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stasisLAX
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GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Fri Feb 20, 2009 12:48 am

According to Automotive News, GM is trying to sell its Opel brand to the German government, while talks with the Swedish government appear to have failed to save Saab from bankruptcy.

"General Motors, on the brink of bankruptcy, may sell a stake in its Opel division as it attempts to cut costs and focus on its core brands back in the United States. The company confirmed in its recent viability plan that it will sell Hummer, downsize Pontiac, and stop building new products for Saturn beyond the 2012 model year.

Until now, however, there haven’t been any solid details concerning the future of GM's European brands, Opel (Vauxhall) and Saab. GM has announced that it is seeking to reduce costs further in Europe without resorting to firings and plant closings, and one of the options under consideration is selling a stake in the brands.

The information comes from GM Europe President Carl-Peter Forster, who told Automotive News that management is willing to consider strategic third-party partnerships, alliances and equity stakes in case such an approach is seen as beneficial for a viable and sustainable future.

There have also been reports that GM may sell its entire Vauxhall division, but a GM spokeswoman revealed that any sale would only concern Opel and even then it would likely be only a portion sold to the German government.

As for Saab, a bankruptcy announcement is expected to come tomorrow and production at the company’s Trollhättan has already stopped. The only activity that is expected to remain will be the fulfilment of servicing and warranty claims, which GM and Saab must comply with by law.

GM confirmed in its viability plan that it would pull out all financial support for Saab by the end of this month and yesterday the Swedish government also rejected requests from the Detroit carmaker to help prop up the company until it could function as a standalone firm."

Source: http://www.motorauthority.com/report...overnment-saab-to-get-the-axe.html
"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety!" B.Franklin
 
seemyseems
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Fri Feb 20, 2009 1:51 am

Oh dear!

So whats going to happen to Saab now?

And Vauxhall too!?

Where I live, there is a large Vauxhall plant, they make the Astra model there. The area is famous for the Vauxhall plant and is a key employer to the locals!

I am a fan of Vauxhall and Saab cars btw!
seemyseems
 
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N328KF
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Fri Feb 20, 2009 3:48 am

The stupid thing is that Opel/Vauxhall (draw no distinction between them) are in better shape than the rest of GM.
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' -Theodore Roosevelt
 
lnglive1011yyz
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Fri Feb 20, 2009 3:52 am

And so begins the reality that this isn't just a North American problem.

Such a sad state of affairs.

I hope all the people left behind with their GM pensions who fought for abnoxious wage increases for decades are happy with themselves.

1011yyz
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WunalaYann
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Fri Feb 20, 2009 3:54 am



Quoting N328KF (Reply 2):
The stupid thing is that Opel/Vauxhall (draw no distinction between them) are in better shape than the rest of GM.

I do not want to read too much into current press releases by car makers and government on the subject, but it could be that GM is trying to sell its valuable assets for something, instead of attempting to get rid of brands no one wants any part of (the list is long).

Curious to see what will happen to Holden which is in similar situation as Opel/Vauxhall, albeit with a minuscule market.
 
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stasisLAX
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Fri Feb 20, 2009 3:56 am



Quoting Seemyseems (Reply 1):
So whats going to happen to Saab now?

Sweden would be justified to declare war on the United States of America for what General Motors did to destroy the Saab brand - GM raped it, stripped it of its authenticity, debased the proud Nordic bloodline with Japanese (Saabaru 9-2) and American (Chevy Trailblazer 9-7) genes, and then simply left Saab bleeding to death on the floor. If the Swedes had nuclear weapons, we Americans would all be down in our basements with the shortwave radio and the cans of tuna fish right about now...

Personally, I thank the good Lord that all that the Swedish government can do is bomb GM headquarters with rotten lingonberries and leave critical bolts out of our IKEA furniture assembly kits.
"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety!" B.Franklin
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Fri Feb 20, 2009 4:02 am



Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 4):
I do not want to read too much into current press releases by car makers and government on the subject, but it could be that GM is trying to sell its valuable assets for something, instead of attempting to get rid of brands no one wants any part of (the list is long).

This is what GM has been doing for the past 5 years or so...DirecTV, EMD, EDS, HNS, several other profitable assets have been liquidated or sold off in order to pay UAW obligations.
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' -Theodore Roosevelt
 
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stasisLAX
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Fri Feb 20, 2009 7:21 pm

It's official. Saab is now bankrupt and been put up for immediate sale. But the problem is that no one wants to buy the automaker.

"Saab has filed for reorganization in a Swedish court. Saab is looking to secure $1 billion in financing to secure its status as an independent automaker.

Although Saab will continue to receive some support from GM and the Swedish government during the proceedings, the reorganization is intended to eventually setup the Swedish automaker as a standalone company. “We explored and will continue to explore all available options for funding and/or selling Saab,” Saab Managing Director Jan-Ake Jonsson said in a release.

