Monday, 14 August 2017

Favored Flagship: 50,000 Orders for New Opel Insignia Already

In the fast lane: Only a few months after starting sales the new Opel Insignia has already attracted more than 50,000 customer orders.

  • High level: Innovative options popular with Opel Insignia buyers across Europe
  • Top connection: 86% order Navi 900 IntelliLink infotainment system
  • Top innovations: 70% look to the ergonomic seats, 63% to IntelliLux headlights
  • Top results: New Opel Insignia takes first position in more than 60 percent of comparison tests so far

Outstanding connectivity and infotainment, a high level of comfort along with great visibility and a stunning design – these are just some of the attributes of the new Opel Insignia that have already won over more than 50,000 customers and media representatives from across Europe. Current orders are well above what Opel had expected to receive despite order books for the Insignia Grand Sport and the Insignia Sports Tourer only having opened in mid-February and the flagship only having arrived at dealership in many major markets in late June. Now that the market launch is underway, the first wins in comparison tests are also rolling in. The success is made even more apparent by a look at the take rates of various features. A high percentage order the new flagship from Rüsselsheim with features such the intelligent on-board navigation system Navi 900 IntelliLink, AGR-certified ergonomic seats, or the new generation IntelliLux LED Matrix headlights, proving that Opel’s credo of making innovative solutions available at affordable prices is paying dividends with customers – the future is everyone’s.

“We are obviously delighted with the current success of the new Opel Insignia. It shows that our new flagship has all the right ingredients – it looks great, delivers on driving pleasure and comes with a high level of comfort,” said Opel Managing Director Sales & Aftersales Peter Küspert. “Furthermore, the orders for the innovative solutions and options show that our customers appreciate our approach of making trendsetting systems and features available to a wide audience and not just a select few.”

Navi 900 IntelliLink: Smartphone integration and integrated navigation system

The feature topping almost every Insignia owner’s wish list is Navi 900 IntelliLink – almost 9 out of 10 Opel Insignias have already been ordered with the top-of-the-range infotainment system. The optional solution with integrated navigation system comes with an 8-inch capacitive color touchscreen. The map data covers all of Europe, and with Opel OnStar, destinations that come from the OnStar advisor or that are sent in advance via myOpel smartphone app can be downloaded directly to the navigation system. Furthermore the system offers a high level of personalization – the home screen can be tailored according to customer preferences. Based on its ‘favorites’ concept, users can adapt the infotainment system to their individual needs. Up to 60 favorites including radio stations, phone contacts, playlists, navigation destinations, etc. can be stored.

Furthermore, it is, depending on the end device, compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, thus bringing the world of smartphones into the car. This allows Apple users to make calls, start navigation directions to a destination with Apple Maps, send and receive messages and listen to music via Spotify right from the touchscreen or by voice via Siri. A full list of Apple CarPlay apps can be found at Android Auto is built around Google Maps, Google Now and the ability to talk to Google, as well as a growing audio and messaging app ecosystem. A full list of supported apps is available at If Opel OnStar is on board, smartphones can also connect to the car’s powerful 4G/LTE Wi-Fi Hotspot[1] – for example for flawless online audio streaming.

Enjoying the perfect view in comfort

 Elsewhere, 70% of new Insignias are ordered with the high level of comfort provided by the ergonomically certified AGR (Aktion Gesunder Rücken / Campaign for Healthier Backs) front seats. In addition to numerous adjustment options, the ergonomic front seats in the new Insignia offer a unique combination of electric side bolster settings, massage, memory and ventilation functions. They provide excellent long-distance travel seating comfort and continue the Opel tradition of award-winning, back-friendly seats that are offered at very attractive prices.

One of the technology highlights driving the success of the new Opel Insignia is the new generation of the trendsetting Opel IntelliLux LED Matrix headlights. 63% of the flagship from Rüsselsheim are ordered with the innovative system. In the Opel Insignia 32 LED segments – twice as many as in the Opel Astra – take over the high beam function. The increased number of LED segments enables the various light patterns to adapt to the prevailing traffic situation even more precisely and the transitions are faster and more seamless. To improve visibility even further while driving through curves on full high beam, Opel engineers added an innovative active curve lighting function to the new Insignia’s IntelliLux LED Matrix headlights. Last but not least, a further, dedicated LED spotlight located within the low beam module provides additional illumination at full high-beam for up to 400 meters.

Higher trim levels proving to be popular

Elsewhere, the uplevel trims available for the new Opel Insignia are also proving extremely popular with customers. Currently, over 60 percent of the over 50,000 Insignia buyers from across Europe have opted for higher trims, which give them access to a lot more standard equipment and features that they subsequently do not need to order as an option. For example, Opel’s personal connectivity and service assistant Opel OnStar comes as standard with the ‘Innovation’ trim.

