How will the Buick-Opel divorce be decided?
Just this past week, Buick revealed the new Regal TourX and Sportback, and like the outgoing Regal, both are a rebadged Opel Insignia. Now that Opel is being sold to PSA, with the deal to be finalized by the end of the year, how will Buick’s future be affected? Remember, the Regal isn’t the only rebadged Opel sold as a Buick. According to Car and Driver, however, Buick will not be negatively impacted now or in the future due to Opel’s upcoming departure.
“The sale of Opel will have no impact on the fresh new lineup Buick is building out,” stated Duncan Aldred, GM’s vice president of global Buick and GMC. No specifics about a future model or possible platform sharing with PSA was mentioned, but the general tone of the conversation, on GM’s part, was that nothing is being ruled out. Remember, the Opel-PSA deal isn’t set in stone yet, and details regarding “component- and vehicle-related pieces” are still being agreed upon. Aside from the Regal/Insignia, the separation of Buick from Opel really isn’t as hard it may seem. For example, the Encore crossover is the only Buick not being discontinued that has an Opel twin, the Mokka.
The eventual successor could be unique to GM. The Buick Verano, also the Opel Astra, is being discontinued this year, andthe Buick/Opel Cascada convertible likely isn’t far behind due to sluggish sales. Expect the new Regal to continue to be built in Germany at Opel’s Russelsheim plant, alongside the Insignia, for the foreseeable future, perhaps through its entire model span. Buick is also expanding its manufacturing in China, where the new Envision crossover will be built and exported to the US. So, in a nutshell, what’ll happen to Buick without Opel? Nothing. Literally.