French group PSA is buying Opel and Vauxhall from GM
Some good news ahead of us; it seems big changes are taking place in the third month of 2017. It’s official: French automaker PSA Group is buying Opel and Vauxhall (with all its related properties) from General Motors. The deal will see Opel and Vauxhall get out from under GM’s ownership to stand under PSA’s, alongside the Peugeot, Citroën, and DS brands. The move is expected to convert PSA into Europe’s second-largest automaker, surely behind Volkswagen.
The acquisition – which may prove to be the industry’s largest since the formation of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles – won’t just encompass the Opel and Vauxhall brands, though. It will also include six assembly plants, five component manufacturing facilities, and an engineering center in Rüsselsheim, Germany. With it, PSA will absorb some 40,000 new employees. But GM will hold on to its engineering center in Turin, Italy.
Through the arrangement, Opel/Vauxhall will continue collaborating with General Motors – at least until the German and British brands gradually transition to PSA platforms “over the coming years.” That may take a while, though, considering how young Opel’s current lineup is: It just launched the new Corsa in 2014, the Astra in 2015, and is in the process of rolling out a new Insignia. Rumor has it that the deal is valued at approximately €2.2 billion – of which PSA’s share (including Opel/Vauxhall and half of the financial operations) comes to €1.8 billion.
My question remains, how will GM challenge the European market without its European operations? Probably the combination of Chevrolet and Cadillac brands will step up to seal the void.
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