Winning formula

However, Opel’s new flagship and it’s combination of innovative features, driving pleasure, spaciousness and high level of comfort is not only proving popular with customers – it is also impressing automotive journalists from across Europe. With the first results of the comparison tests against various competitors having recently been published, the Insignia is proving that Opel have found the winning formula once again. To date, Opel’s new flagship has won eight of 13 comparison tests (62 percent): two wins in Germany (Autostraßenverkehr edition 17/17 and Auto Zeitung edition 17/17), three wins in the Netherlands (AutoWeek edition 29/17 and online July 21, AutoVisie edition July 6), and each in France (, Poland (Auto Świat, edition 28/17 of July 10) and the Czech Republic (

[1] The Wi-Fi Hotspot requires a contract with the network operator cooperating with OnStar. The Wi-Fi Hotspot is subject to a charge at the end of the test period.

Monday, 7 August 2017

!NEW! Buick Regal Family Adopts Hybrid and GS Performance Trim

All-new Buick Regal GS

Buick brought to market the all-new Regal for China. It features a sleek, sporty, coupe-like design and offers the spirited performance of a premium sports sedan. Ten variants, including a hybrid electric, are available priced between RMB 175,800 and RMB 269,800.

The Regal was originally introduced in the United States in 1973 and China in 2002. Over the years, more than 1.1 million have been delivered in China. The nameplate has become especially popular among younger car buyers due to its sporty, stylish design and connectivity features.

Propulsion Choices with Available Hybrid Technology

The all-new Regal is the first Buick model in China with GM's latest nine-speed Hydra-Matic intelligent transmission. Leveraging more than 60 GM-patented technologies, it delivers smooth shifting and improved performance, reliability and fuel efficiency. The all-new Regal also comes standard with stop/start.

Buyers have a choice of two direct-injection turbocharged engines. A 2.0L SIDI engine that has been named one of Ward's 10 Best Engines produces maximum power of 192 kW and peak torque of 350 Nm. The engine enables the all-new Regal to sprint from 0 to 100 km/h in only 7.2 seconds. GM's new 1.5L SIDI engine offers class-leading power of 125 kW and peak torque of 252 Nm. It has estimated combined fuel consumption of 6.3 liters/100 km.

The all-new Regal will also be available as a hybrid. It features the company’s hybrid-tailored 1.8L direct-injection engine, GM's patented EVT electronically controlled intelligent variable transmission, a highly integrated Traction Power Inverter Module (TPIM), and a double high-performance, permanent-magnet electric motor drive unit. The electric drive system is supported by an industry-leading high-performance lithium-ion battery pack. It will deliver estimated fuel consumption of 4.3 liters/100 km.

Performance-Inspired Buick Regal GS

All-new Buick Regal GS: Performance-Inspired
Buick is also offering the all-new Regal GS, which has a unique exterior and interior design. Its exterior has a black wing grille with bright black wing strips and upright “fangs.” The distinct grille is complemented by a body kit under the front bumper and new 18-inch black five-spoke sports hubs. Its integrated aerodynamic tail comes alive with chrome-plated dual exhausts, an expanded body kit and a red GS badge.

The GS-exclusive black sports interior includes a flat steering wheel with a metal shift paddle and sporty seats certified by Aktion Gesunder Rücken (AGR).

The new FlexRide adaptive driving system allows the driver to switch between Auto, Comfort and Sporty modes. Combined with new-generation Continuous Damping Control (CDC), it scans road conditions and adjusts damping in real time for comfort and maneuverability. Brembo four-piston front brake calipers in combination with FNC brake discs enhance braking.

Elegant and Sporty Design

The all-new Regal adopts Buick's latest premium sedan design language. It has a wing-style grille complemented by wing-shaped dual LED daytime running lamps for a strong horizontal visual effect.

The all-new Regal is longer and wider than its predecessor and has a lower center of gravity. With its aerodynamic sleek fastback styling, it combines the spirited performance of a coupe with the generous stance of a premium sedan, setting a new trend for its segment.

The wheelbase of the all-new Regal has been extended 92 mm to 2,829 mm. In conjunction with its increased width, it provides more room than the previous-generation Regal. The roominess is bolstered by a floating interior design and a 360-degree wraparound layout.

Over 80 percent of the interior is covered in soft materials. Refinement is further enhanced by leather accents and hand-sewn double stitching. Moon White ambient lighting combined with dual 8-inch center console LCD screens adds to the high-tech and luxurious feel.

Smooth Handling and Advanced Safety

The sedan has an optimized MacPherson front suspension that is matched with aluminum steering knuckles and a stiffer hollow anti-roll bar for improved comfort and more precise handling. It has introduced a four-link independent rear suspension and rear dampers with advanced concentric piston valves to ensure better flexibility and further contribute to agile and steady handling. The all-new Regal’s high-strength rigid body has shed about 160 kg, supporting improvements in safety, handling, comfort and fuel efficiency.

The all-new Regal applies the latest-generation eProtect smart safety technology with fully upgraded functionality. It includes pedestrian detection (PD), collision mitigation braking (CMB) and adaptive cruise control (ACC). Automatic parking assist (APA) can take over steering and control the brakes and accelerator, setting free the driver's hands and feet during parking.

New Matrix LED headlamps have eight intelligent lighting modes and a lighting distance of 400 meters for greater driving safety at night. In addition, the all-new Regal is equipped with a full-color head-up display (HUD), which shows speed, infotainment information, and navigation and safety prompts.

