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  1. Opel has unveiled their first concept car since coming under the ownership of PSA Group. Called the GT X Experimental, the concept gives us an idea of what direction Opel/Vauxhall's styling will take. The compact crossover shares an obvious similarity to a previous Opel concept, the GT Coupe in terms of overall shape and the colorful line running the length of the roof. A key trait to the concept's design is the "Vizor" up front. Resembling the visor on a motorcycle helmet, the area houses the headlights, running lights, and the various hardware needed for the driver assistance features. A large windshield extends all the way to the second-row to provide an open-air feeling. The concept features a set of suicide doors to provide an unobstructed view through the cabin. The dash is very minimalistic with a massive screen and a simple-looking steering wheel. The GT X Experimental uses an electric powertrain. No power figures or range were given, but Opel did say the concept has a 50-kWh battery and can be charged wirelessly. The concept also features Level 3 Autonomous capability where it can handle all aspects of driving, but the driver needs to ready to intervene at a moment's notice. “The Opel GT X Experimental embodies the spirit of our core brand values – German, approachable, exciting. It’s an “approachable” concept that people can identify with. It confidently combines a pure and bold design execution with progressive technology that makes life easier. Clearly, this vehicle signals a very exciting future for the brand,” said Mark Adams, Opel's Vice President of Design. Source: Opel Opel GT X Experimental: Bold Vision of Opel’s Future The next PACE! milestone: Brand Concept vehicle previews future of Opel models Expressing Opel values: German, approachable, exciting Opel Vizor: Hallmark design for the new face of all future models Visual and digital detox: “Pure Panel” redefines interior design Electric Power: GT X Experimental stands for electrification of all Opel models by 2024 Opel concept vehicles: Designing the future for over 50 years Rüsselsheim. Opel is giving a preview of the exciting future of the brand with a new Brand Concept. Its name: the Opel GT X Experimental – a bold, 4.06-metre, 5-door, all-electric compact SUV with coupé appeal and brimming with innovative ideas. The GT X Experimental embodies Opel’s values and vision along with providing a glimpse of what the future holds for Opel models. The company had already announced that it would further sharpen its profile during the presentation of the strategic PACE! plan last November. The GT X Experimental is the first tangible result of this process. “With our PACE! plan, we have a very clear vision of how we want to create a successful future for Opel. Focus on a strong brand identity defined by our values – German, approachable, exciting – plays an integral role in our return to sustainable success. Our Brand Concept shows how these values will come to life in our products in the future. Our engineering and design teams have put this into effect brilliantly in the Opel GT X Experimental. It gives a clear idea of how we at Opel see the mobility of the future,” said Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller. Passion for democratising technical innovations fuels Opel’s pioneering spirit During the concept phase, Opel started a wide-ranging and intense process of reflection about itself and its values. Opel can look back on 156 years of industrial existence starting with precision mechanics and almost 120 years of automobile engineering fuelled by the constant commitment to make exciting and relevant innovative technologies accessible to all. Throughout its history, the specific “Opel way” can be summarised with these three values: German, approachable and exciting. As for its future, the brand wants to remain anchored in the most modern and positive expression of its German roots: Opel’s “New Germanness” takes the best of Germany’s traditional values – engineering excellence, a genuine fascination for well-executed machines, an intense focus on functionality, quality and reliability – and enriches them with warmth and open-mindedness. Inspired by Opel’s innovative spirit, the new GT X Experimental captures the essence of the company’s rich heritage and promises an exciting future. It blends German engineering, precision and quality with visionary innovations to give a preview of what Opel cars will be in the mid-2020s: bold, pure in appearance yet extremely approachable and customer-centric. Opel decided to embody its vision for its future automobiles in a compact SUV of just 4,063 millimetres in length (wheelbase: 2,625 mm; width: 1,830 mm; height including antenna: 1,528 mm): SUVs are currently the most popular vehicles on the market and Opel is driven by the desire to make such even more attractive for a wide public. But to do so, SUVs must also become more efficient than ever before. This is why the Opel GT X Experimental is built on a lightweight architecture, has a reduced footprint and drives on 17-inch wheels that visually look much larger, so as to maximise road comfort but also look stunning. True to the PACE! plan promise of offering an electrified version of each Opel model by 2024, the GT X Experimental is a fully electric car with power delivered by a 50 kWh, compact next-generation lithium-ion battery with inductive charging. The GT X Experimental does not pretend to offer full autonomous driving. However, it does have Level 3 autonomous driving functions – meaning it can handle all aspects of driving but the driver must be able to respond to a request to intervene. Pure and bold: This is future Opel design The GT X Experimental presents innovative technology with sophisticated simplicity. Vice President Design Mark Adams and his team have developed a whole philosophy for Opel’s specific, German design, blending purity with emotional boldness. In the GT X Experimental, each usual function, each module of an automobile has been questioned with the aim of achieving purity of design by removing all unnecessary design elements. This is something the design team calls “visual detox”. The Opel GT X Experimental body shows bold proportions coupled with beautifully structured, pure flowing surfaces. Its strong silhouette is accentuated by the bold graphic identity separating the upper and lower areas. The lower section is painted in a luminous light grey, and the whole upper part including the bonnet, glass and roof are in an almost black, night blue. Between these is a bold Opel yellow signature accent that flows through the car to give it structure and dynamism. This colour scheme re-visits Opel’s traditional grey/black/yellow colour but reconfigures it to create a fresh modern feel. The GT X Experimental welcomes passengers with spacious, unobstructed access thanks to rear-hinged rear doors and all four doors opening wide to 90 degrees to give the concept an approachable character. The sweeping panoramic windscreen/roof reaches far back to the rear seats, enhancing the SUV’s light and open sense of spaciousness. Opel designers have also reduced the traditional, so-called “cut lines” in the bodywork – made necessary by the different openings such as doors and bonnet – to an absolute minimum. The upper cutline of all doors is hidden in the yellow accent and the one of the rear doors coincides with the opening of the boot. Forgoing conventional elements such as door handles and exterior mirrors, the body is a smooth canvas that wraps around surprising details such as small cameras embedded in the yellow graphic lining the sides of the bonnet pop out, replacing the exterior mirrors. To counterbalance this visual detox, rare graphical details energise the appearance of the GT X Experimental. Cropped triangles are engraved along the sill under the driver’s side rear door: one of them contains a small, hexagonal LED screen that shows the electric charge level of the battery. The 17-inch wheels look much bigger thanks to robust rubber covers that flow over the rim to visually enlarge the size of the dark blue tyres. Yellow graphic lines on the rim echo the yellow signature accent of the body and surround the electronic Blitz emblem that stands still as the wheels rotate. And to underline the SUV character of the car, protective cladding wraps around the lower body, giving the GT X Experimental’s solid, robust stance a rugged look. “The Opel GT X Experimental embodies the spirit of our core brand values – German, approachable, exciting. It’s an “approachable” concept that people can identify with. It confidently combines a pure and bold design execution with progressive technology that makes life easier. Clearly, this vehicle signals a very exciting future for the brand,” said Mark Adams. Opel Compass and Opel Vizor give new visual identity to future Opel models The GT X Experimental also reveals the new theme for the front and the rear fascia of future models for the first time. The “Opel Compass” organises the design elements along two strong axes that intersect the Blitz. The legendary brand emblem is now the focus point more than ever before. In a crisper and purer execution, the centre-crease line on the bonnet represents the vertical axis, which is prolonged under the Blitz. The horizontal axis is symbolised by the Opel-typical wing-shaped daytime running light signature, which will continue to feature on all future Opel vehicles. The rear echoes the front fascia and shows the Opel Compass in its purity, with the Blitz solidly anchoring the horizontal line of the wing-shaped rear lights and the vertical line from the roof fin antenna to the accentuated crease in the bumper. Following the theme of the Opel Compass and in line with the approach of creating the purest possible design, Opel designers have also created a new Opel face that expresses the company’s pioneering spirit: the “Opel Vizor”. The Opel Vizor is a full, single module that frames all of the high-tech and brand elements such as the LED Blitz emblem that shows the car’s operation state by lighting up in different colours, the LED matrix headlights, the wing-shaped daytime running lights as well as all cameras and sensors of the assistance systems and autonomous driving functions under darkly tinted Plexiglas. The elegant module boldly stretches across the front of the car right under the bonnet. The new, distinctive Opel Vizor is set to be a hallmark design element for all Opel models later in the 2020s. Interior around Pure Panel: Visual and digital detox for a relaxing oasis The airy interior of the Opel GT X Experimental follows the same principles and opts for visual and digital detox. Surrounded by the panoramic windscreen/roof and uninterrupted side-window, the cabin’s sleekness masks the innovations it holds in store. The interior’s standout feature is the instrument panel encased in a module that mimics the Opel Vizor – the Opel “Pure Panel”. One wide, single screen welcomes drivers and shows that the multitude of screens, buttons and controls often seen in current-day production vehicles could become obsolete. The Pure Panel enables drivers to have access to the latest technology and get the information they need while eliminating all visually distracting elements. The purity of the interior design can also be seen in the clever positioning of the air vents. They have been hidden behind the screens, allowing all-round pure, clean surfaces. The Pure Panel also shows how Opel allows technology to simplify customers’ lives. Two screens on the far left and right of the front panel display the side views captured by the small pop-out cameras. Elsewhere, the design of the steering wheel has been simplified while its centre module repeats the shape of the Opel Vizor. And, like its counterparts on the wheels, the LED Opel Blitz on its centre remains upright whatever the steering position. This clean high-tech approach flows throughout the interior. For example, the four seats look like they are floating while removable speakers nestled under the headrests also allow an out-of-car sound experience. Graphic details also highlight the strict purity of the design in the interior: the cropped triangle theme is repeated on the seat backs and the accelerator and brake pedals.
