Something is better than nothing, as they say. Although Australia may not be in the auto manufacturing business for much longer, locals can take solace in knowing Holden will have a “key role” in future product sourced from Opel, according to Drive.
The news comes from Opel member of the board and Vice President of Communications, Johan Willems, where he was quoted on future ties between the two brands at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show.
“I am sure that Holden will play a key role … for the products that are coming there,” said Willems.
“There is [currently] input – I know that for a fact.”
He expressed much interest on expanding operations to more global markets, with Australia being an important one, as one-third of future Holdens will be sourced from Opel.
He also understands Aussie tastes are very different from Europeans, something GM has done right by through the continued operation of the Lang Lang proving ground, allowing for refinement of Australian bound product. He expands on further Aussie preference saying, “On engines, Holden wants certain, specific things and we will see what we can accommodate, within the portfolio and within what is reasonable,”
“We won’t be successful [growing sales and expanding into new markets] if we don’t allow a say.”
Speaking of preference, don’t expect Opel to supply a V8 for the upcoming Insignia/Commodore, though. Instead, a twin-turbo V6 is the more likely option for the reborn Holden Commodore, which will ditch its storied rear-wheel drive basis after manufacturing ends in 2017. Do expect, though, either the C7 Corvette of Chevrolet Camaro to enter Australia as the brand’s new V8 powered, rear-drive offering.
Giving credit to Holden input on future models is the information GM International Head Stefan Jacoby spoke of during the 2015 Detroit Auto Show. Catering to Australian consumers will remain a priority, and he revealed the 2018 Holden Commodore is already testing in Australia.
“We are driving this car already in Lang Lang,” said Jacoby at the time.
“We understand what Commodore is and we understand that better than anybody else and it is very obvious that the Commodore successor needs to be stronger than today’s model – and we will do everything to do that, with modern technology.”