Vauxhall-Opel gets its new owner

Posted by Paul Horrell at 1:59 pm on Monday June 1, 2009

Well, Foreman called it wrong. I thought Fiat would get control of Vauxhall and Opel, but the giant Canadian car-components-maker Magna won. I was looking at it from an automotive point of view, and the result was skewed by politics.

Once it was clear Opel-Vauxhall’s American parent GM started sliding towards today’s bankruptcy, GM had to cast aside its European operations to a new owner. The German government, the German unions, and Opel-Vauxhall’s German-domiciled management always wanted Magna, not Fiat, to be that owner.

Crucially, Magna had more or less promised to save most jobs in the German Opel factories. And indeed Magna has a very good record of looking after its employees. The German Government takes a far more hands-on role in industrial policy than our British Government does. It knew there would be votes in saving German jobs.

So the German Government promised loan money to Magna if it keeps the German lines running. A bit of a stitch-up?

Our business secretary Lord Mandelson gets his face on the news saying he wants to save the Vauxhall factories, but doesn’t do a whole lot about it.

By the way, even if Vauxhall’s Ellesmere Port were eventually to shut, Vauxhall wouldn’t be dead. We’d just get our Astras from Germany with Vauxhall badges, just as at the moment we get our Corsas from Spain with Vauxhall badges.

If Fiat had taken over, there would probably have been more and quicker job losses overall, and especially more in Germany. And Opel management and engineers simply didn’t like Fiat. They’d worked with them before, on the Corsa/Punto platform. I talked to them over the past days and they didn’t try very hard to hide their distaste for going there again.

But I still think Fiat would have made more long-term sense. There are simply too many car plants in Europe. These factories cost mountains of money to keep open, and paying thousands of workers costs a fortune too. If a plant is turning out cars at full stretch, that’s fine, but if it’s running slack, it haemorrhages money. And in Europe, there are too many of those slack plants.

Sadly, amalgamating some companies and cutting costs by component-sharing is the only way forward. Maintaining Opel/Vauxhall as a separate company under Magna probably only delays the evil day that closures arrive. (Unless by some chance a reborn GM North America flourishes and can eventually buy back Opel-Vauxhall.)

Remember how MG-Rover became an independent company after BMW abandoned it? Didn’t last long did it?

And Saab looks even shakier. It was until recently part of GM Europe, but Magna didn’t want it, not the brand or the factories. So the Swedes are still looking for their own white knight.

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  1. KarMa said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 2:24 pm Link to comment Report comment

    It will probably mean that FIAT now will have to collect the other GM bits, the ones that are not as “ready to go, just add money” as Opel is.
    A new scenario can be, for instance, FIAT getting SAAB and melt SAAB with Lancia, which is something perfectly compatible, since the two brands share platforms and r&d since the eighties, while having the same target and a similar style.

    It will also mean that this “new Magna” and some FIAT departments will have to be allied, and probably melt in the future, ’cause OPEL diesels are FIAT already, ’cause ALFA and BMW are about to share the Aussie factory for Aluminium engine blocks, and Magna owns at least one factory which is a BMW and Chrysler subcontractor, etc. etc.. AND FIAT owns most of the former “Warsaw pact factories” (Lada, Zastava…) plus Turkish FIAT since the beginning of Eastern automotive industry, With FIAT being well put in South America, more than VW, which appears to be present in Mexico only (but I might be missing something).
    ..so, if things follow some sort of logic, in years it will be FIAT-PSA-BMW-“OPEL”-Tata against VW-Audi-Skoda-Daewoo.

    At this point, it would be interesting to understand what Renault and Mercedes will do, the former being probably mostly into the “VW block”, the latter into the “FIAT block”. Renault and the Japanese factories have been very quiet about all this stir, but we cannot exclude the French firm and Honda being in the position of collecting some GM bits.

  2. KarMa said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 2:31 pm Link to comment Report comment

    The problem in all this is that reduction of ownerships will cause a monopolistic desk to appear, exactly what happened to petrol companies.

    What I really really don’t like is the idea of two executives’tables, one of “energy producers”, which already is, and one of “transport and heating devices”, which will soon be, by the looks of it, to happen, because these two tables can be put in one room… bad Karma.

  3. catersam said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 2:50 pm Link to comment Report comment

    KarMa – VW has a plant in Brazil, that’s where VW Foxs (or Foxes?) are made. Also, Toyota and GM America (and possibly Chrysler, I need to check) have plants – albeit not FIAT size – in Sao Paolo, too.

