Sacrificing Vauxhall/Opel?

Posted by Paul Horrell at 10:23 am on Wednesday March 11, 2009

vauxhall-dealerTop politicians are lining up to proclaim that Vauxhall/Opel isn’t worth saving. Which is mortally wounding for the company because without billions of cash from European governments, it will go bankrupt within weeks.

Vauxhall/Opel has said it needs £3bn state aid in Europe. That’s in addition to the plea by its American parent for eight times that much from the US Government.

But in Germany, chancellor Angela Merkel has said that the car industry is not ‘systemically vital’ to the economy, whereas the banks are. So they’ll save the banks whatever, but the car business can go hang.

Then she said that she isn’t convinced that even if Opel/Vauxhall gets the state aid, that it will be a long-term viable business. In other words, she doesn’t want to be asked for more later, and have to throw good money after bad.

In Britain, business secretary Peter Mandelson announced £2.3 billion of aid for the car industry weeks ago. But he still hasn’t given as much as tuppence of it away.

He’s highly resistant to the one thing that would get car sales going fast, a ‘scrappage scheme’. This is a cash bung to people who scrap an old car and buy a lower-polluting new one. As has been shown in Germany and France, such a scheme would sell a huge number of new superminis.

So what’s the political agenda here? I wonder if a cruel calculation hasn’t been made. The politicians don’t want hundreds of thousands of extra unemployed on their hands. But they also know a prominent truth about the motor industry.

There are simply too many car factories in Europe for the number of car buyers. Over-capacity, it’s called, and it’s been a problem for decades. Now, if one major manufacturer topples over, the remaining car-makers will be able to keep their factories busier.

It’s like cutting off a gangrenous limb to save the patient. If Vauxhall/Opel dies, the rest of the European industry will be healthier. And need less subsidy. Meanwhile the tax take from drivers – in terms of new-car tax and fuel tax – wouldn’t fall at all.

Is this the logic behind the political grandstanding?

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  1. James said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 11:16 am Link to comment Report comment

    its a horrid thought, but one that should be discussed.

    although im sure there must be a better solution than destroying a company the size of opel/vauxhall.

    on a different note, could the government not buy up vauxhall? thereby recreating a british car industry?

  2. Rob89bie said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 11:23 am Link to comment Report comment

    Kill it completely! I´m glad that Saab is as small as it is, I live in Trollhättan and all construction of cars, except the 94-X is coming back home, hope to hell that it´l work out!

    Sry for some bad english =)

  3. dani said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 11:41 am Link to comment Report comment

    No this is not the logic.

    If Opel goes bankrupt, their assets will be sold, not closed during liquidation. Someone will get their plants in the end.

    It’s better that producers downsize their business and survive. Bancrupcy is expensive.

    The true explanation is that the car industry is not the best place to put your money today, it’s as simple as that, and the governments now it too well. In US was a bit more at stake.

  4. Stiggy said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 11:51 am Link to comment Report comment

    You don’t hear about other auto manufactures needing propping up. Its only those from America.

    I say let them go bust, that’s how capitalism works – survival of the fittest!

    Rather bad timing thought as Vauxhall and Opel are just getting to the stage where they have a half decent line up of cars.

  5. Serge said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 12:39 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Cool, yes!

  6. Thepetrolhead said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 12:51 pm Link to comment Report comment

    If Opel/Vauxhall dies, GM will have NO European market at all.

  7. george said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 1:01 pm Link to comment Report comment

    stiggy, capitalism= survival of the richest, ..not neccesarily of the fittest.. The hinted idea in in the article just goes to show, how short sited and deseperate governments are when it comes to getting the economy back on track. They nationalise most of what makes the private sector go around by pumping banks with the tax payers.. un the process major manufacturers, amongstbthem automotive, go bust. The consequence ? Well, how exactly are ppl going to pay for their new superminis ? You guessed it, through a bank loan.. and 15 years down the road we´re back in the soup, only this time around cutting interest rates and forcing the tax payer into even greater shares of the fallen economy wont do the trick. What we´ll heave to look forward to than, is income tax starting at 40% and the new 7 seater hybrid polo peoples carrer super mini… for the price of a porsche.. Cool, yes ?! survival of the fittest ?? I guess so… what a shame.