  2. Opel has unveiled their first concept car since coming under the ownership of PSA Group. Called the GT X Experimental, the concept gives us an idea of what direction Opel/Vauxhall's styling will take. The compact crossover shares an obvious similarity to a previous Opel concept, the GT Coupe in terms of overall shape and the colorful line running the length of the roof. A key trait to the concept's design is the "Vizor" up front. Resembling the visor on a motorcycle helmet, the area houses the headlights, running lights, and the various hardware needed for the driver assistance features. A large windshield extends all the way to the second-row to provide an open-air feeling. The concept features a set of suicide doors to provide an unobstructed view through the cabin. The dash is very minimalistic with a massive screen and a simple-looking steering wheel. The GT X Experimental uses an electric powertrain. No power figures or range were given, but Opel did say the concept has a 50-kWh battery and can be charged wirelessly. The concept also features Level 3 Autonomous capability where it can handle all aspects of driving, but the driver needs to ready to intervene at a moment's notice. “The Opel GT X Experimental embodies the spirit of our core brand values – German, approachable, exciting. It’s an “approachable” concept that people can identify with. It confidently combines a pure and bold design execution with progressive technology that makes life easier. Clearly, this vehicle signals a very exciting future for the brand,” said Mark Adams, Opel's Vice President of Design. Source: Opel Opel GT X Experimental: Bold Vision of Opel’s Future The next PACE! milestone: Brand Concept vehicle previews future of Opel models Expressing Opel values: German, approachable, exciting Opel Vizor: Hallmark design for the new face of all future models Visual and digital detox: “Pure Panel” redefines interior design Electric Power: GT X Experimental stands for electrification of all Opel models by 2024 Opel concept vehicles: Designing the future for over 50 years Rüsselsheim. Opel is giving a preview of the exciting future of the brand with a new Brand Concept. Its name: the Opel GT X Experimental – a bold, 4.06-metre, 5-door, all-electric compact SUV with coupé appeal and brimming with innovative ideas. The GT X Experimental embodies Opel’s values and vision along with providing a glimpse of what the future holds for Opel models. The company had already announced that it would further sharpen its profile during the presentation of the strategic PACE! plan last November. The GT X Experimental is the first tangible result of this process. “With our PACE! plan, we have a very clear vision of how we want to create a successful future for Opel. Focus on a strong brand identity defined by our values – German, approachable, exciting – plays an integral role in our return to sustainable success. Our Brand Concept shows how these values will come to life in our products in the future. Our engineering and design teams have put this into effect brilliantly in the Opel GT X Experimental. It gives a clear idea of how we at Opel see the mobility of the future,” said Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller. Passion for democratising technical innovations fuels Opel’s pioneering spirit During the concept phase, Opel started a wide-ranging and intense process of reflection about itself and its values. Opel can look back on 156 years of industrial existence starting with precision mechanics and almost 120 years of automobile engineering fuelled by the constant commitment to make exciting and relevant innovative technologies accessible to all. Throughout its history, the specific “Opel way” can be summarised with these three values: German, approachable and exciting. As for its future, the brand wants to remain anchored in the most modern and positive expression of its German roots: Opel’s “New Germanness” takes the best of Germany’s traditional values – engineering excellence, a genuine fascination for well-executed machines, an intense focus on functionality, quality and reliability – and enriches them with warmth and open-mindedness. Inspired by Opel’s innovative spirit, the new GT X Experimental captures the essence of the company’s rich heritage and promises an exciting future. It blends German engineering, precision and quality with visionary innovations to give a preview of what Opel cars will be in the mid-2020s: bold, pure in appearance yet extremely approachable and customer-centric. Opel decided to embody its vision for its future automobiles in a compact SUV of just 4,063 millimetres in length (wheelbase: 2,625 mm; width: 1,830 mm; height including antenna: 1,528 mm): SUVs are currently the most popular vehicles on the market and Opel is driven by the desire to make such even more attractive for a wide public. But to do so, SUVs must also become more efficient than ever before. This is why the Opel GT X Experimental is built on a lightweight architecture, has a reduced footprint and drives on 17-inch wheels that visually look much larger, so as to maximise road comfort but also look stunning. True to the PACE! plan promise of offering an electrified version of each Opel model by 2024, the GT X Experimental is a fully electric car with power delivered by a 50 kWh, compact next-generation lithium-ion battery with inductive charging. The GT X Experimental does not pretend to offer full autonomous driving. However, it does have Level 3 autonomous driving functions – meaning it can handle all aspects of driving but the driver must be able to respond to a request to intervene. Pure and bold: This is future Opel design The GT X Experimental presents innovative technology with sophisticated simplicity. Vice President Design Mark Adams and his team have developed a whole philosophy for Opel’s specific, German design, blending purity with emotional boldness. In the GT X Experimental, each usual function, each module of an automobile has been questioned with the aim of achieving purity of design by removing all unnecessary design elements. This is something the design team calls “visual detox”. The Opel GT X Experimental body shows bold proportions coupled with beautifully structured, pure flowing surfaces. Its strong silhouette is accentuated by the bold graphic identity separating the upper and lower areas. The lower section is painted in a luminous light grey, and the whole upper part including the bonnet, glass and roof are in an almost black, night blue. Between these is a bold Opel yellow signature accent that flows through the car to give it structure and dynamism. This colour scheme re-visits Opel’s traditional grey/black/yellow colour but reconfigures it to create a fresh modern feel. The GT X Experimental welcomes passengers with spacious, unobstructed access thanks to rear-hinged rear doors and all four doors opening wide to 90 degrees to give the concept an approachable character. The sweeping panoramic windscreen/roof reaches far back to the rear seats, enhancing the SUV’s light and open sense of spaciousness. Opel designers have also reduced the traditional, so-called “cut lines” in the bodywork – made necessary by the different openings such as doors and bonnet – to an absolute minimum. The upper cutline of all doors is hidden in the yellow accent and the one of the rear doors coincides with the opening of the boot. Forgoing conventional elements such as door handles and exterior mirrors, the body is a smooth canvas that wraps around surprising details such as small cameras embedded in the yellow graphic lining the sides of the bonnet pop out, replacing the exterior mirrors. To counterbalance this visual detox, rare graphical details energise the appearance of the GT X Experimental. Cropped triangles are engraved along the sill under the driver’s side rear door: one of them contains a small, hexagonal LED screen that shows the electric charge level of the battery. The 17-inch wheels look much bigger thanks to robust rubber covers that flow over the rim to visually enlarge the size of the dark blue tyres. Yellow graphic lines on the rim echo the yellow signature accent of the body and surround the electronic Blitz emblem that stands still as the wheels rotate. And to underline the SUV character of the car, protective cladding wraps around the lower body, giving the GT X Experimental’s solid, robust stance a rugged look. “The Opel GT X Experimental embodies the spirit of our core brand values – German, approachable, exciting. It’s an “approachable” concept that people can identify with. It confidently combines a pure and bold design execution with progressive technology that makes life easier. Clearly, this vehicle signals a very exciting future for the brand,” said Mark Adams. Opel Compass and Opel Vizor give new visual identity to future Opel models The GT X Experimental also reveals the new theme for the front and the rear fascia of future models for the first time. The “Opel Compass” organises the design elements along two strong axes that intersect the Blitz. The legendary brand emblem is now the focus point more than ever before. In a crisper and purer execution, the centre-crease line on the bonnet represents the vertical axis, which is prolonged under the Blitz. The horizontal axis is symbolised by the Opel-typical wing-shaped daytime running light signature, which will continue to feature on all future Opel vehicles. The rear echoes the front fascia and shows the Opel Compass in its purity, with the Blitz solidly anchoring the horizontal line of the wing-shaped rear lights and the vertical line from the roof fin antenna to the accentuated crease in the bumper. Following the theme of the Opel Compass and in line with the approach of creating the purest possible design, Opel designers have also created a new Opel face that expresses the company’s pioneering spirit: the “Opel Vizor”. The Opel Vizor is a full, single module that frames all of the high-tech and brand elements such as the LED Blitz emblem that shows the car’s operation state by lighting up in different colours, the LED matrix headlights, the wing-shaped daytime running lights as well as all cameras and sensors of the assistance systems and autonomous driving functions under darkly tinted Plexiglas. The elegant module boldly stretches across the front of the car right under the bonnet. The new, distinctive Opel Vizor is set to be a hallmark design element for all Opel models later in the 2020s. Interior around Pure Panel: Visual and digital detox for a relaxing oasis The airy interior of the Opel GT X Experimental follows the same principles and opts for visual and digital detox. Surrounded by the panoramic windscreen/roof and uninterrupted side-window, the cabin’s sleekness masks the innovations it holds in store. The interior’s standout feature is the instrument panel encased in a module that mimics the Opel Vizor – the Opel “Pure Panel”. One wide, single screen welcomes drivers and shows that the multitude of screens, buttons and controls often seen in current-day production vehicles could become obsolete. The Pure Panel enables drivers to have access to the latest technology and get the information they need while eliminating all visually distracting elements. The purity of the interior design can also be seen in the clever positioning of the air vents. They have been hidden behind the screens, allowing all-round pure, clean surfaces. The Pure Panel also shows how Opel allows technology to simplify customers’ lives. Two screens on the far left and right of the front panel display the side views captured by the small pop-out cameras. Elsewhere, the design of the steering wheel has been simplified while its centre module repeats the shape of the Opel Vizor. And, like its counterparts on the wheels, the LED Opel Blitz on its centre remains upright whatever the steering position. This clean high-tech approach flows throughout the interior. For example, the four seats look like they are floating while removable speakers nestled under the headrests also allow an out-of-car sound experience. Graphic details also highlight the strict purity of the design in the interior: the cropped triangle theme is repeated on the seat backs and the accelerator and brake pedals. View full article
  3. ICE - Hybrid - EVs, Who is doing it right, wrong or what? I figure we have our own views of how American and Asian auto companies are doing it. European auto companies have jumped in with big plans for updated ICE, Hybrid and EV's coming out over the next 5-7 years. I would like to open the discussion on the differences and if you feel they are doing it right, wrong, or just what in regards to the rest of the world. Also, as we are seeing with Mercedes Benz announcement, they have Hybrids, but are they really Hybrids or just performance boosting models using electric motors? So start off with your thoughts on these European models and if any name plates are missing please state the company name and explain why you believe they are doing it right, wrong or just different. Sound off on the discussion of the European brands!
