The Washington Times - November 24, 2008, 12:52PM

Struggling automaker General Motors has ended its relationship with Tiger Woods, after a nine-year run that saw the world’s top golfer endorse the company’s Buick brand and OnStar service.

GM officials said the deal will end on Dec. 31, but that the timing had nothing to do with the company’s recent plea for a governmental bailout. Is it widely known, however, that the automaker has been trying to slash its advertising budget in an effort to stay afloat.

SEE RELATED:


“Tiger has been a great friend to GM and a fantastic asset through the years helping to bring consumer awareness to many new GM products,” Mark LaNeve, GM’s North American vice president of sales, said in a statement. “This decision is the result of discussions that started earlier in the year and the timing of this agreement with these other activities is purely coincidental.

GM said Woods wanted to spend more time with his wife and yound daughter.

Said Woods: “”I am very proud of the long standing partnership I’ve had with GM and have enjoyed being a part of the company’s dramatic product evolution. We’ve had a lot of fun together and I participated in some unique and rewarding activities. We’ve enjoyed a tremendous partnership over the years and we will maintain strong ties with the many people at GM we call friends.”

Last week Buick announced that it was cutting back on the number of courtesy cars offered at tournaments, but it will still remain the sponsor of the Buick Invitational and Buick Open tournaments.