  8. george said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 1:11 pm Link to comment Report comment

    ps. the ratio of banks to major vehicle manufacturing companies must be somewhere in the region of a 1000 to 1.. food for thought.. I´d rather have a choice of wheels than an unlimited choice of credit cards, most of us can´t afford. At least with the car, you know what you´re getting…

  9. Arelius said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 1:37 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Maybe if they could get rid of the unions and the grubby pensioners things might work out

  10. 0-60 in 3.47 said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 3:12 pm Link to comment Report comment

    It is not the european operations which are losing the money but the US side of things for GM and Ford. GM should have sold Opel/Vauxhall a long time ago like Ford did with Jaguar/Land Rover and Aton Martin. If it is a case of survival of the fittest, would you like the choice of only one car manufacturer?

  11. PetrolHead247 said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 4:15 pm Link to comment Report comment

    If GM do kill Vauxhall/Opel there will be a big loss in the european market. Maybe Tata will buy Vauxhall/Opel but Tata are in a tiny bit of trouble. I can’t see anyone buying Vauxhall/Opel. VW or BMW might be interested but their won’t be many others. If Vauxhall/Opel do go soon then there will have been little point in making the Insignia, a car which i like quite a lot.

  12. Wyvern said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 4:26 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I think the books need to be looked at carefully before a decision is made because if Vauxhall/Opel aren’t as far in the shit as other GM companies, perhaps they aren’t beyond saving. However, if the figures are as bad as all that and Vauxhall/Opel have been making massive losses for a long time (and I’m not saying that they have, I don’t know), then it makes no sense to bail them out. It’s not like the supply side organisations won’t have other manufacturers to supply, given how many car plants there are throughout Europe. Nobody wants to see more jobs go, but they’re being kept open artificially and if the long-term viability of any company, whether it be Vauxhall, Opel or my local chippy, can’t be assured, it is better to cut losses now rather than waste already stretched resources in a way that will ultimately prove fruitless.

    If they’re actually worth saving, I hope the governments of Europe see fit to support them in this difficult time. However, if their decline is terminal, there’s no room for sentimentality, and they should be let go.

  13. Chaucer said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 5:12 pm Link to comment Report comment

    All those years making awful cars (Apart from the rather good Cavalier), and when they finally bring out some decent cars i.e. the Insignia, they are about to go bust. The Problem that companies like these have, is that they make cars and then sell them, rather than taking the German approach of making them to order. Sure you have to wait longer, but it would still save the company.

  14. Chaucer said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 5:16 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Also, this year it was time for me to get a new company car, and due to the downturn, my company cannot afford to buy us company cars. Something like 85% of Vectra’s sold were company cars, and if companies ain’t buying, what are Vauxhall going to do with the Insignia?

  15. Greg K Nicholson said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 6:05 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Trying to buy our way back to the status quo ante won’t work: the business model has already failed.

    The car companies need to adapt, or they’ll simply become obsolete.

    In fact, it’s the same with the banks and credit. The governments are just too fearful/conservative to realise this.

  16. Mikeado said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 6:36 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I don’t really want Vauxhall to go. It would be sadder than Rover going, especially now there isn’t a single failbox in their range for once (unless they still sell the Tigra).

    Plus there’s now the really-quite-good-looking Ampera on the way from Geneva (I found this on Google, thanks again guys…), although GM could still flog it as a Euro-bodied Chevvy Volt – it’d be nice for Chevrolet UK to actually get an American car for once – and in fact the Insignia could still be sold here with the same Chevvy badge… but what about the Ozzy V8 nutjob? Hmmm…

    I guess our only hope now is for a *shudder* Chinese company to buy it and sell all the same cars with a slightly worse name. Mind you, with such names as Zafira, Antera, Tigra, Meriva and Agila, what are the worse names gonna be? They’d have to be profain to worse those!!

  17. Mikeado said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 6:39 pm Link to comment Report comment

    On the whole ‘make-to-order’ thing, instead they could just work 3 or 4-day weeks and build them in batches – i.e. wait for customer orders to reach a certain amount, then whip out the spanners and hammers. It might work better for a bigger-volume company like Vauxhall/Opel.

