After having survived a very bad sales drought in Germany, Opel is now preparing to increase its market share to over 10% with the aid of new models like the Mokka SUV and Adam minicar, according to Imelda Labbe, Opel’s sales chief for Germany. Opel is General Motors' European unit. Labbe said that with the upcoming models, Opel will be able to enter new segments, enabling it to increase its market share by more than 10% in the mid to long term.
Opel needs to achieve higher sales. The KBA federal transport agency said that Opel’s registrations have fallen by 11% in May to slightly higher than 23,000 in a total market that dropped by 4.8%.
The five-month registrations have fallen by almost 10% to 96,400. Labbe thinks that the downward trend has come to a stop. He said that May was a “good month” with an increase in market share to 7.9%.
She believes that the improvements will continue. With the decline from Opel’s market share in 2005 from more than 10%, the company kept on losing profits. The German market is dominated by the Volkswagen brand with a 22% share.
Opel is outperformed by all the German premium carmakers with BMW having a 9.9% share last month, Mercedes getting 9.2% and Audi with 8.8%. Opel won two of the past four European Car of the Year awards.
Its Insignia won in 2009 while the Ampera won in 2012. However, Opel wasn’t able to get rid of its working class image in Germany and had failed to shift upmarket to where damaging incentive rivalries aren’t as common. What made its image worse are speculations that GM would either sell it or let it enter a controlled bankruptcy set-up.