“It was determined a formal reorganization would be the best way to create a truly independent entity that is ready for investment.”

Source: http://www.leftlanenews.com/gms-saab...organization-in-swedish-court.html

"Given its Swedish roots, and ability to maneuver in snow, Saabs have traditionally been popular in the northeastern United States. But Saab is G.M.’s worst-selling brand in the United States, selling 21,383 vehicles in 2008, down 34.7 percent from 2007. Its best selling vehicle is the 9-3, of which G.M. sold just over 10,000 cars last year."

Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/21/bu...iness/worldbusiness/21saab.html?em

[Edited 2009-02-20 11:52:30]
"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety!" B.Franklin
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Fri Feb 20, 2009 8:38 pm



Quoting StasisLAX (Reply 7):
Saab is now bankrupt and been put up for immediate sale

-
I just checked the matter with an extensive article of the German TV (ARD=nr.1-chain).
-
> Opel is in urgent need of some 3,3 billion Euro. Talks and speculation centre around a possible part purchase by either the German Federal government and/or one or two German states, for example Hessen, where the Rüsselsheim central plant is located.
-
> Saab is in a kind of "Chapter 11". As soon as Saab will be out of GM, the Swedish government might be ready to get financially involved. Production is carried on normally. The management is now tracing for investors and should find a solution within 3 months. Speculation of course goes in favour of potential foreign investors.
-
> Opel, which produces about 10 times as many motor-cars than Saab (1,5 mio per year) will after its leaving GM be in a similar problem like Saab and will also need an outside partner. Experts speculate about Indian or Chinese partners for Opel.
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Fri Feb 20, 2009 9:55 pm



Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 8):
Opel, which produces about 10 times as many motor-cars than Saab (1,5 mio per year) will after its leaving GM be in a similar problem like Saab and will also need an outside partner. Experts speculate about Indian or Chinese partners for Opel.

I don't think GM would want to get rid of Opel. It's a strategic asset that getting rid of would be a big mistake. Opel is the source of much of their design talent and ongoing revenue. If they sell a stake to Germany, I believe it will be simply to get the investment.
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' -Theodore Roosevelt
 
aa757first
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sat Feb 21, 2009 12:33 am



Quoting StasisLAX (Reply 7):
But Saab is G.M.’s worst-selling brand in the United States, selling 21,383 vehicles in 2008, down 34.7 percent from 2007.

I had no idea that Saab was such a niche brand. GM did really mismanage them. Saab would have been a great BMW/Acura contender if it was given proper attention. The Economist said something along the lines of "Saabs were long affiliated with eccentric individuality -- something completely alien to GM's management." I couldn't agree more.
 
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stasisLAX
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sat Feb 21, 2009 12:53 am



Quoting Aa757first (Reply 10):
The Economist said something along the lines of "Saabs were long affiliated with eccentric individuality -- something completely alien to GM's management." I couldn't agree more.

Saab has been systematically starved for "in-house" engineering and development funds by GM senior management. Opel has been providing most of the platform development for Saab over the past 10 years. GM management only leveraged Saab's expertise in turbo-charged small-displacement powerplants, mostly for the benefit of their other GM brands, while they should have been focused on providing Saab with (much needed) improved mechanincal reliability.  worried 
"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety!" B.Franklin
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sat Feb 21, 2009 2:42 am



Quoting StasisLAX (Reply 11):
Saab has been systematically starved for "in-house" engineering and development funds by GM senior management. Opel has been providing most of the platform development for Saab over the past 10 years.

I want everyone to contrast this with the treatment of Volvo within Ford. People talk about Ford jettisoning Volvo, but I don't think they will unless they have to. Volvo fulfills the same engineering role for Ford that Opel does for GM. Look at most of the GM passenger car platforms for the past 5-10 years...source? Opel. Look at most of the Ford passenger car platforms for the past 5-7 years...source? Volvo for medium and large vehicles, and Mazda for small ones.
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' -Theodore Roosevelt
 
Ken777
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sat Feb 21, 2009 4:24 am

Maybe someone can look at the pieces being tossed around by GM and see intelligent opportunities.

How many years has it been since Opel was imported into the US? Late 50s? Early 60s? And how many years does it look like Saturn (selling Opels) have before closing? 1 or 2?

Why not leverage an excellent car (the Opels) with a group of outstanding dealers (Saturn)? How many cars that Saturn sells are actually Opels under a different badge?

Personally I would love to see Opel and Saturn married rather fast, let the two work independently of GM to determine the cars that are to be sold, including how many are to be assembled in the US.

During the same time Opel can provide engineering services to GM and Saturn/Opel cars can continue to use parts also supplied to GM, increasing GM's economy of scale and cutting the parts costs.

At some point the Saturn & Opel brands can be combined (we once owned a Datsun).