  18. macw1 said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 6:48 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I am discussed that they don’t want to save Vaxhall/Opel they are one of the best european cars around, get rid of Ford. Vauxhall would always be my 1st choice of car no matter what anyone else thinks. Also I would never buy one of these so called super minis even if I was paid a million pounds to do it for the following reasons. I recently got rid of my MPV for a smaller hatch well ever since I have had it I have had one accident due not our fault some one hit us up the bum in an mpv and all 4 us including my 2 small children had been injured physacally and mentally & 99% of my journies I have a near miss either some one gets to close to our back or pull out on us and what do they say sorry I didn’t see you and most of these cars are bigger than us. As soon as our compensation comes in from our accident I am going to get rid of the small hatch and get another Vauxhall zafira. Also super minis are not practical for people who have children the cars are not very wide so the kids tend to argue and his each other even if you only have 2 kids and there is a middle seat between them. The boot is to small especailly if you have to travel to London – Yorkshire regularly as I live in Yorshire and I have all the family live in London. Small cars are not comfortable as large cars which is not good if you have to do long journies alot. It is not the size of the car that pollutes the air or the engine size it is how you drive the car e.g. gental exseleration is better than the pedel to the metal method and Diesals are the worst type of fuel to use. Vauxhall should also be saved as they run on petrol vapour unlike other european cars e.g. Ford. SAVE VAUXHALL

  19. mr. haughey said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 6:50 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Yeah, great, a healthier industry….

    but what happens to Vauxhall’s really really nice cars? Corsa, next Astra, Insignia, Ampera?

    Just remember those really nice quality cars that people are going to miss.

  20. Polish Pawel said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 7:01 pm Link to comment Report comment

    GM doesn’t care much about Vauxhall/Opel simply because they have already signed with FIAT.

  21. Mikeado said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 7:10 pm Link to comment Report comment

    ^^ That was Chrysler.

  22. Mikeado said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 7:11 pm Link to comment Report comment

    http://foreman.blogs.topg ear.com/2009/01/20/chrysl er-fiat-grabbing-a-desper ate-shag/

  23. MarQvard said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 7:26 pm Link to comment Report comment

    No Pawel, GM recently got rid of FIAT (much to their demise since FIAT are shaping up to be one of the healthier manufacturers), it’s Chrysler that has struck a deal with FIAT.

  24. Mohammad said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 7:37 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I think it’s sad to see Vauxhall/Opel die.

  25. KarMa said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 7:54 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I would say that it’s quite the opposite, FIAT getting rid of GM, cause it’s buying off “their” mixed private-state factories in South-East Europe –namely Zastava and the Turkish trucks one… and will probably develop those as part of the joint venture with Chrysler, like they developed the Polski factory that makes the Cinquecento-Ka with FORD.
    Fiat’s strong point in east and south-east Europe comes from having invested know-how and machinery in Lada, Zastava etc. and now they have a credit to spend.

  26. KarMa said...
    Wednesday March 11, 2009 at 8:23 pm Link to comment Report comment

    It seems that OPEL-Vauxhall’s problem is being cut out of big alliances in a critical moment, since GM is not in the position to invest.
    By the way, since its vans seem to be part of a french-italian-german joint venture, maybe the car department will follow the same scheme, with the bmw-alfa alliance somewhere around that.

    I would tend to notice that the refusal of public funds direction OPEL follows the recent privatization of VW, now acquired by Porsche. It wouldn’t sound “EU-german” to let a part-state factory go private and put public funds to save another private company that makes the same product shortly after.

  27. RG said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 6:58 am Link to comment Report comment

    Once Opel/Vauxhall are gone, there won’t be decent cars that you can get for half the price of Beemers etc. Although the last thing that people need right now are decent cars for half a beemer. Which is what the problem is.

    And once they’re gone, everything under GM may be going.

  28. genie said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 7:09 am Link to comment Report comment

    One of the problems with the scrappage program is that whilst it would generate large sales now, it does that by bringing forward the next 10 years of latent car demand. By temporarily accelerating the car replacement demand, all you are doing is sacrificing future sales for current sales, meaning the car manufacturers will feel twice the pain in 5 years time, unless the program is kept indefinitely, at huge government cost. Not to mention all the studies that have shown its healthier for the environment to drive your 7 year old car than buy a new one every few years. The chief problem is oversupply, unfortunately this is probably the best way to remove it, by letting Opel/Vauxhall fall.

  29. Mikeado said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 10:34 am Link to comment Report comment

    Leftlane news says that the Euroda dealer group are buying a minority stake of Vauxhall/Opel. Obviously that’s not enough to single-handedly save the company, buy they’re doing it to show the government that people want the company to stick around. Yay!

  30. Tak said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 11:38 am Link to comment Report comment

    Stating that a car company the size of Opel is not fundamental to the economics of Germany is a blatant lie.