  4. Ever since PSA Group announced that it would be making a return the U.S. as part of a 10-year plan, there has been a large amount of speculation as to which brand would be sold. Would it be Citroen, DS, Peugeot, or the recently acquired Opel/Vauxhall? “We’ve chosen a brand, but it’s too early to talk about it,” said Larry Dominique, president and CEO of PSA North America to Car and Driver. PSA Group is still in the first phase of its plan with the Free2Move mobility aggregation platform (shows various ways of getting around such as bikes and electric vehicles) in Seattle. Somewhat worrying is that the company has only “activated its marketing” in Seattle recently according to Dominique - Free2Move launched back in October. Out of all of the brands under PSA Group, Car and Driver says there is a good chance that Opel could be the brand coming to the U.S. They point out a comment made by PSA Group CEO Carlos Tavares saying after purchasing Opel/Vauxhall is that Opel engineers can “ensure the future products for this market will be fully U.S. compliant,” in terms of regulations and taste. But there is a possible complication to PSA's plans. Yesterday, President Donald Trump's tariffs on imported steel and aluminum went into effect. There is also talk about a possibly matching up the tariff on imported vehicles - currently, the U.S. imposes a 2.5 percent tariff on imported European vehicles. Earlier this month, Tavares told Automotive News that he is watching the situation closely and that if a new vehicle tariff does come, it will make the company rethink their plans. “If the overall framework of tariffs change, it may have an impact on our strategy. That’s clear, because if we don’t have a profitable business plan, then we don’t go,” said Tavares. Dominique is a little bit more hopeful. Speaking at the J.D. Power Automotive Summit this week, Dominique said he doesn't believe an increase in the tariff will happen and expressed confidence that the various trade issues could be worked out. Source: Car and Driver, Automotive News (Subscription Required), 2 View full article
  5. Ever since PSA Group announced that it would be making a return the U.S. as part of a 10-year plan, there has been a large amount of speculation as to which brand would be sold. Would it be Citroen, DS, Peugeot, or the recently acquired Opel/Vauxhall? “We’ve chosen a brand, but it’s too early to talk about it,” said Larry Dominique, president and CEO of PSA North America to Car and Driver. PSA Group is still in the first phase of its plan with the Free2Move mobility aggregation platform (shows various ways of getting around such as bikes and electric vehicles) in Seattle. Somewhat worrying is that the company has only “activated its marketing” in Seattle recently according to Dominique - Free2Move launched back in October. Out of all of the brands under PSA Group, Car and Driver says there is a good chance that Opel could be the brand coming to the U.S. They point out a comment made by PSA Group CEO Carlos Tavares saying after purchasing Opel/Vauxhall is that Opel engineers can “ensure the future products for this market will be fully U.S. compliant,” in terms of regulations and taste. But there is a possible complication to PSA's plans. Yesterday, President Donald Trump's tariffs on imported steel and aluminum went into effect. There is also talk about a possibly matching up the tariff on imported vehicles - currently, the U.S. imposes a 2.5 percent tariff on imported European vehicles. Earlier this month, Tavares told Automotive News that he is watching the situation closely and that if a new vehicle tariff does come, it will make the company rethink their plans. “If the overall framework of tariffs change, it may have an impact on our strategy. That’s clear, because if we don’t have a profitable business plan, then we don’t go,” said Tavares. Dominique is a little bit more hopeful. Speaking at the J.D. Power Automotive Summit this week, Dominique said he doesn't believe an increase in the tariff will happen and expressed confidence that the various trade issues could be worked out. Source: Car and Driver, Automotive News (Subscription Required), 2
  6. Ever since PSA Group took ownership of Opel and Vauxhall back in spring, many were wondering what the French automaker had in store. Today at a press conference at Opel's headquarters, Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller unveiled the turnaround called PACE. Here is a summary of PACE, Return Opel and Vauxhall to profit by 2020 Lowering costs on each car built by €700 (about $813) Committed to keeping Vauxhall as a brand for Great Britain Entering 20 new markets by 2022, with Brazil and China topping the list Accelerating the transition from General Motors to PSA Group platforms (originally was planned to finish by 2027, now plan to finish by 2024). This will reduce the number of platforms Opel/Vauxhall use from nine to two. Powertrain families will also decrease from ten to four Nine new models by 2020. This begins with a new Combo van next year and Corsa subcompact in 2019 Launching four electrified models by 2020, with an electrified option being available for each model by 2024 According to Lohscheller, the existing product strategy would not meet the upcoming CO2 targets coming into effect. Thus the decision was made to move up plans for electrification Opel's technical center in Ruesselsheim will engineer all-new Opel/Vauxhall vehicles to have them stand out from their Citroen/DS/Peugeot brethren Ruesselheim will also become a global competence center for PSA, building up expertise in various areas such as autonomous driving and fuel cells Pledging to avoid closing down factories or forced layoffs "The necessary and sustainable reduction of labour costs shall be reached with thoughtful measures such as innovative working time concepts, voluntary programs or early retirement schemes,” the company said in a statement. “PACE! will unleash our full potential. This plan is paramount for the company, to protect our employees against headwinds and turn Opel/Vauxhall into a sustainable, profitable, electrified, and global company. Our future will be secured and we will contribute with German excellence to the Groupe PSA development. The implementation has already started with all teams eager to achieve the objectives,” said Lohscheller in a statement. But will it be enough? As Reuters noted, shares in PSA Group dropped 2.2 percent to €19.68 (about $22.65) after Carlos Tavares said Opel's financial health has been getting worse as PACE! was being drawn up. “The situation gets worse by the day,” Travares said, without going into detail. Source: Autocar, Car, Reuters, Opel Press Release is on Page 2 Opel/Vauxhall Go Profitable, Electric and Global with PACE! Return to profitability by 2020: 2% automotive recurring operating margin, positive operational free cash flow[1] Lower financial break-even point to 800,000 vehicles Electrification and CO2 leadership: All passenger carlines to be electrified by 2024 Improve efficiency towards benchmark levels for manufacturing and logistics cost as well as for wage cost/revenue-ratio Intention to maintain and modernise all plants and to refrain from forced redundancies R&D centre in Rüsselsheim to become a global competence centre for Groupe PSA Enlarge commercial scope: Leverage Opel brand for overseas export opportunities and foster growth of Opel/Vauxhall LCV business PACE! execution to immediately unleash Opel/Vauxhall performance and pave the way to a sustainable future Rüsselsheim. Michael Lohscheller, CEO of Opel Automobile GmbH, today announced the strategic plan PACE! to restore financial fundamentals and enhance sustainable competitiveness and growth. All PACE! initiatives will contribute to the goals of generating a positive operational free cash flow as well as a recurring operating margin for the auto division of 2% in a first phase by 2020 and of 6% by 2026. Combining strengths will unleash annual synergies on Groupe PSA level of €1.1 billion by 2020 and €1.7 billion by 2026. All actions will contribute to a lower financial break-even point for Opel/Vauxhall of 800,000 vehicles, creating a profitable business model whatever the headwinds may be. Having full access to Groupe PSA technologies, Opel/Vauxhall will become a European CO2 leader. By 2024, all European passenger carlines will be electrified – offering a pure battery electric propulsion or plug-in hybrid version alongside efficient internal combustion engines. By 2020, Opel/Vauxhall will have four electrified carlines on the market, including the Grandland X PHEV and the next generation Corsa as a fully electric vehicle. The company will enhance its competitiveness by 2020 e.g. by reducing costs by €700 per car. Efficiency of marketing expenses will be improved by more than 10%. Overall efficiencies will be increased by reducing complexity across all functions with a ratio G&A/revenue moving from 5.6% to 4.7% and an objective to bring the company towards industry benchmark in terms of wage cost/revenue ratio. Optimising R&D and CapEx at 7-8% of automotive revenue, manufacturing and administration processes by 2020 and releasing working capital of €1.2 billion by 2022 will also contribute to seizing synergies. Improved competitiveness of the manufacturing plants will lead to new vehicle allocations that will provide a better utilisation rate for the next decade. The two Groupe PSA platforms CMP and EMP2 will be localised in all Opel/Vauxhall plants. To start with, an EMP2-based SUV is planned for Eisenach in 2019; and an EMP2-based D-segment vehicle is coming to Rüsselsheim. The allocation of new powertrains in Opel/Vauxhall manufacturing sites will accompany the shift from GM to Groupe PSA engines and transmissions. “PACE! will unleash our full potential. This plan is paramount for the company, to protect our employees against headwinds and turn Opel/Vauxhall into a sustainable, profitable, electrified, and global company. Our future will be secured and we will contribute with German excellence to the Groupe PSA development. The implementation has already started with all teams eager to achieve the objectives,” said Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller. The plan is designed with the clear intention to maintain all plants and refrain from forced redundancies in Europe. The necessary and sustainable reduction of labour costs shall be reached with thoughtful measures such as innovative working time concepts, voluntary programs or early retirement schemes. All new Opel/Vauxhall vehicles will be engineered in