FRANCE: General Motors in "advanced" talks to sell Strasbourg transmission site
No price is being disclosed by GM for the French operation, while the fate of around 1,000 workers employed at the site is sure to attract the attention of France's left-leaning government, which has taken a keen interest in the automotive sector since its recent election.
"Yes, we are in discussions with Punch and ZF Friedrichshafen - we are in advanced discussions with both of them," a GM spokesman told just-auto from Germany. "We went through a strategic review to look for a long-term viable solution for the plant.
"The products built there internally so far did not generate the necessary volumes, so we were looking for some alternatives. We are not giving a figure on the price, we are not discussing a timetable.
"The objective is, of course, as part of a sale, that jobs would be preserved as much as possible."
Punch - headed by a Belgian investor - has previously expressed interest in GM's Strasbourg plant - but as yet it is not clear what the reaction of France's vocal unions will be to any sale.
The labour bodies will be eyeing events at GM in France anxiously, given the current uncertainty surrounding the country's automotive market and in particular, its difficulties with over-capacity in a shrinking European market.
PSA Peugeot Citroen appears determined to press ahead with plans to slash up to 8,000 jobs in France as well as close its Aulnay site near Paris, while Renault is currently in the middle of laborious negotiations with its many unions concerning productivity deals that could see domestic manufacture retained.
Renault recently offered to commit to no plant closures in France if its unions agree to a raft of measures although the CGT labour body has already expressed reservations.
The CFDT, CFE-CGC, CGT and FO unions have met in a second round of talks to improve Renault performance in the light of extremely challenging economic conditions in Europe, with management proposing the setting up of two regional production centres in France.
More read-it-and-weep news for struggling European rivals from Volkswagen group this week as it chalked up another little milestone - selling over 3m vehicles in the first four months of a year....
Vehicle assembly in Colombia began in 1956 when the government signed an agreement to build Austin trucks locally. Colombian entrepreneurs soon saw the opportunity to invest in technology to be part o...
I wouldn't have thought that, with the current state of play in the European auto industry, there'd be too much niggle in the union ranks. But we've reported on a bit this week....
What are Opel's 3,000 odd workers at its Bochum plant in the heavily-industrialised region of North-Rhine Westphalia (NRW) thinking today?...
Geely's Volvo Cars has named former GM marketing executive Alain Visser, who joined last year, as its new senior vice president marketing, sales and customer service, replacing Doug Speck who is leavi...
After announcing an after-tax operating loss of A$141m for the 2012 financial year, following a A$290m loss in 2011, Ford has finally thrown in the manufacturing towel in Australia and will close its ...
The board of directors of Geely Automobile have announced management changes....
Chinese business interests are again reportedly moving to buy financially crippled electric car start-up Fisker Automotive....
- THE WEEK THAT WAS: Chinese scoop up Pirelli
- ANALYSIS: VW Group - success and succession
- Briefing: developments in powertrain batteries
- ANALYSIS: Depressed Thai market forces rethink
- VEHICLE ANALYSIS: A new Volkswagen for the fleets
- Volvo Cars to build US factory
- New York show debuts: GMC Terrain facelift added
- Mahindra throws in the Brazil towel
- GM management outlines reasons for Russia rethink
- Car sharing won't replace car ownership - BMW