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Holden To Launch Small Car Attack In 2009

Joe Kenwright
8 July 2008
www.carpoint.com.au

Holden's switch to Korean small cars will make sense by early 2009.

Holden's current two-tier small car range based on the Viva and Astra models has never made much sense -- but it soon will! Due for preview at the Paris motor show later this year are new Korean-built replacements for both the current Viva and Euro-sourced Astra.

Just as the local Holden Captiva range is made up of entry models shared with Chevrolet and a premium Captiva Maxx, which is sent to Europe badged as an Opel, Holden insiders have revealed the company will market two levels of GM's new global small car.

A more stylish, safer and better-equipped version of the Viva will define a slick new entry point for Holden's small car range and take the battle to the Toyota Corolla. And for the first time, it will be totally styled by an Australian 'schooled' Holden Design team. Much of the engineering fine-tuning will also have been completed in Australia -- as was the case with the Captiva.

Because this new entry level Viva will be marketed across the globe as a Chevrolet, Holden will be able to present the new model with family styling links to the Captiva and new Colorado light commercials with little investment in appearance changes.

The shared economies of scale with Chevrolet should therefore allow Holden to maintain the current Viva's sharp pricing despite a dramatic improvement in almost every area.

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Holden's Small Cars Supply Restrained

Mike Sinclair
8 July 2008
www.carpoint.com.au

Holden's sales boss says he could sell more Barinas et al, if he could get them.

Despite dominant opposition from Toyota, Holden Executive Director Sales, Marketing and After Sales, Alan Batey, says the local hero brand could sell more small cars -- if they could get them.

In answering the Carsales Network's questioning on whether Holden could hope to peg back the Toyota juggernaut, the Lion brand's sales boss revealed it was struggling with supply issues on its (largely Korean sourced) light and small car ranges.

"Obviously, the market's changed a lot, they've [Toyota] got a lot of benefits right now. They've had very, very good availability, on small cars particularly, the very strong Aussie dollar has given them a trading position they haven't seen for many a year, so everything's pointing their way right now.

"I think we've been around long enough to know that things change... Things turn. We're actually very pleased with where we are -- we've got a lot of activity now in the second half of the year, so I think you're going to see us come back somewhat.

"We've also suffered from availability, particularly on small cars -- we just can't get enough to be honest with you. Barina's been doing about 1000 units a month, [but] we could really be doing 1300-1400. We just haven't been able to get the production requirements..."

Batey says the supply issue has hit all of Holden's Korean-sourced products, and Astra too has been affected, he says. He claims the perception that GM's ex-Daewoo based products have not been well accepted by the buying public is wrong.

"No, absolutely not... If you talk to any Holden dealer about Barina, he'll tell you 'I haven't got enough.' Availability is the issue... The [other] big challenge for us is our Astra product comes from Europe, so we've got a five-month lead time on it..."

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Attack of the MicroMachines... Look out Hotwheels... the Micros are coming... the Micros are coming!!!
 

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BTW, whats the red coupe in the middle of the second pic?Astra 2 door coupe?
 

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I certainly hope Holden don't screw this up. The Astra is a good car, the Viva is a bad one, the next Viva needs to be at least able to draw someone moderately interested in cars away from a Focus, while picking up Corolla buyers at the lower end. A Korean assembled Astra that looks exactly the same as the Opel version and a Optra/Lacetti would be a good tactic (Seeing as the next versions of each will share Delta).

The biggest issue is what to call it, I'd say Astra and Astra Maxx myself.
 

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GMDAT has produced nothing but ****. Suzuki Forenza, Reno, etc, the Aveo. Yeh they are selling OK but they are still ****.
Why on earth are they even touching the next Cobalt, Barina, Viva, or whatever? Did they suddenly get competent? Are they going to use interior materials that dont smell like a toxic dump?
I'm starting to get pessimistic about the next batch of small GM cars if they are anything remotely like the GMDAT Trash we have now.
 

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I VE SEEN THE MOVIE VANTAGE POINT W/ DENNIS QUAID NOT BAD OF A MOVIE, BUT DENNIS QUAID WAS DRIVING A SATURN ASTRA BUT A EUROPEAN VERISON. IN THE CAR CHASE SCENE THAT WAS PRETTY FAST CAR AND THE MOVIE MADE THE CAR LOOK HOTT. I KNOW IF THEY MAKE IT, PEOPLE WILL BUY THEM. lol
 

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BTW, whats the red coupe in the middle of the second pic?Astra 2 door coupe?
It's the Astra TwinTop:

http://www.worldcarfans.com/2060321.004/new-opel-astra-twintop-in-depth

A folding hard top convertible, similar to the VW Eos (and much smaller than the G6 Convertible). It's a pretty sweet ride that we don't get in North America. It starts at about 18,000 pounds in the UK (about $35k USD), so it's a bit more than Americans are used to paying for a compact.

I was hoping that Saturn would be importing the entire Astra line, including the TwinTop. I would have bought one for sure.
 

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kinda off topic.. but speaking of small cars.. Saturn needs a Astra RL!! say with the turbo-4 from solstice!
 

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I VE SEEN THE MOVIE VANTAGE POINT W/ DENNIS QUAID NOT BAD OF A MOVIE, BUT DENNIS QUAID WAS DRIVING A SATURN ASTRA BUT A EUROPEAN VERISON. IN THE CAR CHASE SCENE THAT WAS PRETTY FAST CAR AND THE MOVIE MADE THE CAR LOOK HOTT. I KNOW IF THEY MAKE IT, PEOPLE WILL BUY THEM. lol
They use the Astra as a police car in London.
 

