Aussies Hail Holden's Export Success; GM Loses Money

aussies hail holdens export success gm loses money

The forthcoming introduction of GM's Pontiac G8 GXP and ST (Sport Truck to those of us who would prefer they just call it the El Camino) at the New York Auto Show has the Australian GM division Holden crowing its success. "The truth is that under the shadow of the Mitsubishi closure announcements, across the other side of the city, the GM Holden plant has been quietly exporting its head off and making great inroads with the development of new model cars to new markets around the world," says Holden Honcho Kevin Foley. The Sydney Morning Herald reports that Australian Industry Minister Kim Carr joined the Aussie cheerleading, saying "GM Asia-Pacific actually out-performed the parent company in 2007, thanks in part to a strong showing from Holden." GM's plan to ship more Pontiac-branded Holdens stateside may actually exacerbate this imbalance. GM's purchasing chief told a recent suppliers conference that higher fuel costs have already increased GM's transport costs by $84 million this year alone. As excited as some enthusiasts are to witness the return of the El Camino, shipping more cars from the opposite end of the planet are not going to do wonders for GM's bottom line.

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  • Paul Niedermeyer Paul Niedermeyer on Mar 17, 2008
    Jason: "Paul: That’s how much they’re asking for it, it really has nothing to do with how much it costs to make, so I don’t understand what you mean by a “loss”." Are you suggesting that Holden has a 30+% profit margin on the cars they sell in Australia? I don't think so.

  • Pnnyj Pnnyj on Mar 17, 2008
    Paul Niedermeyer : March 17th, 2008 at 1:57 pm A Commodore SV6 starts at $40k in Australia. The Australian dollar is almost at parity to the US dollar. The G8 V6 starts at about $28K. Sounds like a substantial loss to me, above and beyond the shipping costs. Or that might just be a good way of transferring cash and resources to an offshore subsidiary before the North American operations goes through chapter 11. If shipping cost vs. the cost of retooling a North American plant is more or less a wash then this is more a transfer of resources within GM than it is a loss for GM.

  • Nick Nick on Mar 17, 2008

    Oh good, a G8 sport truck. Rushing in to fill the gaping void left by the SST which has been sorely missed by at least several people.

  • Landcrusher Landcrusher on Mar 18, 2008

    NickR, Good one, thanks. I really think it will sell better, but I still liked your joke.