Opel boss leaves firm following the collapse of Magna deal; Bob Lutz set to take senior Opel role
6 November 2009

Carl-Peter Forster has left his job as president of Opel Europe, General Motors has confirmed.

Forster has reportedly left following his disapproval of GM's handling of the sale of Opel/Vauxhall to Magna, which it pulled out of earlier this week.

GM cancels Opel saleSteve Cropley blog: GM keeping Vauxhall is great newsJulian Rendell blog: What next for Opel and Vauxhall?Forster to quit GM Europe

Magna had long been expected to complete a takeover of Opel along with its Russian funding partner Sberbank, but it had decided instead to keep the European firm citing improved business conditions.

A GM source has reportedly told Automotive News that GM stalwart Bob Lutz will step up his involvement with Opel and chair the firm's supervisory board as it enters a new era of GM ownership.

Lutz, who is already a board member, isn't being lined up for a direct management role - or as a replacement for Forster - but he will the lead the board, which meets three or four times a year and will be responsible for forming and implementing Opel's new restructuring plan. A GM spokesman has dismissed the reports as "speculation" at this point.

In a statement, GM President and CEO Fritz Henderson thanked Forster for his time spent at the company and said the firm would now be beginning the search for his successor.

"The Opel brand has made tremendous progress under Carl-Peter’s tenure and leadership over the past several years," he said. "We thank him for his significant accomplishments and wish him only the best in the future."

Henderson said GM would be announcing its plans for Opel/Vauxhall next week, and confirmed no more senior management would be leaving the firm.

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

Forster said: "It’s been an honor to be part of the history of Opel, and I wish all the people with the organisation only the best in what I’m certain will be a great future."

Nick Reilly, former plant director at Vauxhall's Ellesmere Port, is set to stand in for Forster until a full replacement is appointed. Forster will assist GM in its search for his successor.

Twitter - follow autocar.co.ukSee all the latest Vauxhall reviews, news and video

Join the debate


7 November 2009

He is leaving Opel because he knows the s**t will hit the fan in the next couple of months when GM starts closing the german plants down in favor of the ones in England, Belgium and Spain, as the German union leaders have all said they will strike against Opel. The easiest way to end the strike, close the plants and move production to another country who will only be too happy to have the jobs. German labor costs are way too expensive anyway.

7 November 2009

GM Forced him out. Bob Lutz will end up taking his place.

7 November 2009

Girls, girls, please! Restrain yourselves. Draw in those claws.

Have a sense of decorum.

This behaviour is quite unGermanic in its intensity.

7 November 2009

mr head and mr roadtester, you've both clearly got history. which is fine, but take it elsewhere please if you can't exercise some self-control. i believe this is a site for discussing car-related things, not somewhere to hurl abuse about. if you can't control yourselves i will report you - you're both in breach of the house rules. thank you.

7 November 2009

FYI richard head has just been banned for bad language and aggressive behavior. Others who are straying into this territory can take that as a warning...

Jim Holder

Editorial Director, Autocar

7 November 2009

jim - thank you.

7 November 2009

Not sure why he and others took it all so personally. It's just the internet.

Hey ho.

So, is GM pulling back from the sale a good thing or a bad thing? I still can't tell.

7 November 2009

One German press report says Forster is going to Tata. That should be interesting...

7 November 2009

[quote roadtester]One German press report says Forster is going to Tata. That should be interesting...[/quote]

Perhaps JLR will benefit from his move to Tata!

8 November 2009

Guys, GM must keep Opel becuase if they didnt that could throw a monkey wrench into their plans. GM is in the Process of the Opelization of Buick, they need 2 more possibly 3 small cars. Vibe(Regal Wagon), Astra, and Possibly Aglia.


Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week