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Old 09-17-2005, 09:59 AM   #1
Emanuel
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Default How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Since Saturn is becoming America's Opel, I am interested in knowing how well Opel competes with VW/Audi and Japanese cars in Germany.

- What is Opel's market share vs VW/Audi, Toyota, et al?
- Is Opel's market share increasing or decreasing?
- How do the German car mags regard Opel?

Also, Vauxhall is England's Opel and I am interested in how well it competes in the UK

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Old 09-17-2005, 01:05 PM   #2
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

As far as I can tell, in Germany Opel's market share is slightly below that of Volkswagen. Toyota is much lower down the league table.

They're certainly very popular but are sneered at in certain circles because they are positioned a little more downmarket than Volkswagen and are considered by many Germans to be of inferior quality compared to VWs.

In the UK, where Opels are badged as Vauxhalls, they are very popular indeed. Vauxhall is the UK's second best selling car brand. Ford is number 1.

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Old 09-17-2005, 11:42 PM   #3
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Quote:
Originally Posted by EnglishSL2
As far as I can tell, in Germany Opel's market share is slightly below that of Volkswagen. Toyota is much lower down the league table.

They're certainly very popular but are sneered at in certain circles because they are positioned a little more downmarket than Volkswagen and are considered by many Germans to be of inferior quality compared to VWs.
In the US, Volkswagen has probably the most inferior quality of any brand. Buying a VW is like telling the dealer you'll be back for service on a weekly basis. Mercedes-Benz and Audi are just as bad.

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Old 09-18-2005, 12:39 AM   #4
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Quote:
Originally Posted by davidsky
In the US, Volkswagen has probably the most inferior quality of any brand. Buying a VW is like telling the dealer you'll be back for service on a weekly basis. Mercedes-Benz and Audi are just as bad.
For the record, with MB, a lot of that seems to depend on the carline you own. The MLs are junk along with a lot of the E classes... the S classes tend not to fare badly. The worst problem we ever had on our 2000 (first model year for the W220 chassis) S500 was a set of blown headlight ballasts. The '03 has yet to sneeze.
~D.J.~

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Old 09-18-2005, 01:06 AM   #5
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Germany is a tough market...its BMW, VW, and MB land. They sell them for $2 and everybody's got one.

Opel is kind of like a Honda.

Oh, and if you are trying to compare the European (German) market to the United States, and estimating how well Opel will do once its brought here, i'd tell you that its completely irrelevant. The two markets are like comparing Japan to the United States.

Opel cars will sell great here, since even the worst european garbage sells well here. One thing is certain about the US market -- if you want to see a luxury car, you have to make a special name-plate for it. Americans cannot grasp the fact that Honda could make both high end and low end cars at the same time, but every other world market can.

We americans are simple minded. And probably you canadians as well.

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Old 09-18-2005, 01:15 AM   #6
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Quote:
Originally Posted by L300Boy
One thing is certain about the US market -- if you want to see a luxury car, you have to make a special name-plate for it. Americans cannot grasp the fact that Honda could make both high end and low end cars at the same time, but every other world market can.
If that is true, why is Toyota marketing the Lexas brand in both Europe and Japan now?

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Old 09-18-2005, 04:03 AM   #7
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Quote:
Originally Posted by L300Boy
Opel cars will sell great here, since even the worst european garbage sells well here.
No. You can't even buy the worst European garbage in the US (Fiat, Renault, Peugeot, Citroen).

Quote:
Originally Posted by L300Boy
One thing is certain about the US market -- if you want to see a luxury car, you have to make a special name-plate for it. Americans cannot grasp the fact that Honda could make both high end and low end cars at the same time, but every other world market can.
We can't really grasp that here either. It Britain people seem to buy the badge, not the car. Far too many people here are badge snobs - in fact I'd say the situation is worse here than in the US.

Basically, you can't make a success of selling a larger, more luxurious car here unless it has a prestigious badge with snob appeal (preferably German). Thus big BMWs, Mercedes-Benz and Audis sell incredibly well.

Jaguars, Lexus, luxury Saabs and Volvos sell moderately well...

