Opel union boss wants more models built in Europe

Article by Christian Andrei, on November 1, 2011

The management and labor union at Opel seem to be heading toward a clash with regard to where the General Motors subsidiary will manufacture three key models. Union leader Klaus Franz wants the Poland, Spain and Germany facilities to be selected versus the South Korea plant of GM to produce the next-generation Antara and Agila, as well as a new compact crossover positioned beneath the Antara.

An Opel spokesperson informed Automotive News Europe that final decisions have yet to be made on where these future models will be created. Moreover, the union desires to have the Agila replacement in Gliwice, Poland.

Franz told Automotive News Europe that they "definitely won’t build the next generation" of the Agila with Suzuki in Hungary. He further stated that they will fight to have the subcompact produced in Gliwice beginning late 2014.

The Zafira minivan is the only vehicle built at the Opel's Bochum factory in Germany, thus, the unions want to secure the facility's long-term future by adding the next-generation Opel Antara medium SUV and its sibling model, the Chevrolet Captiva, beginning 2014.

These SUVs are presently manufactured in South Korea. Franz commented that GM CEO Dan Akerson was right in stating that Chevrolets should be created in Europe, too.

Franz added that in keeping with the philosophy stating that "production follows the market," they are making the case for assembling the next generation of the Antara in Bochum with the Chevrolet Captiva, since it is based on the compact high-roof architecture. [source: Autonews]

Topics: opel, europe

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