Lots of people have asked me this question recently: if GM is bankrupted, what happens to Vauxhall and Opel? And I’ve asked lots of people, including GM high-ups. No-one seems to know, or to be willing to say.
It’s likely any GM bankruptcy would be slowly executed. Opel and Vauxhall are separate entities from the American parent. So if they can ring-fence cash, they can probably keep trading in the short to medium term. But long term, their business is entirely founded on global synergies.
They buy stuff in global quantities to get it cheaper. They amortise design and development expenses across the globe.
For instance, the new Insignia was meant to be made in at least nine versions. The Vauxhall/Opel. A Saab 9-5. A Holden. A Korean Daewoo-Chevy. A Chinese Buick. A Saturn. A US Chevy. If that can’t happen because various divisions stop trading, the economic case for the Insignia falls off a cliff.