...But luxury cars from mainstream brands generally fail. The Honda Legend (Acura RL in US) was a very slow seller, as was the Toyota Camry (it was positioned as an "executive" car here). Neither are sold here any more. The Vauxhall Omega was at one time was a big seller but lost favour to the German brands, so they don't sell that anymore either. Ford axed the Scorpio in 1998 so there isn't a "big" European Ford now either. The Renault Vel Satis and Peugeot 607 are still with us, but they only sell a few hundred a year.

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Old 09-18-2005, 07:22 AM   #8
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Quote:
Originally Posted by EnglishSL2
No. You can't even buy the worst European garbage in the US (Fiat, Renault, Peugeot, Citroen).
I doubt we ever will again. Those brands are considered by anyone old enough to be the worst cars ever sold in the US



Quote:
...But luxury cars from mainstream brands generally fail. The Honda Legend (Acura RL in US) was a very slow seller, as was the Toyota Camry (it was positioned as an "executive" car here). Neither are sold here any more. The Vauxhall Omega was at one time was a big seller but lost favour to the German brands, so they don't sell that anymore either. Ford axed the Scorpio in 1998 so there isn't a "big" European Ford now either. The Renault Vel Satis and Peugeot 607 are still with us, but they only sell a few hundred a year.
The Camry is the best selling car in the US. We had the Omega here as the Cadillac Catera. The 607 is a nice looking car.

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Old 09-18-2005, 08:09 AM   #9
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

"You can't even buy the worst European garbage in the US (Fiat, Renault, Peugeot, Citroen). "


You can buy Renaults in the US; they are now called Nissans

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Old 09-18-2005, 09:30 AM   #10
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Emanuel
You can buy Renaults in the US; they are now called Nissans
If anything, Nissans have gotten much better since the Renault merger.

The Nissans sold here share nothing with Renaults, and are very high quality, reliable cars.

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Old 09-18-2005, 11:07 AM   #11
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Quote:
Originally Posted by EnglishSL2
As far as I can tell, in Germany Opel's market share is slightly below that of Volkswagen. Toyota is much lower down the league table.

They're certainly very popular but are sneered at in certain circles because they are positioned a little more downmarket than Volkswagen and are considered by many Germans to be of inferior quality compared to VWs.

In the UK, where Opels are badged as Vauxhalls, they are very popular indeed. Vauxhall is the UK's second best selling car brand. Ford is number 1.
Hey English SL2. Glad you put the products in perspective. I like these new Opel/Saturn/Vauxhall products that are coming.If they are comptent and satisfying to drive and look good, they'll sell.
I have pictures being developed of a Chevy Astra from Mexico.Will post as soon as I get them.
You are so right re: being badge minded. From what I have been reading over on the MG Rover Org site, that was one of the problems for the company and an "anything BUT British is better " mind set. [Sort of like our anything not domestic is better school of automotive journalism here in the US. Maybe it's a Baby Boomer thing..]
Glad to have your perspective from "over there". VW has been having some serious sales problems and quality troubles for several years here. The new Golf is beautiful though. A good looking VW who would have thought it ???

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Old 09-18-2005, 11:10 AM   #12
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Quote:
Originally Posted by KrgION03
If anything, Nissans have gotten much better since the Renault merger.

The Nissans sold here share nothing with Renaults, and are very high quality, reliable cars.
Actually they have been going DOWN the quality scale with numerous complaints about interior quality and materials. The Sentra has a "worse than average" record if you follow the Consumer Reports stats and the rest of Nissan's line has been average. The Quest has been especially troublesome. Popular cars, yes, but not of the quality they once were.

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Old 09-18-2005, 12:23 PM   #13
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

I saw new Peugeots and other makes you won't see here when I was in Guatemala. Guess they still sell them down there. They have some decent looking cars, actually.

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Old 09-19-2005, 06:22 AM   #14
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Opel's reputation in Europe is the same as the current reputation for Saturn here in the states. If people can avoid buying them, they will.

