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We misjudged Ruess's new role


Yes, Craig Lowndes is back in racing red in 2010, but Mark Reuss is not going to a top-10 job at new GM in the USA.

But the Reuss news, like the signing of Triple Eight and Lowndes, is good news.

In fact, the outgoing president of the red team has been promoted to a top-five job at GM from next month. He becomes the worldwide head of product development, a job which effectively makes him the replacement for the heroic Bob Lutz in the GM engineering world.

That's great news for Reuss, but potentially even better news for Commodore exports.

The US sales plan for the VE Commodore was originally put in place by another former Holden head, Denny Mooney. He helped sell the Holden into America as a Buick, partly off the back of the Monaro experience in America.

The latest G8 Pontiac is officially dead at the end of the year, even if there are hopes of small-scale Commodore exports for police use, but that could change with Reuss in the top product job.

He is well aware of the car's strengths and has said privately for some time that is hopeful of some sort of new deal, with most people assuming it would be through the Chevrolet sales channel.

We'll have to wait, but the signs are positive.

But things are not so good for Mooney, who took early retirement last week as part of the GM corporate re-shuffle. He is promising to be back and, at 53, still has plenty of good years to contribute somewhere in the motoring world.