Officially announced on February 29, 2012, GM and PSA-Peugeot’s ‘Global Strategic Alliance'(GSA) hasn’t exactly panned out as planned.
For one thing, Opel decided to build its new city car, the Karl, in-house in order to better implement GM’s breadth of technology. Though it seems the Zafira Tourer MPV will still be born out of the alliance.
Once the fourth-most popular vehicle in its class, Zafira has dropped ten spots in a decade and now sits 14th in the segment, according to French sales tallies for 2014. It wasn’t quite clear as to which company will be tasked with building the vehicle, but according to Autoevolution, production of the next-generation vehicle will begin next year at PSA’s Sochaux plant in France, citing French reports. Though it may also be built in Germany, as well.
From the sounds of it, the new Zaf’ won’t be a slap-and-dash job. Opel plans to trim the Zafira – now one of the largest vehicles in the segment – from 4.66 metres (15.28 feet) down to 4.55 metres (14.92 feet) and will also reshape the vehicle to look more like a crossover rather than an MPV.
Just like in the U.S., French buyers now seem to prefer compact SUVs and crossovers. But reports indicate the vehicle will not feature standard 4×4, most likely to keep entry-level prices competitive. The vehicle is expected to ride on the French-developed EMP2 platform.
Buyers looking for a more traditional MPV experience can save some euros by opting for the current Zafira Tourer, which allegedly won’t be put out to pasture until 2018. Meaning that there could be some overlap here if the European reports are correct. Time will tell.