Friday, May 29, 2009

Opel now owned by Magna?

It is interesting that Magna Corp of Canada could be the new owner of Opel.

This means for the first time in generations, there will be a significant part Canadian owned car manufacturer. Magna would have a 20% stake it seems in Opel - GM Europe. I am not certain what all is the deal, which parts are now going to part owned by Magna and which may not be part of it, but Magna now has a major stake in a company that manufactures about 2 000 000 cars per year.

If at some point Opel comes under full control of Magna, this would make Magna about the 13th largest car manufacturer in the world.

Why would Magna do this? I expect because they know a lot about the costs of what goes into cars and see future for a new Opel as a global player. I can see expansion of Opel globally.

Many of the Opel models are not available in North America. Opel has a strong stable of small cars. The Opels that are sold in North America are sold by Saturn, specifically the Ion and the Vue. With the imminent closure of Saturn, it would seem there is a perfect opening for Opel to come to North America.

Canada is slipping in its importance globally as car manufacturer. In recent years we have been passed by China, Spain and Brazil. India will soon pass us as will Russia. We were once number six, but we are now ninth. With the loss of Chrysler, Canada will drop to below 2 000 000 vehicles per year for the first time in decades.

A smart Magna will buy up the empty Chrysler plants in Canada.....
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