Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

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Thread: Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

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    Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

    FRANKFURT -- General Motors' Opel unit faces labor unrest in Germany over future output of the Corsa subcompact and the Karl minicar, a German business magazine reported.

    Opel unions are angry that the Karl and its Vauxhall-badged sibling, the Viva, will be made at a GM plant in Korea that is being stretched beyond its capacity rather than at an underutilized German plant Bilanz reported.

    Opel unions also fear the sixth-generation Corsa, which is due before the end of 2020, may be built entirely at GM's factory in Zaragoza, Spain, the report said.

    The current Corsa is built in Zaragoza and Eisenach, Germany. A heavily revised version of Opel's best-seller will be made at both plants and go on sale before the end of the year.

    Opel unions fear Eisenach, which also builds the Adam minicar, may lose production of the sixth-generation Corsa because the plant has no press shot so it is partly supplied with bodies in white from Zaragoza, Bilanz said.

    Zaragoza already builds more Corsas than agreed, Eisenach workers claim.

    Opel has pointed to an agreement to protect jobs at the plant until 2018, but labor representatives are questioning what will happen after that, the report said.

    Labor representatives are also angry that Opel has chosen to produce more auto components at its factory in Tychy, Poland, instead of Germany, Bilanz reported.

    An Opel spokesman confirmed to Automotive News Europe that the Karl will be built in Korea and that the fifth-generation Corsa will be produced in Eisenach and Zaragoza.

    Opel denies labor unrest

    Opel denied any conflict with employee representatives over future production plans, telling Automotive News Europe in an emailed statement that a planned investment in Europe announced last week and agreed with labor representatives was “a very clear sign that there is no labor unrest.”

    “Speculative rumors about the next vehicle generation but one are frivolous,” the automaker said in the statement, referring to production of the sixth-generation Corsa.

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    Re: Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

    German labor is expensive.
    Opels are cheap.

    The two do not mix.

    *shrug*
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    Re: Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by Jesda View Post
    German labor is expensive.
    Opels are cheap.

    The two do not mix.

    *shrug*
    In addition to Germany, GM has plants in the UK, Spain, Poland, Austria and Hungary.

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    Re: Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by Ruperts Trooper View Post
    In addition to Germany, GM has plants in the UK, Spain, Poland, Austria and Hungary.
    All with much cheaper labor costs and more flexible workforces than Germany.
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    Re: Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

    Wow, the union is surprised and angry that Opel, which hasn't made a profit in 20 years, wants to produce small cars where the costs are cheaper. Big surprise. Then the unions will vilify Opel in the press, thus ensuring less people buy the product and less of a chance for Opel to turn a profit. Self fulfilling prophecy.....

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    Re: Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

    GM should have dealt with the German production problem when they had the chance.....
    From the office of the Burnout Czar.

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    Re: Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by BlackGTP View Post
    Wow, the union is surprised and angry that Opel, which hasn't made a profit in 20 years, wants to produce small cars where the costs are cheaper. Big surprise. Then the unions will vilify Opel in the press, thus ensuring less people buy the product and less of a chance for Opel to turn a profit. Self fulfilling prophecy.....
    Oh, it takes me back - parts of this sound just like the UK in the '60/70s - I hope the Germans realise the similarities before it's too late to save Opel.

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    Re: Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by BlackGTP View Post
    Wow, the union is surprised and angry that Opel, which hasn't made a profit in 20 years, wants to produce small cars where the costs are cheaper. Big surprise. Then the unions will vilify Opel in the press, thus ensuring less people buy the product and less of a chance for Opel to turn a profit. Self fulfilling prophecy.....
    There is-the-truth, all l want to see it Opel making a nice tidy profit every year so they have more money to reinvest in better products for customers, it's not gonna be easy though using a German workforce with the world most expensive labor costs, building small no profit on the roof small cars, thats a tall order.

    German Opel unions have got be careful they don't end up pricing themselves out of a job, little Karl and the Viva are two small cars that can take on Dacia & Skoda in Europe and generate a tiny profit, something the German made Opel can't complete on costs without losing a lot of money, General Motors are not a benevolent society for highly paid Germans they have to run a business complete on cost's.

    That is why l like higher profit yielding cars like the Mokka that helps sustain higher wages/ bigger profits money that can be used to reinvest in better product that in turn produces a long term future of employees at Opel plants in Europe, the Mokka is proving very successful at the moment for GM Europe. Which just goes to show if you are bold offer a nice "fuel efficient" SUV with an Opel badge, folk down deep genuinely hold Opel in very high regard will respond to top quality higher priced Opel's, when GM are bold enough to offer do them.
    Last edited by Oldsmobile stopped; 11-28-2014 at 11:33 AM.
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    Re: Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

    On top if all of that the economic climate in Germany is uncertain as well, this could be rely bad for the Germans unless they are winning to make some changes.

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    Re: Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by spd98 View Post
    On top if all of that the economic climate in Germany is uncertain as well, this could be rely bad for the Germans unless they are winning to make some changes.
    They're discovering the downside of a currency union - taking the rough with the smooth - if they'd not gone into the Eurozone, the German economy would be thriving - they're having to take some of the financial pain inflicted on Greece, Spain, etc from the global banking crisis.

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    Re: Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

    UAW's model is the best, they bid for the Sonic from Korea and got it, and now its the best selling sub compact sold in the US

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    Re: Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldsmobile stopped View Post
    All with much cheaper labor costs and more flexible workforces than Germany.
    Of the production costs of a Corsa, what fraction of these costs is labor?

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    Re: Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by Ruperts Trooper View Post
    They're discovering the downside of a currency union - taking the rough with the smooth - if they'd not gone into the Eurozone, the German economy would be thriving - they're having to take some of the financial pain inflicted on Greece, Spain, etc from the global banking crisis.
    That's part of it but their energy choices are hurting then as well. A lot of companies are not investing in the future because of uncertainty of rates in the future.

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    Re: Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

    This week they announced that 400 more workers are hired in Eisenach to open a 3rd shift. I don't think they are too upset since the Mokka now is being built in Zaragoza instead of Korea.

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    Re: Germans upset by new buddy "Karl" from South Korea

    Quote Originally Posted by mchicha View Post
    UAW's model is the best, they bid for the Sonic from Korea and got it, and now its the best selling sub compact sold in the US
    The UAW didn't make that model the best. It takes a good car first and one built good by the employees. I don't give the UAW credit for that. It could have happened sooner if it weren't for the UAW. The economic downturn, bailout and GM's bankruptcy forced the UAW to do things they weren't willing to do before.

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