Monday, 30 June 2014

!NEW! 50 Years of Innovation: Opel Design Studio First of its Kind in Europe

  • Advanced Studio started its creative work at Opel in Rüsselsheim in 1964
  • Architecture and concept was modeled after GM studio in Warren, Michigan
  • Design icons from Opel GT to Opel Monza Concept

1964 was a year of Olympic Games – the XI Winter Games were opened in Innsbruck, and just a few months later, the Olympic flame burned at the XVIII Summer Games in Tokyo. And Rüsselsheim also extended an invitation to a special celebration. For the first time, guests were able to visit the new Opel Design Studio in building N10. For many of them it was also the last time, because after the grand opening, the futuristic-looking facilities were again closed to the public. From June 1964, forms, colors and functions of the brand’s cars were developed and decided here. “It’s easier to get into Fort Knox than into N10,” said an insider back then.

The new, ultra-modern Opel Styling facility that opened in 1964 in the N10 building was directly inspired by GM Styling in Detroit. This new set-up propelled Opel to the leading edge of automotive design in Europe.
The formal opening of the building marked a milestone in European automotive history. It was the largest design studio owned by an automaker in Europe. Up until then, most European car manufacturers often commissioned external specialists for the development of new concept cars. Northern Italy, in particular the area around the capital of the Piedmont region, Turin, was regarded as the mecca of automobile design. Pietro Frua, Guiseppe “Nuccio” Bertone and Pininfarina had all set up their coachbuilding enterprises between the Alps and the Apennines. They were responsible for the design of many of the car manufacturers’ new models and concepts.

First studies from European car manufacturers
The idea for Opel’s own design studio came from US parent company GM. In Warren, Michigan, near company headquarters in Detroit, GM Styling had already been working on the future of the automobile since the late 1950s. The first attention-getting concept car had been presented even earlier: after the Art & Color Section established in 1927 and headed by Harley Earl was re-named GM Styling in 1937, just one year later GM presented the Buick Y-Job – the first genuine concept vehicle in automotive history. The goal had been to develop a new, large convertible for the Buick brand to present to the public. The building in Warren was now built on the Rüsselsheim premises, identical in form, layout and function, just on a smaller scale.

In the early 1960s, GM Styling was the biggest and most powerful design organization in the world. By 1956, GM Styling’s 1,200 staff members had settled into the brand new building designed by Eero Saarinen at GM’s Technical Center in Warren, near Detroit. Opel benefited considerably from GM’s power and vast expertise.
However, the Rüsselsheim design studio’s task was much more complex. It was to develop not only the design language of new model lines, but its sharp minds and visionaries were to reach out beyond the confines of daily business and research the design of future vehicles. Design was seen as strategic focus for future success, not as an end in itself. And this is exactly what made the difference. While others at best developed the shape of a new body, in Rüsselsheim thought was being put into design language and emotions, including aspects like what kind of statement, what character does the customer expect from the car of the future.

Clare M. MacKichan, founder of Opel Styling in Rüsselsheim, sits in the middle of his staff for one of their first meetings in their new building. They made Opel Styling the most advanced and powerful automotive design organization in Europe.
Advanced Studio was a department in N10, free from daily design work, charged not with working on what should be on the road tomorrow or the day after, but with developing possibilities and opportunities for products that would win over customers years down the road. This was a real challenge. Because as a designer back then said, if you are a step ahead of the mainstream’s taste, you are moving around on the precipice to boredom. Take a brave step further, and you have made yourself inaccessible to most people. Or to put it more bluntly: had someone entered the king’s palace in the 19th century with a tablet PC, that person would have had to reckon with being thrown in jail for subversive behavior. Maybe that is why some automobile studies look boring and uninspired just a few years after their premiere.

Opel’s design team led by Erhard Schnell (standing right) try out the future Opel GT’s interior at Opel’s brand new Advanced Studio.
The Opel design studio’s task made it unique in Europe. It quickly turned into a European school for automobile design that had a magical attraction for the best in the industry. The studio’s personnel list from the past reads like a Who’s Who of the automotive design world: Anatole Lapine, Erhard Schnell, George Gallion, Charles M. ‘Chuck’ Jordan, Herbert Killmer, Chris Bangle, Murat Nasr and Hideo Kodama. And more than a few made their way to other manufacturers during their career after other brands had also established their own design studios years later. Many ideas, forms and design statements in automobiles originated in Rüsselsheim and reach back into the 1960s.