    Don’t put your trust in scrapsidizing, we got it too and it doesn’t do a lot of good. Those who have eligible cars are usually those who can’t afford a new car anyway, even with extra money. So man A gets the money and scraps his car, then buys some slightly younger 2nd hand. Man B who sold his trusty old steed to man A isn’t getting any, and thus has no extra appetiser to buy new. Then it sort of stops, because the only one who really might get his hands on a new car will lease it thru work. But employers are getting the hell out of carleasing because they all have problems meeting the wages bill these days. So nobody buys new, period.

  31. Tak said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 11:50 am Link to comment Report comment

    What might actually be a real problem with Opel/Vauxhall is that they have no ‘green’ cars. Well, hardly anything worth speaking of. VW do, as do Porsche, Mercedes, Audi, Ford and BMW.
    They’re not to blame of course, since GM had some other priorities. But nevertheless, people won’t buy Opels.

  32. Astraman said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 1:07 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Certainly up until recently, GM Europe (Opel/Vauxhall) were the only part of GM worldwide making any profit, weren’t they?

    If they were to be cut loose and get some investment, I see no reason why Vauxhall/Opel couldn’t be up, running and profitable.

    I’d hate to see them disappear, I’ve had a few Astras in my driving history and they’ve always been better than the wheezy offerings from the VW/Audi group.

    Save VX/Opel and save not only one of the best manufacturing plants in the industry (Ellsmere Port) but all the secondary industries that rely on it too. It’s insane to let it die.

  33. KarMa said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 3:46 pm Link to comment Report comment

    The favourite car between the ones I’ve owned and/or driven a lot is the OPEL Kadett 2.0 8v gsi, and I got it secondhand.
    (I don’t care about brands etc. etc.)

    It had a horrid chassis, but you could notice that waaaay past speed limits, or “illegal but sensible” driving limits… the typical OPEL style “spare on zynch and let people complain about rust and paint that fades cause nothing serious will break down” made Kadetts terrific objects to go around with.
    This policy is not socially acceptable nowadays, cause we’re more vain while buying a car.

    Now I drive an old FIAT-PSA Scudo, and it’s white.

    I’m happy about my girlfriend, and still cannot afford to be more stylish than that, although I would love to have a greener vehicle, I would ask for that to a car-sharing company rather than buy it… so I would be the perfect OPEL client, BUT: if one wants to buy a car “wallet-first-running costs-included”, any recent USED italian or german or french diesel midsized engine with a car around it will be fine, if well kept and with new tyres… and THIS is what is killing my fav brand.

  34. jammie said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 4:47 pm Link to comment Report comment

    great idea get rid of vauxhall they’ve made some rubbish cars! vectra anyone?

  35. Lieutenant Jones said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 5:26 pm Link to comment Report comment

    hear hear ^^

  36. Lieutenant Jones said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 5:27 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I do say, I do hate you plebs. Rolls Royce is much better than anything else, thus, we should all buy Rolls Royce’s. They are very cheap now to.

  37. Lieutenant Jones said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 5:27 pm Link to comment Report comment

    *too.

  38. Lieutenant Jones said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 5:38 pm Link to comment Report comment

    And as for you ‘Chaucer’ you can jolly well be quiet, you can’t tell the jerry that they make good cars, they’ll be insufferable.

  39. Martin said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 6:00 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Why should the tax payer prop up a company that makes mediocre products not a lot of people want. Vauxall hasn’t been English for most of its existence so it’s not like we’re losing a british manufacuring business.

    Shame for the workers but we can’t afford to pay for unproductive subsidised jobs. We’re all broke as a country.

  40. Chaucer said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 8:38 pm Link to comment Report comment

    You say what you want, but not all of us (in fact, nearly none of us) can afford rollers, and if the Germans make decent car (which I think they do) then so be it.

  41. plebeian said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 9:07 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Jones, my dear fellow, you´re in the wrong century old boy. Rolls´ Spirit of Extacy caved hidden under the mighty bonnet stands no longer for notion of motoring nobility,but rather as the guardian securing the aspirations of the nouvo riche russian loan shark hoping for heritage in an automobile that is essentialy just as german as the vauxhall..Wake up man! Buy a Subaru !!

