Opel has been successful in wiping away $18 billion from parent company, General Motors’, bottom line over the past 16 years. The company knew it either had to reinvest itself, or ditch the floundering European brand.
GM CEO, Mary Barra, chose the former, and her turnaround plan is preparing to enter its second phase according to Automotive News.
The first step was to halt the bleeding of funds from the brand by the middle of the decade, something executives says will indeed happen this year. But where does the plan take Opel next?
Barra told reporters at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show Opel is eying a market expansion to eight percent by 2022. The brand currently holds 6.7 percent, but the growth will be profitable, she added.
“You need to be present in Europe. You need to win in Europe,” Barra said. “Our investment in Opel reflects that.”
Moving forward, it will be all about a whirlwind of new product introductions, packaged with more premium trim levels to command higher transaction prices. It’s something Opel CEO, Dr. Karl-Thomas Neumann, said the brand is already seeing with models like the Opel Mokka, Adam and Corsa.
“Our intention is to get more revenue per car by selling higher trim lines and more features,” Neumann told reporters on the sidelines of the auto show.
On the horizon is a new Mokka, an all-new Insignia and a new-large SUV for Opel and Vauxhall. In the meantime, the 2016 Opel Astra will play a very important part to command those higher transaction prices Neumann spoke of.