    MG Rover only failed because they were in too much muck when they took themselves over to do anything new. So yeah, Saab have no chance, unless FIAT buy them and turn them to Italian Lexus.

  4. Musashi said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 2:58 pm Link to comment Report comment

    As for GM and Chrysler: Good Riddance to Bad Rubbish. They should have gone bankrupt years ago as punishment for churning out crap cars for the past 40 years.

    I for one am glad that Fiat didn’t buy them.
    The idea of almost all cars being made by a handful huge companies is simply scary.
    With Fiat owning everything from Ferrari to Alfa; VW owning everything from SEAT to Lamborghini and Bugatti; the former GM owning Opel and Vauxhall – this lead to a terrible homogeneity of cars.

    As good as it is for spare parts, it doesn’t encourage innovation or competition. With governments always ready to step in at the slightest sign of trouble, the car companies have gotten away with delivering mediocre crap for too long (broad generalization, I know).

    Instead a few big companies with huge plants, we should many small companies delivering more competition to the consumer.

  5. chickenfeed said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 3:04 pm Link to comment Report comment

    They wouldn’t build the cars as crap as possible so they can sell more spare parts would they?

  6. Lloydy said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 3:12 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Well im glad for Magna. Because if FIAT took over, the newer vauxhall/opel models would have been rubbish. Their quality would suck, and lets be honest, although vauxhalls may be bland, they seem to work quite well. FIAT on the other hand, which in the mechanics industry stands for Fix It Another Time, well that sums it up.

    The only good thing to come out of Chrysler was the Viper. And that was dodge really. Shame though, just as the challenger comes out, it probably wont be around for long. I wish that chevrolet will go down. Get rid of the bloody corvette.

    Good idea by Mercedes though to sell chrysler. I mean although we all seem to hate germany, (i love it frankly, nurburgring, a good government and de-restricted Autobahns make sense in my world) they do seem to have their heads on a swivel and they will have the best chance of surviving this economic downturn out of EVERYONE.

    I mean apart from vauxhall, opel, saab and holden, does the downfall of GM really change anything?

    Simple answer: NO

    And as for MG rover, the point was that they hadnt changed their models for almost 10 years. and they decided to kill off the rover V8, which could have helped them survive their demise had they used it wisely. and they supplied the gearboxes and engines to lotus for a while for – wait for it – £900! thats sutupidly small! Should have increased the price, made some more money. Because the honda engines were being sold at more than £1200 without the gearboxes (sourced from lotus engineer mates ;) ).

    So basically, Rover F***ed up, and would have anyway by now had they survived, noone over this side of the atlantic cares about GM, and Vauxhall/opel is in good hands. Now someone buy Saab and Holden! (if holden are still owned by GM :P :D )

  7. KarMa said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 3:36 pm Link to comment Report comment

    “Good Riddance to Bad Rubbish” is definitely the point.

    If it’s rubbish it has to be tiny cheapo cars for people that need to move but cannot afford to pay much more than “something to use fuel-energy with”.

    “Because if FIAT took over, the newer vauxhall/opel models would have been rubbish.”

    Well, in the meantime this sentence definitely IS rubbish, sorry for being this direct, ’cause industry doesn’t work like this, and quality is a decision based on an object’s marketing target from r&d on.
    FIAT can have Ferrari quality, but would people buy a 500 that’s perfect, but would cost three or four times than it currently does?
    No.
    Same for any brand. And please consider that the Saab 9000 was way more FIAT than “Swedish” already, since you seem to appreciate the brand, for instance.

    I would really like to say “good riddance for brand hooliganism”, but this will happen only if brands would stop advertising their things using anything else than tech data and stats (and it would be boring).

  8. KarMa said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 3:40 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Italian Lexus is Lancia. btw :)

    thx for the piece of info ’bout south am. industry, I really don’t know much about that part of the golbe.

  9. PetrolHead247 said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 3:50 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I have to admit that i didn’t see this coming either. Fiat were odviously interested in buying Vauxhall/Opel but instead, Magna has taken control, big shock! But when i read this i was a little concerned.

    For a start i had no idea what sort of financial state Magna was in. Secondly i thought Fiat owning Vauxhall/Opel would boost profits of both companies, give them a better reputation among the car industry and that they wouldn’t go bankrupt, unlike GM.