  42. gamester4520503 said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 9:18 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Vauxhall/Opel need to be saved – you cant just let such a massive company with a large consumner base die! It wouldnt be just the employees out of a job, but all the other companies that depend on Vauxhall/Opel for parts or testing. Vauxhall has had a long, long heritage – it survived the recessions before, so I am confident it will survive this… but only if GM get their act together! They should let Vauxhall and Opel go, even if it is to a foreign investor (Tata havent done too badly, eh!), and let them have a chance to get back on their feet again. They make nice cars – and to those who say they dont, then go for a ride in the new Insignia. Mmmm…

  43. genie said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 10:07 pm Link to comment Report comment

    The problem gamester4520503 is that no one has steps forward and showed any interest in buying out Opel/Vauxhall. GM could just let them go tomorrow if they wanted, but that would leave Opel bankrupt. They are billions in debt, can’t meet their repayments, and are still losing billions of euros a year. Without someone who has the required capital to help Opel ride out the recession and turn the company around, they are buggered. And even if they survive that period, they will come out a very small fish in a very big ocean full of sharks. The automotive industry is consolidating and resizing, and without the huge platform sharing deals that its competitors have (Ford, Peugeot/Citreon, VW, etc) and without GM, they will quickly be back in the same situation.

  44. Chris said...
    Thursday March 12, 2009 at 10:23 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Vauxhall/Opel it makes a bit of sense, but how about the ppl left out of jobs; or how about theyr cars, theyr better than Peugeot/Citroen and on the same lenght as VW or Ford

    there’s lot’s for stuff to be considered here, but on my oppinion, dismising one of the best car making brands is rubish !

  45. KarMa said...
    Friday March 13, 2009 at 11:17 am Link to comment Report comment

    Product quality in cars, nowadays, is a decision, not an ability.
    the VW group owns-makes from SEAT to Porsche, for instance, and all the other big “western” groups already have EU based factories for an equivalent range of products, so either OPEL gets bought by someone that feels some advantage in having it or governments will have to collocate its employees somewhere else.

    Besides EU regulations (thou shalt not save industries that lose on the market with euro money), doing it nowadays means rising taxes in the region where factories are, because you cannot play with inflaction, money value, so economists would have to play with money amount to do it.

  46. Vecman said...
    Friday March 13, 2009 at 11:48 am Link to comment Report comment

    jammie said… Thursday March 12, 2009 at 4:47 pm
    great idea get rid of vauxhall they’ve made some rubbish cars! vectra anyone?

    I dont have any problems with the vectra mate its been a great car I have had a few of them as well.

    Think it may just be your driving mate!

  47. Duro said...
    Friday March 13, 2009 at 12:51 pm Link to comment Report comment

    It’s very likely Opel will go bust, ’cause:
    - As Ms Merkel said, they’re not a strategic business for Germany. That’s because Germany already has plenty of manufacturers (VW, Ford, BMW, MB). It’s not like Italy or even France, where one or maybe two companies represent virtually the whole industry and therefore their demise will mean a catastrophic work loss.
    - Opel is a direct competitor to VW (and Seat/Skoda), so there’s no reason why VW would buy it! BMW “could” buy it as a “second brand” and to rake up total production numbers (which are so important nowadays), like Fiat did with Alfa Romeo and Lancia. But this would mean a somewhat “downgrading” of BMW (like it happened to AR/Lancia) in order to exploit commonized production BMW+Opel, which, in the end, would harm BMW.
    - No Euro producer (apart maybe Mercedes) would have an interest in saving Opel. On the contrary, they’ll all benefit from the market share left void by Opel death.
    - GM doesn’t *need* Opel as a brand, for they already have Chevrolet, expecially now that they re-badged Daewoo small cars, so that they can use them instead of Opel.

    In the end, if Opel is going to survive, it’ll be probably through being bought by an Asian company willing to take a place in the Euro market (as Fiat is doing with Chrysler for the US market). At the same time, they would buy Opel’s technology (which is low by Euro standards but high by Asian ones) cheaply.
    This would save most, if not all, jobs.

  48. phil said...
    Friday March 13, 2009 at 1:39 pm Link to comment Report comment

    BMW will NOT buy Opel / Vauxhall as they are not in the best health themselves. They are also scared of a repeat of the Rover episode, so are not willing to buy another company – that’s why they didn’t buy Volvo when they could have. They would rather buy a badge and develop it themselves, e.g. Mini, Rolls Royce than take on existing products, factories, employees etc etc.

  49. P6ULO said...
    Friday March 13, 2009 at 2:20 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Here’s an idea….why not seize the pension pots and bonuses of all those greedy sleazebags in the financial sectors who have brought the world to the brink of financial collapse, and distribute them to the businesses whom they have contributed to making vulnerable due to the recession they have helped to cause. Call it compensation if you will. GM Europe do not deserve to fail. They have a long history and finally a good product range. There must be £2bn somewhere in that big ol’ pension pot!

  50. p7ulo said...
    Friday March 13, 2009 at 6:08 pm Link to comment Report comment

    p6ulo, did you pay cash for your car ?