I don't believe GM should give up their European position, nor do I believe that Saturn dealers should get the shaft. GM needs to look beyond 2010 or 2015. They might be be able to do well in the future without Saab, but I don't believe they can without Opel and, to some degree, Saturn.
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sat Feb 21, 2009 5:05 am



Quoting Ken777 (Reply 13):
Why not leverage an excellent car (the Opels) with a group of outstanding dealers (Saturn)? How many cars that Saturn sells are actually Opels under a different badge?

Personally I would love to see Opel and Saturn married rather fast, let the two work independently of GM to determine the cars that are to be sold, including how many are to be assembled in the US.

What you're forgetting is that many Saturns are already rebadged Saturns:

Saturn Astra - Opel Astra
Saturn Aura - Opel Signum
Saturn Vue - Opel Antara
Saturn Sky - Opel GT

The only standout is the Saturn Outlook.
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' -Theodore Roosevelt
 
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stasisLAX
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sat Feb 21, 2009 5:49 am

Quoting N328KF (Reply 14):
The only standout is the Saturn Outlook.

And the Outlook CUV is an infamous "badge engineered" version of the Chevy Traverse, Buick Enclave, et al.   

I truly think that Saturn's dealer network will be sold (if not completely absorbed) by a major Chinese automaker like SAIC, Geely or maybe Brillance.

[Edited 2009-02-20 22:00:11]
"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety!" B.Franklin
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sat Feb 21, 2009 10:53 am



Quoting Seemyseems (Reply 1):
So whats going to happen to Saab now?

I see Saab surviving, they have two new models which are signed off and ready for production, the new 9-4 and 9-4x, production of these models being moved back to Sweden from Opel, this would be critical if Saab is to be saved. Saab employs 30,000 people in Sweden, I just can't see the Swedish govt allowing all Saab to die.


Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 4):
Curious to see what will happen to Holden which is in similar situation as Opel/Vauxhall, albeit with a minuscule market.

Holden is plugged into Daewoo and Opel for a lot of it's models, so it could always survive as an importer or an asembler of kits. However I don't think the Australian govt or the Victorian govt will allow Holden to fail, it's too big an employer and it earns export dollars.

Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 8):
Opel, which produces about 10 times as many motor-cars than Saab (1,5 mio per year) will after its leaving GM be in a similar problem like Saab and will also need an outside partner. Experts speculate about Indian or Chinese partners for Opel.

Opel produced 1.6 million cars in 2008, this is plenty big enough for it too become a stand alone manufacturer without needing a partner. Opel would probably supply vehicles and designs for GM should it become independant. Opel already have a number of partners they share platforms and light commercial vehicles with Renault/Nissan and share platforms with Fiat.
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sat Feb 21, 2009 4:31 pm



Quoting N328KF (Reply 9):
Opel, which produces about 10 times as many motor-cars than Saab (1,5 mio per year) will after its leaving GM be in a similar problem like Saab and will also need an outside partner. Experts speculate about Indian or Chinese partners for Opel.

I don't think GM would want to get rid of Opel. It's a strategic asset that getting rid of would be a big mistake. Opel is the source of much of their design talent and ongoing revenue. If they sell a stake to Germany, I believe it will be simply to get the investment.

-
What you write is what I would see as THE right thing for GM to do, to get some outside investments into Opel while retaining a majority. Latest reports however point to something else. In Europe, Opel in most places is among the TOP THREE of motor-car sellers, and so, nobody really expects to see Opel disappear. As Opel in Europe is far far far more than 50% of GM Europe, a separation of Opel from GM might rather reduce the European presence of GM to a non-entity.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 16):
and share platforms with Fiat.

-
True, things like windows and some other features are common with FIAT. So that Opel in the end might switch to ally with FIAT and Chrysler !
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 5:25 am



Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 16):
new 9-4 and 9-4x,

You probably meant the 9-5, because rumor has it that is coming down the pike for introduction later this year as a 2010 model.

For Saab, I see Chinese or Hyundai affiliation or management, maybe with Swedish government participation.

Hyundai faces a choice. They could make Saab into Hyundai's Lexus. Problem is, Mazda or Subaru is probably a better match in terms of products. But Hyundai has the deep pockets and vast engineering know-how to make a luxury brand "take flight," and do so immediately.

The Chinese brands, I don't see that they have the engineering know-how to play in this game. The Chinese are 20 years behind even the Koreans. Someday, they can market nice refined cars in the USA. Not yet. Hyundai just arrived on the scene (the Genesis) so I can see them toying with SAAB.
 
jcs17
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 6:07 am

SAAB was screwed when they signed with their partnership with GM.

Yep, nothing is sweeter than getting a 9-7 and having cheap-ass Delco GM shit that you'd find in a Buick all over the car. Saab ceased to be something special under GM.