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GMDAT has produced nothing but ****. Suzuki Forenza, Reno, etc, the Aveo. Yeh they are selling OK but they are still ****.
Why on earth are they even touching the next Cobalt, Barina, Viva, or whatever? Did they suddenly get competent? Are they going to use interior materials that dont smell like a toxic dump?
I'm starting to get pessimistic about the next batch of small GM cars if they are anything remotely like the GMDAT Trash we have now.
My guess is it's because GMDAT engineers work relatively quickly and cheaply, which would translate to lower-priced small cars.
 

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The Barina and Viva are two vehicles with least input by Holden, followed by Epica. Captiva has had input and is more than competitive with it's main opposition. Again, they've got constrained supply of them, too, despite moving manufacture to the Isuzu plant in Thailand.

The Captiva diesel soon to appear in the Epica is a sign of the future: it's already Euro V compliant and actually produces a few extra Kx over the Mondeo TDi, and it's a joint Daewoo/Fiat/VM Motori design that's right up to the minute. Same with the engine in the Holden Rodeo/Colorado which is competitive with the opposition.

People have to get over this Korean/Asian thing. Ford is moving Fiesta to Thailand to source it cheaper. Renault is about to build a small SUV based on the Nissan X-Trial at Ssanyong which will start in Oz at a RAV4/CR\V bashing sub $30K price.

The Daewoos we've seen have no quality issues - ask any industry underwriters. They have design/development inadequacies. It's easier to fix that than it is to create a competent, motivated consistent-quality-capable workforce.

Unless Holden produces it's own shortened VE and can assemble it on the existing plant at Elizabeth you won't see a Torrie made here. More likely to be made in Mexico.
 

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GMDAT has produced nothing but ****. Suzuki Forenza, Reno, etc, the Aveo. Yeh they are selling OK but they are still ****.
Why on earth are they even touching the next Cobalt, Barina, Viva, or whatever? Did they suddenly get competent? Are they going to use interior materials that dont smell like a toxic dump?
I'm starting to get pessimistic about the next batch of small GM cars if they are anything remotely like the GMDAT Trash we have now.
IT IS NOT GOING TO BE A DAEWOO!!!! It will be a GM GLOBAL vehicle. gggrrrrrrrrr!!!!!

Go and have a look inside a Saturn Vue and get back to us...xxxxx (edited due to bad language).
Also, if you actually have done some reading about the changes made to Epica, you may have noticed that some significant changes have been made already.

As for competent...I will agree that the Viva and Barina are hardly standard setting but the number of warranty claims for these vehicles is very low. How do I know?...I enter claims at a dealership. Also I can tell you that the Epica with the 6 spd auto is a very smooth, economical mid sized car.

After seeing the effort, and results, of Holden's and GM's input into the Epica and Captiva I think many will be very surprised when the Viva (or Cobalt???) is launched in NZ and Aust. Also the next Barina (Aveo) will be based on the next gen Corsa so I would expect huge improvement over the current gen vehicles on the market now. This is due in the next 12 -18 months.
 

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The Barina and Viva are two vehicles with least input by Holden, followed by Epica. Captiva has had input and is more than competitive with it's main opposition. Again, they've got constrained supply of them, too, despite moving manufacture to the Isuzu plant in Thailand.

The Captiva diesel soon to appear in the Epica is a sign of the future: it's already Euro V compliant and actually produces a few extra Kx over the Mondeo TDi, and it's a joint Daewoo/Fiat/VM Motori design that's right up to the minute. Same with the engine in the Holden Rodeo/Colorado which is competitive with the opposition.

People have to get over this Korean/Asian thing. Ford is moving Fiesta to Thailand to source it cheaper. Renault is about to build a small SUV based on the Nissan X-Trial at Ssanyong which will start in Oz at a RAV4/CR\V bashing sub $30K price.

The Daewoos we've seen have no quality issues - ask any industry underwriters. They have design/development inadequacies. It's easier to fix that than it is to create a competent, motivated consistent-quality-capable workforce.

Unless Holden produces it's own shortened VE and can assemble it on the existing plant at Elizabeth you won't see a Torrie made here. More likely to be made in Mexico.
I'll get over it when GMDAT start making good small cars. There's nothing wrong with building in Asia, but until we start seeing GM's investment in shifting the small car development in Korea (Hopefully staffed this time with people who know what they are doing) then I reserve my scepticism.

Far as I'm concerned, build something that can match Fords Euro product in all areas and you can build it in Madagascar for all I care. My Accord was assembled in a shed in Nelson yet still has superior fit and finish to US and Japanese made Accords, just shows how much the plant has to do with the end result (Sod all).
 

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I'll get over it when GMDAT start making good small cars. There's nothing wrong with building in Asia, but until we start seeing GM's investment in shifting the small car development in Korea (Hopefully staffed this time with people who know what they are doing) then I reserve my scepticism.

Far as I'm concerned, build something that can match Fords Euro product in all areas and you can build it in Madagascar for all I care. My Accord was assembled in a shed in Nelson yet still has superior fit and finish to US and Japanese made Accords, just shows how much the plant has to do with the end result (Sod all).
GMDAT is now GM and will be a full member in the Gamma and DeltaII cars. They will be as good a car in development terms as any of their siblings. Equipment levels and styling nicities may be different of course, but these are always subjective.

Slightly different tack, will GMDAT be utilising the Thailand and Malaysian factories?
 
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