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Old 09-19-2005, 10:18 AM   #15
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Citation84
VW has been having some serious sales problems and quality troubles for several years here.
Undoubtedly Volkswagen's quality is nowhere near as good as it used to be, and they aren't doing so well in customer satisfaction these days. VWs of the 1980s were incredibly well made cars - thats how they built up a repuation for quality, but things have definitely gone downhill since. Volkswagen still seems to have a good reputation and theur cars are still desirable, but they are still trading on the reputation they built up years ago - nevermind the fact that they don't live up to it so well anymore. They may lose that reputation soon.

That said, Volkswagens are still a lot better quality and reliability-wise than a lot of other European brands.

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Old 09-19-2005, 10:33 AM   #16
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Quote:
Originally Posted by EnglishSL2
Undoubtedly Volkswagen's quality is nowhere near as good as it used to be, and they aren't doing so well in customer satisfaction these days. VWs of the 1980s were incredibly well made cars - thats how they built up a repuation for quality, but things have definitely gone downhill since. Volkswagen still seems to have a good reputation and theur cars are still desirable, but they are still trading on the reputation they built up years ago - nevermind the fact that they don't live up to it so well anymore. They may lose that reputation soon.

That said, Volkswagens are still a lot better quality and reliability-wise than a lot of other European brands.
Starting to sound like Honda and Toyota.....'resting on laurels' is the term I'm looking for. BMW and MB seem to be constantly improving and advancing their cars (and for the price, they'd better!), whereas Honda, VW, and Toyota are all becoming complacent . Much like GM in the 70's and 80's, they feel they don't have to try anymore.

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Old 09-19-2005, 12:38 PM   #17
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Quote:
Originally Posted by VTHokie97SL2
I saw new Peugeots and other makes you won't see here when I was in Guatemala. Guess they still sell them down there. They have some decent looking cars, actually.
It was quite interesting for me to see three Saturns in Honduras two weeks ago. Since so many people come to the US from Honduras for work, it seems reasonable that many return home and simply drive the cars back there. In fact, the #1 revenue stream in Honduras is people in the US sending money back to relatives (to the tune of $1 billion a year).

There were lots of Hyundais and Kias there. Of course, they were models we don't see. We used a Kia truck, which was an industrial model with four doors and a truck bed.

Every country's market is different. In all the countries I've seen, the US does seem to have a very unique car market. You simply don't see cars like the Camry in abundance, and you will rarely (if ever) see pickups larger than a Ranger or Tacoma. The Toyota Hilux truck is very popular in many countries.

Our cars are very luxurious compared to other countries. Our base models are loaded with CD players, power everything, etc. In South Africa, for instance, a base Corolla doesn't have AC or power steering or a radio (and it costs $20,000). You can even get new cars that are carryover designs from the 80s from VW and Toyota. In the US people view their cars are more than just a utility device. Of course, Europe is a different market in itself as well.

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Old 09-19-2005, 02:20 PM   #18
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JDRedline
Opel's reputation in Europe is the same as the current reputation for Saturn here in the states. If people can avoid buying them, they will.
The difference though, is that in the US people will buy a regular brand like a Toyonda, whereas in Europe they buy a premium badge brand.

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Old 09-19-2005, 09:17 PM   #19
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Citation84
Actually they have been going DOWN the quality scale with numerous complaints about interior quality and materials. The Sentra has a "worse than average" record if you follow the Consumer Reports stats and the rest of Nissan's line has been average. The Quest has been especially troublesome. Popular cars, yes, but not of the quality they once were.
They were never high-quality cars. The Nissans from the early 90s were especially troublesome. The older Z cars had lots of issues.

From what I understand, they've improved quite a bit. The Quest is the exception. However, the Altima, G35, and new M35/45 come to mind as extremely nice/well-built cars.

BTW...the current Sentra was designed before Renault came along. Yes, it is a piece of crap.

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Old 09-19-2005, 09:44 PM   #20
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Default Re: How well does Opel compete in Germany?

Here is an article that talks about actual quality and perceived quality
http://www.canadiandriver.com/articles/jc/quality.htm

BTW, I personally think that Peugeot makes some really cool looking cars... and their suspensions are supposedly one of the best out there...

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