My mother had a '97 9000 CSE and it was a basket case in terms of electrical problems. You know what though, it was a Saab. It was a quirky POS, but when the damn thing worked, it ruled.
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WunalaYann
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 7:23 am



Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 16):
Holden is plugged into Daewoo and Opel for a lot of it's models, so it could always survive as an importer or an asembler of kits. However I don't think the Australian govt or the Victorian govt will allow Holden to fail, it's too big an employer and it earns export dollars.

That they are plugged into Opel is a good thing, in my opinion, but it would be even better if they ditched the Daewoo imports. They will not compete with the Europeans and the Japanese by "Australianising" Korean products, with due respects to Korean manufacturing.

As for the exports, I think we will have to wait and see what the last quarter's results look like. Exporting big Commodores and bigger Statesmans at the moment is not the recipe for success, especially if the Gulf states go through tough economic times.
 
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stasisLAX
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 7:33 am



Quoting JCS17 (Reply 19):
My mother had a '97 9000 CSE and it was a basket case in terms of electrical problems. You know what though, it was a Saab. It was a quirky POS, but when the damn thing worked, it ruled.

I agree - my best friend's mother owned several Volvos over the years, and decided she wanted a new Saab for its safety features and cool styling. So, she bought a brand-new 2001 Saab 9-5 sedan with a turbo-four cylinder motor. It was trouble-free for the first 2 years, then all hell broke loose with the car. The turbocharger and engine control computer died in the Saab when it had about 70K miles on it. She paid a fortune to fix it and immediately traded the POS in for a 2006 Acura RL (with all-wheel drive) that she still owns - it's an awesome car for Pennsylvania winter driving and she's never had an serious issue it in the over 3 years she's owned the RL.

Saab's poor reliability (along with its lackluster model line-up) killed its appeal to American buyers.
"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety!" B.Franklin
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 12:54 pm



Quoting StasisLAX (Reply 21):
Saab's poor reliability

-
Sounds as if something went down. In the pre-GM days, more than 20 years ago, Saab, a company whose style I personally DISliked, had the reputation of almost absolute reliability.
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 1:46 pm



Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 22):
Sounds as if something went down. In the pre-GM days, more than 20 years ago, Saab, a company whose style I personally DISliked, had the reputation of almost absolute reliability.

This sounds like the opposite of the effect I have heard that Ford had on Volvo (and Jaguar, for certain): Improved reliability.
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' -Theodore Roosevelt
 
swissy
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 2:01 pm

It makes sense the Swedish government is holding back with the $$$ until Saab is free from GM..... I also hope the Germans do not compromise with GM on Opel.... NO $$$ until GM does not own the majority of Opel anymore...... Opel was bleeding for too many years because GM pulled most of the profits & funds away from Opel and left Opel in the dirt.....

The US manufacturer are financially sick for a long time and finally reality has appeared

GM needs Opel but Opel does not need GM..... that is reality  Wink.....

Cheerios,
 
MD11Engineer
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 2:29 pm



Quoting Swissy (Reply 24):
It makes sense the Swedish government is holding back with the $$$ until Saab is free from GM..... I also hope the Germans do not compromise with GM on Opel.... NO $$$ until GM does not own the majority of Opel anymore...... Opel was bleeding for too many years because GM pulled most of the profits & funds away from Opel and left Opel in the dirt.....

This is exactly what the German government is afraid of: They would like to bail out Opel, since it seems that it is a viable company, which, under proper management, should be back in the black numbers within a few years, but they fear that all this bailout money might be syphoned off by GM to plug financial holes in the US.

Jan
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 3:16 pm



Quoting N328KF (Reply 23):
the effect I have heard that Ford had on Volvo (and Jaguar, for certain): Improved reliability.

-
Volvo for decades here in Zurich was THE motorcars-brand due to its absolute reliability and that was long before Ford got involved. That Ford could "improve" what was already TOP class is beyond my imagination. Jaguar was legendary ways before Ford got involved and people feared that Ford might reduce class and reliability of that superb brand.
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 3:19 pm



Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 25):
It makes sense the Swedish government is holding back with the $$$ until Saab is free from GM..... I also hope the Germans do not compromise with GM on Opel.... NO $$$ until GM does not own the majority of Opel anymore...... Opel was bleeding for too many years because GM pulled most of the profits & funds away from Opel and left Opel in the dirt.....

This is exactly what the German government is afraid of: They would like to bail out Opel, since it seems that it is a viable company, which, under proper management, should be back in the black numbers within a few years, but they fear that all this bailout money might be syphoned off by GM to plug financial holes in the US.

Exactly. I hope that German governments, federal and states, only get forward if having majority ownership back in Germany
 
Charles79
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 3:25 pm



Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 25):
This is exactly what the German government is afraid of: They would like to bail out Opel, since it seems that it is a viable company, which, under proper management, should be back in the black numbers within a few years, but they fear that all this bailout money might be syphoned off by GM to plug financial holes in the US.