  51. skul said...
    Friday March 13, 2009 at 6:50 pm Link to comment Report comment

    i fear that this is the begining of the end for
    GM

    it will be sad to see vauxhall go they may have made some bad cars but recently things have been improving just look at the new Insignia

  52. Andre said...
    Friday March 13, 2009 at 8:05 pm Link to comment Report comment

    am i the only person who thinks the nationalisation idea raises great fears yet still enthused to have large scale british owned car production back

  53. Rich T said...
    Friday March 13, 2009 at 8:50 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Whilst I do feel for anyone losing there job Vauxhall / Opel don’t make a decent car and haven’t done since the Cavalier. Even the Pug 308 is better than an Astra and as for the “new” Insipida, enough said: Anyway, moving on there is massive oversupply in the market place with too many cars being built and little demand for them. For years Vauxhalls only real UK volume customers have been Mr Hertz and Mr Avis but even they aren’t buying now.

    Don’t know what the answer is but unlimited loans it ain’t. I really do hope that Saab can find new ownership and get back to building some great fast cars rather than luke warm ones based on flawed GM platforms.

  54. Irish Racer said...
    Friday March 13, 2009 at 9:57 pm Link to comment Report comment

    whoa whoa hold on there… The opel speedster wasnt a bad car.. It was a great sports car.. Of course they fall apart but then what sports cars dont. Lotus were involved in the chassis design and I think that its the same chassis thats used in the elise

  55. Massimiliano said...
    Saturday March 14, 2009 at 7:20 am Link to comment Report comment

    I’m from Italy, and I’m sad ’cause my father wants to change our red Astra GTC 150HP for a new big grey heavy Insigna with automatic gear!… It’s so difficult to change from a red car to a grey one!

  56. tails2101 said...
    Saturday March 14, 2009 at 9:40 am Link to comment Report comment

    regarding the state of vauxhall/gm in europe, we in adelaide, south australia have concerns as gm are a major employer in this state. one recent development is the major execs have chosen to take pay cuts and the workers are working fewer days in order to cut costs and keep the company’s australian arm in production. might be worth a shot doing the same in uk, europe and usa.

  57. KarMa said...
    Saturday March 14, 2009 at 3:27 pm Link to comment Report comment

    “BMW “could” buy it as a “second brand” and to rake up total production numbers (which are so important nowadays), like Fiat did with Alfa Romeo and Lancia.”

    It makes sense, though bmw just made an alliance with Fiat-ALFA, and Lancia is concentrating on mini-to mid-size high specs cars “aka luxurious Fiats”, and it would be a better partner for BMW at the moment. Since alfa will move a part of the production to Australia (aluminium engine parts), it sounds like they will collect some gm-opel bits, but it’s likely they will expect the brand crack to get a better deal.

  58. KarMa said...
    Saturday March 14, 2009 at 3:30 pm Link to comment Report comment

    (which is what FIAT did when they bought Lancia, while they got ALFA with a quite shady political operation, cause ALFA was healthy-ish, but, being a state company, it had to “save” minor factories, which is precisely what made it collapse, and FIAT got it almost for free)

  59. nick199622 said...
    Saturday March 14, 2009 at 3:58 pm Link to comment Report comment

    so we waste money on RBS and LLoyds TSB and wont invest it in a industry that employs 100,000′s shame on you goverments. We know we cant have a service economy we need to make things and export. HM Gov need to invest in UK car production. Take the surpless cars and give them to the police local goverment change the fleet of HM Gov that way we will have something to show for our money we cant say that about RBS can we!

  60. beat-68 said...
    Saturday March 14, 2009 at 8:36 pm Link to comment Report comment

    well, I think this is bad for the work force, but it’s good for the european industry, the Americans are trying to do everything to stay in the market, killing opel should boost European sales…

  61. marcus said...
    Sunday March 15, 2009 at 12:38 am Link to comment Report comment

    u should bild a car so fast it is colt
    a racecar

  62. SHEBAS said...
    Sunday March 15, 2009 at 5:43 pm Link to comment Report comment

    IF YOU LAID THE BACK SEATS DOWN WOULD IT MAKE THE CAR SAFER IN THE EVENT OF A REAR CRASH, OR WOULD IT MAKE NO DIFFERENCE AT ALL

  63. SHEBAS said...
    Sunday March 15, 2009 at 5:47 pm Link to comment Report comment

    IF YOU LAID THE BACK SEATS DOWN,WOULD IT MAKE INSIDE OF THE CAR SAFER AND STRONGER IN THE EVENT OF A REAR ENDER SMASH.

