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  1. From Drive.com.au: Holden has all but officially confirmed it will ditch the European-built Astra small car from its local line-up. Holden has all but waved goodbye to the Astra small car, admitting that unfavourable exchange rates mean it’s unlikely the 22-year-old nameplate will continue beyond the hundreds of cars waiting to be sold. The announcement comes after Drive’s exclusive revelation that Holden had instructed dealers to cease ordering the small car that’s consistently been Holden’s second biggest seller behind the locally made Commodore. The move to drop Astra from the Australian lineup car means Holden will be without a small hatchback for at least a year. It will also miss out on the sleek new Astra that goes on sale in Europe in 2009. The just-released Holden Cruze small car will initially arrive only as a sedan, effectively replacing the Viva and Astra ranges before it is built locally next year. “Astra’s been a great car for us … but the reality is … we have to do what we have to do to get profitable in the marketplace,” said Holden marketing director Alan Batey. “We’re not going to build cars here to make a loss.” “Your marketing dollars can only go so far. We had a Viva in a sedan, hatchback and wagon. We had an Astra hatchback, coupe, twin-top, sedan and wagon. “Half of our problem was proliferation.” Asked if Astra was unlikely to continue in Australia, Batey said: “in the environment we’re in today the answer’s yes”. Batey said the Cruze was crucial for the success of Holden. “150 per cent of our focus is on launching this car (Cruze).” Holden will begin building a localised version of the Cruze alongside the Commodore from 2010. Holden has more than a month’s stock of Astras still to sell, but most were built in 2008 and are being sold at a discount to the recommended retail price. “They were bought in before the (foreign exchange) rate turned,” said Batey. How sad - as much as I really want to slam this decision, if Opel gets sold then Holden needs to be prepared, however the Cruze just isn't good enough a replacement.
  2. cyclonic

    Daewoo Lacetti Premiere

    The chicks are hot. Looks ok as a Daewoo, especially remembering that its built in Korea and will be exported from there to Australia as a Holden.
  3. Good news. Holden is too valuable a brand to lose and means too much to the Australian public. Meanwhile, having the Volt here will be a good thing too.
  4. cyclonic

    The Coolest Fiero on the Planet

    Ahh Canadians. Is there anything they can't do?
  5. cyclonic

    Opel moving toward independence from GM?

    To an outsider (me) thats how GM looks right now. Either way, this whole thing is going to result in a massive restructure and change the face of the auto industry as we know it. Though that is kinda obvious really. So what does this mean? We can all throw our own two cents in here. *Keep Opel design where it is? *Move all GM group manufacturing to much lower cost centres? *Centralise all design instead and tailor brands/platforms to suit various markets? *Kill off/sell several brands? (ie Saab, Buick, Saturn, Vauxhall, Holden) *Consolidate all brands worldwide into one or two brands? ie Chevrolet, Cadillac I personally like Opel and want them to hang around.
  6. cyclonic

    Word Association

    PCS? No thats mean. Mindless? Violence.
  7. cyclonic

    Sarah Palin.........?

    As an outsider, on the other side of the planet.... i'm scared $h!less of the Republicans getting into office again - especially with a gun-toting, ditzy, morally confused and corrupt redneck like her. Shes nothing more than pretty fluff. I would regard her as the US equivalent of Iran's President Ahmadinejad, and thats saying a lot.
  8. cyclonic

    Holden cuts workforce after GM cancels programs

    GM sneezes, Holden catches a cold. Simple and sad.
  9. If it works then fine. The problem is trying to sell it to the local market that still has memories of how bad the 4cyl VB Commodore was. If it can be marketed effectively, then why not? However a 4cyl engine in a traditionally large car like the Commodore is a taboo here.
  10. About time too. As much as I hate to say it, the VE is just too damn porky and really needs to lose some weight. Losing the spare will tick off rural customers, but if the run-flats work, then it shouldn't be too much of an issue. Going to lighter construction materials should be done and the sooner the better. I don't agree with a 4 cylinder Commodore (the 4 cyl VB with the Starfire 4 was a dismal failure and tainted the car's image for years) unless its coupled with a hybrid powertrain. Direct Injection needs to happen, and Holden needs to hasten its access to fuel efficiencies available to it from the GM empire. However fuel-saving tyres are a no-no, as they usually spoil driving dynamics!
  11. cyclonic

    Officially official: 2011 Chevrolet Cruze

    Can we say "J-car"?
  12. cyclonic

    Euro-sourced Astra Dead?

    Is the Astra being manufactured in South Africa?
  13. cyclonic

    Euro-sourced Astra Dead?

    Thats pretty much the point I think as well. I'm sure Holden would love to keep bringing in the Euro Astra but the exchange rates are pretty tight and Holden is under pressure from Detroit to maximize profits. As much as a I don't like it, a Korean-Astra makes sense financially, especially as Holden has design input in the GMDAT offices in Seoul and significant local input (lets not forget that the Captiva was partially Holden designed) into the coming Korean product. Here's an interesting aside. A recent poll asked consumers if they though all of Holden's cars we're made locally - over 60% of respondents thought they were!
  14. cyclonic

    can-am SPYDER

    Or the new V8 Ariel Atom......
  15. cyclonic

    The 2008 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ

    I really like the Malibu - makes me wish Holden looked at it instead of the Epica.

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