Analysis: the purchase of Opel by PSA could draw in a new Europe


Headquarters of Opel in Germany.

General Motors and PSA were negotiating the purchase of Opel was something that surprised more than one, including the members of the Board of Opel, who learned of the negotiations by the press. According to the German media, the only one who seemed to know was the maximum responsible of the brand, Karl-Thomas Neumann.

And yet, Neumann also seemed to know how advanced the talks. In fact, today we have known that Neumann was working on a plan to turn Opel into a manufacturer of electric vehicles, whose horizon was set in 2030, and was destined to be the evolution and salvation of the mark, that would be a range of models of purely electric.

have Not revealed details of that plan, but the range would consist of models developed on the new platform of the recent Chevrolet Bolt, which will be sold in Europe as the Ampera-e.

In theory, the ideas and the plan to turn Opel into a brand of pure electric should be elected in the month of may, but it seems that that plan for the moment has been frozen. At least until the outcome of the negotiations between PSA and GM.


One of the headquarters of PSA.

Today we already know that Mary Bar and other executives of GM have traveled to Europe for these negotiations, although at the moment not to have leaked more details of the same.

Try to analyze the outcome of the possible sale of Opel to PSA is an exercise far more complex than may seem at first sight, because could considerably change the current landscape in the european market. The immediate consequences go beyond that Opel and PSA to share more platforms and elements since that time.

From the perspective of PSA

The arrival of Opel and Vauxhall to PSA will bring two direct consequences a priori, more market share for PSA (16.3 percent) in Europe and a substantial improvement of the economies of scale. However this carries the problem of the positioning of the ranges.

A group formed by the Peugeot, Citroën and DS in addition to Opel in Europe and Vauxhall in the Uk you need to be very well-planned so that their products are not do not step on each other. In Germany and the Uk the advantage is clear, as the new brands are already better positioned than those of PSA, but outside of those markets are at risk of colliding head on with the three signatures galas.


Facilities of PSA Peugeot-Citroën.

To the naked eye all of these brands since they occupy the same segments and the same positioning generalist. In theory, Opel and Peugeot are something more premium that the Citroën and DS has a more casual and young in spite of being premium.

Too many brands targeting the same objectives, so that the ranges would have to be restructured and more than likely sharing platforms and schemes mechanical. The current style of PSA.

The move does not seem bad if you look at the markets the british and German, but the rest of Europe will require further analysis to be able to find a logical formula for success.

Another of the advantages for PSA can be the access to the latest technology in the field of electrical thanks to the Ampera-e, his pending matter, but this does not stop being a Chevrolet, and that is not even manufactured in Europe, so that will have to wait if the sale of Opel carries harnessed this technology, which is not of the German mark.

From the perspective of Opel/Vauxhall


Emblem of Opel in Rüssellheim.

The benefit that I would find the current GM Europe is clear, less reliance on a policy of overseas, a greater role in their markets and improvements in the economies of scale, not in vain, because that is what they were doing in conjunction with PSA.

however, despite having a better product, and more cost-effective thanks to be shared with Peugeot and Citroën, we find the same problem outside of Germany and Great Britain. What that indicates to us to think that some of the models, the less important outside of its key markets might run the risk of disappearing. Although there is also the possibility of the introduction of new models in new segments.

From the perspective of General Motors

The output of Opel and Vauxhall umbrella of GM has two consequences are clear and obvious. The first is the disappearance of the red numbers of Opel of the books of GM, whose losses have been a constant annoyance to the corporation, of Detroit, and the second is that Chevrolet would have the door open in Europe, being a global brand as planned the last decade.

on the other hand, losing Opel would mean lose the development department that has created numerous platforms and models for various markets, as Buick in the USA and Holden in Australia, who feed and increasingly the models of the German brand.


The Renaissance Centrer of Detroit, home of GM.

These brands should re-define the next generation of its current range, although as Opel, which would have to adapt its range gradually to the new product PSA+Opel.

Another detail to keep in mind is the nature of the purchase,
you will not have the same result done with a percentage majority
of the company, maintaining GM a percentage of the same and therefore,
stay your involvement and interest in the brand – which is the
most likely alternative – that made with all of the
participation of GM, which would take the corporation of Detroit from the
equation and enable the entrance of Chevy in the old
, something that PSA would not agree.