GM to build Chevrolet Cruze at Opel site in Poland, says report

Article by Anita Panait, on June 17, 2013

General Motors Co. will commence building the Chevrolet Cruze at its Opel’s Gliwice site in Poland at the end of 2014, German daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reported, citing an internal production plan as the source of the information. A spokesman for Chevrolet Europe, however, denied the report, saying that there is yet no decision as to where the next-generation Cruze will be produced.

GM has disclosed that it would shift output of the next-generation Cruze out of South Korea, where the current model is being produced. Reuters reported in January 2012 that GM’s management and workforce were discussing wether to transfer production of the Cruze from South Korea to Poland to lower losses at Opel. South Korean unions welcomed the news negatively and threatened to "wage a war."

The Gliwice site could be a good site to produce Chevrolet’s products since it is the only low-cost Opel plant in Europe. It also produces the Cruze sibling, the Opel Astra. Both models could be produced on one assembly line that would require only a little additional investment. The Cruze is Chevrolet's best-selling model in Europe, with sales up 5 percent to 12,441 units in the first four months of 2012, according to data from JATO Dynamics.

German business daily Handelsblatt said that GM was mulling shifting a huge chunk of the current output of the Opel Mokka subcompact crossover from South Korea to Spain, citing sources privy with the US carmaker. Opel has already disclosed it wil produce the next-generation Mokka in Europe and not in South Korea.

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