General Motors’ European operations have commissioned a comprehensive study to investigate public opinion of Opel in Europe, GM Authority has learned from sources with unconfirmed track records with the publication. The review, which is said to be extremely secretive, is divided among several companies driven by one coordinating firm and will measure current perception, reputation, and public image of the Opel brand in several European markets.
The research, according to sources, was set in motion due to the concerns of some within Opel that the brand is widely seen as damaged goods following consistent losses and failed attempts to sell the operating unit by parent General Motors. While specifics were not provided, the study is said to be taking place in many European markets, but specifically excludes Germany and the UK.
In addition, several options are being considered and studied, including ditching the Opel name entirely, selling Opel vehicles as Chevrolet, Buick, Vauxhall, as well as the overarching GM brand, and various combinations of each. The review process is also said to extend to sales operations, with strong support for unifying Opel and Chevrolet sales outlets all over Europe.
A full report is said to be due by year’s end, with real actionable recommendations. The news comes on the heels of Opel’s 2020 plan, which promises 23 new or revised models and 13 engines by the year 2020; ironically, 2020 may not take place for Opel if the study recommends to move away from the Opel brand in some way, shape, or form.