Mary Barra is making her first trip outside the U.S. since she took over as CEO of General Motors on Januray 15. Today, Barra visited Opel’s headquarters in Germany where she backed plans for Opel to produce an all-new model at the automaker’s main factory in Russelsheim Germany.
“Opel is clearly a vital part of the company,“ said Barra. “I thought it was very important to reinforce in person my commitment, and GM’s commitment, to Opel.”
Opel is investing $5.2 billion through 2016 to develop new engines and vehicles to help return the brand to profitability by mid-decade. GM has lost more than $18 billion in Europe since 1999.
Opel plans to re-tool the Russelsheim plant, which currently builds the Insignia, Astra, and Zafria Tourer starting in 2015, in order to accommodate production of a new model that Barra says “will go hand-in-hand” with the additional spending in Germany. Barra added that she is “very pleased with Opel’s progress so far.”