Currently reading: GM plans two new city cars
GM adds a budget city car to its plans to build a premium Mini rival

General Motors is developing not one but two new small cars that will join the Corsa in the Vauxhall/Opel line-up by the middle of this decade.

The Mini-rivalling premium hatch, internally labelled ‘fun and fashion’, will be joined by a budget-priced city car based on an entirely different platform.

The premium hatch, and the next Corsa, are being designed and engineered in Korea, GM DAT boss Mike Arcamone told Autocar. Korea is also where GM will source a cost-effective platform for the city car.

Read more on Opel's premium city car

Arcamone admitted that the new Mini rival was being almost completely engineered in Asia, with only a small amount of input from Opel’s German engineering base in Rüsselsheim. Work on the new Corsa is also at an advanced stage. However, design boss Taewon Kim told Autocar that final styling for the new Mini rival, which will go on sale in 2013, has not yet been signed off.

Although Korea is undertaking the bulk of the design and engineering, it’s expected that the upmarket supermini will be manufactured in Europe. The new Corsa could still be made in Korea, although the decision has yet to be made, Arcamone admitted.

He also confirmed that the Chevrolet Volt could be produced in Korea. “I think we’ve underestimated how many Volts we can sell,” he said.

A more likely scenario, though, is that Korea will become a centre for pure electric vehicles. GM DAT is just beginning a trial for EV Cruze and Lacetti saloons. If successful, it could spawn full production for either of them.

Chas Hallett/Richard Bremner

See all the latest Vauxhall reviews, news and video

Join the debate

Add a comment…
shopa 9 November 2010

Re: GM plans two new city cars

These small cars will need my patented auto safety invention-

jelly7961 8 November 2010

Re: GM plans two new city cars

The Special One wrote:
Xenophobes: I thought they were killed off in 1945? Obviously they re-based in the UK.

I am in Italy...

And have you driven a Korean car lately? The Hyundai i45 that I drove recently was in my opinion borderline dangerous. It had the roadholding of a Nissan Sunny and that is probably being unkind to the Datsun. To me it's taken them an awful long time to make anything half way decent and I will admit that there a couple that are OK. But will they ever be desirable? Probably not. Everyone is a badge snob at heart. Admint it. Faced with the prospect of say a Jag and a Hyundai - both same spec, quality and price. Are you going to take the Hyundai? Thought not...

andrepaul999 8 November 2010

Re: GM plans two new city cars

well done GM you are only about 20 years late into this market

better late than never hey!