  64. SHEBAS said...
    Sunday March 15, 2009 at 5:48 pm Link to comment Report comment

    OOPS SAID IT TWICE SORRY

  65. heinz said...
    Sunday March 15, 2009 at 6:03 pm Link to comment Report comment

    As comment nr.7 said above, capitalism is all about survival of the richest. GM and the other American manufacturers asked aid worth many billions of $ more than the mere 3 billions Opel is looking for. GM is not dead yet, Opel/Vauxhall is definitely going to die.
    I accept US government’s money was used to save thousands of jobs, but look at it in terms of vehicles: sheds of money were available to keep alive ever-losing horrid things like Saturn and Pontiac which cost a lot and have no buyers; in the meantime much better cars like Opels are going to vanish because no one is going to make a much smaller effort to save them and all the workers from factories that’ll be closing down soon.

  66. PatrickBMW said...
    Sunday March 15, 2009 at 6:33 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Ridiculous. The government shouldn’t be able to pick and choose which automaker dies in order to save the rest. Each nation in Europe should give their money to the automakers that play the biggest role in their economy. But, life isn’t fair, and it seems the government isn’t either.

  67. obvious said...
    Sunday March 15, 2009 at 10:48 pm Link to comment Report comment

    would they really have built the insignia not to mention all the other models of late if they saw the end coming ? just a thought….

    it would be like taking all toilet paper off every shelf and replacing it with… towels.. will never happen !

  68. obvious said...
    Sunday March 15, 2009 at 10:57 pm Link to comment Report comment

    someone will come along and grab up opel,vauxhall and saab for peanuts and they´ll have enough capacity to flood asia with exactly what it´s lacking : cheap but durable, decent, proper, euro style luxury.. and when production get shifted, you can all buy them for 70% the present price :D
    just w8 & C

  69. obvious said...
    Sunday March 15, 2009 at 11:01 pm Link to comment Report comment

    have a look at what the upper middle class prof. drives in india, the worlds fastest growing middleclass econmy… google t, you´ll be shocked ! same goes for china, malaysia, the philipines..korea can´t compete and japan´s not for sale..

  70. mikeyc said...
    Monday March 16, 2009 at 8:24 pm Link to comment Report comment

    just let Vaxhaull/Opel die…. are gov.ts of today really that gutless? Just think of the job losses – in the current situation i think its better to hold onto the jobs now by saving Vaxhaull/Opel, even if they do go bust later on.

    If we want to spend our way out this recession, its going to be impossible if we just let thousands of jobs like these just disappear, it’d be a stupid idea; but then again, i wouldn’t put it past them….

  71. andy said...
    Monday March 16, 2009 at 11:37 pm Link to comment Report comment

    hit by oneluckyeuro.com.
    Seams the site is quite aggressive as images and idea.
    What you guys think about it ?

    Cheers
    Andy

  72. Mark Simmons said...
    Tuesday March 17, 2009 at 11:18 am Link to comment Report comment

    Hey andy i went to see the site you spoke about http://www.onelukyeuro.co m
    Nice site it looks a great idea and very cheep…

  73. andy said...
    Tuesday March 17, 2009 at 12:36 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I agree Mark.
    Maybe ill put a couple of euros just to check it out !

    Who knows…. eheheh (wish me luck)

  74. Fred Shed said...
    Tuesday March 17, 2009 at 5:54 pm Link to comment Report comment

    As a taxpayer I do not think you can just give billions to private companies to use as they will.
    This is what was done wth British Leyland/Rover. All it did was postpone the inevitable. It gave management the idea that they could be as useless as they liked, someone would always bail them out.Even if Vauxhall were nationalised, where would they source the cars? Surely no-one thinks British taxpayers should subsidise foriegn factories.
    If we are going to subsidise any car company, surely it should be the most successful one with major production facillities in Britain, not a German/US company on the rocks.

  75. j keetley said...
    Wednesday March 18, 2009 at 4:03 pm Link to comment Report comment

    there is a good reason why there in debt because vauxall cars are not very good

  76. HATER said...
    Wednesday March 18, 2009 at 9:32 pm Link to comment Report comment

    good, their ugly , stupid cars, Good Riddance

  77. lover said...
    Wednesday March 18, 2009 at 10:04 pm Link to comment Report comment

    like, oh my god, jaaa, this car is like sooooo stupid and uhhhgly.. stupid car, stupid ! H8r, you must be from somewhere bad.

