• Sign in to follow this  
    Followers 0

    The Other Shoe Drops: Holden Ceases Manufacturing In 2017



    William Maley

    Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com

    December 10, 2013

    The rumors were flying around only a week ago, but it has been confirmed now. This afternoon in Australia, Holden announced that after sixty-five years of production, the automaker will stop producing vehicles and "transition to a national sales company in Australia and New Zealand" by 2017. The move will affect 2,900 workers at the Elizabeth manufacturing plant and Victoria. It will also affect a number of suppliers in Australia.

    “We are completely dedicated to strengthening our global operations while meeting the needs of our customers. The decision to end manufacturing in Australia reflects the perfect storm of negative influences the automotive industry faces in the country, including the sustained strength of the Australian dollar, high cost of production, small domestic market and arguably the most competitive and fragmented auto market in the world,” said GM Chairman and CEO Dan Akerson in a statement.

    “GM remains committed to the automotive industry in Australia and New Zealand. We recognize the need for change and understand the government’s point of view. Moving forward, our business model will change significantly however, GM Holden will remain an integral part of its communities and an important employer both directly and through our dealers,” said Holden Chairman and Managing Director Mike Devereux.

    Holden says they hope to have "significant presence in Australia beyond 2017" with a national sales company, parts distribution, and a global design studio.

    Acting Prime Minister Warren Truss told members of the Australian Parliament during question period that he had spoken with Devereux and found out the decision had been made in Detroit.

    "Now this government had indicated right from the very beginning that we wanted Holden to remain manufacturing cars in Australia. "We've wanted, we want to have a strong and active motor vehicle manufacturing industry in Australia," said Truss.

    Workers were told the news at the end of their shift. Many were angry and honked and screamed as they left for the day.

    "Ive been waiting for a package anyway," said Rob Williams, a worker to Drive.com.au.

    Holden follows in the footsteps of Ford who announced earlier in the year that would be shutting down their operations in Australia by 2016.

    Source: Drive.com.au, News.com.au, General Motors

    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

    Press Release is on Page 2


    GM to Transition to a National Sales Company in Australia and New Zealand

    • Company to cease manufacturing in Australia by 2017

    DETROIT – As part of its ongoing actions to decisively address the performance of its global operations, General Motors today announced it would transition to a national sales company in Australia and New Zealand. The company also said it would discontinue vehicle and engine manufacturing and significantly reduce its engineering operations in Australia by the end of 2017.

    “We are completely dedicated to strengthening our global operations while meeting the needs of our customers,” said GM Chairman and CEO Dan Akerson. “The decision to end manufacturing in Australia reflects the perfect storm of negative influences the automotive industry faces in the country, including the sustained strength of the Australian dollar, high cost of production, small domestic market and arguably the most competitive and fragmented auto market in the world.”

    As a result of the company’s actions, approximately 2,900 positions will be impacted over the next four years. This will comprise 1,600 from the Elizabeth vehicle manufacturing plant and approximately 1,300 from Holden’s Victorian workforce.

    Holden will continue to have a significant presence in Australia beyond 2017, comprising a national sales company, a national parts distribution centre and a global design studio.

    GM Holden Chairman and Managing Director Mike Devereux said an important priority over the next four years would be to ensure the best possible transition for workers in South Australia and Victoria.

    “This has been a difficult decision given Holden’s long and proud history of building vehicles in Australia,” said Devereux. “We are dedicated to working with our teams, unions and the local communities, along with the federal and state governments, to support our people.”

    The sale and service of Holden vehicles will be unaffected by this announcement and will continue through the extensive network of Holden dealers across Australia and New Zealand. Warranty terms and spare parts availability will remain unchanged.

    “GM remains committed to the automotive industry in Australia and New Zealand. We recognize the need for change and understand the government’s point of view. Moving forward, our business model will change significantly however, GM Holden will remain an integral part of its communities and an important employer both directly and through our dealers,” Devereux said.

