In past years, General Motors’s attention in Europe was divided between Chevrolet as the mainstream brand and Opel as a premium marque. That didn’t help Opel recover its former spark and failed to stop a 14-year decline in market share. Now that GM has dropped Chevrolet in Europe and has focused on Opel, the European brand will have another try on getting back its lost glory.
Opel is now launching a new marketing campaign -- its largest ever -- in Germany, where local rival Volkswagen is outselling it by more than 3 to 1. The marketing campaign -- "Umparken im Kopf" -- asks consumers to "unpark" their pre-conceived notions about Opel. For instance, a billboard ad jokes that 90 percent of men think that red-haired women are more exciting, although 68 percent of them have never met one.
GM considers propping up Opel's image as crucial that is why it is investing $5.2 billion into its European turnaround program through 2022. GM is targeting aims to halt its financial bleeding in Europe by 2016.
According to Tim Urquhart, a senior analyst for IHS Automotive, Opel falls into a "midmarket morass" of several brands – like Peugeot and Citroen -- clashing for market share. "It'll take inspired leadership and solid products to get Opel back on track," Urquhart remarked. Opel’s marketing campaign will be spearheaded by its chief marketing officer, Tina Mueller. [source: automotive news - sub. required]