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Archive for Friday, February 26, 2010

Hummer brand runs out of gas

February 26, 2010

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— One thing you can say about the Hummer, roaring down the road, towering over subcompacts like an NBA center in a sea of toddlers: It always drew a reaction.

The beefy, military-inspired SUV began as a macho icon for enthusiasts like Arnold Schwarzenegger, who held photo ops in Hummers in his early days as governor. For others it was a symbol of excess, environmental ruin and tackiness — a view that seemed to grow in direct proportion to gas prices and economic distress.

And now the brand is likely no more. General Motors Co. said Wednesday its bid to sell Hummer to a Chinese heavy equipment manufacturer had collapsed. Government regulators in Beijing failed to approve the sale and GM said it would have no choice but to let the brand die, 18 years after its first and most enormous model started lumbering off the assembly line.

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