    Since 2001, the Australian dollar has risen from US$0.50 to as high as US$1.10 and from as low as 47 to as high as 79 on the Trade Weighted Index. The Australian automotive industry is heavily trade exposed. The appreciation of the currency alone means that at the Australian dollar’s peak, making things in Australia was 65 percent more expensive compared to just a decade earlier.

    With the decision to discontinue vehicle and engine manufacturing in Australia by the end of 2017, GM expects to record pre-tax charges of $400 million to $600 million in the fourth quarter of 2013. The charges would consist of approximately $300 million to $500 million for non-cash asset impairment charges including property, plant and equipment and approximately $100 million for cash payment of exit-related costs including certain employee severance related costs. Additional charges are expected to be incurred through 2017 for incremental future cash payments of employee severance once negotiations of the amount are completed with the employees’ union. The asset impairment charges will be considered special for EBIT-adjusted reporting purposes.

    0


      Report Article
    Sign in to follow this  
    Followers 0


    User Feedback


    Sad. But other than the Commodore and it's variations, Holden today is just peddling the same generic FWD appliances that GM is peddling elsewhere. The Commodore and it's variations are their only unique models.

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar
    0

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    The real genius behind Holden's cars is the variation and creativity they were able to generate from one single platform. That is something the rest of GM never learned how to do very well at all.

    0

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Camino, I think it is not as bleak as you see. Manufacturing jobs may go, but I think Mark Reuss is too smart to let the design studio go hayside.

    0

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    A shame perhaps, but considering how high the value AU dollar has gotten, its cost prohibitive, and it makes more sense financially. Plus, Alpha is more sophisticated and flexible than Zeta. Its not like RWD is dead, its just going Alpha.

    0

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites


    Your content will need to be approved by a moderator

    Guest
    You are commenting as a guest. If you have an account, please sign in.
    Add a comment...

    ×   You have pasted content with formatting.   Remove formatting

    ×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

    Loading...



  • Popular Stories

  • Similar Content

    • By William Maley
      It is no secret that Ford is working on new Bronco that will go into production at Ford's Michigan Assembly alongside the Ranger in the coming years. But it seems that Ford's American branch will not be doing a majority of the engineering work.
      Motoring has learned from sources that Ford's Asia-Pacific Product Development team based in Victoria will be handing the development of the Bronco. This is because the Bronco will be using an updated version of the Ranger's T6 ladder platform - a platform that the Asia-Pacific Product Development team designed and developed.
      The Bronco is expected to use a shortened version of the T6 platform and share the running gear from the Ranger - four and five-cylinder diesel engines paired with manual and automatic transmissions. Expect a gas engine for the U.S.-spec Bronco.
      Production of the Bronco is expected to being in 2020.
      Source: Motoring.com.au

