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Mike Stevens | Jun 8, 2010

Following the announcement in April of a $210 million loss for 2009, Holden boss Mike Devereux has said this week that strong Commodore and Cruze sales will see a turnaround, with the company posting a profit for the first time in five years.

While no figures have been offered as yet, Mr Devereux said that Holden was a "major contributor" to GM's global first-quarter profit of $850 million.

"This business is set up to be profitable for years to come," Mr Devereux told press today. "Our costs and revenues are now in line with our marketplace."

Commodore sales in May increased by 5.9 percent to 3899 sales, while the Cruze saw 2484 sales, making it one of the top-selling models in the small car segment.

Mr Devereux said that the Cruze will be a critical element in ensuring the return of a second shift to the carmaker's Elizabeth plant, with local production set to begin early next year.

"Given that the Cruze is the number five-selling car already in Australia, we sold over 2,500 units just last month, we're going to be building tens and tens of thousands of these cars so yeah we'll need a second shift," Mr Devereux told press today.

Click here to read TMR's review of the 2009 Holden Cruze.

The new Holden boss would not be moved on a market date for the local Cruze however, saying it will launch "the second we know it is absolutely perfect, and not a moment before that".

Export opportunities for the Cruze are expected to be limited, with the model also being built in China, Korea and the United States as well as Australia. Holden expects to build around 24,000 to 30,000 Cruze units each year.

Mr Devereux said that there has also been little progress on the topic of the Holden-developed Chevrolet Caprice Police Patrol Vehicle, with th company waiting on the next round of tenders later this year.

“What we have done is to design a car that we believe is a better vehicle than that used by USA police forces at the moment,” he said.

“The task now is to get out there and sell it to them.”

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