Opel/Vauxhall’s new small car is expected to rival the Ford Ka or Volkswagen's Up and will be slotted beneath its Corsa subcompact in Germany, according to the automaker. Opel said that it may even produce an electric version. Opel said that its minicar will be its entry to Europe's fast-growing minicar segment and “will be an important element in our growth strategy.”
Production for this model (code-named Junior) will start in 2013 in its factory in Eisenach, eastern Germany, on an existing production line. Opel is prepared to invest 90 million euros (about $120 million) to build the model.
The three-door Corsa variant is currently being produced at this plant. In a press statement, CEO Nick Reilly said that by offering this minicar, it is fulfilling its pledge to expand its product portfolio and enter new segments.
Reilly claims that this stylish new model will be fuel-efficient and will feature “innovative technology and an exciting design."
The release said further that this future car is targeted towards buyers who require a small-sized fuel-efficient car in urban areas but are unwilling to “compromise on technology, design or convenience."
Opel also divulged that this car might later on have a battery-electric version for zero-emission driving in city areas. Opel said that this project will secure 1,600 jobs at Eisenach.
It’s expected that as this new minicar comes on stream, Opel's factory in Zaragoza, Spain, which also builds the Corsa, will receive additional Corsa production volume. [via autonews - sub. required]