Following the stunning success of the Experimental GT at the Frankfurt Motor Show, Opel decided to put the car into production. While engineers were developing the chassis and powertrain of the future Opel GT, designers adapted its shape for production, which required creating new sketches and clay models.
Opel GT production started in 1968. But Opel designers had further ideas and the Advanced design team under Erhard Schnell (speaking with Hans Seer) prepared a proposal for an Aero GT with a targa roof, here as a clay model, for the 1969 Frankfurt Motor Show.
The list of design icons created by the Opel Advanced Design Studio in these 50 years can hardly be topped in its diversity. The Opel Experimental GT was the first masterpiece of work the young, committed team presented just one year after the new design studio was opened. The bold sports car already made its debut in 1965 at the Frankfurt Motor Show (IAA). Thereafter in quick succession followed the Opel CD, a streamlined coupé with a V8 engine in 1969, the GT2 with sliding doors in 1975 and the extremely aerodynamically optimized Tech1, whose drag coefficient of Cd 0.235 was an absolute sensation in the early 1980s. The women and men from the Advanced Design Studio team presented their latest work at the last IAA in Frankfurt. The Opel Monza Concept shows design solutions and technical approaches that will appear in the brand’s model lines in the coming years.

Opel Monza Concept (2013)

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

!NEW! Opel ADAM ROCKS at Dudenhofen Test Center: Adventure Calls

  • Over hill and down dale: Urban mini-crossover rocks through the torture track
  • In fast motion: 24-week test in Dudenhofen as tough as a whole car life
  • Attractive entry-level price: ADAM ROCKS for 15,990 euros soon available to order

Only flying is better: ADAM ROCKS shows how fast it can go on the newly-expanded high-speed circuit at the Opel Test Center Dudenhofen
Recently it captivated visitors to the Auto Mobil International (AMI) show in Leipzig, and now in just a few days it will be available to order: the Opel ADAM ROCKS is ready to roll! Open-air driving fun is an essential part of the ADAM ROCKS repertoire with a Swing Top canvas roof fitted as standard, all for 15,990 euros (RRP incl. VAT in Germany). But before customers can enjoy this stylish mini-crossover in the city and beyond, Opel engineers have once again put it through its paces at the Opel Test Center in Dudenhofen.

With its muscular proportions, encapsulated by bold side-sill plates and distinctive body cladding, the ROCKS likes to show what it can do beyond the urban landscape. Key to its purposeful stance is a 15 mm increase in body ride height, giving greater ground clearance and a wide, robust appearance. Numerous components have been modified or re-tuned to guarantee (almost) limitless driving fun. These include dampers, springs, the front and rear suspension geometry, steering and the electronic stability control program (ESC).

Opel ADAM ROCKS at the Opel Test Center Dudenhofen
To prove the effectiveness of all these changes, it was time to ‘hit the track’, of course with expert guidance. The Opel engineering team took the ADAM ROCKS to its limits at the Test Center. Be it on the torture track, the high-speed circuit or the hill track – the ADAM ROCKS had to cover around 40,000 km at Dudenhofen. This tough test is equivalent to covering 160,000 km on particularly demanding real roads. Vehicles at the Opel Test Center are exposed to levels of stress and strain in just 24 weeks that correspond to an entire vehicle life experience under normal road conditions.

Alpine mountain-like conditions: to put the steering, transmission and brakes to the test, the all-new Opel ADAM ROCKS also successfully completes the hill track with rising and falling gradients ranging from eight to 30 percent
For example the torture track: here the auto industry’s first urban three-door mini-crossover proved its durability. That’s because the track delivers exactly what its name promises: more than 900 meters of potholes, humps, the “washboard“, a cobbled section and a pavé track. It’s a really tough test for the chassis, which will most probably never go through such torture in real life. But it was not a problem for the ROCKS. After all, the small Opel ADAM ROCKS’ design and durability were inspired by the exploits of agile ‘Parkour’ athletes, who use the city landscape as their playground and easily overcome every obstacle.

Over hill and down dale: the urban mini-crossover Opel ADAM ROCKS rocks through the torture track at the Opel Test Center in Dudenhofen
On the newly-expanded high-speed circuit, the saying is: “Only flying is better”. Thanks to its 40 degree banking, speeds of up to 250 km/h can be achieved without lateral forces. This enables Opel engineers to test their calculated target values, such as top speed, while being able to relax and release the steering wheel once in a while. To put the steering, transmission and brakes to the test, Opel ADAM ROCKS also successfully completed the hill track. This undulating, man-made circuit has rising and falling gradients, ranging from eight to 30 percent, with different road surfaces and a serpentine section including hairpin turns – similar to conditions found in alpine mountains. It was another stage that the newest Opel family member effortlessly rocked through. Opel’s agile urban athlete really showed off its strengths, particularly in curves. The newly-tuned steering underpins ADAM ROCKS’ agility, impressing with its direct responsiveness and sporty driving style.