I heard the exact same thing on the news last week while on vacation in Essen (yes, people go on vacation to the Rurh area!). My feelings on the subjects being discussed here are:

- Opel leaving GM, becoming its own entity, and acquiring Saturn to sell its cars in the US through an established dealer network. I saw the new Insignia in Germany last week and it looks terrific, and Auto Zeitung has drawings of what the new Astra will look like and I see a big seller there as well. Bring them over as Saturns and they'll probably sell enough to cover the costs. I would refrain from using the Opel brand here since it costs so much to re-introduce a dormant brand but would play off the fact that the Saturns are German engineered (and in some cases German built).

- Saab is done with GM me thinks, no doubt about that. A foreign takeover is likely, and I see some scenarions playing out in here. My first thought was a French buyer, with PSA or Renault seeing it as an opportunity to enter the American market with Saab badged French cars (I could see Meganes or Lagunas or C5s sold here under the Saab name). Then someone in here brought in Hyundai, which has aspirations of its own. The new Genesis IS a very fine car but it could sell better perhaps as a Saab, along the new 9-5 and a revamped 9-3. The third scenario was a FIAT takeover to finally introduce the Alfa Romeo brand in the US using an established operation. Finally, it could very well go the way StasisLAX says and we could have a Chinese brand taking over. Many possibilities but one thing's for sure is that I don't see Saab disappearing (in fact, I see them better off w/o GM).

My $0.02.
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 3:31 pm



Quoting Charles79 (Reply 28):
Opel leaving GM, becoming its own entity, and acquiring Saturn to sell its cars in the US

-
I do not quite see any sense in Opel taking over "Saturn", a widely unknown brand.

Quoting Charles79 (Reply 28):
refrain from using the Opel brand

-
Opel will have to use its own and well established brand wherever, anywhere, and not dilute it by using third class brands

Quoting Charles79 (Reply 28):
Saab is done with GM me thinks, no doubt about that. A foreign takeover is likely, and I see some scenarions playing out in here. My first thought was a French buyer, with PSA or Renault

-
No, neither Renault nor Peugeot nor FIAT will do much with Saab as the image of Saab is far too much "northern" and differs far too much from the mentioned ones in style and philosophy.
 
swissy
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 3:44 pm



Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 27):
Exactly. I hope that German governments, federal and states, only get forward if having majority ownership back in Germany

Support it 100%, have many friends which worked for Opel in the early 90's.... it was/is a disgrace how GM took all the $$$$$$ and left them with nothing, perhaps you remember the time when Opel had some severe quality/relaibilty issues..... Opel will be fine on their own, it is a very strong brand within Europe.....

Quoting Charles79 (Reply 28):
I saw the new Insignia in Germany last week and it looks terrific,

Agree have seen their new car line up and they look terrific.... do not know if Opel/Saturn would be an option for Opel... or how important it would be for them to start an US adventure...
or how about Opel-Saab..... would work as I think it would be a bad move selling Saab to China/far east

Cheerios,
 
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N328KF
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 3:49 pm



Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 29):
I do not quite see any sense in Opel taking over "Saturn", a widely unknown brand.

Everybody knows who Saturn is in the US. Even if they the US brand to Opel, they would inherit a good dealer network.
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' -Theodore Roosevelt
 
ME AVN FAN
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 3:55 pm



Quoting N328KF (Reply 31):
I do not quite see any sense in Opel taking over "Saturn", a widely unknown brand.

Everybody knows who Saturn is in the US. Even if they the US brand to Opel, they would inherit a good dealer network.

Opel is based in Rüsselsheim/Germany, and in Europe, NOBODY knows Saturn as a car-maker. To people in Europe, Saturn is an outer planet ! The heavy orientation of business onto the USA done by European banks caused heaps of problems and proved to be a heavy mistake. The decision of Giovanni Agnelli to pull FIAT out of the USA in the meantime is recognized as one of the wisest decision of a European business tycoon of all times. If Opel gets whatever share of "Saturn" it should sell it for 1/one US-Dollar immediately in order to avoid disaster.
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 4:03 pm



Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 32):
Opel is based in Rüsselsheim/Germany, and in Europe, NOBODY knows Saturn as a car-maker. To people in Europe, Saturn is an outer planet ! The heavy orientation of business onto the USA done by European banks caused heaps of problems and proved to be a heavy mistake. The decision of Giovanni Agnelli to pull FIAT out of the USA in the meantime is recognized as one of the wisest decision of a European business tycoon of all times. If Opel gets whatever share of "Saturn" it should sell it for 1/one US-Dollar immediately in order to avoid disaster.

I am not suggesting that the Saturn brand be employed anywhere outside of the US.