Rüsselsheim, which will be transformed into a global competence centre for the whole Groupe PSA. First areas of expertise are identified, e.g. fuel cells, certain automated driving technologies and driver assistance developments. This will further guarantee German engineering quality and affordable innovations. Altogether, the number of platforms Opel/Vauxhall uses for its passenger cars will be reduced from currently 9 to 2 by 2024. Furthermore, the powertrain families will be optimised from currently 10 to 4. “Aligning architecture and powertrain families will substantially reduce development and production complexity, thus allowing scale effects and synergies, contributing to overall profitability,” said Lohscheller. Opel/Vauxhall will switch to efficient and flexible Groupe PSA vehicle architectures faster than originally expected. From 2024 onwards, all Opel/Vauxhall passenger car models will be based on joint Groupe PSA architectures. Next to come are the Combo in 2018 and the next generation of the bestselling Corsa in 2019. This course will be steadily continued with one major launch per year. Counting every body style, Opel/Vauxhall will launch 9 new models by 2020. This line-up will enable to increase the pricing power of Opel/Vauxhall brands and reduce the gap against benchmark by four points. Sales growth of the further profiled and strengthened Opel/Vauxhall brands will be supported by initiatives like the start of even more attractive financial offerings as well as full service leasing offers via the Financial Services of Opel and Vauxhall. Furthermore, Opel will enter more than 20 new export markets by 2022. Beyond that, Opel will explore global midterm overseas profitable export opportunities. To foster growth in the financially attractive light commercial vehicle (LCV) business, Opel/Vauxhall will launch new models and enter new markets with the clear goal to increase its LCV sales by 25% by 2020 against 2017. “PACE! has been designed by Opel/Vauxhall for the benefit of our employees as an immediate performance booster,” said Lohscheller. View full article
  7. Ever since PSA Group took ownership of Opel and Vauxhall back in spring, many were wondering what the French automaker had in store. Today at a press conference at Opel's headquarters, Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller unveiled the turnaround called PACE. Here is a summary of PACE, Return Opel and Vauxhall to profit by 2020 Lowering costs on each car built by €700 (about $813) Committed to keeping Vauxhall as a brand for Great Britain Entering 20 new markets by 2022, with Brazil and China topping the list Accelerating the transition from General Motors to PSA Group platforms (originally was planned to finish by 2027, now plan to finish by 2024). This will reduce the number of platforms Opel/Vauxhall use from nine to two. Powertrain families will also decrease from ten to four Nine new models by 2020. This begins with a new Combo van next year and Corsa subcompact in 2019 Launching four electrified models by 2020, with an electrified option being available for each model by 2024 According to Lohscheller, the existing product strategy would not meet the upcoming CO2 targets coming into effect. Thus the decision was made to move up plans for electrification Opel's technical center in Ruesselsheim will engineer all-new Opel/Vauxhall vehicles to have them stand out from their Citroen/DS/Peugeot brethren Ruesselheim will also become a global competence center for PSA, building up expertise in various areas such as autonomous driving and fuel cells Pledging to avoid closing down factories or forced layoffs "The necessary and sustainable reduction of labour costs shall be reached with thoughtful measures such as innovative working time concepts, voluntary programs or early retirement schemes,” the company said in a statement. “PACE! will unleash our full potential. This plan is paramount for the company, to protect our employees against headwinds and turn Opel/Vauxhall into a sustainable, profitable, electrified, and global company. Our future will be secured and we will contribute with German excellence to the Groupe PSA development. The implementation has already started with all teams eager to achieve the objectives,” said Lohscheller in a statement. But will it be enough? As Reuters noted, shares in PSA Group dropped 2.2 percent to €19.68 (about $22.65) after Carlos Tavares said Opel's financial health has been getting worse as PACE! was being drawn up. “The situation gets worse by the day,” Travares said, without going into detail. Source: Autocar, Car, Reuters, Opel Press Release is on Page 2 Opel/Vauxhall Go Profitable, Electric and Global with PACE! Return to profitability by 2020: 2% automotive recurring operating margin, positive operational free cash flow[1] Lower financial break-even point to 800,000 vehicles Electrification and CO2 leadership: All passenger carlines to be electrified by 2024 Improve efficiency towards benchmark levels for manufacturing and logistics cost as well as for wage cost/revenue-ratio Intention to maintain and modernise all plants and to refrain from forced redundancies R&D centre in Rüsselsheim to become a global competence centre for Groupe PSA Enlarge commercial scope: Leverage Opel brand for overseas export opportunities and foster growth of Opel/Vauxhall LCV business PACE! execution to immediately unleash Opel/Vauxhall performance and pave the way to a sustainable future Rüsselsheim. Michael Lohscheller, CEO of Opel Automobile GmbH, today announced the strategic plan PACE! to restore financial fundamentals and enhance sustainable competitiveness and growth. All PACE! initiatives will contribute to the goals of generating a positive operational free cash flow as well as a recurring operating margin for the auto division of 2% in a first phase by 2020 and of 6% by 2026. Combining strengths will unleash annual synergies on Groupe PSA level of €1.1 billion by 2020 and €1.7 billion by 2026. All actions will contribute to a lower financial break-even point for Opel/Vauxhall of 800,000 vehicles, creating a profitable business model whatever the headwinds may be. Having full access to Groupe PSA technologies, Opel/Vauxhall will become a European CO2 leader. By 2024, all European passenger carlines will be electrified – offering a pure battery electric propulsion or plug-in hybrid version alongside efficient internal combustion engines. By 2020, Opel/Vauxhall will have four electrified carlines on the market, including the Grandland X PHEV and the next generation Corsa as a fully electric vehicle. The company will enhance its competitiveness by 2020 e.g. by reducing costs by €700 per car. Efficiency of marketing expenses will be improved by more than 10%. Overall efficiencies will be increased by reducing complexity across all functions with a ratio G&A/revenue moving from 5.6% to 4.7% and an objective to bring the company towards industry benchmark in terms of wage cost/revenue ratio. Optimising R&D and CapEx at 7-8% of automotive revenue, manufacturing and administration processes by 2020 and releasing working capital of €1.2 billion by 2022 will also contribute to seizing synergies. Improved competitiveness of the manufacturing plants will lead to new vehicle allocations that will provide a better utilisation rate for the next decade. The two Groupe PSA platforms CMP and EMP2 will be localised in all Opel/Vauxhall plants. To start with, an EMP2-based SUV is planned for Eisenach in 2019; and an EMP2-based D-segment vehicle is coming to Rüsselsheim. The allocation of new powertrains in Opel/Vauxhall manufacturing sites will accompany the shift from GM to Groupe PSA engines and transmissions. “PACE! will unleash our full potential. This plan is paramount for the company, to protect our employees against headwinds and turn Opel/Vauxhall into a sustainable, profitable, electrified, and global company. Our future will be secured and we will contribute with German excellence to the Groupe PSA development. The implementation has already started with all teams eager to achieve the objectives,” said Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller. The plan is designed with the clear intention to maintain all plants and refrain from forced redundancies in Europe. The necessary and sustainable reduction of labour costs shall be reached with thoughtful measures such as innovative working time concepts, voluntary programs or early retirement schemes. All new Opel/Vauxhall vehicles will be engineered in Rüsselsheim, which will be transformed into a global competence centre for the whole Groupe PSA. First areas of expertise are identified, e.g. fuel cells, certain automated driving technologies and driver assistance developments. This will further guarantee German engineering quality and affordable innovations. Altogether, the number of platforms Opel/Vauxhall uses for its passenger cars will be reduced from currently 9 to 2 by 2024. Furthermore, the powertrain families will be optimised from currently 10 to 4. “Aligning architecture and powertrain families will substantially reduce development and production complexity, thus allowing scale effects and synergies, contributing to overall profitability,” said Lohscheller. Opel/Vauxhall will switch to efficient and flexible Groupe PSA vehicle architectures faster than originally expected. From 2024 onwards, all Opel/Vauxhall passenger car models will be based on joint Groupe PSA architectures. Next to come are the Combo in 2018 and the next generation of the bestselling Corsa in 2019. This course will be steadily continued with one major launch per year. Counting every body style, Opel/Vauxhall will launch 9 new models by 2020. This line-up will enable to increase the pricing power of Opel/Vauxhall brands and reduce the gap against benchmark by four points. Sales growth of the further profiled and strengthened Opel/Vauxhall brands will be supported by initiatives like the start of even more attractive financial offerings as well as full service leasing offers via the Financial Services of Opel and Vauxhall. Furthermore, Opel will enter more than 20 new export markets by 2022. Beyond that, Opel will explore global midterm overseas profitable export opportunities. To foster growth in the financially attractive light commercial vehicle (LCV) business, Opel/Vauxhall will launch new models and enter new markets with the clear goal to increase its LCV sales by 25% by 2020 against 2017. “PACE! has been designed by Opel/Vauxhall for the benefit of our employees as an immediate performance booster,” said Lohscheller.
