line. And if not, we'll have enjoyed kicking them around in our spare time.
By the way: we'd planned on making an Oscar-style video about the year's losses, but we got lazy (surprise). You'll just have to hum Barbra Streisand's "Memories" on your own. Don't play like you don't know the tune.
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Saturn LogoEnlarge Photo
Saturn, Pontiac, Saab
General Motors learned the hard way that eight was more than enough brands to manage in a tanking global economy. Despite heartbreaking attempts to drop four of its sickliest kids at orphanage, only the linebacker of the group -- HUMMER -- found a new home in the hilly, chilly terrain of central China, snuggled up to unheralded heavy-duty truckmaker Sichuan Tenzhong. We've heard that Pontiac, Saturn, Saab are being stored in a time capsule and buried somewhere north of Detroit. Here's hoping that one of them gets thawed out down the road. (You know which one we mean.)
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Our legal right to send text messages while driving
Actually, this is a great thing to lose. It dovetails perfectly with another loss -- our loss in faith in hand-eye coordination.
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The Chrysler PT Cruiser
When the PT launched about ten years ago, it was like a breath of fresh air. Now, it's just bad breath -- underachieving, underwhelming, downmarket halitosis. We thought we were done with it, but Sergio Marchionne's chosen to milk that ailing cow for just a bit longer, since Chrysler doesn't have anything else in the barn. The second those Fiats start rolling into showrooms, though, the Cruiser's getting a new pair of cement shoes and a one-way boat ride to the middle of Lake Michigan. C'mon, Sparky! Let's go for a ride!