Blog: Dave LeggettOpel/Vauxhall's chief gets delightfully candid

Dave Leggett | 4 March 2015

General Motors' European chief, Karl-Thomas Neumann, was on good form in Geneva this week. At a journalists' round-table at the show, I asked Opel/Vauxhall's boss for an update on Russia and GM's response to the growing economic problems there. He was pretty candid in his reply. Essentially, he pointed out that GM is taking the appropriate actions in response (basically, cutting output, raising prices) and monitoring the position closely. And he said that no-one knows what will happpen with respect to the causes of the crisis and that GM will take action as things become clearer. Not everyone is as honest as that.

Someone then slightly cheekily asked him if Russia could be left out of the Europe reporting region for GM, because then things like sales totals and trends would look a whole lot better for Europe. Neumann let out a little grin.

"I am a little unfortunate here because I asked for Russia," he said. And to laughter in the room added: "It was one of my most brilliant moves!"

In GM when K-T Neumann arrived, Russia was managed in GM's International Operations division. Neumann said that he thought it should be managed as part of Europe. "And there was growth potential for Russia, so we all agreed that it should be part of our European organisation. So I got it and it's in my P&L now..."

18 March 2015: RUSSIA: General Motors closing Russian assembly lines, axing Opel

NEWS

Uber resumes some driverless car testing

Uber has resumed driverless vehicle testing in San Francisco following weekend crash in Arizona caused by the driver of another car....

NEWS

GM India signs three year wage deal for Talegaon plant

General Motors India (GMI) said a new three-year wage agreement, good till 31 March, 2020, just signed with the General Motors Employees union would support further advances in vehicle manufacturing q...

BLOG

Colossal China powers on

I'm starting to get a small idea of the scale of things here in China, but really, I'm only scratching the surface of this vast country....

NEWS

Supplier fire slows some Audi output

A fire at a supplier is affecting some Audi output this week....

BLOG

China Hot Pot

Given the startling complexity of obtaining a journalist visa for China - the code 'J2' is now indelibly stamped on my mind - it was with some surprise how swiftly I managed to sail through airport im...



Forgot your password?