GM to end manufacturing in Australia

General Motors has announced that its vehicle and engine manufacturing operations in Australia will cease by the end of 2017. Engineering activities are also going to be cut back, although the intention is to keep a design studio open.

Exchange rate issues, high production costs and a small competitive domestic market have all been cited as reasons for the decision. Its immediate impact is around 2,900 job losses over the next four years.

However, this doesn’t mean the end of Holden. Sales, service, warranty support and parts availability will continue via the brand’s dealer networks in Australia and New Zealand.

What’s less certain is the future of Holden’s VF Commodore. The rear-wheel drive model range, which is also sold as the Chevrolet SS and Vauxhall VXR8, is only assembled in Australia.

Holden VF Commodore Sportwagon Calais V-Series (2014) Front Side

Given Ford’s factory closure statement last May and the Australian government’s reluctance to carry on subsidising the motor industry, GM’s move wasn’t unexpected. It will leave Toyota as the sole car builder in Australia, but for how much longer?

Related post:
Ford to shut Australian plants


Image © General Motors.

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