    But Magna’s website looks very promising. On their website it states that their customers are:
    Acura
    Aston Martin
    Audi
    Alfa Romeo
    Bentley
    BMW
    Bugatti
    Buick
    Cadillac
    Chery
    Chevrolet
    Chrysler
    Citroen
    Dacia
    Daihatsu
    Dodge
    Fiat
    Ferrari
    Ford
    GMC
    Honda
    Hummer
    Hyundai
    Infiniti
    Isuzu
    Iveco
    Jaguar
    Jeep
    Kia
    Lamborghini
    Lancia
    Land Rover
    Lexus
    Lincoln
    Lotus
    Maserati
    Maybach
    Mazda
    Smart
    Mercedes-Benz
    Mercury
    MINI
    Mitsubishi
    Nissan
    Opel
    Peugeot
    Pontiac
    Porsche
    Renault
    Rolls Royce
    SAAB
    Saturn
    SEAT
    Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp.
    Skoda
    Ssangyong
    Subaru
    Suzuki
    Tata
    Toyota
    Vauxhall
    Volkswagen
    Volvo

    There’s more good news. Magna has 124 sites in Europe (12 in the UK and 1 in Ireland), 37 in Asia (22 in China and 5 in Japan), 3 in South Africa, 68 in the US, 27 in Mexico, 65 in Canada (one of which is their headquarters) and 3 in Brazil. So they have 327 sites on Earth, that’s quite impressive.

    So Magna seem extremely successful. They have over 300 sites worldwide, make a range of items for some of the greatest car companies in the world and don’t seem to be bankrupt.

    So will Vauxhall/Opel being owned by Magna work? I think so.

  10. idislikechryslers said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 4:30 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I think with Magna at the helm, there could be a few problems.

    British Leyland was partially caused by BMC buying Pressed Steel, which made bodyparts the same as Magna. Could this mean that the company would know all their bodyshapes etc. when they go to manufacture and have the upper hand.

    This would mean that either no-one will go to the company for bodywork due to this and it’ll go bankrupt as it currently is impartial.

    or

    Magna will expand and buy up other car companies.

  11. motorwriter60 said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 5:09 pm Link to comment Report comment

    What will happen to Holden then? Has anyone any news?

  12. KarMa said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 5:18 pm Link to comment Report comment

    In one sense it’s wise from Magna’s point of view to buy “upwards” rather than expand “horizontal” trying to buy, say, Brembo or Bosch instead of car brands, because the factory decides its subcontractors, not the opposite.
    As long as they can keep and expand r&d teams and patents they can keep the know-how, and it doesn’t matter if yesterday they were making radiators only.

    It’s not wise from the industrial point of view, because there’s a precise reason for subcontractors to exist: “neutrality” (as you can see from Magna’s client list posted up here, same goes for Brembo, Bosch or Valeo, for instance) and agility in solving little dramas before they become big ones that can be only if the production is “federal”.

    I don’t imagine Bosch buying car brands tomorrow, yet they’re quite big, while Brembo makes high quality brakes, but they don’t buy upwards either.
    I suppose Magna’s choice being a lot more a political one than a technical one.

  13. KarMa said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 5:22 pm Link to comment Report comment

    @12: gossips say it will become part of the Alfa-BMW alliance and their forthcoming plant will maybe be based on Holden. Alfa and BMW will share aluminium engine blocks, and Holden maybe will assemble both.

  14. liam said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 8:31 pm Link to comment Report comment

    but fiat make very nice cars,canadians don’t know anything about good attractive cars,another bad decision,it could end up with vauxhall,opel,saab and chevy eu (rebaged daewoos) could end up bankrupt as well,…… and gone forever

  15. kingrocky said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 8:32 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I see no point of american cars. Germans are good enough and they should be the only people who invent cars.

  16. jolly roger said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 8:53 pm Link to comment Report comment

    so za cherman government scored some brownie points and chose a buyer who in return will get them votes.. an arranged marriage made in heaven ! ask frauline merkel :D on the other hand the parts manufacturer that started forging radiators now builds cars.. I like ! :D 20 years down the road ? bad karma, indeed !

  17. Stig's Irish Cousin said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 9:42 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Good research petrolhead247! But I don’t get it, why if Magna make parts for SAAB why don’t they buy them? Will Fiat buy SAAB now and abandon their own useless large cars?

  18. KarMa said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 10:15 pm Link to comment Report comment

    To be honest, the “radiator” thing was a metaphore, they started making “metal parts” in general… but yes, it’s a sort of romantic “old pioneers gone pro” thing, as if Nikola Tesla managed to buy Philips out :)

    Also Marchionne is a similar old fashioned “self made man”, from Italian war orphan that lost his house when Istria passed from Italy to Yugoslavia (his dad was killed when he was a kid and he was expelled with his mum from his hometown) to one of the world’s most important industry executives.

