In a bid to again become Australia’s top-selling auto brand, Holden’s rebadged Opel models will eventually comprise more than one-third of its full local range.
The news also forms part of Opel’s ongoing ‘Drive! 2022’ business strategy, which calls for greater investment in new models and a wider market reach.
“I’m very excited about the role our great products will play in the resurgence of the Holden brand, by being able to provide more than one-third of Holden’s future product line-up,” Opel boss Karl-Thomas Neumann said.
“Spearheaded by Opel’s Drive! 2022 strategy, we are making significant investments in new models, engines, transmissions and testing facilities to ensure we deliver truly world class products to our export markets like Australia.”
GM’s disastrous Australian launch of the German brand in 2012 means that we will likely never officially see the thunderbolt badge here again, but the return of Opel models to the Holden range will be ‘just like old times’.
Years past have seen Holden offer a number of Opel models, including the Astra, the Insignia-preceding Vectra, the Corsa - rebadged as the Barina - and a number of other familiar nameplates.
Even the iconic Commodore has its roots in the Opel range, and we may yet see that model replaced - when it is retired in 2017 - by the next-generation Insignia.
Holden boss Gerry Dorizas said the brand is “absolutely committed to bringing the best possible products from GM’s global portfolio to Australian customers”.
“Holden and Opel share very similar core brand values, including our commitment to performance, engineering excellence, vehicle dynamics and technology, which makes this such a strong and obvious partnership," he said.
Going forward, this could see the new Corsa come to Australia as a premium partner for the price-leading Barina, with the German car taking on Volkswagen’s Polo.
Likewise, the light Adam could come to Australia as a style-focused city car, and the recently teased Opel Karl could also mark the return of the Holden Viva badge - possibly as a replacement for the troubled Barina Spark.
Watch for more on Holden's Opel plans in the near future.
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