Opel Is Coming To China. End Of Story.15
We just received a statement from GM Europe stating that Opel will, indeed, be making its way to China after all. In fact, Opel is already in China.
“There are actually no change in plans and Opel will continue to export vehicles to China,” wrote Klaus-Peter Martin of GM Global Communications.
The official statement comes days after a Gasgoo article (that we ended up picking up) detailing that the German brand would not be coming to China, contrary to previous reports. It appears that Gasgoo misunderstood the difference between building Opels in China — which still isn’t and never was never the plan — and an export strategy from Europe — such as the one in place currently.
Presently, Opel offers the Zafira, Antara, and last-generation Astra in China. “Other Opel vehicles will be added to the portfolio soon,” wrote Mr. Martin.
The GM Authority Take
China is currently the only place where Opel-based Buicks will be sold alongside actual Opels in the same geographic market, a move most GM Authority readers seem to be strongly against — as evidenced by the following poll:
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I am now honestly afraid that a in a couple of years GM will restart use of widespread badge-engineering that will once agin destroy GM in terms of both profibility and reputation. What part of platform sharing does GM not get which even Hyundai can effectiviely pull off.
Well amen, hallaluia
SO then what is the point of Buick in China? This doesn’t seem well thought out.
buick has been popular in china since the 1910s. most people in china would take a buick over an opel because the brand has been knowns as a high standard in terms of status for over 100 years!!! the last emporer of china owned a BUICK not an opel! getting rid of buick in china is like gettiong rid of toyota in japan.
Who said anything about getting rid of Buick?
Buick and Chevy and Caddy will be the three main brands in China, Opel will continue with a Small but growing import role. nothing more needed
All of GMs brands should be able to compete on an international level, even Buick…
Lets be real at this point in time, if you are not an international auto brand, do you really have any legitimacy at all. This is the real issue to me. Even domestically there is to much competition to sustain non internationaly recognized brands. GM should have been thinking on a broader international agenda along time ago, the question now is wich brand is next to go the way of mercury (ford) and the deseased GM brands. Dare I say GMC…
GM does think globally all the time, that said, there is important advantages to having products that are in some cases not gobal. In third world countries they need simple cheap and tough products that do not fit well in extablished areas, also developing countries like China need a whole host of products to fit crowded cities to third world farm areas, in many cases they don’t even have lawn mowers but have livestock to keep the weeds etc. in check. our approach after bankruptcy has been to make those local brands very strong and differentiate them with their global counterparts you will start to see this with the new GMC offerings in the very near future and in some cases Buick and overseas with Opel and in china with some of their new lower cost brands. We think this will help us saturate all markets in all areas of the world this is not to say that some overlap may happen in differant markets but the product will be on the brands merits in that market not comparing it to other markets similiar products may be sold. the pipeline is filling up and simplifying but yet sales are increasing, We may be onto something don’t you think?
Jd, GM is moving in right direction… The auto industry is also transforming and moving quicker and more dynamically then ever before. I think GM will need to be very strategic in brand development/strategy as well as product development/strategy as well as consumer perception. Consumer behavior has dramatically shifted just in the last 4 to 5 years, I am not totally sold that GM gets that, but at same time I don’t think GM needs to race out and do me to products just to fill a void. The question remains how will GM differentiate itself and its brands in the marketplace, redefining itself in the present age and in the years to come. The consumer is waiting to be impressed, impressed enough to leave the Honda; the Toyota that they have been accustomed to buying over last 25 years, unfortunately most of these people migrated to pricier German makes and Japanese luxogarbage. The ball is in GM’s court…
Can’t leave out the Hyundai effect either, how GM competes holistically will be huge… Is the question who is GM’s competition or who is GM’s consumer. I think this is huge, to be honest the heck with the competition what is the product the consumer will buy… Hyundai has been effective because I don’t think the give a rats butt about the competition, there focus is creating products that stand out to the consumer…
GM should absolutely go global with 3 of its 4 NA brands, obviously Chevy is a global brand, take buick all the way (using its own developed vehicles), caddy 4 as many markets as possible. GMC not an int brand.
Agreed. Unfortunately, it seems that this won’t happen with Buick — since Opel is going global except for North America.
I still hugely agree with you when you said that a brand doesn’t really exist unless it’s global. This is especially true for luxury brands — where telling your international business colleagues that you drive a BMW gives you a sense of class and respect. Not the same with a Buick… or an Opel.
Alex, exactly the world is getting smaller not larger.
Creating international recognized brands is paramount 4 GM.
I do not agree about international/global brands. There is something to be said for niche brands in an age of economic nationalism–would Opel be #2 in Germany as Buick? Fiat does that same thing in Europe with thier various brands. Down under, the Holden brand means something to consumers and no one could argue that the Statesman would sell better as a Chevy. GMC is pure profit for GM so any talk of killing off the brand because it is not international is insane. I see local brands as a strength for GM and as a powerful tool to beat back Toyota.
I do see Buick as a special case. The brand would be dead if it were not for the China history. In truth, Opel might be a better sell here in the US except for the fact that it would look like a cheap GM branding trick. Globally, German cars are far more respected and GM is smart to be pushing Opel with a special focus on Latin America.
Personally, I think GM should have saved Saturn and flipped it over to Opel and then directly competed against Chevy much the way Hyn/Kia does–same price point but different demos. If GM had done this years ago with Pontiac and other brands, the General might still hold 30% market share. It sort of makes me sick to see how GM cowered to great brands like Mazda and Kia when they had enough marques to cover all tastes and styles.
Then again, Nissan/Renault will, regardless, be the number one brand within one decade. They have eaten Honda domestically and are changing the rules of the game. I would love to see them buy Mazda and become the Asian GM with five brands.