    I’m definitely no fan of either the Soviet union or fascism (this just for the record ’cause I don’t want to be misunderstood about that), but, being born myself on the iron courtain, it does strike a smile to see that ants with big balls do manage to ride mammoths sometimes.

  19. KarMa said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 10:28 pm Link to comment Report comment

    @18 it’s indeed likely to happen, IMO they didn’t finish buying it just ’cause they were on OPEL and definitely don’t care about having both.
    Problem is also that it would mean buying the 9-3 line only, ’cause the next 9-5 was developed by Saab and Alfa together and Alfa already got the Saab part off them last year. Not sure that they need the 9-3 at all, which is based on the Vectra, or the biofuel engine, ’cause FIAT already has a good one. So it would just mean buying the logo, more or less, and save the factory, which I suppose it’ll happen if the Swedish government offers a good deal about that.

  20. Mikeado said...
    Monday June 1, 2009 at 11:32 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Good god that’s a big list of Magna Steyr customers!!

    It’s good they got the companies, partly because it means no/fewer job losses, but also because Fiat already has Chrysler – to buy off bits of GM Europe aswell would just be greedy.

  21. SiChi said...
    Tuesday June 2, 2009 at 2:53 am Link to comment Report comment

    As an OEM supplier owning one of its customer will give a big boost to Magna, not only will it revieve the profits generated by sell the finished cars it will also be able to source most of the components from its own in house, generating profits across the complete range of Magna holdings.
    So Good Luck Magna just bear in mind that Quality is remembered a lot longer after the cheap price is forgotten!!!

  22. SiChi said...
    Tuesday June 2, 2009 at 3:02 am Link to comment Report comment

    To stigs irish cousin, Magna builds the Saab Saab 9-3 Cabrio, Porsche Boxster as well as BMW X5, and will also be building the 4 door Aston Rapide. Quite a sexy line up….

  23. Showie said...
    Tuesday June 2, 2009 at 5:00 am Link to comment Report comment

    maybe Fiat can take over VW then. and that would be a new world of fun.
    german mechanics and electrics mixed with Italian looks. sounds like i’m dreaming.
    on a totally unrelated subject, what happened to the chromed inlet pipes on Alfa Romeo’s V6 models? the cool factor has gone and i want an old 156 V6, because, as Clarkson said (along the lines), when it breaks down, which it will, you get out and look at the engine and fall in love again.

  24. lookat said...
    Tuesday June 2, 2009 at 8:36 am Link to comment Report comment

    As I know, Magna is going to buy only 10% of shares, which is less than 30% part of GM shares in new company. There is also new big shareholder – russian Sberbank with 30%. At least 10% is for Opel emloyees and dilers.

    So, Magna is not going to be the biggest owner.

  25. jolly roger said...
    Tuesday June 2, 2009 at 4:09 pm Link to comment Report comment

    sichi, not that it matters but they build the x3 and not the x5 as far as I know…

  26. Solidus said...
    Tuesday June 2, 2009 at 4:39 pm Link to comment Report comment

    SiChi, I thought Magna (under Magna Styer, Austria) assembles the X3 and they have not much to do with the X5.

    Frank Stronach, an Austrian immigrant to Canada, who built up Magna from his small workshop into an over $20 billion international company and the Magna executives been wanting for the past 5 years to buy a car manufacturer. Magna was bidding on Chrysler few years back when Daimler put it up for sale. They got outbid by Cerberus Capital and that in hindsight was lucky. It would have been too difficult to cut cost and turn them around. And Chrysler as a brand is rubbish, even compared to the other American car manufacturers.

    I read in the Canadian newspapers about 2-3 years ago that Magna had car designs of their own ready to go into production (I think that’s one of the reason they wanted to get Chrysler). They might have been shy about lunching a Magna branded car that has no car brand history/recognition from the public’s point of view.

  27. Solidus said...
    Tuesday June 2, 2009 at 4:48 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I know Wikipedia is not the best of sources, but here is a bit about Magna Styer:

    “In 2002 it absorbed Daimler AG’s Eurostar vehicle assembly facility. The company’s vehicle assembly capacity reached 200,000 vehicles a year. It is the largest contract manufacturer for automobiles worldwide.

    Magna Steyr developed Mercedes-Benz’s “4MATIC” all wheel drive system and assembles all E-Class 4Matic models. The company also did substantial development on the BMW X3 and manufactures all X3s.”

