Chevrolet to withdraw from Europe

  • Chevrolet to wind down European presence by 2015
  • Dwindling sales and difficult economic situation to blame
  • Chevrolet will still support existing customers

American car giant General Motors (GM) has announced that Chevrolet will be withdrawn across Western Europe by 2015.

The move forms part of GM’s wider plan to focus on its mainstream Opel brand in Europe, which is known as Vauxhall in Britain.

A challenging business model and the difficult economic situation in Europe were key factors in the company's decision that the brand will no longer have a presence in this part of the world.

Chevrolet, the fourth-largest global automotive brand, will instead tailor its offering to a range of its specialist vehicles - such as the new Corvette Stingray - in Western Europe, as well as strengthening Cadillac's standing as the premium choice in the market.

Mainstream models will continue to be sold across Eastern Europe, Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States.

“Europe is a key region for GM that will benefit from a stronger Opel and Vauxhall and further emphasis on Cadillac,” said GM chairman and CEO Dan Akerson. “For Chevrolet, it will allow us to focus our investments where the opportunity for growth is greatest.”

“This is a win for all four brands. It’s especially positive for car buyers throughout Europe, who will be able to purchase vehicles from well-defined, vibrant GM brands,” Akerson said.

Although this is likely to be alarming news for Chevrolet company car drivers and retail customers, Chevrolet has stated it will work closely with its dealer network to define future steps while ensuring it can honor obligations to existing customers in the coming years.

“Our customers can rest assured that we will continue to provide warranty, parts and services for their Chevrolet vehicles, and for vehicles purchased between now and the end of 2015,” said Thomas Sedran, president and managing director of Chevrolet Europe. “We want to thank our customers and dealers for their loyalty to the Chevrolet brand here in Europe.”