Anyhow, Saturn still accounts for some proportion of Opel dealership, and Opel could establish themselves well here. They make good cars, and with proper management, either the Saturn network, or perhaps even the Saturn brand could be put to good use.

FIAT failed here because they make, or made shitty cars, and people haven't forgotten.
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' -Theodore Roosevelt
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 4:17 pm



Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 4):
Curious to see what will happen to Holden which is in similar situation as Opel/Vauxhall, albeit with a minuscule market.



Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 16):
Holden is plugged into Daewoo and Opel for a lot of it's models, so it could always survive as an importer or an assembler of kits. However I don't think the Australian govt or the Victorian govt will allow Holden to fail, it's too big an employer and it earns export dollars.

Meaning even MORE money as they have had a fair bit already. So far that investment is making the money given to Toyota look like a smart investment, which it probably was not in absolute terms. Maybe the funds invested in Holden could go as equity to the Future Fund????

I think it was one of the Holden imports that melted fairly spectacularly in the recent fires, but I guess that is a hazard with most new cars.
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 4:22 pm



Quoting N328KF (Reply 33):
I am not suggesting that the Saturn brand be employed anywhere outside of the US.
--
Anyhow, Saturn still accounts for some proportion of Opel dealership

-
But "Saturn" is irrelevant outside the USA. And so, Opel once out of GM should get rid of that liability. Opel rather should care about its sister company Vauxhaul, the great British car producer.

Quoting N328KF (Reply 33):
FIAT failed here because they make, or made shitty cars,

-
FIAT never made "shitty" cars, but made and makes tremendous cars. FIAT did not fail outside the USA. Which means that it was a USA problem of sorts.
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 4:36 pm



Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 35):
But "Saturn" is irrelevant outside the USA. And so, Opel once out of GM should get rid of that liability. Opel rather should care about its sister company Vauxhaul, the great British car producer.

I'm guessing you don't know anything about Saturn. Who cares about the brand? You've got a set of eager and willing dealers for whomever wants to pick up the network. Obviously they're irrelevant outside of the US, but I'm not even talking about that. Why do you keep harping on the same point?
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' -Theodore Roosevelt
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 5:04 pm



Quoting N328KF (Reply 36):
I'm guessing you don't know anything about Saturn. Who cares about the brand? You've got a set of eager and willing dealers for whomever wants to pick up the network. Obviously they're irrelevant outside of the US, but I'm not even talking about that. Why do you keep harping on the same point?

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I am NOT "harping on the same point" but I feel that you misunderstand the situation of Opel. Opel, once out of GM, rather should concentrate on its major home-market. IF "Saturn" is half as good in the USA as you say, they could, by selling Saturn, make lots of money. Opel in the 1960ies was number 2 in Europe right behind VW and should try to regain that rank. Opel in conjunction with Vauxhaul ought to build up a good position in Europe and Africa and the Middle East, and might, possibly in conjunction with Tata, expand their position nicely.
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European companies, trying to expand into the USA, not least by misunderstanding US realities, have repeatedly failed so miserably, that the latest round of semi-bankruptcies of major European banks had its logics. Well off still are those banks which were not lured into American adventures. Or those who right all through relied upon a partnership with a US owned independent US partner with US management.
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Look at UBS. Their US involvement has lead them into crisis. The result of the merger of two out of three major Swiss banks now is in a position that whomever reveals to be employed by that company will be ridiculed. People in restaurants refer to "that pack" when talking about that bank. The Zürcher Kantonalbank, owned by the Canton of Zurich, who due to its structure, only has limited interests outside the Canton of Zurich, is now flying fairly high on the place.
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So, once again, Opel should concentrate on Vauxhaul and potential new partners like Tata, but get fully out of the USA.
 
swissy
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 5:06 pm



Quoting N328KF (Reply 36):
I'm guessing you don't know anything about Saturn. Who cares about the brand? You've got a set of eager and willing dealers for whomever wants to pick up the network. Obviously they're irrelevant outside of the US, but I'm not even talking about that.

Agree, who ever will p/u Saturn will get a very good & established dealer network... Saturn is very young and I do not believe they have the pension fund liabilities like the others do...also I am sure the employees of Saturn will make sure Saturn will survive.

Saturn is a very "unique" brand and since they are bringing in the Opel models under the Saturn brand they appeal even more to me..... have noticed lately there are more Saturn's on the road here in Southern Ontario.... I guess Saturn's handicap is GM.....

Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 35):
FIAT never made "shitty" cars, but made and makes tremendous cars. FIAT did not fail outside the USA. Which means that it was a USA problem of sorts.

Will have to disagree after living in North America for over 14 years.... people just had enough of the cr.... and instead of Fiat fixing/improve things (just like the Japanese did) they pull the plug......

Even in Europe FIAT had their fair share of building lesser quality cars...... and took a beating....

