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      02-18-2020, 08:38 AM   #1
Alfisti
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GM has killed Holden

Not sure anyone outside of Australia and NZ really understands the impact of this decision. HOLDEN is, arguably, the biggest brand in the country in regards to aussie pride and know-how.

They were struggling a sit was but Opel being sold absolutely ate them alive, they had no RHD product to sell.

The Commodore was a great feat of engineering on a budget (Chevy SS here), for a big, big car it handled well and rode well, satisfying the the oddball australian preference for american style big engines, big back seats, a comfortable ride yet still wanting handling closer to their european cousins.

'Tis a sad day.



















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      02-18-2020, 09:02 AM   #2
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      02-18-2020, 11:13 AM   #3
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I've always thought they made kool cars, I always like the odd ball stuff though.
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      02-18-2020, 11:42 AM   #4
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I worked on a Holden project when I lived in Oz in 2000. Fun times and good blokes.
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      02-18-2020, 12:48 PM   #5
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Holden made nice cars. GM doesn't seem to have its act together. It sold Vauxhall to Peugeot which promptly made a profit on it. Now they are selling the one sub that actually made car that were fun to drive and it is pulling Chevrolet out of all countries that are right hand drive (other than the C8).

In the US they have sued California on pollution rules which looks like they want to continue to invest in yesterday's tech while the smart car companies are investing in tomorrow's tech.
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      02-18-2020, 04:55 PM   #6
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This is indeed unfortunate, but the make was all but dead since they killed the Commodore a few years ago and shuttered the local assembly plants. Since then they have just been selling rebranded Opel and Chevrolet products. It really had become a completely badge engineered operation.

The real sad part of the story is that GM is essentially exiting the Australian market almost completely now. And they are exiting other RHD markets too. That means even more jobs will be lost. This seems short sighted to me. You'd think they'd want to keep Chevrolet in the region. Obviously RHD adds to vehicle development costs, but the rest of the industry does it.
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      02-19-2020, 11:00 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
This is indeed unfortunate, but the make was all but dead since they killed the Commodore a few years ago and shuttered the local assembly plants. Since then they have just been selling rebranded Opel and Chevrolet products. It really had become a completely badge engineered operation.

The real sad part of the story is that GM is essentially exiting the Australian market almost completely now. And they are exiting other RHD markets too. That means even more jobs will be lost. This seems short sighted to me. You'd think they'd want to keep Chevrolet in the region. Obviously RHD adds to vehicle development costs, but the rest of the industry does it.
They are building a C8 for right hand drive markets, including Australia. Hence, the plant expansion at Bowling Green in preparation for the new C8 and making it a global market car.

Last edited by hellrotm; 02-19-2020 at 11:05 AM..
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      02-19-2020, 11:06 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hellrotm View Post
They are building a C8 for right hand drive markets, including Australia. Hence, the plant expansion at Bowling Green in preparation for the new C8.
True, and that's why I said "almost completely". They will sell a couple low volume RHD models, but nothing for the masses in Australia and most other RHD markets. As a consequence, in such markets, they will pare the workforce down significantly.
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      02-19-2020, 11:21 AM   #9
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oh this cant be good...
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      02-19-2020, 11:31 AM   #10
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That's sad to hear. Visited Australia a couple of times, and the Ford vs Holden thingy was interesting and fun. They're killing of an entire sub culture.. :-|
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      02-19-2020, 12:06 PM   #11
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Given that they killed the SS here first it doesn't really surprise me that they killed Holden altogether.

They'd have to design a new sport saloon from scratch, and we saw how long it took them to prototype and build the C8! I can't imagine them doing that for what is comparatively a low market share vehicle.

Sorta like BMW killing off their small RWD chassis.

Hate to see it though. RIP Commodore.
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      02-19-2020, 12:26 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShocknAwe View Post
They'd have to design a new sport saloon from scratch...
Not strictly true. As I mentioned earlier, most of Holden's vehicles in recent decades have been rebadged GM products sold elsewhere under other brand names. The Commodore was locally grown until 2017, but since then it has been a rebadged Insignia. Even though GM is killing off almost all of their sedans in the US (just like Ford and FCA) they continue to manufacture sedans in other parts of the world and those could have continued to serve as the basis for GM cars in Australia. And of course the same holds true for SUVs and pickup trucks. So available product was not the barrier.

Furthermore, while it's true that the Holden brand name itself had become unnecessary, and it's not a huge surprise they'd eventually decide to retire the nameplate to cut costs, the fact that GM has decided to pull out of the region entirely (aside from some specialty performance vehicles) instead of simply switching to Chevrolet or GMC or another of their brands does come as a bit of a shock.

