We're about to see a lot more Opel — kinda — in the U.S. and a lot less Opel in China. After years of unimpressive sales, GM is pulling Opel out of China. On the flip, GM will rebadge two more Opel products in the U.S. for Buicks — one of which is most likely the Adam we've been curious about.
First off, let's talk about GM's conquests outside America. The automaker is moving to simplify where it sells which brands. Chevy is being pulled out of Europe because GM couldn't match Volkswagen, which dominates the continent with four brands. Now, Automotive News has the scoop on GM ending exports of Opel to China, where the German brand has bricked for 20 years.
Opel's 22 Chinese dealers sold 4,365 vehicles in 2013. That compares with Buick's 650 sales locations in the country and deliveries last year of 810,000. Opel's European sales in the first two months gained 2.8 percent to 112,534, according to data from the ACEA industry group.
To keep Opel busy, GM is calling on them to build a few new models for export across the globe. First, Opel has approved a variant of the Insignia, which we know as the Regal here in the States. Your first guess might be an Insignia coupe with a convertible option, but then we'd be bumping into Cadillac ATS coupe territory. Could the new Insignia model be a high-output model to be sold in the U.S. as a reborn Grand National? I'm leaning in that direction.
Another new Opel model that's definitely going to be a U.S. Buick will be built at Opel's Ruesselsheim, Germany, plant, but GM hasn't said what that model will be. Ruesselsheim currently builds the Insignia and will build a Europe-only (for now) minivan next year.
We're going to go ahead and say that the model that will be exported here is indeed the Adam, which means I WAS RIGHT when I guessed that GM was seriously leaning closer to bringing the Adam to America because they were talking about it a bunch of times recently. Bow to me, for I am your god of predicting future product planning.
Production of the new model in Ruesselsheim begins "during the second half of the decade." Uh, so next year marks the half-mark of the decade, right? So we won't see this until 2016 at least.