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Rumorpile: Holden To Transition Into Chevrolet After 2017


William Maley

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William Maley

Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com

December 13, 2013

With the announcement of Holden closing up production and R&D by 2017, the battle to keep the Holden brand alive has only begun.

News.com.au reports that General Motors is considering dropping Holden and transitioning to Chevrolet. The reasons for this begin with the Holden brand not having any distinction once the brand begins importing vehicles in 2017. There is also an image problem as the brand could be seen as damaged with the shutdown of its factories.

"There will now be the biggest fight ever to save the Holden brand from being shelved. Every time there is a new boss of Holden or a new head of General Motors, the question is asked, 'Why do we still have the Holden brand in Australia? Now that (Holden) won't be making cars and there won't be anything unique about the vehicles, the debate is going to come up again and it will be hard to win. There will be massive implications for the brand," a Holden insider said.

"There is no emotion in this. It will all come down to money. If General Motors thinks sales will go down because the Holden brand is on the nose, then they will switch it to Chevrolet," another insider said.

This isn't the first time that Holden had to fight back. Back at the start of the global financial crisis, Holden was on the chopping block alongside Hummer and Pontiac. Holden fought back with Mark Ruess at the helm.

"The amount of money we've spent trying to defend the Holden brand to Detroit is ridiculous. But when executives from North America come out to Australia, they take photos of Chevrolet badges that people have fitted to their Holden utes, and use that against us," an insider said.

Source: News.com.au

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


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Is the Holden brand worth saving? Maybe not.

Only in Australia is it known as Holden. When the Commodore and its siblings are sold in the ME and elsewhere, they are sold as Chevrolets. The Chevy SS in the USA is a Commodore (of sorts). Since there is no unique selling point to Holden (a RWD haven in this era of FWD appliances), especially given the ridiculous strength of the Australian dollar, Holden can go peacefully into the night. Holden RIP.

And I say that as someone who mourned Oldsmobile's untimely passing in 2004.

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Then Vauxhall should go too. They already sell Opel in the UK, no need for both.

Saw a blurb somewhere today that Vauxhall could go also. Didn't realize Opel was in the UK, I knew it was in Ireland so they already have RHD Opel badged models...

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eh, apparently I was wrong... but I'm sure I saw Opels there before.

Could have been gray market or from Ireland.

Hard times still for GM. It's going to be hard for their regional niche brands to survive..

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First it will be a transition to Chevy. Then with Chevy's failure in Europe, and Buick's continued China success, all Chevy will transition to Buick. Afterwhich GMC and Cadillac lose their way, marketing versions of the Spark to replace the loss of the original Chevy Spark, they and Opel (Vauxhall is just a memory by then) are all folded into Buick.

In the beginning it was Buick... in the end it will be all Buick!

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First it will be a transition to Chevy. Then with Chevy's failure in Europe, and Buick's continued China success, all Chevy will transition to Buick. Afterwhich GMC and Cadillac lose their way, marketing versions of the Spark to replace the loss of the original Chevy Spark, they and Opel (Vauxhall is just a memory by then) are all folded into Buick.

In the beginning it was Buick... in the end it will be all Buick!

In the beginning was Olds, not Buick. Buick is only 6-7 years younger than Olds when Olds was still around.

I personally doubt that Buick will be the ONLY nameplate left. The people that buy a GMC truck would generally never buy a Chevy truck, for example. Chevrolet is in most markets around the world; Buick is in the USA and China only.

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The Holden thing is not really as big of a deal than it is to a hand full of purist.

Number one Holden's present line up is pretty much Chevy bases already including a Volt. GM is not fooling Aussies as they are smart enough to know what a Chevy is and they do love Chevy.

Number two They can save a lot of money on rebadging and Holden would be part of the deep pockets of the Chevy global Marketing Program. They would have so much more marketing money than they have now.

Number three. GM made it clear the latest Zeta was not going to last long so 2017 is no surprise.

Number four look for a Alpha Chevy sedan based on the under pinnings of the Gen 6 Camaro to carry on the SS and possibly a cheaper model with more options choices. This could be exported as Australia only needs 30K units a year and the money exchanges that way better.

Number five GM has said it will re enter Japan with Chevy. They can only do this with RHD. Well we already have RHD down under in Malibu, Cruze and other small Chevy eh I mean Holden's so this would lead one to think Chevy for down under.

Add to all this the ability to intro a Camaro and even a Corvette down under once the LHD version arrive. They are prime for a Camaro. I have a friend in Perth with a LS powered 68 Camaro and he is excited about this as well as many other of our customers. Many spend a lot of money to buy Chevys and import them. Some have to spend more to convert to LHD if they are in the east and it is a rich mans car.

The only real negative is the loss of a old name and some equity here but that is about it. This is a country that has made the Mazda 3 number one so there is little loyalty to the home brands anymore.

I would recommend a visit to the Holden site and just compare the line up to Chevy and realize it already is Chevy. Also I would recommend visiting the enthusiast sites and see just how many Chevys are in the country. They are prized and used for shows and racing. We have sold tons and tons of parts for their cars and few go to Holden's.

The worst loss here is some 2900 jobs with the Zeta but that is the extent of their production there and that is less than many plants here.

The markets have changed and the way we build and sell cars has to change as the cost involved anymore prevent so many brands and models anymore. The overlap has to stop. Like I have said before we will lose more names globally as there are still some weak companies that just can no longer go it alone.


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In the beginning was Olds, not Buick. Buick is only 6-7 years younger than Olds when Olds was still around.

No. Oldsmobile may be older, but Buick was the first GM company, controlled by Durant to acquire Olds, Oakland, Cadillac, etc.

I think he was joking

Yes, I am.

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