By on March 28, 2014

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Opel is announcing that they will build a Buick model for North America in the “second half of the decade”.

Automotive News reports that the announcement comes amid a $245 million euro investment for the Ruesselsheim, Germany plant that will start exporting to North America, and receive a new model. At the same time, Opel will stop plans to export to China, allowing the much stronger Buick brand to take the lead.

Neither the Opel Adam nor the Cascada are built at Ruesselsheim, which raises the question of what model Opel will build for Buick. Currently, the Insignia, aka our Buick Regal, is built at the site.

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39 Comments on “Opel Will Build Buicks For North America...”


  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    So where are the Adam and Cascada built, just a different Opel factory?

    What other things are built at Russelheim?

    Most importantly, when can the eager Australians get their hands on more new Opels!?!

    • 0 avatar
      th009

      Cascada is built in Gilwice, Poland while the Adam is assembled in Eisenach, Germany. Both are viable candidates, I think.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        I have a hard time seeing this Opel connection playing out for Buick that well.

        • 0 avatar

          Seems at least like the beginning of a plan Corey. Instead of re-inventing the wheel, GM is just going for what’s “natural”, in other words, GM=Opel in Europe, GM=Buick in the US.

          As to Opel as Buick in North America, I think the buying public in the US has changed their tastes. Ford going all Euro is hurting them, GM having a Euro style car as a Buick could work.

          It all depends on execution I guess.

  • avatar
    thegamper

    Just maybe this means we will finally get a Insignia/Regal wagon. I can dream. Since the Adam and Cascadia are relatively new, would be low volume offerings in North America it would probably not make sense to move production. The Regal is probably slated for a redesign soon, my guess is that we will once again be getting a Euro-built regal, and hopefully all of the variants offered in Europe.

    • 0 avatar
      psarhjinian

      The North American Regal used to be made in Europe before Oshawa tooled up for it, and we didn’t get the wagon then. I wouldn’t hold out hope.

      • 0 avatar
        thegamper

        True, and I dont exactly recall the squence of events, but the Regal was probably originally intended to be a saturn before the bankrutpcy. I think the Regal we got had different engine choices that were available in Europe. Perhaps if it is going to be built and sold as a global product with the US Market in mind, we will end up being offered all model variations in order to utilize the factory capacity to the extent possible.

        I am not sure, but I wonder if the federalization of the wagon would have just been too costly given its low volume last time around. Please dont rain on my parade ;)

        • 0 avatar
          cpthaddock

          My last UK trip had us in a 3 pedal(Vauxhall) Insignia turbo diesel wagon.

          Overall, the powertrain was by far the biggest “pro” of the experience maintaining very consistent performance regardless of loads which ranged from minimal to overloaded.

          By comparison to it’s native competition, the packaging did not seem so competitive. When space, dimensions and utility are measured on a much narrower scale than we are accustomed to in the US, certain competitive disadvantages are more apparent.

          Compared to my brother in law’s Mondeo wagon, the insignia lost significant utility to the swooping rear of the roofline and raised rear deck. In one instance it was necessary to remove the rear deck cover entirely to gain precious extra inches of space.

          The depth of the side panels reminded me of the Audi Q7 in so far as you can’t help but wonder why they sacrificed so much interior space. Even adding some storage cubbies inside these thick sections would have made them less aggravating.

          The passenger space also seemed to suffer simmilar sacrifices to “style” compared to the competition, though I recall few specifics now.

          Overall, the experience was good albeit with some frustrations. I’d not walk away from another (auropean based) rental in the future, as I likely would the ’14 4 cylinder Malibu rental I recently didn’t care for. What these two GM offerings both had most in common for me was a clear sense that they both been designed more for the rental market than real world owners.

      • 0 avatar
        bumpy ii

        Yeah, this is just Regal production moving back to Europe after Oshawa shuts down.

    • 0 avatar
      fredtal

      Curious if the Volvo V60 is selling. If it is then maybe there is a future for wagons. I’m going to check out the TSX Sport Wagon this weekend. It maybe my last chance to get a new wagon.

      • 0 avatar
        SCE to AUX

        US sales of the V60 in 2014 through February: 657 units, plus another 70 units in Canada.

        The V60 is 8% of Volvo’s US sales so far this year, and 12% of its Canadian sales.

        Total TSX sales for Jan-Feb are 1804 units, and I’m sure only a fraction of those are wagons.