Cheerios,
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 5:07 pm



Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 37):
European companies, trying to expand into the USA, not least by misunderstanding US realities, have repeatedly failed so miserably, that the latest round of semi-bankruptcies of major European banks had its logics. Well off still are those banks which were not lured into American adventures. Or those who right all through relied upon a partnership with a US owned independent US partner with US management.



Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 37):
Look at UBS. Their US involvement has lead them into crisis. The result of the merger of two out of three major Swiss banks now is in a position that whomever reveals to be employed by that company will be ridiculed.

Listen, bub, I don't know what your beef is with the US market, but you never seem to stop to consider that those European companies that fail do so out of their own missteps. The list of European countries that do well here is long, and includes automakers: BMW, Porsche/VW/Audi, Mercedes-Benz (their Chrysler foray excepted), Bayer, Nestle, BAe, many others.

I think you have an agenda and/or bias.
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' -Theodore Roosevelt
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 5:17 pm



Quoting Swissy (Reply 38):
FIAT had their fair share of building lesser quality cars...... and took a beating....

-
FIAT has a lot of success in many markets, and this would NOT have been possible with "shitty" cars. They did have the "rusting" problem in the 60ies and 70ies but have solved this problem quite nicely. They did have a problem with new programs and also overcame this. And now are relatively nicely off.
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Also Renault and Peugeot in the past had serious problems, not least with quality issues, and now, just as FIAT, are rather well off.
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Back to FIAT. Whether the new thing with Chrysler is to work out well is a bit doubtful. FIAT cars are based on markets where people drive 20 to 500 kms per day, while the markets in the USA and Canada demand cars for people who drive 100 to 1000 kms per day, which means a completely different concept. ---- And THIS is where I see that Opel simply should get OUT of the USA and sell Saturn to a US company.
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 5:22 pm



Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 32):
Opel is based in Rüsselsheim/Germany, and in Europe, NOBODY knows Saturn as a car-maker. To people in Europe, Saturn is an outer planet ! The heavy orientation of business onto the USA done by European banks caused heaps of problems and proved to be a heavy mistake. The decision of Giovanni Agnelli to pull FIAT out of the USA in the meantime is recognized as one of the wisest decision of a European business tycoon of all times. If Opel gets whatever share of "Saturn" it should sell it for 1/one US-Dollar immediately in order to avoid disaster.

ME AVN FAN, I am quite well aware of the fact that Saturn is not known outside of the US, and I do know where Opel is based at (I have been to their factory, some of us Americans do travel to Europe from time to time  Wink ). The point of my post was for Opel to be able to make use of the already established brand/dealer network for them to sell cars IN THE US! Opel is very well known in Europe where the Astra competes with the likes of Focus, Megane, Golf, etc, and in some countries sells within the top 3. In the US, however, Opel is not known at all, other than within enthusiast circles.

Now I don't want to sound as if an automaker needs to sell cars in the US in order to be profitable but, as one of the largest new car market in the world, it can add some serious revenue. If anything it can add capacity to idling plants in Europe where layoffs might be the only alternative.

Quoting N328KF (Reply 33):
FIAT failed here because they make, or made shitty cars, and people haven't forgotten.

Exactly! Besides FIAT decided to not do business with GM because of GM, not because of the US market necessarily (just look at their biggest markets for Ferrari and Maserati, it ain't the Caribbean).

Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 29):
No, neither Renault nor Peugeot nor FIAT will do much with Saab as the image of Saab is far too much "northern" and differs far too much from the mentioned ones in style and philosophy.

Which is why I went on to mention several other scenarios...besides, a different "style" and "philosophy" did not stop Renault from forming an alliance with a Japanese maker, Nissan.
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 5:29 pm



Quoting N328KF (Reply 39):
The list of European countries that do well here is long, and includes automakers: BMW, Porsche/VW/Audi, Mercedes-Benz (their Chrysler foray excepted), Bayer, Nestle, BAe, many others.

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BAe is a company which has sold many programs to US companies, as having been weak. BMW had its fair share of problems. As companies, FIAT and Renault and Peugeot are much better off than BMW. You mention Bayer and forget Novartis and Roche who also are working quite well in North America, BUT all three with North American managements in charge of their US and Canada companies. Daimler-Benz (Mercedes Benz is their brand) has had its fair share of problems in recent decades, NOT caused in North America. Nestlé is working worldwide, and when being in the USA, I was rather astonished to see their relatively small stature in the USA.
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More spectacular is the list of European companies who right NOW have failed in the USA like UBS, CS, National Westminster, Barclays, Standard Chartered, just to name a few. You see, this in a way is a European problem, the idea that the USA is a nice marketplace where you can move in with your "traditional" recipes, and make big money, without really working into US realities.
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That US companies failed in Europe similarily at present is relatively irrelevant.
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Back to Opel and GM. IF Opel gets out of GM and IF Opel retains Saturn, any GM dealer anywhere in the USA will be busy to catapult Opel/Saturn out of his market as soon as possible, and will use ALL force he can muster. What would YOU do as GM dealer in that possible situation ?
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 5:49 pm



Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 42):
Nestlé is working worldwide, and when being in the USA, I was rather astonished to see their relatively small stature in the USA.

