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GM's Simplified Vehicle Maintenance Can Save Consumers Time & Money; 3,000-Mile Oil Changes May be Unnecessary

(April is Car Care Month)

GRAND BLANC, Mich., March 30 -- How frequently should drivers change their engine oil? Most technicians will say 3,000 miles while others say 5,000 or 7,000. But ask Mr. Goodwrench and he'll offer a simple solution -- let your vehicle tell you when -- that could protect your wallet and the environment from unnecessary oil changes. GM's patented Oil Life System (GMOLS) can double or even triple the time between oil changes when compared to the common 3,000-mile recommendation simply by evaluating driving conditions.

"This car care season, most owners of 2004 GM vehicles won't have to worry about deciding when to change their engine oil because leading-edge technology will determine the right time for them," said Peter Lord, executive director, GM Service Operations. "Simply visit your GM Goodwrench dealership for an oil change service when the vehicle signals and you won't have to worry about how many miles you have driven. This alone could save consumers significantly on the number of oil changes they purchase over the life of the vehicle."

GMOLS is on about 95 percent of the vehicles that GM produces today and on a wide variety of models since the mid-1990s. There are roughly 20 million vehicles on the road today equipped with GMOLS. The system itself uses an algorithm that tracks engine revolutions and temperature and predicts oil life based on these parameters and driver use.

GM's New Simplified Maintenance Schedules Challenge Industry Assumptions

GMOLS technology allows GM and GM Goodwrench dealerships to offer all new Simplified Maintenance Schedules on most 2004 vehicles to simplify maintenance for GM customers and to build long-lasting customer relationships. The new schedules are a departure from the typical industry approach of basing maintenance intervals on mileage. Instead of a complicated list of different services to be performed at different mileage intervals, GM's new Simplified Maintenance Schedules are based on the change oil light/message.

The first time the message on the dash appears, GM Goodwrench dealerships will offer a Maintenance I service package which includes an oil and filter change, a four-tire rotation, visual inspections of the fluid levels and brakes and a resetting of the system. The next time the message appears a Maintenance II service package is recommended, which includes everything in Maintenance I, plus a professional inspection of the suspension and steering components and the transmission. After the first two visits drivers will alternate between the two schedules as the prompt appears on the dash for the life of the vehicle. Since the system must be reset to work properly and many of the required maintenance services can be complex, GM recommends taking GMOLS-equipped vehicles to the GM experts at Goodwrench dealerships for proper service.

"Simplified Maintenance Schedules are a major convenience to drivers because it takes the guesswork out of when to change oil and it eliminates the need to make decisions regarding routine maintenance," Lord said. "Basically, when the light comes on you bring the vehicle in for maintenance and the technician can perform an oil change along with other necessary maintenance items such as checking belts, rotating tires and changing the air filter."

When used as intended and linked with the Simplified Maintenance Schedules offered by GM Goodwrench dealerships, GMOLS also can provide an environmental benefit, said Lord. If the more than 20 million vehicles on the road equipped with this technology all used the system as intended, hundreds of millions of gallons of oil would be saved, eliminating the chance of this oil ever entering the environment, he added.

Consumers should check their owner's manual to determine if their GM vehicle has GMOLS. If it does, a GM Goodwrench dealership can service and reset the system at the vehicle's next oil change. If it doesn't, they should follow the oil change recommendations listed in their owner's manual. The engine oil and filter must be changed at least once a year even if the GMOLS indicator does not come on.

The GM Oil Life System is available on all light-duty North American GM cars except for some models of Buick Park Avenue and Le Sabre, Pontiac Bonneville and Sunfire/Sunbird, Chevrolet Tracker, Cavalier and Malibu, S10/Sonoma trucks, Astro/Safari Vans, and the Pontiac Vibe. For more information about the GM Oil Life System, visit .

GM Goodwrench is the service brand for GM vehicles. With more than 7,000 dealerships, the GM Goodwrench network is one of the largest automotive service chains in the industry. GM Goodwrench technicians receive specialized training from General Motors to provide expert care for GM cars and trucks. Genuine GM replacement parts are manufactured to the exact specifications of the GM vehicle. For more information, visit the GM Goodwrench web site at .

National Car Care Month is a nationwide effort to focus motorists' attention on the importance of vehicle care and maintenance. It was developed by the National Car Care Council and lasts the entire month of April. More information is available at .