GM looking to Gulf Arab buyers for Hummer: report

Mumbai: Deserted by investors from China, India and Russia, General Motors Corp's gas-guzzling Hummer sports utility vehicle (SUV) may finally find a home in the oil-rich West Asian states.

Two Gulf Arab investors are reported to have expressed interest in buying the Hummer brand. If either of the offers materialise, Hummer will drive into the oil-rich region which has helped drive it into the red.

GM said it received initial expressions of interest from potential buyers that it hoped to develop into formal sale talks.

The military-derived Hummer brand is becoming a tough sell for GM, which aims to raise up to $4 billion in asset sales through 2009 as part of a plan to raise cash and ride out its biggest downturn in US sales.

Giving an average between nine and 14 miles per gallon of gasoline, Hummer is not an attractive asset worldwide amidst high oil prices and increasing environmental concerns.

Either way a sale will only do good for GM whose US sales were down 18 per cent through July and losses reached $3.6 billion in the latest quarter.

The Gulf would perhaps be the only option other than oil-rich Russia where GM can hope to offload Hummer.

The Hummer, though very low by sales volume, is growing very fast and is extremely vibrant. Only the status symbol of getting to buy Hummer would now save the brand.