GM to make Opel a premium brand in Europe and create room for Chevrolet

Article by Anita Panait, on July 11, 2013

General Motors Co. reaffirmed a plan to position Opel as a more expensive brand in Europe and to create room for Chevrolet as its value offering. The plan was reaffirmed by Alan Batey, Chevrolet's new global chief, as the carmaker launches newer vehicles at Opel and sister brand Vauxhall with an aim to better GM's dire financial situation in Europe.

Batey said that they plan to build on the early strong demand for the Mokka small sports utility vehicles and the Adam minicar. Success of the Opel and Vauxhall brand will enable GM create space for Chevrolet to operate in Europe. Following a question as to how GM will differentiate Opel and Chevrolet in Europe, Batey replied that they need to rebuild the Opel brand.

He said that will provide GM with an opportunity to move Opel and Vauxhall "up a little bit," creating a "value opportunity" for Chevrolet." He noted that they have to make sure that there is a "little overlap as possible" between Opel and Chevrolet in Europe. Batey called Opel the mainstream brand in Europe and Chevrolet as the value play.

Chevrolet is GM's global mainstream brand, and along with luxury brand Cadillac, is intended to penetrate every market around the world. Opel (Europe), Holden (Australia) and Buick (US and China) are intended to be successful regional brands. In the first five months of 2013, Opel controlled 6.8 percent of European Union new-car market. In the same period, Chevrolet held 1.1 percent of the EU new car market. [source: automotive news - sub. required]

Topics: gm, opel, chevrolet, europe

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