Quality assurance right before start of sales

On Dudenhofen’s comfort and noise measurement track across various road surfaces, engineers tested their development work to ensure it is transferred to real-life experience. As a result, Opel ADAM ROCKS meets the requirements of the ECE-R51.02 pass-by noise type approval regulations. The main factors affecting pass-by sound are powertrain noise emissions, especially those from the exhaust system. The test track used for the Opel ADAM ROCKS was exactly 23.74 meters long. In accordance with the standard procedure, engineers drive onto the track in second and third gear, both at 50 km/h, and then accelerate under full throttle. To the left and right of the track, directional microphones are posted which capture the pass-by noise. The average limit value for pass-by noise in second and third gear is 74 dB(A) – and the small crossover mastered this without a problem.

But that’s not all. A decisive test which the series production version of the Opel ADAM ROCKS had to undergo was the endurance track. The longest track at the test center offers many different road surfaces including asphalt and cobblestones, bumps and numerous curves. Here engineers test if the performance and quality they fine-tuned and approved in the development vehicles has been successfully transferred to the volume production vehicles. “This gives us another possibility for additional quality assurance right up to the start of sales,” says Rainer Bachen, Lead Development Engineer at Opel. “For example, if we determine in Dudenhofen that the steering feels different, or bothersome noises can be heard inside the vehicle, we can immediately take appropriate measures and get the quality back on track before delivery to our customers.”

During the development phase of Opel ADAM ROCKS, everything for the prototype making in the development center is carried out by hand. In contrast, speed and volume count in series production, so that series production quality also has to undergo final testing. That is why the team brings the Opel ADAM ROCKS into the workshop after the various test runs and examines the vehicle and its individual components. “We want to be absolutely sure that our series production cars drive exactly like we tuned our prototypes during development. In the process, safety, quality and endurance are top priority for us,” says Bachen. So when the endurance test is completed, engineers again check all the fastening elements which were bolted together by series equipment, disassembling the ROCKS down to its single components to assess every single part. After this careful inspection, the result was an unqualified “Thumbs up!”. So there is nothing standing in the way of having pure driving fun at the wheel of the Opel ADAM ROCKS – even over hill and dale – from September.

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

!NEW! Opel Corsa E Will Come to Market at End of 2014

Fifth-generation Corsa still in camouflage on test drives today
  • Powerful 1.0 ECOTEC Direct Injection Turbo with 85 kW/115 hp
  • Superbly tuned steering is more precise and gives lot of feedback from the road
  • Newly developed chassis is now in two versions: Comfort and Sport

New engines, new gearbox, new chassis: The new Opel Corsa will be introduced this year. The huge leap made from the Corsa D to the Corsa E is clearly noticeable.
There has been much speculation, and now it’s certain: the new Opel Corsa will be introduced this year. It is currently on the home stretch to series production, with the final validation drives in camouflage taking place to test the harmonious fine-tuning of all components. Opel Corsa E doesn’t just feature the new-generation 1.0 ECOTEC Direct Injection Turbo gasoline engine with new six-speed manual transmission, it also boasts a newly developed chassis and superbly tuned steering. Opel engineers were secretly on the road with four validation prototypes in the Palatinate region south-west of Frankfurt am Main. The test vehicles were equipped with the new, powerful 85 kW/115 hp, 1.0 liter three-cylinder  Direct Injection Turbo engine with both Sport and Comfort chassis. For the sake of comparison, the current Opel Corsa D 1.4 (74 kW/100 hp) and 1.4 Turbo (88 kW/120 hp) accompanied the test vehicles.

Final validation drives in camouflage: Opel engineers were secretly on the road with validation prototypes of the new Corsa in the Palatinate region south-west of Frankfurt am Main.

Opel Board Members including CEO Dr. Karl-Thomas Neumann, Vice President Engineering Michael Ableson and Vice President Sales and Aftersales Peter Christian Küspert put the new generation Corsa under the microscope. The feedback is very positive, and the huge leap made from the Corsa D to the Corsa E is clearly noticeable. Praise for the newly developed 1.0 ECOTEC engine is unanimous. The three-cylinder turbo’s strengths – torque, driveability and noise generation – together with the all-new gearbox and chassis, top the list of highlights according to the Board and engineering team.

New Opel Corsa E will come at end of 2014: It is currently on the home stretch to series production, with the final validation drives in camouflage taking place to test the harmonious fine-tuning of all components.

Monday, 23 June 2014

!NEW! Chevrolet Unveils Interior Photos of the New Generation Cruze

Shanghai GM today released interior photos of the new Chevrolet Cruze, which made its world premiere at Auto China 2014 in April. One month ago the automaker unveiled the model's innovative exterior design, which served as an exciting preview of its interior design language.

 New Chevrolet Cruze 
Conceived with Chevrolet's "Power of Ingenuity • Youth" concept in mind, the all-new Cruze was created by GM's global design network. The model offers the first expression of Chevrolet's next-generation design language characterized by the slogan "Design with a Heartbeat," and demonstrating the brand’s global design cues. These photos attest to the car’s "dynamic, sophisticated, efficient, and innovative" design philosophy from inside to outside.