  8. On Thursday, Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller will be presenting a new restructuring plan for its future under the PSA Group umbrella. Thanks a report from German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, we have some idea of what this plan entails. According to the paper, Opel will be cutting down on the models it offers and begin to focus on high-margin segments. The brand will also be tasked with developing technology for partial and complete electrification of all PSA Group models. To pull this off, Opel’s Rüsselsheim tech center will become the central point for the development of this tech. Other parts of the plan outlined in Frankfurter Allgemeine's report include, Combining the purchasing activities of the two companies Launching Opel into new markets (this was considered to be too taboo for GM) Cut labor costs Reduce the amount of discounting for new vehicles Future models to use platforms, engines, and transmissions from PSA Source: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Automotive News Europe (Subscription Required) View full article
  9. On Thursday, Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller will be presenting a new restructuring plan for its future under the PSA Group umbrella. Thanks a report from German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, we have some idea of what this plan entails. According to the paper, Opel will be cutting down on the models it offers and begin to focus on high-margin segments. The brand will also be tasked with developing technology for partial and complete electrification of all PSA Group models. To pull this off, Opel’s Rüsselsheim tech center will become the central point for the development of this tech. Other parts of the plan outlined in Frankfurter Allgemeine's report include, Combining the purchasing activities of the two companies Launching Opel into new markets (this was considered to be too taboo for GM) Cut labor costs Reduce the amount of discounting for new vehicles Future models to use platforms, engines, and transmissions from PSA Source: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Automotive News Europe (Subscription Required)
  10. Opel has more orders than they can fill for the Opel Ampera E According to the news, Opel has issued an order to all opel dealers to pause on accepting anymore orders for the Ampera E EV auto that is based on the Chevrolet Bolt. To date, Chevrolet has delivered 15,000 bolts and in Europe 1,000 have been delivered in Norway alone with another 5,000 already on order. Opel has also started Ampera E deliveries in Germany, Switzerland and Netherlands. Opel has stated they want to ensure getting the Consumer Reports most reliable auto, the BOLT into as many hands as possible and at this time till they can fulfill the backlog, they are holding off on accepting new orders. There is no answer from Opel or GM on what is holding up production of the Ampera E for the European market as GM has the capacity to build far more auto's. Opel Ampera E story
  11. Opel and Vauxhall are currently in the process of working on a new business plan for their new owner, PSA Group. Already, it seems one project has been suspended. Auto Express has learned from sources that plans for a flagship SUV have been shelved for the time being. Possibly named Monza, the model would use the Insignia platform and be around the size of a Ford Edge. It seems PSA Group is putting a freeze on various projects that are related in some form to Opel/Vauxhall's former owner, General Motors. Whether or not the Monza is canned or moved to a platform from PSA Group remains to be seen. One thing is clear, changes are already happening. Source: Auto Express View full article
  12. Opel and Vauxhall are currently in the process of working on a new business plan for their new owner, PSA Group. Already, it seems one project has been suspended. Auto Express has learned from sources that plans for a flagship SUV have been shelved for the time being. Possibly named Monza, the model would use the Insignia platform and be around the size of a Ford Edge. It seems PSA Group is putting a freeze on various projects that are related in some form to Opel/Vauxhall's former owner, General Motors. Whether or not the Monza is canned or moved to a platform from PSA Group remains to be seen. One thing is clear, changes are already happening. Source: Auto Express
  13. General Motors and PSA Group completed the sale of Opel/Vauxhall yesterday, effectively ending the era of GM’s European division. “It is a historic day. We are proud to join Groupe PSA and are now opening a new chapter in our history after 88 years with General Motors. We will continue our path of making technology `made in Germany´ available to everyone. The combination of our strengths will enable us to turn Opel and Vauxhall into a profitable and self-funded business. We have set ourselves the clear target of returning to profitability by 2020,” said Opel Automobile GmbH CEO Michael Lohscheller. As part of the sale, PSA Group paid 1.53 billion for the Opel and Vauxhall brands and $1.06 billion for the European arm of GM Financial. GM is still on the hook for existing pension obligations for Opel - estimated to be around $3.54 billion. The final part of the sale also marks some key changes of Opel and Vauxhall's leadership. Four new people - Christian Müller, Rémi Girardon, Philippe de Rovira, and Michelle Wen - will be joining the company's management. What happens next? The new management team will begin working on a new plan for the future of the two brands. The ultimate goal is to have Opel and Vauxhall return to profitability by 2020. Source: Reuters, Opel Press Release is on Page 2 Birth of a European Champion: Opel and Vauxhall join Groupe PSA Opel and Vauxhall to be operated as true iconic German and British brands New performance plan to be presented in 100 days: to generate a positive operational free cash flow by 2020 as well as an operating margin of 2% by 2020 and 6% by 2026 Four new team members to join the leadership team Rüsselsheim. The sale of Opel Automobile GmbH with its brands Opel and Vauxhall by General Motors to Groupe PSA has been finalized now. “It is a historic day,” said Opel Automobile GmbH CEO Michael Lohscheller. “We are proud to join Groupe PSA and are now opening a new chapter in our history after 88 years with General Motors. We will continue our path of making technology `made in Germany´ available to everyone. The combination of our strengths will enable us to turn Opel and Vauxhall into a profitable and self-funded business. We have set ourselves the clear target of returning to profitability by 2020.” “We are witnessing the birth of a true European champion today,” emphasized PSA Chairman of the board Carlos Tavares. “We will assist Opel and Vauxhall’s return to profitability and aim to set new industry benchmarks together. We will unleash the power of these iconic brands and the huge potential of its existing talents. Opel will remain German, Vauxhall will remain British. They are the perfect fit to our existing portfolio of French brands Peugeot, Citroën and DS Automobiles.” The market share of the enlarged Groupe PSA is now around 17 percent in Europe, making it the continent’s second largest carmaker with first or second place in main markets. As already assured when the contract was signed in March, all employee codetermination rights will remain unchanged. The Opel/Vauxhall management team will work on a plan for the future in the next 100 days. “We are eager to build the plan with PSA’s support and obviously together with our partners from the Works Council and the unions,” said Opel CEO Lohscheller. Synergies within the Groupe PSA, for example in purchasing and development, are set to play a major part. The combined entity will unlock substantial economies of scale and synergies in purchasing, manufacturing and R&D estimated at €1.7 Bn at run rate. The goal is to generate a positive operational free cash flow by 2020 as well as an operating margin of two percent by 2020 and six percent by 2026. Today’s start of a new era is accompanied by some important leadership changes. “I am happy to announce that four new members will join my management team,” said CEO Lohscheller: Christian Müller, previously Vice President Global Propulsion Systems – Europe and with Opel since 1996, will succeed William F. Bertagni as Vice President Engineering. He will integrate engineering and powertrain in one department. Rémi Girardon, previously Senior Vice President Group Industrial Strategy at Groupe PSA, will succeed Philip R. Kienle as Vice President Manufacturing. Philippe de Rovira, previously Group Controller at Groupe PSA, will become the new CFO of Opel, following Michael Lohscheller. Michelle Wen, Group Supply Chain Management Network Director at Vodafone Procurement, will be joining the Opel leadership team effective September 1 replacing Katherine Worthen currently Vice President Purchasing and Supply Chain. All other moves are with immediate effect. “We thank Katherine Worthen, William F. Bertagni and Philip Kienle for all their contributions to Opel/Vauxhall and wish them all the best for the next chapter of their careers within General Motors,” said Opel CEO Lohscheller. “And we cordially welcome Michelle Wen from Vodafone as well as Remi Girardon and Philippe de Rovira from Groupe PSA. I am looking forward to working with these new team members who will reinforce the potential of our leadership team.” Going forward, Michael Lohscheller is planning with a much leaner management structure, including the number of direct reports. “We are reducing complexity and increasing speed,” said Lohscheller. “I am looking forward to shaping the next chapter of Opel/Vauxhall with the new management team and leading our company into a successful future. The owners and the employees will not be the only ones to benefit from ever stronger Opel and Vauxhall brands – our customers will do so too.” PSA and Opel/Vauxhall have been working together since 2012. The cooperation so far includes four vehicles from Opel. The first model, the Opel Crossland X, has been available at dealerships since the end of June. The Opel Grandland X SUV in the next higher segment follows in the fall. The successor of the Opel Combo light commercial vehicle will come onto the market next year and as of 2019 the next generation of the best-selling Opel Corsa will be launched. Opel/Vauxhall and Groupe PSA will continue to work with General Motors in the future. In addition to development in the area of electric propulsion, Opel plants will continue to produce vehicles for the GM brands Buick and Holden. In parallel, the acquisition of GM Financial's European operations is under way, subject to validation by the different regulatory authorities’ review and is scheduled for the second half of 2017. View full article