It's clear to me that you actually know very little about the US. Nestle has a huge presence here. It's also clear that you are biased, and also unable to see that you are incorrect. So be it.
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' -Theodore Roosevelt
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 5:59 pm



Quoting N328KF (Reply 43):
Nestle has a huge presence here

-
That "huge presence" is a minimal one compared to what I am used to .
 
gorgos
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 6:16 pm



Quoting StasisLAX (Reply 5):
Personally, I thank the good Lord that all that the Swedish government can do is bomb GM headquarters with rotten lingonberries and leave critical bolts out of our IKEA furniture assembly kits.

You know there are SAAB fighterjets, dont you  Wink
 
swissy
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 6:44 pm



Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 40):
FIAT has a lot of success in many markets, and this would NOT have been possible with "shitty" cars. They did have the "rusting" problem in the 60ies and 70ies but have solved this problem quite nicely.

you can go as far as the 90's....... Fiat still struggles because of the past

rust was one problem..... electrical was an other mayor one... why do people always refer
to the FIAT model RITMO...

The US is a very important market and money can be made..... the reason why these European car manufacturer failed is simple ...... they could not/did't want to fix the cr... they produced back in the days..... VW had his fair share but they kept on working on it, so did the Japanese manufacturers.....and look at them today.....

Chrysler had a chance to make it work with MB.... but I guess the ego was to big and now they are paying the price.....

I guess the mentality differences are sometime to great to make business work.....

Opel could enter the US market with Saturn fairly "cheap", would not worry about any GM dealerships because once GM is done with slimming down it will be just a shadow of the past (size wise).....

How about OSS Opel, Saturn & Saab......

Cheerios,
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 7:02 pm



Quoting Gorgos (Reply 45):
there are SAAB fighterjets

-
true, but while Saab Automobile AB is the car-producer, Saab AB is an independent Swedish company, producing, among other hardware, the Saab Gripen below
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http://www.ar.admin.ch/internet/armasuisse/de/home/aktuell/evaluation_tte/gripen/fotos/abflug_gripen.parsys.97297.downloadList.44891.DownloadFile.tmp/gri0553.jpg
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Quoting Swissy (Reply 46):
go as far as the 90's....... Fiat still struggles because of the past

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Not the rusting problem, which disappeared in the 80ies. The basic problem however was that FIAT for decades did hide behind "Fortress Italy" with rather unfair and unfine methods like making it almost impossible for non-Italian companies to establish good dealer networks and horribly difficult to import cars. So that when Italy finally had to yield to EU pressures, quite many Italians simply wanted something ELSE, whatever.
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While the rusting problem was severe with FIAT 127 and 128, it was done and no longer a problem with the FIAT UNO and later models.
-

Quoting Swissy (Reply 46):
Chrysler had a chance to make it work with MB.... but I guess the ego was to big and now they are paying the price.....

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The combination Chrysler-DaimlerBenz was not a very good one, was Chrysler cars are for "average" people while MercedesBenz cars are "upmarket". In case of the new linkup with FIAT, it will be interesting to see which FIAT models Chrysler is to produce. But again, I am simply not convinced of the concept.
-

Quoting Swissy (Reply 46):
Opel could enter the US market with Saturn fairly "cheap", would not worry about any GM dealerships because once GM is done with slimming down it will be just a shadow of the past (size wise).....

-
a good argument, ok, but Opel is in urgent need of cash, and so might rather sell Saturn to Halliburton.
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 7:35 pm



Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 35):
But "Saturn" is irrelevant outside the USA. And so, Opel once out of GM should get rid of that liability. Opel rather should care about its sister company Vauxhaul, the great British car producer.

I really don't thik many in the UK would be upset if the Vauxhal name were replaced by Opel, I would only see people being upset if Luton and Ellsmere Point closed down.

Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 40):
Opel simply should get OUT of the USA and sell Saturn to a US company

Pardon me but Opel don't own Saturn, they never have, Saturn retail certain products shared by Opel and the Astra which is made in Belgium but thats about it. What would be interesting was if Opel was spun off and as part of the package Saturn was included.
 
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RE: GM/Opel Stake Sold To German Gov't; Saab Fails!

Sun Feb 22, 2009 8:12 pm



Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 47):
true, but while Saab Automobile AB is the car-producer, Saab AB is an independent Swedish company, producing, among other hardware, the Saab Gripen below

Yes! Thankfully GM has nothing to do with the "real" SAAB! SAAB and SAAB are as different as Volvo car and Volvo trucks. I will miss SAAB  Sad
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