Dynamic Styling, Efficient Space Contribute to an Engaging Interior

Remaining true to its dynamic driving characteristics, the New Cruze features Chevrolet's flowing signature dual-cockpit design inspired by classic sports cars Corvette and Camaro. Though incorporating a sports-car-like streamlined style, the cabin is roomy and comfortable. Its three-spoke multi-function leather steering wheel is combined with a dual gauge sporty instrument cluster

The flowing signature dual-cockpit design of the New generation Chevrolet Cruze 
Despite being a compact vehicle, the new-generation Cruze maintains delivers unexpected spaciousness. The model’s interior space was expanded by optimizing its layout and structure, moving forward the cowl point, as well as adopting four wheels that extend outward and a roof curve that extends backwards. Moreover, an all-new downsized engine helps maximize cabin space. With class-leading rear knee room, the all-new Cruze provides customers with roomy interior dimensions plus a superior driving experience. Additionally, its efficient, intelligent butterfly-shaped center console delivers intuitive, user-friendly operation, with clear functions at a glance.

Innovative Features and Exquisite Details

When Chevrolet developed the Tru 140 Concept two years ago, it was based on market research indicating that future young car buyers wanted a refined interior design with incredible attention to detail. Inspired by the concept car, the new-generation Chevrolet Cruze comes with an innovative and sophisticated interior that was created to exceed the demands ofyoung customers.

 New Chevrolet Cruze - The front dash, door panels, and seats of the Cruze are all wrapped in hand-stitched saddle brown premium leather
The bold use of a rich, saddle brown color throughout enhances the feeling of luxury. The front dash, door panels, and seats of the Cruze are all wrapped in hand-stitched saddle brown premium leather. The model also affords young customers superior connectivity with a stylish best-in-class eight-inch multi-point touch screen, abundant personalized built-in APPs, and the Chevrolet MyLink II system, which allows customers to get directions, access their personal contacts, and stream music and images by connecting their smartphone via Bluetooth. They can also use voice controls to access features such as hands-free calling. Luxurious chrome accents, which echo the exterior chrome detailing, are accompanied by a piano-black-trimmed center console and ice blue ambient lighting.

New Chevrolet Cruze MyLink II system - Eight-inch multi-point touch screen
The new Cruze represents the "dynamic, sophisticated, efficient, and innovative" design philosophy of Chevrolet both inside and out, to embody Chevrolet's "Design with a Heartbeat."  

General Motors traces its roots back to 1908. GM has 10 joint ventures, two wholly owned foreign enterprises and more than 58,000 employees in China. GM and its joint ventures offer the broadest lineup of vehicles and brands among automakers in China. Passenger cars and commercial vehicles are sold under the Baojun, Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Jiefang, Opel and Wuling brands. In 2013, GM sold nearly 3.2 million vehicles in China. 

!NEW! Opel Astra GTC: Powerful Whisper Diesel for 24,390 Euros

  • Economical: Sporty coupé consumes just 4.1 liters diesel per 100 kilometer
  • Powerful: From 80 to 120 km/h in only 8.9 seconds with new turbo diesel
  • Popular: 1.6 CDTI with 100 kW/136 hp now available for whole Astra family
Whisper diesel premiere for the Opel Astra GTC: 1.6 CDTI with 100 kW/136 hp now also ensures powerful and clean drive in the sporty compact coupé.

Whisper diesel premiere for the Astra GTC: the all-new 1.6 CDTI now also ensures powerful and clean drive in the sporty compact coupé. This makes the 100 kW/136 hp turbo diesel with 320 Nm maximum torque available for the entire Astra family. It replaces the 1.7 CDTI and provides more performance and higher torque with less displacement. The Astra GTC can be ordered with the new engine for prices starting at 24,390 euros (RRP incl. VAT in Germany).

Opel Astra GTC: 1.6 CDTI consumes just 4.1 liters diesel per 100 km and emits just 109 g/km CO2

The 1.6 CDTI consumes just 4.1 liters diesel per 100 km and emits just 109 g/km CO2. This earns the Astra GTC the German A energy efficiency label. But that is not all – with its powerful performance, the turbo diesel does absolute justice to the compact coupé’s sporty character. The newest generation all-aluminum turbo unit boasts powerful 320 Nm maximum torque – 20 Nm more than the 1.7 liter predecessor with 130 hp. The whisper diesel also has more power than the previous generation in spite of its smaller displacement. With 6 hp higher output, the Astra GTC accelerates from zero to 100 km/h in 10.2 seconds; it sprints from 80 to 120 km/h in fifth gear in just 8.9 instead of the previous 10.5 seconds. Its top speed is an impressive 198 km/h.