    I think Opel/Vauxhall will be in good hands. For anyone interested further, here is a current article in the Star about Magna and it’s founder (hoping the link will post):

    http://www.thestar.com/bu siness/article/642986

  28. Solidus said...
    Tuesday June 2, 2009 at 5:01 pm Link to comment Report comment

    ‘lookat’, the shareholding percentages will be as follows (you can read about it in more detail in the Toronto Star article I link above):

    35% Sberbank (Russian bank)
    35% General Motors
    20% Magna
    10% Opel employees

  29. Solidus said...
    Tuesday June 2, 2009 at 5:09 pm Link to comment Report comment

    ‘lookat’, just to further clarify: together with Sberbank, Russia’s largest bank as their investing partner, Magna will in effect have 55% majority control over the company.

  30. jolly roger said...
    Tuesday June 2, 2009 at 8:14 pm Link to comment Report comment

    so next time you buy an astra, you’ll automatically become a part of the great russian money laundry.. hope they’ll come with a hawaii shirt&shorts set, obama’s autobigraphy, some maple syrup and a collection of mozart classics and of course the inevitable vauxhall badge to give us some false sensation of pride..:D.. @take all you can, give nothing back, arrrrrggghhhhhh !!!”

  31. svrallo svrallone said...
    Tuesday June 2, 2009 at 10:16 pm Link to comment Report comment

    well is a very big corporation indeed, and the economic problems of some competitors helps out, but right now they’re not a flourishing fountain of money, just look at they’re press zone on them sites, they’re loosing money and the two biggest customers are gm and chrysler, while they’re biggest external third parties production are some suvs and pick ups and parts of new opels, european manufacturer are trying to generate agreements to produce common parts and reduce external were possible. and one very ridiculous thing is that they’ll have to work with fiat a lot,and will be a bit of a war between the two, not only for the diesel engines, but, mostly, with chrysler, some platforms, and if they bought it, the last bit of gm s.america (well in this case is a tooling thing)
    we already said that the factories cost enormously for car builders and that’s the primary reason for some latest models been built by other companies (as magna) but is also true that there is over production, and that some badge have to go, but this politically madness is really a bad thing. fiat+opel+chrysler with gm collapsing, vw and porsche playing stupid with they’re stocks and the second one with empty pockets etc etc were a good scenario of the car risiko.also strangely many external builders are in bad shape or vanished.
    AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA AH please someone make a recap of the car industry AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH
    a confused svrallo

  32. jolly roger said...
    Wednesday June 3, 2009 at 12:13 am Link to comment Report comment

    well as long as you get that you don’t get it there’s hope..:D

  33. jolly roger said...
    Wednesday June 3, 2009 at 12:15 am Link to comment Report comment

    meanwhile, you could just sit back and enjoy ? just a thought…

  34. V said...
    Wednesday June 3, 2009 at 12:27 am Link to comment Report comment

    as long as it’s a good long term financial deal and a solid progression on the Opel badge.

  35. Joe King said...
    Friday June 5, 2009 at 9:58 am Link to comment Report comment

    With regard to Fiat’s electrical failures. Fiat’s are more reliable than Audi, BMW, Honda, Mercedes, Mini, Porsche, Toyota, Volkswagen and many more.
    Check out “What car” Reliability index. http://www.reliabilityind ex.co.uk/man_index_2.html  ?searchtype=electrical&a pc=3128339010848601#

  36. KarMa said...
    Friday June 5, 2009 at 12:19 pm Link to comment Report comment

    …and off another waltz starts… oh my, let’s just ask bookmakers

  37. svrallo svrallone said...
    Friday June 5, 2009 at 12:27 pm Link to comment Report comment

    ahahah. Ok my grammar doesn’t help (nor my brain) but the point of the thing was that 1)magna is an enormous company so it’s difficult to make an all around analysis
    2) some important business of it actually are in bad shape (but the company is solid and some market situation are positive for them
    3)some of this important business now cocerns fiat (for example chrysler)
    So this is interesting in understand some of the next steps of the affair.
    a more clear svrallo

  38. KarMa said...
    Saturday June 6, 2009 at 11:50 am Link to comment Report comment

    IF things stay like this and within the rules of free market (which is quite creative an assumption already) problem is: would other car brands still use Magna as a subcontractor, feeding competition?

  39. svrallo svrallone said...
    Saturday June 6, 2009 at 2:11 pm Link to comment Report comment

    @38
    if you buy a finished-designed-and-bui lt-by-magna product yes. :-)
    is interesting also in another way.
    Would you share chassis and engine with opel any more?
    there’s something about holden i want to ask but i think i’ll ask in the new posts about vauxhall.

