Agencies to Pitch for Ion Account

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DETROIT ( -- General Motors Corp.'s Saturn Corp. said it picked four or five finalists, including incumbent Publicis Groupe's Publicis & Hal Riney, from among 10 undisclosed agencies invited to pitch for next fall's $100-million-plus Ion small car launch.

Saturn declined to name the finalists, but they are believed to include two GM roster shops, Bcom3 Group's D'Arcy Masius Benton Bowles, Troy, Mich., and Interpublic Group of Cos.' McCann-Erickson Worldwide, New York Omnicom Group's Goodby, Silverstein Partners, San Francisco and independent agency Wieden & Kennedy, Portland, Ore.

The agencies declined to comment. A decision is due by March 31.