We first saw the GMC Granite as a concept car at the 2010 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, and although it was thought to be designed as a strict concept-only model, US reports say GM will be putting the Granite into production in the near future.
A report by MotorTrend in the US spoke with a 'well-placed source' who apparently confirmed GM will be developing the Granite, complete with rear suicide doors, for market entry. The report says GM will introduce the new model as early as 2012, badged as a 2013 model year.
The GMC Granite will be built on GM's C-segment platform which is currently applied to the Chevrolet Volt, Chevrolet Cruze and the European Vauxhall/Opel Astra. This means the Granite is likely to feature the same 1.4-litre 103kW/200Nm turbo four-cylinder engine seen in the original Granite Concept and the current Chevrolet Cruze. An alternate powertrain is said to include an Ecotec 2.4-litre engine offering 132kW of power and 230Nm of torque.
The main difference between the concept version and the production version of the Granite is said to be the middle B-pillar. On the concept car, the B-pillar doesn't exist as it is a concept and therefor exempt from the confines of safety. The production version is expected to feature the pillar though.
It should be a fairly popular car if it goes into production, taking on the same segment as the Kia Soul and the Toyota Rukus. It should sell in especially high numbers if the production model retains plenty of the Concept's interior and exterior design features too.