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      It is no secret that Ford is working on new Bronco that will go into production at Ford's Michigan Assembly alongside the Ranger in the coming years. But it seems that Ford's American branch will not be doing a majority of the engineering work.
      Motoring has learned from sources that Ford's Asia-Pacific Product Development team based in Victoria will be handing the development of the Bronco. This is because the Bronco will be using an updated version of the Ranger's T6 ladder platform - a platform that the Asia-Pacific Product Development team designed and developed.
      The Bronco is expected to use a shortened version of the T6 platform and share the running gear from the Ranger - four and five-cylinder diesel engines paired with manual and automatic transmissions. Expect a gas engine for the U.S.-spec Bronco.
      Production of the Bronco is expected to being in 2020.
      Source: Motoring.com.au
    • By William Maley
      As we have known for a couple of years, the next Holden Commodore will not be a rear-wheel drive based model. Instead, it will be based on the next-generation Opel and Vauxhall Insignia. This model isn't due to come out till 2018, but Holden has surprised everyone by releasing key details about the next Commodore.
      Holden has been working with Opel and Vauxhall for the past five years on developing the Insignia for its duties as the Commodore in Australia. In terms of looks, Holden has not messed with or changed the Insignia's design. It will look the same as the European and North American models (Buick Regal). No sedan will be offered, only a five-door liftback and wagon.
      There will be two turbocharged four-cylinder engines on offer - gas and diesel. No displacement or power figures were given. We do know this engines will be paired with front-wheel drive. A 3.6L V6 producing 306 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque will power the flagship model - likely the Commodore SS. This will come paired with a nine-speed automatic and a torque-vectoring all-wheel-drive system. According to media reports, Holden pushed for the V6 and all-wheel drive combination for their requirements. There were rumors of the Commodore getting a twin-turbo V6 - possibly the twin-turbo 3.0L or 3.6L from Cadillac. But that isn't going to happen for a simple reason - it can't fit in the Insignia/Commodore's platform (E2XX). 
      Other key details about the next Commodore:
      The flagship Commodore model will feature adaptive dampers In most dimensions, the new Commodore is smaller than the current model Weight-wise, the new Commodore is 200 to 300 kg (about 441 to 661 pounds) lighter than the current model Holden will be doing their own ride and handling tuning program for the Commodore to better handle the roads and conditions that Australia offers Will the new Commodore be a success or tarnish a nameplate that has been around since 1978. That's a question that can only be answered in 2018. In the meantime, we have reports from various Australian outlets who were given the chance to drive two prototypes of the next Commodore. 
      Source: Holden
      First Drive Reports: CarAdvice, Drive.com.au, Motoring.com.au, Wheels
      Press Release is on Page 2
      Next-Generation Holden Commodore Is Coming
      First details of Holden’s next-generation Commodore revealed, redefining a four decade legacy First imported Commodore lives up to the legend; V6 flagship boasts 230kW and 370Nm, cutting-edge AWD system and 9-speed transmission   Packed with advanced technology: Active Fuel Management, adaptive suspension, torque-vectoring AWD, matrix lighting system, Apple CarPlay® and Android® Auto Extensive Holden Australian engineering development ensures next-generation Commodore lives up to the legendary nameplate with outstanding driving dynamics   Next-generation Holden Commodore on sale in 2018  Holden has today revealed first details of the all-new, next-generation Commodore ahead of its Australian launch in early 2018.
      Australia’s first look under the bonnet of the cutting-edge new Commodore reveals a car that will set new benchmarks in its segment for technology, style, practicality and driving dynamics.
      Headlined by the V6 flagship model, the first ever imported Commodore will honour the legendary nameplate by being the most technologically-advanced Holden ever. With a cutting-edge all-wheel-drive system channeling 230 kilowatts and 370 Newton metres to the road, combined with adaptive suspension technology, a company-first nine-speed automatic transmission and torque-vectoring all-wheel drive, the next-generation Commodore is set to cement the iconic nameplate’s reputation for class-leading driving dynamics and on-road refinement.
