Opel has started of engines at its new plant in western Hungary's city of Szentgotthard.

The plant, which costs more than EUR500m (US$669m), employs 300 people and is producing the newly designed 1.6-litre direct injection (SIDI) engines.

Opel plans to start producing a diesel and a smaller petrol engine at the plant in the middle of next year. The facility is expected to produce 500,000 engines a year and employ 800 people at full capacity.