  14. General Motors and PSA Group completed the sale of Opel/Vauxhall yesterday, effectively ending the era of GM’s European division. “It is a historic day. We are proud to join Groupe PSA and are now opening a new chapter in our history after 88 years with General Motors. We will continue our path of making technology `made in Germany´ available to everyone. The combination of our strengths will enable us to turn Opel and Vauxhall into a profitable and self-funded business. We have set ourselves the clear target of returning to profitability by 2020,” said Opel Automobile GmbH CEO Michael Lohscheller. As part of the sale, PSA Group paid 1.53 billion for the Opel and Vauxhall brands and $1.06 billion for the European arm of GM Financial. GM is still on the hook for existing pension obligations for Opel - estimated to be around $3.54 billion. The final part of the sale also marks some key changes of Opel and Vauxhall's leadership. Four new people - Christian Müller, Rémi Girardon, Philippe de Rovira, and Michelle Wen - will be joining the company's management. What happens next? The new management team will begin working on a new plan for the future of the two brands. The ultimate goal is to have Opel and Vauxhall return to profitability by 2020. Source: Reuters, Opel Press Release is on Page 2 Birth of a European Champion: Opel and Vauxhall join Groupe PSA Opel and Vauxhall to be operated as true iconic German and British brands New performance plan to be presented in 100 days: to generate a positive operational free cash flow by 2020 as well as an operating margin of 2% by 2020 and 6% by 2026 Four new team members to join the leadership team Rüsselsheim. The sale of Opel Automobile GmbH with its brands Opel and Vauxhall by General Motors to Groupe PSA has been finalized now. “It is a historic day,” said Opel Automobile GmbH CEO Michael Lohscheller. “We are proud to join Groupe PSA and are now opening a new chapter in our history after 88 years with General Motors. We will continue our path of making technology `made in Germany´ available to everyone. The combination of our strengths will enable us to turn Opel and Vauxhall into a profitable and self-funded business. We have set ourselves the clear target of returning to profitability by 2020.” “We are witnessing the birth of a true European champion today,” emphasized PSA Chairman of the board Carlos Tavares. “We will assist Opel and Vauxhall’s return to profitability and aim to set new industry benchmarks together. We will unleash the power of these iconic brands and the huge potential of its existing talents. Opel will remain German, Vauxhall will remain British. They are the perfect fit to our existing portfolio of French brands Peugeot, Citroën and DS Automobiles.” The market share of the enlarged Groupe PSA is now around 17 percent in Europe, making it the continent’s second largest carmaker with first or second place in main markets. As already assured when the contract was signed in March, all employee codetermination rights will remain unchanged. The Opel/Vauxhall management team will work on a plan for the future in the next 100 days. “We are eager to build the plan with PSA’s support and obviously together with our partners from the Works Council and the unions,” said Opel CEO Lohscheller. Synergies within the Groupe PSA, for example in purchasing and development, are set to play a major part. The combined entity will unlock substantial economies of scale and synergies in purchasing, manufacturing and R&D estimated at €1.7 Bn at run rate. The goal is to generate a positive operational free cash flow by 2020 as well as an operating margin of two percent by 2020 and six percent by 2026. Today’s start of a new era is accompanied by some important leadership changes. “I am happy to announce that four new members will join my management team,” said CEO Lohscheller: Christian Müller, previously Vice President Global Propulsion Systems – Europe and with Opel since 1996, will succeed William F. Bertagni as Vice President Engineering. He will integrate engineering and powertrain in one department. Rémi Girardon, previously Senior Vice President Group Industrial Strategy at Groupe PSA, will succeed Philip R. Kienle as Vice President Manufacturing. Philippe de Rovira, previously Group Controller at Groupe PSA, will become the new CFO of Opel, following Michael Lohscheller. Michelle Wen, Group Supply Chain Management Network Director at Vodafone Procurement, will be joining the Opel leadership team effective September 1 replacing Katherine Worthen currently Vice President Purchasing and Supply Chain. All other moves are with immediate effect. “We thank Katherine Worthen, William F. Bertagni and Philip Kienle for all their contributions to Opel/Vauxhall and wish them all the best for the next chapter of their careers within General Motors,” said Opel CEO Lohscheller. “And we cordially welcome Michelle Wen from Vodafone as well as Remi Girardon and Philippe de Rovira from Groupe PSA. I am looking forward to working with these new team members who will reinforce the potential of our leadership team.” Going forward, Michael Lohscheller is planning with a much leaner management structure, including the number of direct reports. “We are reducing complexity and increasing speed,” said Lohscheller. “I am looking forward to shaping the next chapter of Opel/Vauxhall with the new management team and leading our company into a successful future. The owners and the employees will not be the only ones to benefit from ever stronger Opel and Vauxhall brands – our customers will do so too.” PSA and Opel/Vauxhall have been working together since 2012. The cooperation so far includes four vehicles from Opel. The first model, the Opel Crossland X, has been available at dealerships since the end of June. The Opel Grandland X SUV in the next higher segment follows in the fall. The successor of the Opel Combo light commercial vehicle will come onto the market next year and as of 2019 the next generation of the best-selling Opel Corsa will be launched. Opel/Vauxhall and Groupe PSA will continue to work with General Motors in the future. In addition to development in the area of electric propulsion, Opel plants will continue to produce vehicles for the GM brands Buick and Holden. In parallel, the acquisition of GM Financial's European operations is under way, subject to validation by the different regulatory authorities’ review and is scheduled for the second half of 2017.
  15. Today, Dr. Karl-Thomas Neumann has announced that he will be stepping down as Opel CEO, confirming various reports that came out over the weekend. His replacement is Opel's current chief financial officer, Michael Lohscheller effective immediately. "It was a difficult personal decision to not continue with the Opel/Vauxhall team when it transitions to Groupe PSA. I am proud of the team for all we have accomplished so far and have no doubt that the move to PSA will make Opel/Vauxhall an even stronger and more successful company in the future. I am committed to completing this transaction and will then take some time to decide what is next for me,” Neumann said in a statement released today. Neumann will stay on Opel's management board until the sale of Opel and Vauxhall to PSA Groupe is completed. Reports of Neumann's department popped up on Saturday by German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung. Their report said a key reason for his departure was concerns about PSA Group not fully valuing the importance of electric vehicles. It should be noted the paper did not cite a source for this claim. As we reported back in February, Neumann was working on a secret plan on transitioning the brand to selling only electric vehicles. Then on Sunday, Reuters learned from a source that Volkswagen was considering re-hiring Neumann - possibly as CEO for Audi. Before joining GM, Neumann was in charge of Volkswagen's operations in China. Current Audi CEO Rupert Stadler is under fire due to the recent reveal of illegal software installed on certain A7 and A8 TDIs in Europe. Source: Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung , Reuters, Opel Press Release is on Page 2 Michael Lohscheller Appointed New CEO of Opel Rüsselsheim. Opel CEO Dr. Karl-Thomas Neumann has stepped down as the Speaker of the Management Board and CEO of Adam Opel GmbH today. He remains a member of the Management Board until the closing of the sale of Opel/Vauxhall to Groupe PSA. Michael Lohscheller, Opel CFO since September 2012, has been unanimously appointed as his successor with immediate effect by the Supervisory Board. This will ensure continuity for the business and its stakeholders as well as a seamless managerial transition with the priority task to build the new strategic plan for Opel. According to Dr. Neumann, “it was a difficult personal decision to not continue with the Opel/Vauxhall team when it transitions to Groupe PSA. I am proud of the team for all we have accomplished so far and have no doubt that the move to PSA will make Opel/Vauxhall an even stronger and more successful company in the future. I am committed to completing this transaction and will then take some time to decide what is next for me.” “We have made tremendous progress in the turnaround of Opel/Vauxhall under Karl-Thomas’ leadership,” said Dan Ammann, Opel Supervisory Board Chairman and President, General Motors. “We thank him for his significant contributions to Opel/Vauxhall and GM over the past four years.” Dr. Wolfgang Schäfer-Klug, Vice Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Adam Opel GmbH and Head of the General Works Council: “The worker representatives within the Supervisory Board respect Dr. Neumann’s decision. He has managed to regain recognition with Opel, an improved brand image and a strengthened self-awareness, coupled with competitive, outstanding models. The decision to appoint the current CFO and member of the management board Michael Lohscheller as the new CEO is explicitly supported by us.” Michael Lohscheller said: “I would like to thank the Supervisory Board for the trust. We will stay on the current path and continue to gain strength as part of the Groupe PSA. After the expected closing of the transaction, a new European champion will emerge. I am looking forward to the new task and to working together with the management team to implement a successful future plan for the benefit of all 38,000 Opel/Vauxhall employees and its stakeholders.”