Opel Astra GTC: new 1.6 CDTI engine comes with Start/Stop plus a braking energy recuperation system as standard and is coupled with the further developed, improved six-speed manual transmission
Opel renewed the engine family for the Astra GTC within a very short time. The wide portfolio is completed by the 206 kW/280 hp top-of-the-line OPC, the high-performance diesel 2.0 BiTurbo CDTI with 143 kW/195 hp and 400 Nm maximum torque, the powerful 1.6 ECOTEC Direct Injection Turbo with 125 kW/170 hp and 147 kW/200 hp as well as the whisper-quiet 1.6 CDTI with 100 kW/136 hp.

Pleasantly quiet: Higher comfort thanks to lower noise generation

The new 1.6 CDTI engine comes with Start/Stop plus a braking energy recuperation system as standard and is coupled with the further developed, improved six-speed manual transmission. This guarantees highest shifting comfort. A host of enhancements to the transmission components and shifting mechanisms, as well as to integration in the vehicle, led to noticeable improvements in comfort.

Efficient and powerful whisper diesel: 1.6 CDTI consumes just 4.1 liters diesel per 100 km and emits just 109 g/km CO2. This earns the Opel Astra GTC the German A energy efficiency label.

Opel’s extremely efficient whisper diesel is the first unit in the Astra portfolio to already comply with the future Euro 6 emissions standard, making it the cleanest diesel Opel has ever built. The engine is best-in-class in noise and vibration generation thanks to its optimized component design, an especially efficient combustion process with multiple injection and additional acoustic measures. The result is totally convincing. Opel’s new 1.6 CDTI is the quietest diesel in its class, earning the name whisper diesel. Further contributors to its strong and clean performance are the VTG turbocharger (variable turbine geometry), the high-pressure common rail system and lean NOx trap exhaust after-treatment (LNT). The LNT is upstream of the diesel particulate filter and can capture and reduce nitrogen oxides (NOx) from exhaust gases there, a clean and space-saving solution.

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

!NEW! Opel Meriva MPV: Whisper-diesel now with Super-economical 95 hp

  • Best base: 70 kW/95 hp Turbo rounds off new diesel portfolio in Opel Meriva
  • Exemplary consumption: Minivan needs just 4.0 l/100 km and emits 105 g/km CO2
  • Attractive offer: Meriva with whisper-diesel technology now from just 19,150 euros

Opel Meriva MPV with new entry-level diesel: The 70 kW/95 hp 1.6 CDTI rounds off the new Meriva diesel portfolio.
The new Opel Meriva impresses with its new range of economical gasoline, LPG and diesel engines. The highlight is the ultra-modern 1.6 CDTI that is now available in three output levels: 100 kW/136 hp, 81 kW/110 hp, and new in the range, the 70 kW/95 hp. The entry-level unit completes the trio of the newly designed diesel generation that distinguishes itself with economical consumption and running smoothness as well as exceptionally low noise generation – the 1.6 CDTI is Opel’s whisper-diesel for good reason.

Opel Meriva MPV - X-Ray Illustration
The brand new 70 kW/95 hp 1.6 CDTI comes with Start/Stop as standard and is available with a low-friction six-speed manual transmission. It replaces the previous generation 1.3 liter diesel with the same output and increases maximum torque by 100 to 280 Nm. The new whisper-diesel version also reduces consumption and CO2 emissions. The efficient turbo diesel makes do with just 4.0 liters diesel per 100 km in the combined cycle and emits just 105 g/km CO2 – four grams less than its predecessor. This has earned the Meriva the best A+ energy efficiency label in Germany. So the ultra-flexible Opel van that has also been recognized for its overall ergonomic concept by Aktion Gesunder Rücken e.V. (Campaign for Healthier Backs) benefits both the environment and its owner. With the new entry-level engine, the diesel-powered Meriva is now available for an attractive price of 19,150 euros (RRP incl. VAT in Germany).

Opel Meriva MPV with all-new whisper-diesel technology is now available from just 19,150 euros.

New Opel diesel generation: Powerful, economical, environmentally friendly

The new Meriva 1.6 CDTI already complies with the future Euro 6 emission standards. The necessary reduction in nitrogen oxide is achieved through Lean NOx Technology (LNT). The system’s special LNT catalyst stores the nitrogen oxide. When the storage capacity is used up, the engine management system automatically begins regeneration. Opel’s LNT system is entirely maintenance-free. 

Monday, 16 June 2014

!NEW! Vauxhall Insignia Sports Tourer Crowned Best Petrol Tow Car

Proving that petrol can still play in the pulling power stakes, the Vauxhall Insignia Sports Tourer has been recognised as the best petrol model in the annual Tow Car Awards 2014.

