New Opel/Vauxhall Small Car to be Built in Eisenach; Possible Basis for a BEV

Opel/Vauxhall will build an all-new small car targeted at the segment below the Corsa at its Eisenach plant in the east German state of Thuringia.

The future car “Made in Eisenach” is geared towards customers who need a small-sized fuel-efficient car in urban areas, for example, but who do not want to compromise on technology, design or convenience. The start of regular production is planned for 2013. At a later stage, this car might also provide the opportunity of a battery-electric (BEV) version for zero-emission driving in city areas.

To date, Opel/Vauxhall has invested €1.5 billion (US$2 billion) into Eisenach site. Opel Eisenach has 1,600 employees who are currently building the three-door version of the Corsa.

The decision to build the small car in Eisenach also has a positive effect on Opel/Vauxhall’s manufacturing plant in Zaragoza, Spain. As the new car comes on stream in Eisenach, Zaragoza will receive additional Corsa production volume. As a result, both plants will be able to produce volumes exceeding current levels.

This announcement marks the third major Opel/Vauxhall investment commitment within the past two weeks. On 15 September, the company announced it will significantly strengthen its Kaiserslautern plant as a component manufacturing center and expand local engine production.

On 21 September, Opel/Vauxhall announced a €500-million (US$674-million) investment in its engine plant in Szentgotthard, Hungary. There, Opel will build a new facility for the production of three new engines families that will fulfill Euro 6 emissions standards, add direct injection to gasoline powertrain, secure a low power/weight ratio, provide smooth running and substantially reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

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