  16. Today, Dr. Karl-Thomas Neumann has announced that he will be stepping down as Opel CEO, confirming various reports that came out over the weekend. His replacement is Opel's current chief financial officer, Michael Lohscheller effective immediately. "It was a difficult personal decision to not continue with the Opel/Vauxhall team when it transitions to Groupe PSA. I am proud of the team for all we have accomplished so far and have no doubt that the move to PSA will make Opel/Vauxhall an even stronger and more successful company in the future. I am committed to completing this transaction and will then take some time to decide what is next for me,” Neumann said in a statement released today. Neumann will stay on Opel's management board until the sale of Opel and Vauxhall to PSA Groupe is completed. Reports of Neumann's department popped up on Saturday by German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung. Their report said a key reason for his departure was concerns about PSA Group not fully valuing the importance of electric vehicles. It should be noted the paper did not cite a source for this claim. As we reported back in February, Neumann was working on a secret plan on transitioning the brand to selling only electric vehicles. Then on Sunday, Reuters learned from a source that Volkswagen was considering re-hiring Neumann - possibly as CEO for Audi. Before joining GM, Neumann was in charge of Volkswagen's operations in China. Current Audi CEO Rupert Stadler is under fire due to the recent reveal of illegal software installed on certain A7 and A8 TDIs in Europe. Source: Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung , Reuters, Opel Press Release is on Page 2 Michael Lohscheller Appointed New CEO of Opel Rüsselsheim. Opel CEO Dr. Karl-Thomas Neumann has stepped down as the Speaker of the Management Board and CEO of Adam Opel GmbH today. He remains a member of the Management Board until the closing of the sale of Opel/Vauxhall to Groupe PSA. Michael Lohscheller, Opel CFO since September 2012, has been unanimously appointed as his successor with immediate effect by the Supervisory Board. This will ensure continuity for the business and its stakeholders as well as a seamless managerial transition with the priority task to build the new strategic plan for Opel. According to Dr. Neumann, “it was a difficult personal decision to not continue with the Opel/Vauxhall team when it transitions to Groupe PSA. I am proud of the team for all we have accomplished so far and have no doubt that the move to PSA will make Opel/Vauxhall an even stronger and more successful company in the future. I am committed to completing this transaction and will then take some time to decide what is next for me.” “We have made tremendous progress in the turnaround of Opel/Vauxhall under Karl-Thomas’ leadership,” said Dan Ammann, Opel Supervisory Board Chairman and President, General Motors. “We thank him for his significant contributions to Opel/Vauxhall and GM over the past four years.” Dr. Wolfgang Schäfer-Klug, Vice Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Adam Opel GmbH and Head of the General Works Council: “The worker representatives within the Supervisory Board respect Dr. Neumann’s decision. He has managed to regain recognition with Opel, an improved brand image and a strengthened self-awareness, coupled with competitive, outstanding models. The decision to appoint the current CFO and member of the management board Michael Lohscheller as the new CEO is explicitly supported by us.” Michael Lohscheller said: “I would like to thank the Supervisory Board for the trust. We will stay on the current path and continue to gain strength as part of the Groupe PSA. After the expected closing of the transaction, a new European champion will emerge. I am looking forward to the new task and to working together with the management team to implement a successful future plan for the benefit of all 38,000 Opel/Vauxhall employees and its stakeholders.” View full article
  17. If General Motors and PSA Group were hoping to have a smooth sale of Opel, they were dashed this week. Both Automobilwoche and German newspaper Allgemeine Zeitung report Opel's work council and German labor union IG Metall have some specific demands for workers at Opel's development center in Rüsselsheim. The two parties want a guarantee that 7,700 workers will keep their jobs at the center and that continue performing work for GM until 2020 - which could account for 30 percent of the development center's output. There are also some disagreements on vehicle development. PSA Group wants the next-generation Corsa subcompact to use one their platforms, while Opel wants to keep the current platform and also wants to develop an SUV based on the Insignia platform. Until this issue can get resolved, GM and PSA Group cannot move forward with the Opel sale. Originally, GM was planning to move their European assets into a new company titled Opel Automobile GmbH. But plans for this have been postponed. "Only when these service contracts are signed and the new ITEZ contract is signed can the business transition come," an insider told Allgemeine Zeitung. A spokeswoman for the works council told Automobilwoche that there was no disagreement between the various parties on this issue. But the complexity of this matter has pushed back plans for workers to ratify the agreement. Information sessions about the agreement that were supposed to take place this week have been reportedly canceled. Source: Automobilwoche, Allgemeine Zeitung
  18. If General Motors and PSA Group were hoping to have a smooth sale of Opel, they were dashed this week. Both Automobilwoche and German newspaper Allgemeine Zeitung report Opel's work council and German labor union IG Metall have some specific demands for workers at Opel's development center in Rüsselsheim. The two parties want a guarantee that 7,700 workers will keep their jobs at the center and that continue performing work for GM until 2020 - which could account for 30 percent of the development center's output. There are also some disagreements on vehicle development. PSA Group wants the next-generation Corsa subcompact to use one their platforms, while Opel wants to keep the current platform and also wants to develop an SUV based on the Insignia platform. Until this issue can get resolved, GM and PSA Group cannot move forward with the Opel sale. Originally, GM was planning to move their European assets into a new company titled Opel Automobile GmbH. But plans for this have been postponed. "Only when these service contracts are signed and the new ITEZ contract is signed can the business transition come," an insider told Allgemeine Zeitung. A spokeswoman for the works council told Automobilwoche that there was no disagreement between the various parties on this issue. But the complexity of this matter has pushed back plans for workers to ratify the agreement. Information sessions about the agreement that were supposed to take place this week have been reportedly canceled. Source: Automobilwoche, Allgemeine Zeitung View full article
  19. There are still a lot of unanswered questions concerning the sale of Opel/Vauxhall to PSA Groupe. A fair number deals with Buick as a number of their products (including the new Regal) are intertwined with Opel. GM executives say this will not affect Buick's lineup down the road. “The sale of Opel will have no impact on the fresh new lineup Buick is building out,” said Duncan Aldred, GM’s vice president of global Buick and GMC during the launch of the 2018 Regal this week. “This is very much part of our portfolio plan,” said Mark Reuss, GM’s executive vice president of global product development, purchasing, and supply chain to Car and Driver. “As we said, Opel and the engineering/production piece of this is very much intact for all of our global platforms. So, you know, no impact.” While the deal isn't fully finished yet, Reuss claimed that issues relating to products would be settled before the final transfer takes place. Reuss said he didn't know "of a specific agreement" when asked about if GM would pay PSA Group for engineering work done by Opel. In related news, Automotive News Europe reports that Opel would continue to build Buick vehicles beyond 2019 in its German factories. Source: Automotive News Europe (Subscription Required), Car and Driver View full article
  20. There are still a lot of unanswered questions concerning the sale of Opel/Vauxhall to PSA Groupe. A fair number deals with Buick as a number of their products (including the new Regal) are intertwined with Opel. GM executives say this will not affect Buick's lineup down the road. “The sale of Opel will have no impact on the fresh new lineup Buick is building out,” said Duncan Aldred, GM’s vice president of global Buick and GMC during the launch of the 2018 Regal this week. “This is very much part of our portfolio plan,” said Mark Reuss, GM’s executive vice president of global product development, purchasing, and supply chain to Car and Driver. “As we said, Opel and the engineering/production piece of this is very much intact for all of our global platforms. So, you know, no impact.” While the deal isn't fully finished yet, Reuss claimed that issues relating to products would be settled before the final transfer takes place. Reuss said he didn't know "of a specific agreement" when asked about if GM would pay PSA Group for engineering work done by Opel. In related news, Automotive News Europe reports that Opel would continue to build Buick vehicles beyond 2019 in its German factories. Source: Automotive News Europe (Subscription Required), Car and Driver
  21. One of the big questions facing the sale of Opel to PSA Group is what will happen in the future. Opel CEO Karl-Thomas Neumann spilled some of the beans in an interview with German magazine Auto Motor und Sport. Neumann will remain the CEO of Opel, but tells the magazine that he will work closely with PSA's CEO Carlos Tavares. "It is important for me to stand before employees and show leadership. I have done this in the past and will continue to do so," said Neumann. "I think we have great respect for each other. That is why I see a good foundation for continued cooperation," the magazine quoted Neumann as saying. Opel will also have its own leadership, and the ability to design and develop its own cars. The only difference is that it will be using platforms from PSA. Neumann says it will take several years for the brand to transition from GM to PSA platforms. The main priority is to get Opel profitable once again. This will be accomplished by deepening cooperation with PSA and lowering development costs. Opel is also planning their largest product offensive with 7 new models being launched in the near future. They include a new SUV that will serve as the second flagship model alongside the new Insignia and new electric models. Neumann declined to comment on a report he was planning to make Opel an electric-vehicle only brand. Interestingly, Neumann revealed that he was very skeptical about introducing Opel into the Chinese marketplace. "This is a complete misunderstanding of the situation. PSA has long since ceased to be sick, but has recovered very strongly and just presented a super result for 2016. And we are clearly on the road to recovery. From a strong and a well-being, two might now become strong." Source: Auto Motor und Sport View full article
  22. One of the big questions facing the sale of Opel to PSA Group is what will happen in the future. Opel CEO Karl-Thomas Neumann spilled some of the beans in an interview with German magazine Auto Motor und Sport. Neumann will remain the CEO of Opel, but tells the magazine that he will work closely with PSA's CEO Carlos Tavares. "It is important for me to stand before employees and show leadership. I have done this in the past and will continue to do so," said Neumann. "I think we have great respect for each other. That is why I see a good foundation for continued cooperation," the magazine quoted Neumann as saying. Opel will also have its own leadership, and the ability to design and develop its own cars. The only difference is that it will be using platforms from PSA. Neumann says it will take several years for the brand to transition from GM to PSA platforms. The main priority is to get Opel profitable once again. This will be accomplished by deepening cooperation with PSA and lowering development costs. Opel is also planning their largest product offensive with 7 new models being launched in the near future. They include a new SUV that will serve as the second flagship model alongside the new Insignia and new electric models. Neumann declined to comment on a report he was planning to make Opel an electric-vehicle only brand. Interestingly, Neumann revealed that he was very skeptical about introducing Opel into the Chinese marketplace. "This is a complete misunderstanding of the situation. PSA has long since ceased to be sick, but has recovered very strongly and just presented a super result for 2016. And we are clearly on the road to recovery. From a strong and a well-being, two might now become strong." Source: Auto Motor und Sport
