By on January 31, 2013

Not to anyone’s huge surprise, the Opel Supervisory Board today confirmed  former Volkswagen exec Karl-Thomas Neumann as CEO of Opel. To make the job a little more interesting, “General Motors appointed Dr. Neumann president of GM Europe and GM vice president,” as a GM communique says. It continues that Neumann “will become a member of GM’s Executive Committee and is expected to play a key role in the global leadership of GM.”

“Opel/Vauxhall is a key to General Motors’ global success,” said Neumann’s boss Dan Akerson.  Hm, some people think the opposite is true.

As the picture proves, Neumann goes from a company with the tagline “Das Auto” to a company with the tagline “Wir leben Autos.” Along with a new CEO, Opel also needs a new ad agency. Or rather executives who demand unique taglines.

Offiucially, Neumann wil start on March 1.

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10 Comments on “Not Really New: Opel Gets A New Man...”


  • avatar
    Conslaw

    Totally looks like actor Jeffrey Jones – sans ‘stache. http://filmfanatic.org/reviews/wp-content/uploads/2008/06/ferris-jones.png

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Nobody expects the ostrich inquisition!

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    ““Opel/Vauxhall is a key to General Motors’ global success,” said Neumann’s boss Dan Akerson.”

    So did he say that with a straight face?

  • avatar
    doctor olds

    Opel is #3 in Germany and Vauxhall is #2 in England. The nameplates generate sales volume on the scale of Honda in the US. In addition, the GM Europe engineering center is the lead for major global car programs.
    All GM has to do is rationalize production capacity in line with market conditions. They will do that, though the German unions won’t make it easy or cheap.

    GM seems very, very unlikely to abandon Europe.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      Always with the helpful factoids Dr Olds.

      I also agree it looks very unlikely GM will be abandoning Europe, it might make or break them.

    • 0 avatar
      Lorenzo

      It sounds like the plan is for Opel/Vauxhall to go into exports, but where? America? Canada? Australia? Africa? Asia? Everywhere? Whatever the plan is, it looks like Neumann, unlike his predecessors, is a major co-conspirator, er, player.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        I heard that was the plan for Holden too, and while there will be some new US exports, nobody seems to be expecting a home run.

        I’m not even sure what Opel’s current products are, who knows maybe they can be competitive.

  • avatar
    jimboy

    Keep Opel as an engineering facility, quit making cars in germany. Will Gm ever figure this out? Opel will never make money in Europe, I don’t believe it ever has.

  • avatar
    doctor olds

    Actually, GM once made a lot of money in GM Europe. A big reason they bought Saab was for more production capacity, back when times were good.

    GM E’s problem is the same as what happened here. Union power stops the company from reducing costs despite a persistent regional economic slump and depressed business results.

    Now, GM has ample cash to support restructuring as they continue to generate strong profit in NA. I expect the EU unions will come to reality, as Gettlefinger did here in 2007.

    For the sake of the workers, I hope so.

  • avatar
    doctor olds

    @ 28-cars-later:

    http://www.opel.com/

    Opel/Vauxhall have some very cool products. I want to see them here as Buicks! The Cascada and 325HP AWD OPC wagon!


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