By contrast, Ford and FCA remain in AU, as do most other large global automakers.
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      02-19-2020, 12:45 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
Not strictly true. As I mentioned earlier, most of Holden's vehicles in recent decades have been rebadged GM products sold elsewhere under other brand names. The Commodore was locally grown until 2017, but since then it has been a rebadged Insignia. Even though GM is killing off almost all of their sedans in the US (just like Ford and FCA) they continue to manufacture sedans in other parts of the world and those could have continued to serve as the basis for GM cars in Australia. And of course the same holds true for SUVs and pickup trucks. So available product was not the barrier.

Furthermore, while it's true that the Holden brand name itself had become unnecessary, and it's not a huge surprise they'd eventually decide to retire the nameplate to cut costs, the fact that GM has decided to pull out of the region entirely (aside from some specialty performance vehicles) instead of simply switching to Chevrolet or GMC or another of their brands does come as a bit of a shock.

By contrast, Ford and FCA remain in AU, as do most other large global automakers.
Well yeah that's sort of what I'm getting at. What would they rebrand, Cadillac? GM doesn't have much that I can think of at this point.
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      02-19-2020, 12:58 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShocknAwe View Post
Well yeah that's sort of what I'm getting at. What would they rebrand, Cadillac? GM doesn't have much that I can think of at this point.
I mentioned Chevrolet or GMC which are also possibilities. I'm sure you're familiar with those, right?

There's nothing special about Australia that it needs its own nameplate nor its own product. As I said, many other automakers maintain a presence in Australia, and they simply sell vehicles branded under whichever of those in their existing global umbrella are most prudent.
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      02-19-2020, 03:17 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
I mentioned Chevrolet or GMC which are also possibilities. I'm sure you're familiar with those, right?

There's nothing special about Australia that it needs its own nameplate nor its own product. As I said, many other automakers maintain a presence in Australia, and they simply sell vehicles branded under whichever of those in their existing global umbrella are most prudent.
I was primarily thinking if they were to continue the Commodore.

With the SS dead, what does GM have other than Caddy CTS/ATS?

Certainly wouldn't use the Camaro/Corvette. Could revisit the Malibu but that's what the SS was. I'm unaware of any GMC vehicles that aren't trucks or SUVs
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      02-19-2020, 06:49 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShocknAwe View Post
I was primarily thinking if they were to continue the Commodore.

With the SS dead, what does GM have other than Caddy CTS/ATS?
The current Buick Regal is a rebadged Insignia just like the current Holden Commodore. With Opel no longer under GM ownership, a next generation Regal will almost certainly be designed and built in China. It could easily be sold in Australia too - probably not as a Buick but it could simply be badged Chevrolet instead.

Quote:
I'm unaware of any GMC vehicles that aren't trucks or SUVs
It’s true that GMC doesn’t have any sedans, but they could continue to provide GM with SUVs in Australia just like they do today with the Acadia.

So, GM has plenty of product to cover the Australian market if they were to stay.
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      02-19-2020, 06:58 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
The current Buick Regal is a rebadged Insignia just like the current Holden Commodore. With Opel no longer under GM ownership, a next generation Regal will almost certainly be designed and built in China. It could easily be sold in Australia too - probably not as a Buick but it could simply be badged Chevrolet instead.



It’s true that GMC doesn’t have any sedans, but they could continue to provide GM with SUVs in Australia just like they do today with the Acadia.

So, GM has plenty of product to cover the Australian market if they were to stay.
No doubt. To be honest I haven't given Buick a moment's thought since I was a kid and had no clue Opel was involved.

Makes me wonder what's going to fill the void in Oz. JDM? Ford? Almost all the Brit houses are closed.
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      02-19-2020, 07:07 PM   #18
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Ford sells vehicles today in Australia, but does not manufacture in Australia.

Last edited by chassis; 02-20-2020 at 11:30 AM..
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      02-19-2020, 07:20 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShocknAwe View Post
Makes me wonder what's going to fill the void in Oz. JDM? Ford? Almost all the Brit houses are closed.
I’m sure Toyota will continue to dominate. But, yes, Ford and Japanese automakers will pick up the slack. Koreans too.
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      02-19-2020, 08:13 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
So, GM has plenty of product to cover the Australian market if they were to stay.
They really don't because we are RHD. So to sell product there is a serious added cost and they are then noncompetitive.
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      02-19-2020, 09:19 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alfisti View Post
They really don't because we are RHD. So to sell product there is a serious added cost and they are then noncompetitive.
Like I said earlier, everyone else with a presence in Australia is doing it. And GM was doing it too. It's obviously possible to make money selling cars and trucks in Australia. GM has decided they want out. Fine, but as I say, I think it is very short sighted.
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      02-20-2020, 08:09 AM   #22
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Right but they have RHD products, this is why the europeans and japanese are so strong
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