New Generation of Intelligent Connected Technologies

With Buick eConnect technology, the all-new Regal is the first model from the brand to offer cloud-based services. The technology supports Apple CarPlay and Baidu CarLife. Users can listen to Kaola FM and NetEase Cloud Music online, and access 4S store service information quickly and accurately.

Customers receive five years of free basic OnStar service, including Remote Access, Advanced Diagnostics and Dealer Maintenance Notifications. With 4G LTE, the all-new Regal turns into a Wi-Fi hotspot. The intelligent home interconnection function works with OnStar’s electronic fence and mobile phone app to enable activation of home appliances.

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Birth of a European Champion: Opel and Vauxhall join Groupe PSA

  • Opel and Vauxhall to be operated as true iconic German and British brands
  • New performance plan to be presented in 100 days: to generate a positive operational free cash flow by 2020 as well as an operating margin of 2% by 2020 and 6% by 2026
  • Four new team members to join the leadership team

Handshake: Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller and PSA Group CEO, Carlos Tavares (right) in front of the new Opel Insignia.

The sale of Opel Automobile GmbH with its brands Opel and Vauxhall by General Motors to Groupe PSA has been finalized now. “It is a historic day,” said Opel Automobile GmbH CEO Michael Lohscheller. “We are proud to join Groupe PSA and are now opening a new chapter in our history after 88 years with General Motors. We will continue our path of making technology `made in Germany´ available to everyone. The combination of our strengths will enable us to turn Opel and Vauxhall into a profitable and self-funded business. We have set ourselves the clear target of returning to profitability by 2020.”

“We are witnessing the birth of a true European champion today,” emphasized PSA Chairman of the board Carlos Tavares. “We will assist Opel and Vauxhall’s return to profitability and aim to set new industry benchmarks together. We will unleash the power of these iconic brands and the huge potential of its existing talents. Opel will remain German, Vauxhall will remain British. They are the perfect fit to our existing portfolio of French brands Peugeot, Citroën and DS Automobiles.” The market share of the enlarged Groupe PSA is now around 17 percent in Europe, making it the continent’s second largest carmaker with first or second place in main markets.

As already assured when the contract was signed in March, all employee codetermination rights will remain unchanged.

The Opel/Vauxhall management team will work on a plan for the future in the next 100 days. “We are eager to build the plan with PSA’s support and obviously together with our partners from the Works Council and the unions,” said Opel CEO Lohscheller. Synergies within the Groupe PSA, for example in purchasing and development, are set to play a major part. The combined entity will unlock substantial economies of scale and synergies in purchasing, manufacturing and R&D estimated at €1.7 Bn at run rate. The goal is to generate a positive operational free cash flow by 2020 as well as an operating margin of two percent by 2020 and six percent by 2026.

Today’s start of a new era is accompanied by some important leadership changes. “I am happy to announce that four new members will join my management team,” said CEO Lohscheller:

  • Christian Müller, previously Vice President Global Propulsion Systems – Europe and with Opel since 1996, will succeed William F. Bertagni as Vice President Engineering. He will integrate engineering and powertrain in one department.
  • Rémi Girardon, previously Senior Vice President Group Industrial Strategy at Groupe PSA, will succeed Philip R. Kienle as Vice President Manufacturing.
  • Philippe de Rovira, previously Group Controller at Groupe PSA, will become the new CFO of Opel, following Michael Lohscheller.
  •  Michelle Wen, Group Supply Chain Management Network Director at Vodafone Procurement, will be joining the Opel leadership team effective September 1 replacing Katherine Worthen currently Vice President Purchasing and Supply Chain. All other moves are with immediate effect.

“We thank Katherine Worthen, William F. Bertagni and Philip Kienle for all their contributions to Opel/Vauxhall and wish them all the best for the next chapter of their careers within General Motors,” said Opel CEO Lohscheller. “And we cordially welcome Michelle Wen from Vodafone as well as Remi Girardon and Philippe de Rovira from Groupe PSA. I am looking forward to working with these new team members who will reinforce the potential of our leadership team.”

Going forward, Michael Lohscheller is planning with a much leaner management structure, including the number of direct reports. “We are reducing complexity and increasing speed,” said Lohscheller. “I am looking forward to shaping the next chapter of Opel/Vauxhall with the new management team and leading our company into a successful future. The owners and the employees will not be the only ones to benefit from ever stronger Opel and Vauxhall brands – our customers will do so too.”

PSA and Opel/Vauxhall have been working together since 2012. The cooperation so far includes four vehicles from Opel. The first model, the Opel Crossland X CUV, has been available at dealerships since the end of June. The Opel Grandland X SUV in the next higher segment follows in the fall.

The successor of the Opel Combo light commercial vehicle will come onto the market next year and as of 2019 the next generation of the best-selling Opel Corsa will be launched.

Opel/Vauxhall and Groupe PSA will continue to work with General Motors in the future. In addition to development in the area of electric propulsion, Opel plants will continue to produce vehicles for the GM brands Buick and Holden.

In parallel, the acquisition of GM Financial's European operations is under way, subject to validation by the different regulatory authorities’ review and is scheduled for the second half of 2017.