Vauxhall parent company Opel plans a new model assault, accompanied by a surge of new engines and technology upgrades designed to lift the brand upmarket

Vauxhall's parent company Opel has today announced plans to introduce 27 new models and 17 new engines by 2018.

Opel boss Dr Karl-Thomas Neumann told journalists that the brand would also look to increase its market share in Europe from 5.8 per cent to 8 per cent by 2022, and in doing so become the second-largest car maker in the market.

The firm also wants to grow sales in its home market of Germany to 10 per cent by the same deadline, as well as strengthen its image to become "an emotional, approachable German brand".

The first of the brand's new models are scheduled to appear before the end of this year, with the new Vivaro van and Vauxhall Adam Rocks. Also being revealed in the coming months will be the new Corsa. Driven here in Prototype form, the new Corsa will make its debut at the Paris motor show in October before going on sale in the UK in 2015. Also in development is the next-generation Astra, which will launch in 2016. Both cars will start a significant shift upmarket for Opel and Vauxhall, with the brand inspired by the fit and finish exhibited in cars from German rivals such as Audi.

Among the planned range of new engines is a 113bhp ‘SGE’ 1.0-litre turbocarged petrol triple, which will appear in the new Corsa.

As well as its new model onslaught, Opel will also continue to bring new technology to market, including the newest generation of its OnStar connected service. Neumann said OnStar would be capable of turning into a mobile Wi-Fi hotspot starting from next year.

Opel plans to return to profitability next year thanks to lower product costs, improved capacity at its plants, higher sales revenues and an improved brand image.

The latest announcements form part of Opel's Drive 2022 strategy, a 10-year plan which was first revealed in the summer of 2012. The plan was seen as GM's rescuing of Opel and Vauxhall, and was kicked off by the unveiling of the Adam supermini in production form.

Speaking to journalists, Neumann said: "We have already made the preparations for implementing the plan step by step. We have the full backing of our parent company General Motors."

In the UK, a Vauxhall spokesman told Autocar the brand was "committed to building our true (smaller) fleet sales by 2016, and we feel that will be at the core of creating profit within the business.

"That growth will be underpinned by an extensive powertrain offensive as well as significant new product in this year and next."

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Our Verdict

Vauxhall Corsa

The Vauxhall Corsa is very refined, stylish and practical. Engines are not so good

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Comments
10

4 June 2014
I realise they advertise, but do you have to let them get away with this puff? We were told the unispiring Insignia was a significant move upmarket. Every new car they make is brilliant unlike all the old ones which they now admit were dire.

The only informative bit in this was about cost cutting. GM will continue to be all about making cars cheaply and cynically to sell in bulk at a discount to fleets. The automotive world would be a much better place without them.

4 June 2014
Chris576 wrote:

I realise they advertise, but do you have to let them get away with this puff? We were told the unispiring Insignia was a significant move upmarket. Every new car they make is brilliant unlike all the old ones which they now admit were dire.

The only informative bit in this was about cost cutting. GM will continue to be all about making cars cheaply and cynically to sell in bulk at a discount to fleets. The automotive world would be a much better place without them.

Insignia/Regal is superior to anything in its class.

4 June 2014
Just the same as the world would be a better place with out you and your inanne comment

4 June 2014
What's all this upmarket nonsense? Every manufacturer these days wants to move upmarket and touts the next generation model will be the one to do it. And invariably it fails, so why not just accept that it's ok to occupy the middle ground. By all means improve the quality, reliability and style on offer thus increasing desirability, just don't pretend that that's going to be enough to justify charging more money.

4 June 2014
erly5 wrote:

What's all this upmarket nonsense? Every manufacturer these days wants to move upmarket and touts the next generation model will be the one to do it. And invariably it fails, so why not just accept that it's ok to occupy the middle ground. By all means improve the quality, reliability and style on offer thus increasing desirability, just don't pretend that that's going to be enough to justify charging more money.

exactly it just confuses the brand!

5 June 2014
Surely it's meant to say Opel will launch 27 new models, and they will screw on some "special" Vauxhall badges and heavy handed fake chrome for the UK?

All due respect to Vauxhallphiles, but their lack of investment in engineering and style since the late 80s means that they're getting they're getting their ar*se handed to them by the Koreans amongst others now.

Mainstream European manufacturers are truly knackered. They can't move upmarket due to brand image, the Koreans have caught up for style and quality, and they are better priced. Only option is to go for customisable cars such as Fiat 500, Adam, etc, or rehash DS brand for example to distance their cars from commodity and make a decent margin. The other strategy is to go for a long term push upmarket, but Audi are probably the last marque to achieve this, and it took 20+ years, and they don't have the funds to do this.

Doom and gloom I know, but they're reaping what they sowed many years ago.

5 June 2014
I look forward to seeing these new Vauxhall's on the forecourt of my local hire car centre...

5 June 2014
Ah, Opel - yeah, I remember that cool Manta. Err, Vauxhall - I remember my old man's Viva. Despite being 43' nothing, but nothing will make me buy a Vauxhall.

7 June 2014
Oh God no; I'll bet Vauxhall are gutted...

7 June 2014
Do you think do? It would be a blessing to know I had a part in sorting out their branding issues.

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