      • 0 avatar
        Richard Chen

        The V60 is doing better than the Mazda6 wagon did.

        The future of wagons appears to be on the high end and in small quantities, as the VW Sportwagen has sucked up all the demand for an affordable NA wagon (not counting the Prius v). Heck, there are now rumors of a Volvo V90 replacing the V70/XC70 based upon the Concept Estate:

        http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/03/geneva-2014-volvo-brown-wagon-concept/

        • 0 avatar
          gtrslngr

          The future of the wagon good sirs .. both here and in the EU/UK .. despite all our/their claimed love for the things is drawing to a rapid close . Wagons being the segment most in decline sales wise … and quickly being over taken by the fastest growing segment in the World . That being compact and especially Premium compact CUV/SUV’s

          Which means Volvo’s well behind the Eight Ball .. and heading down the road to perdition … which is no surprise … when considering who owns them now

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    Given Opel’s tenuous status, and the nebulous date for this product, it may never actually happen.

    • 0 avatar
      gtrslngr

      Somebody gets it ! .. +1 ! …. and … phew ….

    • 0 avatar

      Hey SCE to AUX! You really think Opel is going anywhere? Now that GM has a new lease on life, Opel will stay. I think the move to put Chevy into Europe was a desperate move based on the bankruptcy thinking that Opel could raise a quick buck for GM. When that didn’t happen, they used the threat of closure to scare unions and governments.

      GM is and wants to remain a global player. To do that, you must be in Europe. Europe will only abandon Europe to save itself. Now that that situation is no longer, Opel will go on.

  • avatar
    mjz

    Perhaps the long rumored and much anticipated Riviera?

  • avatar
    Lie2me

    I’ll take an AWD Riviera wagon, in brown please

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      Oops, my bad, apparently they already have they just call it the Insignia Range

      http://www.car-revs-daily.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/Opel-Insignia-Sports-Tourer-287570.jpg

      It even comes in a beautiful bronze (brown)I’m sure NA won’t get it

  • avatar
    gtrslngr

    Bahahahahahahaha ! First y’all cheerlead the POS JEEP Cherokee/FIAT … and now you’re wanting the OPEL’s even the Europeans don’t want … aren’t buying … and couldn’t care less about …. and are happy GM’s going to dump unloved OPELs on our shores as rebadged Buicks ?

    Seriously ? Don’t any of you actually take the time to READ the EU/UK automotive magazines – watch DW’s automotive reports etc before heading on your blind quest for automotive Nirvana ?

    But hey … quality issues aside …. aint y’all payin attention here either ? Cause all signs on the Business Front point to OPEL/Vauxhall’s eventual closer just like GM’s Holden [ that aint holdin on anymore ] … due to extreme lack of interest . And that … you can take to the bank !

    Truthfully … is there anyone here that pays attention ? Anybody ?

  • avatar
    willbodine

    The Opel connection has been good for GM lately. The renaissance of Buick in the US and China especially has been from the Opel-derived La Crosse and Regal. The Germanically rigid body structures and improved handling of the entire GM line-up are Opel contributions.
    As for the future of the station wagon, it is pretty much over in the US. The SUV/CUV has replaced it. Not so much in northern and western Europe. Wagons are way more numerous there than utes. If I recall correctly, the V60 wagon is the most popular single model sold in Holland. You see lots of wagons there.

  • avatar
    readallover

    If the Euro continues to rise against the Dollar, you can kiss it goodbye.

  • avatar
    bomberpete

    FWIW I like the look of that convertible and can see it with a Buick badge.

  • avatar
    MadHungarian

    Yes, I know there is a fair amount of Opel DNA in a number of North American GM platforms. However, every attempt GM has made to sell actual Opels in the US, whether named as such or rebadged, has ultimately failed. Catera and Saturn L series most recently. I fond myself thinking about that classic definition of insanity, doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results . . .

  • avatar
    VCplayer

    Everything GM does with Opel reeks of “Well shucks, nothing else worked, let’s give this crazy idea a try!”

    The worst part is that Opel is a huge asset for GM if they can figure out what its purpose is. I really don’t think selling a handful of cars in North American is the future for Opel or Buick.

  • avatar
    mjz

    The Opel Cascada should be brought over as the Buick Wildcat here in NA. Buick could use a sexy halo car, and that would do just dandy until they finally decide to do the Riviera coupe flagship.


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