      Based on General Motor’s new ‘E2’ global architecture, engineered in Germany and shared with the Opel Insignia, the new Commodore has also been co-developed under the expert and watchful eye of Holden’s Australian engineers to ensure the all-new Commodore continues a four-decade tradition of setting new benchmarks.  
      “Holden has been engaged in this program from the outset to ensure the next-generation Commodore lives up to its legendary nameplate,” said Jeremy Tassone, Holden’s Engineering Group Manager for Vehicle Development.
      “We know the first imported Commodore will come under a lot of scrutiny and we know we have a lot to live up to – this car delivers in spades”
      “Although we are remain in the early stages of the Holden development process, this is an absolutely world-class car. We’ve taken a precision-engineered German car and endowed it with Holden DNA. It drives like a Commodore should.
      “We’ve had our Holden engineers engaged in this global program from the outset and we’re continuing to do extensive tuning and development, racking up thousands of kilometers, at our Lang Lang proving ground in Victoria to ensure it’s got that Holden magic.
      “Of course, it helps that the underlying platform is absolutely world class! This global vehicle program, led by Opel in Germany, has produced a phenomenal base for us to work from. The genuinely cutting-edge all-wheel-drive system using active torque vectoring provides incredible traction and handling finesse. The key is what is dubbed the ‘Twinster’ rear drive module. Essentially, the traditional rear differential has been replaced with two individual clutches that not only save weight and improve packaging but provides virtually instantaneous active distribution of torque to the required wheel.
      “The overall system monitors inputs from vehicle sensors 100 times per second and constantly adjusts accordingly, it’s extraordinary.”
      The V6 engine with the all-wheel-drive system is a combination that the Holden team drove into the global vehicle program because we know our customers and this performance option is important to them. While it may not be built here, we’ll deliver a Commodore that our customers will love in 2018,” said Mr Tassone.    
      Commodore’s evolution reflects the transformation of the Holden brand and company as it moves to full-line importer of vehicles. But just like Commodore, Holden will remain a powerhouse of the industry and of the local motoring landscape. 
      “The next-generation Commodore will reset benchmarks in its class, as has every Commodore since 1978,” said Holden’s Executive Director of Sales, Peter Keley.
      “What Commodore will also continue to do is carry the family in space and comfort. Commodore will also race in Supercars from 2018 and continue to be on the road as police cars.
      “This next-generation vehicle is changing and bringing incredible technology and refinement with it but will continue to offer customers that quintessential Commodore experience they have loved for nearly four decades.  
      “With the first-ever imported Commodore, we’re delivering our customers an absolutely world-beating vehicle, with the space, practicality, technology and driving pleasure that Commodore has always provided. This is a different kind of Commodore to what has come before but lives up to the nameplate in every respect and will carry our heritage with pride.”
      NEXT-GENERATION COMMODORE KEY HIGHLIGHTS:
      Next-generation Commodore built in Germany on all-new, global E2 architecture shared with Opel Insignia Lightweight construction methods result in 200kg - 300kg weight savings compared to current Commodore Flagship model offers V6 AWD drivetrain with Holden-first 9-speed transmission V6 engine delivers 230kW / 370Nm while being incredibly efficient thanks to Stop-Start technology and Active Fuel Management 2.0T petrol and 2.0T diesel front-wheel drive models also coming to Australia Liftback and Sportwagon body-styles Cutting-edge, adaptive all-wheel-drive system with torque vectoring and twin-clutch (‘Twinster’) rear differential system Adaptive suspension Next-generation matrix lighting system Infotainment includes: Apple Car Play and Android Auto 8-inch configurable LCD instrument display, next-gen head-up display Pricing, specification, full details of driver, safety and additional infotainment technology to be confirmed closer to launch  