Vauxhall Insignia Sports Tourer 1.6 Turbo
The Vauxhall Insignia Sports Tourer 1.6i 16V Direct Injection Turbo (170 PS) beat competitors from Mercedes–Benz and SEAT to be awarded Best Petrol Tow Car in the prestigious awards, run jointly by The Camping and Caravanning Club, Practical Caravan magazine and What Car?.

Since even the most avid caravan owners will spend more time driving ‘unhitched’ than towing, the judges looked at more than pure hauling ability. The scores took into account the car’s performance while towing and driving solo, its practicality, as well as buying and owning.

Head judge David Motton, Practical Caravan’s Tow Car Editor, said, “The 1.6 litre turbocharged engine proves that the best petrols can make very capable tow cars.”

The Insignia Sports Tourer’s turbocharged petrol engine, which entered production last year, features direct injection and Start/Stop technology, helping it to achieve an impressive combined fuel economy figure of 45.6mpg and emit just 146g/km CO2.

David continued: “It’s a much more flexible engine than most petrols, with a punchy 168 bhp at the top of the rev range and 260 Nm torque (280 Nm with Overboost) across a broad power band. It pulled from 30-60 mph in 15.3 seconds and the engine stays quiet and smooth even when worked hard.

“At speed the Vauxhall feels reassuringly solid. Even when tested at speeds above the legal limit, there’s hardly any movement from the caravan. The Insignia’s electronic parking brake held car and caravan still on the 1-in-6 slope and released smoothly and the fitment of Trailer Stability Assist ensures car and caravan stay in sync.”

Saturday, 14 June 2014

!NEW! Opel Market Success in Europe Continues

  • 3.6 percent increase in sales in the first five months of the year
  • Market share gains in ten European countries including Germany
  • High order volume for Opel Mokka SUV, ADAM and new Insignia

Opel Mokka SUV - More than 240,000 orders across Europe
Opel considerably increased sales across Europe in the first five months of the year, according to preliminary figures. From January through May, Opel new vehicle registrations increased by 3.6 percent to 454,807 units versus the same year-ago period, representing a 5.77 percent share of the overall vehicle market in Europe. In May Opel sold 95,143 units, and market share climbed to 5.96 percent.

New Opel Insignia - More than 100,000 orders for the Opel flagship
“Our models are extremely popular, and we benefit from this in many European markets that are once again growing. This is also reflected in the order books. We have already received more than 240,000 orders for the Mokka across Europe, over 90,000 for our lifestyle mini ADAM and more than 100,000 for our flagship, the new Insignia,” says Board Member for Sales Peter Christian Küspert.

Opel ADAM: Over 90,000 orders for the lifestyle mini
This success has a broad, multi-market base. In the first five months, Opel gained market share in ten European countries.  This included Germany, where market share rose to 6.88 percent of the total vehicle market over the first five months. In May alone, market share reached 7.26 percent. The compact Mokka SUV was number one in the SUV segment in May as well as in the first five months of the year. The Corsa proved to be a perennial favorite and ranked number one in the small car segment in May. The Zafira was number two in the high-capacity van segment in May as well as in the first five months of this year.

In the UK, Vauxhall defended its position as the second-largest brand in the first five months and in May of this year. Insignia and Zafira MPV were top of their segments in both time periods. In May, the Mokka SUV also took the top spot in its segment. Opel was particularly successful in Hungary in May, when it was market leader in the overall vehicle market.

Thursday, 12 June 2014

!NEW! Opel is Exclusive Mobility Partner of Munich Film Festival 2014

  • “Umparken im Kopf“ approach creatively promoted at Munich Film Festival
  • Exclusive gala premiere of movie “Der Koch“

At the Munich Film Festival: Opel Super 6 Cabriolet “Gläser”.
For the first time ever, Opel is the exclusive mobility partner of the 32nd Munich Film Festival taking place from June 27 – July 5. Opel continues the idea behind the “Umparken im Kopf“ campaign in an attention-getting manner with this cooperation. As with the campaign’s TV spots, out-of-home ads and the accompanying social media activities, the automaker’s engagement at the Munich Film Festival again underlines its positive image change and continues dispelling existing prejudices, encourages re-thinking and looking more closely at the brand and its cars.

In Munich Opel will be present with a host of communication measures and two exhibition vehicles – the Opel ADAM in camouflage look designed by musician and photographer Bryan Adams and the new ADAM ROCKS. In the festival center, the “Umparkzone” is the meeting place for accredited trade visitors and media representatives to watch the film. Mobile attention-getters will be the “Umpark Shuttle” with an Opel Insignia fleet to shuttle prominent national and international guests to the red carpet as well as a small fleet of Opel classic cars. In addition, on Wednesday, July 2, Opel will present the gala premiere of the movie “Der Koch”, the film adaptation of the book of the same name written by Swiss author Martin Suter, starring famous German actress Jessica Schwarz.

