Vauxhall/Opel boss Karl-Thomas Neumann has confirmed to Autocar that the company is planning a new line of cheap, entry-level vehicles to go head-to-head with budget manufacturers such as Renault’s Dacia brand. As part of the effort, two new entry level vehicles will be introduced to fill the void left by Chevrolet’s departure from the European market, one of which will be the recently spied Viva hatchback.
The Viva will sit on the same platform as the next-generation Chevrolet Spark and will be priced to compete with the Ford Ka, which starts at £8945 ($15,241 USD) in the UK. It will slot in below the Corsa in Vauxhall’s lineup, but will sit directly alongside the Adam in size. The Viva will be cheaper and less focused on style and image in comparison to the Adam, however.
“We think there is possibility for Opel to come up with some entry-level product, specifically now Chevrolet is out of the market,” said Neumann. “We had Chevrolet, which looked like a budget brand, but it was not.”
The second vehicle in the new cheap car lineup will be a compact crossover to compete with the Dacia Duster. Autocar says the new SUV may be a replacement for the current Meriva MPV.
Neumann noted “all the burden” is on Opel and Vauxhall to perform now that Chevrolet has left Europe.
“GM can only be successful as a leading car maker in the world if we have a strong stake in Europe, so we can’t give up,” he said.
Check out Autocar’s recent spy photo of the Viva prototype here.