  23. Last week saw the PSA Group (parent company of Citroen and Peugeot) purchasing Opel and Vauxhall from General Motors for $2.3 billion. This move would make the PSA Group the second-largest automaker in Europe. We already know some of the plans that PSA Group has for their new brands such as setting operating profit targets of 2 percent in 2020 (jumps to 6 percent by 2026) and the next-generation Opel/Vauxhall Corsa being the first new product developed with PSA. But as we alluded to in the original news story, there are a lot of questions that remain unanswered such as possible job cuts or what happens to Buick and Holden as they share products with Opel. I have been doing a bit of thinking on these and some other questions. The end result is this piece. 1: Will there be job cuts and plant closures? In 2016, PSA Group employed 172,000 people worldwide. With the acquisition of Opel and Vauxhall, they will be adding close to 42,000 workers (the majority of those from Opel). The number of plants will also increase to 28 due to this purchase. Sooner or later, PSA Group is going have to make cuts. During the press conference announcing the deal, PSA Group CEO Carlos Tavares said the company “would honor existing labor agreements and closing plants is a “simplistic” solution.” That may be true for now, but this might change within the coming years. Some analysts believe PSA Group will close two to three plants within five years. The most likely place where the closures and layoffs could take place is in Great Britain. The reason as we talked about in a story back in February deals with the decision made by British citizens last year with leaving the European Union. “By leaving, the country would lose access to the EU Single Market which guarantees unconstrained trade across the member states. It would mean various countries would be leveraging tariffs on British-made goods, making production in the country less competitive.” Former British member of parliament and business secretary Sir Vincent Cable outlined how bad this decision looks for Vauxhall in a recent interview on BBC Radio 4. There could be a way that the British Government could at least stall the possible closures. Back in October, the British Government worked out a secret deal with Nissan to keep them investing in British car production at their plant in Sunderland. This deal caused an uproar as the details were kept as many believed the British Government would be handing over money to keep Nissan happy. But sources told British newspaper The Independent back in January that the deal had no mention of money. It could be that the British Government could do something similar for PSA Group to keep jobs, but it is too early to say if this will happen or not. 2: Will this affect PSA’s plans of entering the U.S.? Probably not. Let’s remember that PSA Group is working through a ten-year plan that may or may not see the return of the Citroen and Peugeot, along with the introduction of DS to the country. Already, the first part of this plan is gearing up for the launch of a car sharing service next month. There is also extensive research going on into the U.S. marketplace. But could there be a possibility of Opel or Vauxhall vehicles being sold here? It would not be surprising if there isn’t talk about this at PSA Group’s HQ. But there is a slight complication to this idea. As part of the sale, PSA Group cannot sell any Opel vehicles developed by GM anywhere in various markets outside of Europe (China and U.S. for example) until they transition to PSA platforms. That means a number of models such as the Astra, Insignia, and Mokka are out of the question for the time being. If Opel was chosen to be one of the brands PSA would sell in the U.S., they might not have a full line of vehicles to sell due to this clause. 3: What does the future hold for Buick and Holden? If there are some losers from the sale of Opel, it has to Buick and Holden. Buick has found some success with Opel products as the Encore (rebadged Mokka) has become one the best-selling models for the brand. Holden is getting a shot in the arm as the Astra will hopefully help their fortunes in the compact space, and the new Commodore (rebadged Insignia) has a tough task ahead of it with living up to an iconic name. For the time being, Opel will continue supplying models to both brands. It is what happens in the future that many are concerned about. During the Geneva Motor Show, GM President Dan Ammann said something very interest to Australian journalists about the future of Holden’s products. This makes sense as the Astra was only launched and the Commodore is getting ready to go on sale. But I wouldn’t be surprised if talks begin very soon about this very topic. The same talks are likely to begin at Buick soon where they face the same issue for the Regal and Encore. Our hunch is Buick might have the easier time of two. The Encore would continue on since it shares the same platform as the Chevrolet Trax. As for the Regal, it could leave Buick’s lineup once the next-generation model runs its course. 4: Does GM lose anything with this deal? There has been a lot of talk about how much money will be freed up from the sale of Opel/Vauxhall for GM, along with making a bit more profit. But it comes at a cost that could hurt GM down the road. The recent crop of compact and midsize sedans from GM owe a lot to Opel’s engineering knowledge. Vehicles that excel in driving dynamics and fuel economy are worth their weight in gold when it comes to the European marketplace. As we know, one part of why GM went into bankruptcy was the lack of competitive small and midsize cars that got good fuel economy. Opel would prove to be GM’s savior with this key knowledge. Right now, compacts and midsize sedans aren’t selling as consumers are directing their attention to crossovers and SUVs. This is due in part to lower gas prices. But sooner or later, the price of gas will go back up and cause many to go back to smaller vehicles. With talk about GM scaling back on their small and midsize car lineup, this decision could have consequences down the road. Plus with Opel out of the picture, GM doesn’t have someone it can rely on to get these models back to the forefront. We can hope GM’s North American office has learned some stuff when working with their European counterparts. View full article
  24. Last week saw the PSA Group (parent company of Citroen and Peugeot) purchasing Opel and Vauxhall from General Motors for $2.3 billion. This move would make the PSA Group the second-largest automaker in Europe. We already know some of the plans that PSA Group has for their new brands such as setting operating profit targets of 2 percent in 2020 (jumps to 6 percent by 2026) and the next-generation Opel/Vauxhall Corsa being the first new product developed with PSA. But as we alluded to in the original news story, there are a lot of questions that remain unanswered such as possible job cuts or what happens to Buick and Holden as they share products with Opel. I have been doing a bit of thinking on these and some other questions. The end result is this piece. 1: Will there be job cuts and plant closures? In 2016, PSA Group employed 172,000 people worldwide. With the acquisition of Opel and Vauxhall, they will be adding close to 42,000 workers (the majority of those from Opel). The number of plants will also increase to 28 due to this purchase. Sooner or later, PSA Group is going have to make cuts. During the press conference announcing the deal, PSA Group CEO Carlos Tavares said the company “would honor existing labor agreements and closing plants is a “simplistic” solution.” That may be true for now, but this might change within the coming years. Some analysts believe PSA Group will close two to three plants within five years. The most likely place where the closures and layoffs could take place is in Great Britain. The reason as we talked about in a story back in February deals with the decision made by British citizens last year with leaving the European Union. “By leaving, the country would lose access to the EU Single Market which guarantees unconstrained trade across the member states. It would mean various countries would be leveraging tariffs on British-made goods, making production in the country less competitive.” Former British member of parliament and business secretary Sir Vincent Cable outlined how bad this decision looks for Vauxhall in a recent interview on BBC Radio 4. There could be a way that the British Government could at least stall the possible closures. Back in October, the British Government worked out a secret deal with Nissan to keep them investing in British car production at their plant in Sunderland. This deal caused an uproar as the details were kept as many believed the British Government would be handing over money to keep Nissan happy. But sources told British newspaper The Independent back in January that the deal had no mention of money. It could be that the British Government could do something similar for PSA Group to keep jobs, but it is too early to say if this will happen or not. 2: Will this affect PSA’s plans of entering the U.S.? Probably not. Let’s remember that PSA Group is working through a ten-year plan that may or may not see the return of the Citroen and Peugeot, along with the introduction of DS to the country. Already, the first part of this plan is gearing up for the launch of a car sharing service next month. There is also extensive research going on into the U.S. marketplace. But could there be a possibility of Opel or Vauxhall vehicles being sold here? It would not be surprising if there isn’t talk about this at PSA Group’s HQ. But there is a slight complication to this idea. As part of the sale, PSA Group cannot sell any Opel vehicles developed by GM anywhere in various markets outside of Europe (China and U.S. for example) until they transition to PSA platforms. That means a number of models such as the Astra, Insignia, and Mokka are out of the question for the time being. If Opel was chosen to be one of the brands PSA would sell in the U.S., they might not have a full line of vehicles to sell due to this clause. 3: What does the future hold for Buick and Holden? If there are some losers from the sale of Opel, it has to Buick and Holden. Buick has found some success with Opel products as the Encore (rebadged Mokka) has become one the best-selling models for the brand. Holden is getting a shot in the arm as the Astra will hopefully help their fortunes in the compact space, and the new Commodore (rebadged Insignia) has a tough task ahead of it with living up to an iconic name. For the time being, Opel will continue supplying models to both brands. It is what happens in the future that many are concerned about. During the Geneva Motor Show, GM President Dan Ammann said something very interest to Australian journalists about the future of Holden’s products. This makes sense as the Astra was only launched and the Commodore is getting ready to go on sale. But I wouldn’t be surprised if talks begin very soon about this very topic. The same talks are likely to begin at Buick soon where they face the same issue for the Regal and Encore. Our hunch is Buick might have the easier time of two. The Encore would continue on since it shares the same platform as the Chevrolet Trax. As for the Regal, it could leave Buick’s lineup once the next-generation model runs its course. 4: Does GM lose anything with this deal? There has been a lot of talk about how much money will be freed up from the sale of Opel/Vauxhall for GM, along with making a bit more profit. But it comes at a cost that could hurt GM down the road. The recent crop of compact and midsize sedans from GM owe a lot to Opel’s engineering knowledge. Vehicles that excel in driving dynamics and fuel economy are worth their weight in gold when it comes to the European marketplace. As we know, one part of why GM went into bankruptcy was the lack of competitive small and midsize cars that got good fuel economy. Opel would prove to be GM’s savior with this key knowledge. Right now, compacts and midsize sedans aren’t selling as consumers are directing their attention to crossovers and SUVs. This is due in part to lower gas prices. But sooner or later, the price of gas will go back up and cause many to go back to smaller vehicles. With talk about GM scaling back on their small and midsize car lineup, this decision could have consequences down the road. Plus with Opel out of the picture, GM doesn’t have someone it can rely on to get these models back to the forefront. We can hope GM’s North American office has learned some stuff when working with their European counterparts.
  25. Holden was relying on Opel to help supply its upcoming lineup with models such as the Astra and Insignia rebadged as the Commodore. But with the sale of Opel and Vauxhall to PSA Group, the future of Holden's lineup hangs in the balance. But GM is still committed to the Australian brand and the sale of Opel should not have any impact in the near future according to GM president Dan Ammann. “What I want to emphasise is we are 100 per cent committed to the business in Australia and New Zealand, and we have a lot of exciting things in the pipeline. It’s going to be a really good period of time for the business down there,” said Ammann. "As a lot of you know there are a lot of people in the business at General Motors that have a lot of history and linkage to Holden and there's nothing we want to see more than seeing the business prosper down there. So we're really committed to making the business work down there." For the time being, Holden will be getting the Astra and Commodore from Opel as part of the deal between GM and PSA. Ammann did admit that decisions concerning long-term product plans for Holden are up in the air. "So no specific decisions have been taken on that front. We have, I'd say as a result of yesterday's announcement, more not less opportunities going forward," said Ammann. "Clearly the current models that are just launching will run through their full lifecycle and what we do after that is yet to be determined." Source: CarAdvice , Drive.com.au, Wheels View full article

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