“Good movies have a surprise in store. Good car brands do too.” This is on Opel’s posters for the film festival. “It’s not just since the beginning of our ‘Umparken im Kopf’ campaign that everyone is talking about Opel. But it has noticeably increased the interest in our innovative models – even the most steadfast optimists would not have dreamed of this one year ago,” says Opel Chief Marketing Officer Tina Müller. “The new partnership with the Munich Film Festival is another step along the successful path that we have started down with our campaign.”

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

!NEW! Opel at Nürburgring 24 Hours Race – The legend lives on

Nürburgring 24 hours: ten Opel Astra OPC Cup cars compete in the world’s toughest endurance race on June 21 and 22. 
There are venues that hold an outstanding place in their respective sports. Without a doubt, the Nürburgring’s Nordschleife is one of the world’s most famous motor racing circuits – especially when the legendary ADAC Zurich 24h-race takes place there for the 42nd time on June 21 and 22, 2014. Opel, one of the most successful marques in the race at the “green hell,” will be represented by ten Astra OPC Cup cars, alongside numerous privately owned race cars.

Opel Astra OPC Cup - Racing car
Successful racing cars from Rüsselsheim have a long tradition in the 36-year history of the VLN endurance racing championship. Nine champions have driven to victory in an Opel, with the Rüsselsheim-based manufacturer responsible for 17 outright wins. With 594 class victories, Opel is the third most successful brand. The overall victory at the 2003 24 hours by Manuel Reuter, Timo Scheider, Marcel Tiemann and Volker Strycek in their Opel Astra V8 Coupé remains a memorable moment in motor racing.

Opel Astra V8 Coupé winning the 24 hours race at the Nürburgring in 2003.
Last year, Opel revived this grand Nordschleife tradition with its Opel Astra OPC Cup. The racing version of the Astra OPC, which has been optimized for the 2014 season to combine high performance and professional technology at an affordable price, provides the technical basis for the Cup models.

Opel Astra OPC Cup - Racing car
However, the 24-hour race on the Nordschleife is more than just an extremely demanding race. It is also the site of one of the largest events in international sports and attracts some 200,000 fans every year to a gigantic party for everyone lucky enough to be there.

The tension increases: The legendary ADAC Zurich 24h-race takes place on the Nürburgring for the 42nd time.

The 42nd ADAC Zurich 24 hours starts at 4 p.m. on Saturday, June 21, 2014.

Tuesday, 10 June 2014

!NEW! Opel ADAM for José Carreras Foundation

Stylish city-car for leukemia patients at the Hamburg-Eppendorf University Hospital

Stylish city-car for leukemia patients: Opel Chief Marketing Officer Tina Müller (left) has officially handed over a brand-new €20,000 ADAM Slam to the José Carreras Foundation.
Opel Chief Marketing Officer Tina Müller has officially handed over a brand-new €20,000 ADAM Slam to the José Carreras Foundation. The car will be used by back2life, which was chosen in a lottery organized by the foundation among self-support groups, to help ease some of the pressures faced by the group’s volunteers and leukemia patients.

The foundation was established by world renowned tenor José Carreras in 1987 after he survived leukemia. He has since been active in helping people who are suffering from the same blood illness.

The Opel ADAM Slam will mainly be used by the back2life group to see to the transport needs of patients under the care of Dr. Johanna Schrum from the Hamburg-Eppendorf University Hospital and foundation member Gabriele Heitmann.

Opel ADAM Slam with OPC Line Pack 
The car was received by Dr. Gabriele Kröner, representing the foundation’s executive committee. The foundation is also supported by prominent actors Jens Münchow and Reah Harder, known for their part in the Hamburger TV series Großstadtrevier and Notruf Hafenkante.

!NEW! Buick Encore Sales in China Surpass 100,000 Units

“SUV for Youth” is leader in compact SUV segment

Last month, sales of the Buick Encore in China surpassed 100,000 units since the SUV’s introduction in late 2012. Shanghai GM had sold 102,468 Encores as of May 31.

2014 Buick Encore
The Encore is Buick’s first SUV manufactured in China. Positioned as the "SUV for Youth," it is the leader in the compact SUV segment.

With its length of 4,278 mm and roomy interior, it addresses the needs of those looking for a compact SUV with practical space. The Encore is powered by a 1.4 T engine paired with a six-speed manual/automated-manual transmission. It also has features more commonly associated with upscale sedans such as an electric sunroof, Bluetooth (available with an audio player) and the Electronic Stability Control (ESC) system.