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      As we have known for a couple of years, the next Holden Commodore will not be a rear-wheel drive based model. Instead, it will be based on the next-generation Opel and Vauxhall Insignia. This model isn't due to come out till 2018, but Holden has surprised everyone by releasing key details about the next Commodore.
      Holden has been working with Opel and Vauxhall for the past five years on developing the Insignia for its duties as the Commodore in Australia. In terms of looks, Holden has not messed with or changed the Insignia's design. It will look the same as the European and North American models (Buick Regal). No sedan will be offered, only a five-door liftback and wagon.
      There will be two turbocharged four-cylinder engines on offer - gas and diesel. No displacement or power figures were given. We do know this engines will be paired with front-wheel drive. A 3.6L V6 producing 306 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque will power the flagship model - likely the Commodore SS. This will come paired with a nine-speed automatic and a torque-vectoring all-wheel-drive system. According to media reports, Holden pushed for the V6 and all-wheel drive combination for their requirements. There were rumors of the Commodore getting a twin-turbo V6 - possibly the twin-turbo 3.0L or 3.6L from Cadillac. But that isn't going to happen for a simple reason - it can't fit in the Insignia/Commodore's platform (E2XX). 
      Other key details about the next Commodore:
      The flagship Commodore model will feature adaptive dampers In most dimensions, the new Commodore is smaller than the current model Weight-wise, the new Commodore is 200 to 300 kg (about 441 to 661 pounds) lighter than the current model Holden will be doing their own ride and handling tuning program for the Commodore to better handle the roads and conditions that Australia offers Will the new Commodore be a success or tarnish a nameplate that has been around since 1978. That's a question that can only be answered in 2018. In the meantime, we have reports from various Australian outlets who were given the chance to drive two prototypes of the next Commodore. 
      Source: Holden
      First Drive Reports: CarAdvice, Drive.com.au, Motoring.com.au, Wheels
      Press Release is on Page 2
      Next-Generation Holden Commodore Is Coming
      First details of Holden’s next-generation Commodore revealed, redefining a four decade legacy First imported Commodore lives up to the legend; V6 flagship boasts 230kW and 370Nm, cutting-edge AWD system and 9-speed transmission   Packed with advanced technology: Active Fuel Management, adaptive suspension, torque-vectoring AWD, matrix lighting system, Apple CarPlay® and Android® Auto Extensive Holden Australian engineering development ensures next-generation Commodore lives up to the legendary nameplate with outstanding driving dynamics   Next-generation Holden Commodore on sale in 2018  Holden has today revealed first details of the all-new, next-generation Commodore ahead of its Australian launch in early 2018.
      Australia’s first look under the bonnet of the cutting-edge new Commodore reveals a car that will set new benchmarks in its segment for technology, style, practicality and driving dynamics.
      Headlined by the V6 flagship model, the first ever imported Commodore will honour the legendary nameplate by being the most technologically-advanced Holden ever. With a cutting-edge all-wheel-drive system channeling 230 kilowatts and 370 Newton metres to the road, combined with adaptive suspension technology, a company-first nine-speed automatic transmission and torque-vectoring all-wheel drive, the next-generation Commodore is set to cement the iconic nameplate’s reputation for class-leading driving dynamics and on-road refinement.
      Based on General Motor’s new ‘E2’ global architecture, engineered in Germany and shared with the Opel Insignia, the new Commodore has also been co-developed under the expert and watchful eye of Holden’s Australian engineers to ensure the all-new Commodore continues a four-decade tradition of setting new benchmarks.  
      “Holden has been engaged in this program from the outset to ensure the next-generation Commodore lives up to its legendary nameplate,” said Jeremy Tassone, Holden’s Engineering Group Manager for Vehicle Development.
      “We know the first imported Commodore will come under a lot of scrutiny and we know we have a lot to live up to – this car delivers in spades”
      “Although we are remain in the early stages of the Holden development process, this is an absolutely world-class car. We’ve taken a precision-engineered German car and endowed it with Holden DNA. It drives like a Commodore should.
      “We’ve had our Holden engineers engaged in this global program from the outset and we’re continuing to do extensive tuning and development, racking up thousands of kilometers, at our Lang Lang proving ground in Victoria to ensure it’s got that Holden magic.
