General Motors has announced that, beginning in 2016, it will compete in Europe’s volume markets under its Opel and Vauxhall brands. The company’s Chevrolet brand will no longer have a mainstream presence in Western and Eastern Europe, largely due to a challenging business model and the difficult economic situation in Europe, according to the automaker.
Chevrolet will instead tailor its presence to offering select iconic vehicles – such as the Corvette – in Western and Eastern Europe, and will continue to have a broad presence in Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).
This will improve the Opel and Vauxhall brands and reduce the market complexity associated with having Opel and Chevrolet in Western and Eastern Europe, according to the automaker. In Russia and the CIS, the GM European brands are clearly defined and distinguished and, as a result, are more competitive within their respective segments.
Conversely, Cadillac, which is finalizing plans for expanding in the European market, will enhance and expand its distribution network over the next three years as it prepares for numerous product introductions.
"Europe is a key region for GM that will benefit from a stronger Opel and Vauxhall and further emphasis on Cadillac," said GM Chairman and CEO Dan Akerson. "For Chevrolet, it will allow us to focus our investments where the opportunity for growth is greatest. This is a win for all four brands. It’s especially positive for car buyers throughout Europe, who will be able to purchase vehicles from well-defined, vibrant GM brands."
Chevrolet said it will work closely with its dealer network in Western and Eastern Europe to define future steps while ensuring it can honor obligations to existing customers in the coming years.
"Our customers can rest assured that we will continue to provide warranty, parts and services for their Chevrolet vehicles, and for vehicles purchased between now and the end of 2015," said Thomas Sedran, president and managing director of Chevrolet Europe. "We want to thank our customers and dealers for their loyalty to the Chevrolet brand here in Europe."