2014 Buick Encore with Alcantara interior.
The 2014 Buick Encore offers new features such as the Coral Orange exterior color and Alcantara interior. The Encore 100,000-Unit Commemorative Edition offered through, Buick’s flagship store on Tmall, adds new amenities such as exterior chrome accents, an integrated door sill, daytime running lamps, shark gill portholes, metal sports pedals, an embedded navigation system and a rearview camera.

The Encore Car Cleaning service campaign for buyers kicks off this month in Shanghai, Beijing and Guangzhou. It will include a variety of music, sports and other fun activities. In addition, Buick will attempt to set a new Guinness world record by gathering 100 Encores and their owners in one location.

General Motors traces its roots back to 1908. GM has 10 joint ventures, two wholly owned foreign enterprises and more than 58,000 employees in China. GM and its joint ventures offer the broadest lineup of vehicles and brands among automakers in China. Passenger cars and commercial vehicles are sold under the Baojun, Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Jiefang, Opel and Wuling brands. In 2013, GM sold nearly 3.2 million vehicles in China. 

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

!NEW! Opel outlines growth plan until 2022

  • Market share in Europe to increase to 8 percent by 2022
  • EBIT margin of 5 percent targeted
  • 27 new models and 17 new engines by 2018

Opel has presented an update of its DRIVE!2022 strategy. The company has set itself five strategic objectives. By 2022, Opel and Vauxhall are aiming for 8 percent market share in Europe, with the focus on profitable growth. The profit margin (earnings before interest and taxes – EBIT) is targeted to reach 5 percent. At the same time, the company plans to further enhance the quality of its products as well as the satisfaction of its customers and employees.

Dr. Karl-Thomas Neumann, Chairman of the Board of Adam Opel AG
Opel CEO Dr. Karl-Thomas Neumann: “In the past months Opel’s management team has worked hard on advancing the DRIVE!2022 initiative. The catalogue of strategic targets presented here today is the result of our efforts. We have already made the preparations for implementing the plan step by step. We have the full backing of our parent company General Motors.”

Opel is focusing on three strategic priorities: models, brands and an improved market penetration. The model and engine offensive is continuing at a fast pace. A total of 27 new models and 17 engines are planned for the years 2014 through 2018.

The second strategic priority is the strengthening of Opel’s image as an emotional, approachable and German brand. The values are brought across by such factors as technical innovations, German engineering skills, and good value for money. Technical innovations, for instance, are exemplified by OnStar, the next stage of vehicle connectivity that will turn the automobile into a Wi-Fi hotspot starting in 2015.

Market share and growth targets represent the third priority. By 2022, Opel plans to increase its market share in Germany from 7.2 to 10 percent. In Europe (including Russia and Turkey), the company aims to raise its market share from a current 5.8 to 8 percent. By 2022, Opel plans to become the number two in the European passenger car market together with its British sister brand Vauxhall.

Opel announced the DRIVE!2022 ten-year plan for the first time in summer 2012. In 2013, the company had already made substantial operational progress, cutting its losses in Europe by more than half. Opel expects 2014 to be a challenging year. On the one hand, the company continues to improve its operational business. On the other hand, non-recurring costs such as the closure of the plant in Bochum and volatile currencies will put pressure on earnings. Opel plans to return to profitability by mid-decade thanks to a number of measures, including lower product and structural costs, improved capacity utilization of plants, higher sales revenues and the improved brand profile.

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

!NEW! Opel Achieves 7.7 Percent Market Share

  • Brand grows 9 percent in May, stronger than the overall market
  • Registrations increase by 6 percent from January to May 2014

Merry month of May for Opel: according to preliminary data, Opel increased its market share to 7.7 percent, a plus of 0.3 percentage points compared to the same time last year. Especially the new models such as Mokka SUV and ADAM brought fresh momentum to the market.

Merry month of May for Opel: the automaker again made substantial gains on the German passenger car market last month. Opel had a total of 21,040 new registrations, 9 percent more than in May of last year. With this, Opel considerably outperformed developments on the overall market, which grew by 5 percent. According to preliminary data, Opel increased its market share to 7.7 percent, a plus of 0.3 percentage points compared to the same time last year. In the first five months of this year, Opel was able to grow its market share to 7.2 percent compared to 7.0 percent in same year-ago period.

Especially the new models such as ADAM and Mokka SUV brought fresh momentum to the market. The compact Mokka SUV was number one in the SUV segment in May as well as in the first five months of the year. But established models in the Opel portfolio like the Corsa and Zafira were also at the forefront of their respective categories. The Corsa, which has enjoyed market success for eight years now, was number one in the small car segment in May. The Zafira MPV was number two in the high-capacity van segment in May as well as in the first five months of this year.

Jürgen Keller, Opel Executive Director of Sales, Marketing and Service in Germany, said: “People are not just saying positive things about Opel and our advertising – we are also selling more cars. This is not only thanks to our new cars like the Mokka, for which we have already received over 240,000 orders across Europe.”