Opel Plans to Unseat Ford in Europe image

Thomas Sedran, Opel’s CEO, said the company plans to overtake Ford as the second largest automaker in Europe.

Thomas Sedran said the automaker will make investments of billions to manufacture new engines and models. Opel also plans to improve its image, by launching new models in growing segments. Sedran denied rumors according to which GM wants to get rid of Opel, saying that ‘Opel is genuinely involved in the global GM organization’ and is, therefore, of utmost importance for the US automaker’s product development.

This is quite an ambitious plan taking into consideration the fact that Europe’s economy is still unstable and the crisis is expected to extend over the following years too. Opel’s sales have been dropping and its market share fell to 7.5%, 0.7% behind Ford.

The news comes after GM and Peugeot announced their plans to make an European joint venture to strengthen their carmaking alliance announced earlier this year. The joint venture would be formed by GM’s European subsidiary Opel and PSA Peugeot-Citroen’s core manufacturing division, each with 50% stake of the JV. Since PSA Peugeot-Citroen’s assets are worth more than those of Opel, GM may have to invest more money into the joint venture, according to a report published by La Tribune.