GM Certified Service
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|Headquarters||Detroit, Michigan, USA|
|Website||GM Certified Service|
GM Certified Service is an auto repair service for General Motors. In 2011, GM replaced the Goodwrench brand in the US with Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, and GMC Certified Service brands (Canada followed in 2014).
Goodwrench took to the airwaves in 1977 as a way to market General Motors franchised dealers' service departments, replacing a patchwork of separate GM-divisional offerings. At the time, GM marketed vehicles in the US under the Chevrolet, Buick, Pontiac, Oldsmobile, Cadillac, and GMC brands.
The Mr. Goodwrench program, as originally conceived, required each dealer to adhere to a set of service delivery standards: requiring high levels of factory training, parts on hand, and service department amenities. The program was backed with a national advertising campaign which featured the iconic Mr. Goodwrench, as the helpful mechanic who could fix whatever ailed your vehicle.
Through several iterations, the advertising campaign worked its way into the lexicon of Americana by becoming shorthand for someone who can fix things. For many years, Jay Leno included his portrayal of Mr. BadWrench, the Evil Twin of Mr. Goodwrench in his stand-up act; The NASA Space shuttle astronauts compared themselves to "Mr. Goodwrench" when they were fixing the Hubble space telescope. The name, according to comedian George Carlin, was also used for the penis.
Beginning in 1996, the brand was changed to become GM Goodwrench Service Plus, dropping the "Mr." and the human representations.
From 1988 until 2005, they were the primary sponsor for Richard Childress Racing in NASCAR. In 2006, they reduced their role, as the #29 car split sponsorship with Hershey's. On October 7, 2006, General Motors announced that it would step down as one of the longest running NASCAR title sponsors, with Royal Dutch Shell taking over as the main sponsor for the #29 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet driven by Kevin Harvick.
With this change, GM's Service and Parts Operations closed a major chapter in NASCAR history. Since signing on with the Rookie of the Year Driver, Dale Earnhardt, as an associate sponsor in the early 1980s, and assuming title sponsor status for the 1988 season, Goodwrench was present in the winners circle for six of Earnhardt's seven Winston Cup wins.
Goodwrench remained an associate sponsor for the 2007 season. In 2008, after a 22 year partnership, GM Goodwrench ended sponsorship of Richard Childress Racing and NASCAR, as a result of budget cuts from General Motors.
In February 2011, General Motors phased out the Goodwrench brand in the United States, as it sought to focus its marketing efforts on its four brands. The Goodwrench name is still used for service in Canada.
As of March 2014, GM Goodwrench in Canada will also change for Certified Service in the weeks to come; dealers are already receiving shipments of new material for the rebranding.