      “Of course, it helps that the underlying platform is absolutely world class! This global vehicle program, led by Opel in Germany, has produced a phenomenal base for us to work from. The genuinely cutting-edge all-wheel-drive system using active torque vectoring provides incredible traction and handling finesse. The key is what is dubbed the ‘Twinster’ rear drive module. Essentially, the traditional rear differential has been replaced with two individual clutches that not only save weight and improve packaging but provides virtually instantaneous active distribution of torque to the required wheel.
      “The overall system monitors inputs from vehicle sensors 100 times per second and constantly adjusts accordingly, it’s extraordinary.”
      The V6 engine with the all-wheel-drive system is a combination that the Holden team drove into the global vehicle program because we know our customers and this performance option is important to them. While it may not be built here, we’ll deliver a Commodore that our customers will love in 2018,” said Mr Tassone.    
      Commodore’s evolution reflects the transformation of the Holden brand and company as it moves to full-line importer of vehicles. But just like Commodore, Holden will remain a powerhouse of the industry and of the local motoring landscape. 
      “The next-generation Commodore will reset benchmarks in its class, as has every Commodore since 1978,” said Holden’s Executive Director of Sales, Peter Keley.
      “What Commodore will also continue to do is carry the family in space and comfort. Commodore will also race in Supercars from 2018 and continue to be on the road as police cars.
      “This next-generation vehicle is changing and bringing incredible technology and refinement with it but will continue to offer customers that quintessential Commodore experience they have loved for nearly four decades.  
      “With the first-ever imported Commodore, we’re delivering our customers an absolutely world-beating vehicle, with the space, practicality, technology and driving pleasure that Commodore has always provided. This is a different kind of Commodore to what has come before but lives up to the nameplate in every respect and will carry our heritage with pride.”
      NEXT-GENERATION COMMODORE KEY HIGHLIGHTS:
      Next-generation Commodore built in Germany on all-new, global E2 architecture shared with Opel Insignia Lightweight construction methods result in 200kg - 300kg weight savings compared to current Commodore Flagship model offers V6 AWD drivetrain with Holden-first 9-speed transmission V6 engine delivers 230kW / 370Nm while being incredibly efficient thanks to Stop-Start technology and Active Fuel Management 2.0T petrol and 2.0T diesel front-wheel drive models also coming to Australia Liftback and Sportwagon body-styles Cutting-edge, adaptive all-wheel-drive system with torque vectoring and twin-clutch (‘Twinster’) rear differential system Adaptive suspension Next-generation matrix lighting system Infotainment includes: Apple Car Play and Android Auto 8-inch configurable LCD instrument display, next-gen head-up display Pricing, specification, full details of driver, safety and additional infotainment technology to be confirmed closer to launch  
    • By William Maley
      Today was a sad day for the Australian automotive industry as the final Ford Falcon rolled down the assembly line at Ford's Broadmeadows plant in Broadmeadows, Victoria. The final vehicle was a Falcon XR6 finished in blue and being number 4,356,628 to roll off the assembly since Broadmeadows opened back in August 1959. The vehicle will join alongside a Falcon Ute (which ended production earlier this year) and Territory SUV in Ford's ownership.
      Ford held a private ceremony with its 600 workers at the plant to mark the occasion. 
      "Today is an emotional day for all of us at Ford. We are saying goodbye to some of our proud and committed manufacturing employees and marking an end to 91 years of manufacturing in Australia," said Ford Australia CEO Graeme Whickman.
      Whickman's comment hits home as many of the workers will not have a job after today. Ford will be keeping around 120 workers to decommission the plant. Ford also announced that 160 workers will be redeployed to new roles in design and enginnering. Ford says they are still committed to Australian market as they will still operate design and enginnering offices in the country.
      “Ford will remain a major presence in Australia and we will carry forward the legacy of our manufacturing team by continuing to design and engineer world-class vehicles for Australia and the world for many years to come,” said Whickman.
      The Falcon is Australia's longest running nameplate. First introduced back in June 1960, Ford built 3,568,689 Falcons - that includes sedans, wagons, utes, and panel vans. During its heyday, the Falcon would compete with the Holden Commodore as to who would top the sales sheet. But sales of both models have been declining over the past decade as buyers have been turning towards smaller vehicles and SUVs. The increasing costs of producing vehicles in Australia didn't help the cause.
      2017 will see Holden and Toyota end their local production of vehicles in Australia.
      Source: ABC, Drive.com.au, Motoring.com.au, 2, News.com.au, Wheels, 2

      View full article
  • Recent Status Updates

  • Who's Online (See full list)