  40. KarMa said...
    Thursday June 11, 2009 at 5:06 pm Link to comment Report comment

    It is possible, true… but… would it be healthy?
    You buy a Microsoft product within any non-apple computer, and Microsoft has money in Apple anyway (and Apple’s quality went down after that happened).
    Monopoly usually doesn’t help quality.

  41. R94N said...
    Monday June 15, 2009 at 4:26 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Like the photo… it’s like them pub signs where there’s this grubby banner hung over the actual pub sign

  42. Anonymous said...
    Friday June 19, 2009 at 1:56 pm Link to comment Report comment

    i think if opel gets a new owner it will be good cauase then they will stay in forgien countrys

  43. chpsracing said...
    Friday June 19, 2009 at 9:44 pm Link to comment Report comment

    KarMa, you’re completely wrong when you say the new 9-5 was done by SAAB and ALfa. The new 9-5 is based on the same Epsilon II platform as the Insignia and was developed by SAAB and OPEL. The new 9-3 will be based on the Global Delta platform, which is the base for the coming Astra and the Cruze…

    And about this Magna – Opel/Vauxhall thing… Magna is a very active company, hopefully they’ll come with the idea of developing new cars and making new things!!! They’ll probably loose some contracts as suppliers fro other OEMs, but also some suppliers will get less contracts with Opel/Vauxhall now… things kind of balance out and the end, don’t they???

  44. twojags said...
    Sunday June 21, 2009 at 1:09 pm Link to comment Report comment

    they own another great car companey

  45. KarMa said...
    Monday June 22, 2009 at 8:39 am Link to comment Report comment

    @43 naw, probably I wasn’t clear. the plan ’bout the NEXT 9-5 involved developing a shared new chassis, halfways though r&d saab backed off from the project, cause the development costs would have been to steep for saab to substain, and alfa now has the full ownership of the r&d part that hase done (and paid) in common.
    This caused a delay for Alfa, but caused Saab quite a waste of money.
    Wasn’t talking about anything that entered production yet, probably that project will end up in the next medium-big + suv alfas (which are indeed late, the only suvvish alfa being the Crosswagon that was actually still based on the 156 platform when the 159 was out already). It’s quite a messy subject, this being a phase in which r&d engineers start to have the same brand mobility that footballers have.
    More or less this kind of things are those that push brands into outsourcing r&d and buy the “protptypized” result… ’cause if one partner gets broke the other gets at least… late.

    Not that all this actually matters too much for the FIAT group, I suppose, ’cause they’re changing their plans a lot since the chrysler deal and opel’s soap opera.

  46. johnjoe said...
    Monday June 22, 2009 at 9:15 am Link to comment Report comment

    i have never really owned a gm car i always bought either peugeots or citroens as they are much more creative cars with interesting features. but why does vauxhall exhist as a seperate brand surely it must cost opel a bit to do this, and it might make sense if right hand drive opels were vauxhalls and left hand drive ones were opels but the republic of ireland has right hand drive opels. the other thing is that this means every opel has an identical vauxhall which does make things boring. and why did vauxhall recently make its badge less detailed and blurred, rover did that its old badge was very detailed and then it just looked childish. but the thing about all these car companies just merging has happened in the tractor industry there are very few independant tractor companies with john deere being i think the main one. and then there is vw, since it owns so many different car companies here in europe it looks like it is following the same rule for disaster that british leyland used of building cars that compete with eachother eg the vw passat, skoda octavia, audi a4 and seat toledo are roughly the same price and compete with eachother. another thing about vw is its diesel engines which are in my opinion quite noisy compared with the competition from toyota and mercedes. i think that mercedes are quite a good company but they should go back to building the strong cars they used to, i had a e300d from 1987 and it did 350,000 miles no problem and sailed through the mot when i sold it. fiat are a good company but they are risking the whole italian car industry because if they own all the car companies in italy when they reach financial trouble so do the other companies. saab, i do not really understand how they merged with gm in the late 80’s because they were with scania

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    Monday January 31, 2011 at 3:03 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Bonjour,
    je suis nouveau ici j’aime vous lire ;)
    je voulais vous remercier pour votre super site internet !
    Bonne continuation
    —-
    Nicolaseo, Rien de mieux que le referencement naturel.

  49. ali said...
    Wednesday November 7, 2012 at 2:44 am Link to comment Report comment

    cdvd

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