  78. lover said...
    Wednesday March 18, 2009 at 10:08 pm Link to comment Report comment

    and j. keetley, who ever carved in stone that we deserve only the best eh ?? perhaps vauxhall/opel aren´t very good but they aren´t exactly very bad either.. there is however a reason to their debt, and it isn´t very good I can tell you that much !

  79. Lewis B said...
    Thursday March 19, 2009 at 12:11 am Link to comment Report comment

    Vauxhall will die or be bought out by the chinese (not sure which is worse…)

    Now we just need Lada to buy the old factories and the dealer network with the intention to reintroduce on a major scale to trully make this one of the most unfortunate events in recent years.

    ofcourse, lada could buy opel/vauxhall and establish it as a luxury brand! (against the rest of their lineup atleast)

  80. Tajsen said...
    Thursday March 19, 2009 at 12:24 pm Link to comment Report comment

    i think it’s time that we started coming up with solutions because of course if nothing is done then they have to sell it to the Belgium or something. Stig come on do something!

  81. si said...
    Thursday March 19, 2009 at 8:15 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Althogh i do not want anybody to go bust it will not be a big loss. sure they have made the odd good car like the vxr8 and the monaro but all the other ones like the meriva or the zafira are not the greatest cars in the world.

  82. Lloydy said...
    Sunday March 22, 2009 at 9:03 pm Link to comment Report comment

    american tw@s – give us back our brilliant company! and f*ck off wiv ur rebadged daewoos

  83. Lloydy said...
    Sunday March 22, 2009 at 9:04 pm Link to comment Report comment

    enuff said me thinks

  84. slovak said...
    Tuesday March 24, 2009 at 7:17 am Link to comment Report comment

    try to read this article:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/h i/business/7927924.stm

    this says it all:

    “Media reports suggest that the German government was angry that the bail-out proposal – which asked for 3.3bn euros (£2.93bn; $4.16bn) – was simply a glossy 217-page brochure which read like an advertisement, rather than presenting any viable business plan. “

  85. JP Vauxhall slayer said...
    Wednesday March 25, 2009 at 3:14 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Vauxhall cars are pony, let them go pop.

  86. Matt said...
    Thursday March 26, 2009 at 3:01 am Link to comment Report comment

    I don’t think the German government can just pile money into businesses, especially if they were on the edge of extinction anyway, and a lot of the workforce is over here in the UK as well. It’s far better for them to make sure the banks keep the lending of money liquid as it ensures people and new companies that need credit get it. I agree that maybe they’ve realised they have to let the old, poor businesses die, and keep money going into new growth. I feel sorry for the Opel/GM workforce though.

  87. Matt said...
    Thursday March 26, 2009 at 3:12 am Link to comment Report comment

    Quote: ‘and 15 years down the road we´re back in the soup, only this time around cutting interest rates and forcing the tax payer into even greater shares of the fallen economy wont do the trick.’
    This may be true. I’ve always wondered what the negative effects of getting credit above inflation rates on a depreciating asset are on an economy. Seems now the answer is bigger boom and bigger bust. So the era of cheap credit has come to an end and now we are going to struggle. In the past most recessions have been caused by either the government or people spending too much causing inflation. What worries me is that every Western government may spend too much trying to get their economy back on track. That means in the future loads of government spending cuts, less social care, etc.

  88. jolly roger said...
    Friday March 27, 2009 at 2:45 pm Link to comment Report comment

    and/or simply higher tax and even less social care with even greater public interfearance.. ie pseudocommunism.. see scandinavia.

  89. Gareth the Mechanic said...
    Sunday March 29, 2009 at 8:00 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I am a independent mechanic and have had 100s of different cars through my place and one of the best put together motors is a vauxhall. You start to pull apart somthing like a ford and its all just ceap CRAP!, the same can be said of french motors that is one of the reasons they will live on. I look at ford and think they made a big mistake selling jag/land rover and aston martin, they should of kept them and sold ford. Vauxhall/opal have always been the best alturnitive to ford or the french and the car manufactur ive owned the most and always go back to and i think they should be saved even if GM goes tits up.

  90. j keetley said...
    Tuesday March 31, 2009 at 6:11 pm Link to comment Report comment

    lover do you work for Vauxhall/Opel

  91. Guy doing Nothing said...
    Wednesday April 8, 2009 at 4:33 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Can someone help me. i cant watch video over here in the U.S. I agree with Jolly Roger. plz help me

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