Next Astra to be UK built

Next-generation Vauxhall Astra will be built at Ellesmere Port, General Motors has confirmed

The next-generation Vauxhall Astra will be built at the firm's facility in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, as part of a £125million investment that will secure the future of 2,100 workers and create 700 new jobs.

 

The announcement follows last night's vote by Vauxhall staff on a new pay and conditions deal. An overwhelming 94 per cent voted in favour of the new deal, which will allow more flexible hours as the plant moves towards 24-hour, seven-days-a-week working.

 

Production of the next-generation Astra will begin in 2015, and the agreement - which lasts until the early 2020s - is for a minimum of 160,000 cars to be built every year.

The future of the Ellesmere Port plant had been under threat, with parent company General Motors reporting continued losses in Europe. GM's European division Opel has lost 11billion dollars (£7billion) since 1997, and 750million dollars last year alone.

Speaking at the Detroit Motor Show earlier this year, President of GM International Operations Tim Lee told Auto Express: “We are determined to turn these two great brands (Vauxhall and Opel) around. Key players from GM are working on this, including myself, and it will be a large part of our focus over the next few years.”

He explained that the plan is to improve profitability by increasing sales, introducing a host of new products, and by reducing manufacturing costs. Lee said, “If we currently have two warehouses in Belgium, then we will now have one.”

He admitted that this could result in future job losses, but said: “We will build cars where we sell them and won’t chase cheap labour around the world, as it doesn’t make sense.”.

The future of Opel's factory in Bochum, Germany, is still under threat. Bochum produces 30 cars an hour over three shifts a day, while Ellesmere Port produces 47 cars an hour over two shifts a day.

Recommended

Iconic Vauxhall Manta name to return on new all-electric SUV
Vauxhall Manta - front (watermarked)
Vauxhall

Iconic Vauxhall Manta name to return on new all-electric SUV

Vauxhall is set to bring back the famous Manta name on a sporty SUV to rival the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and our exclusive images preview how it could look
5 May 2022
Final British-built Vauxhall Astra rolls off Ellesmere Port production line
Vauxhall Astra on production line
Vauxhall

Final British-built Vauxhall Astra rolls off Ellesmere Port production line

Vauxhall’s Wirral-based factory has built its last Astra, as the facility prepares for an EV future
7 Apr 2022
Vauxhall Corsa and Mokka ranges revised with new trim levels for 2022
Vauxhall Corsa Design
Vauxhall

Vauxhall Corsa and Mokka ranges revised with new trim levels for 2022

The new-look line-up for the Vauxhall Corsa and Vauxhall Mokka is claimed to offer better value than before
6 Apr 2022
All new Vauxhalls will be electric from 2028
Vauxhall Mokka-e - front
Vauxhall

All new Vauxhalls will be electric from 2028

Every popular Vauxhall will be electric from 2028, and the Manta model will return by 2025
3 Mar 2022

Most Popular

Tipo 184: on the road in the Mazda MX-5 based kit car
Tipo 184 kit car front
Features

Tipo 184: on the road in the Mazda MX-5 based kit car

Inspired by classic Grand Prix racing cars, Darren Collins has created a model that faithfully recreates the originals, but with a twist - it’s actual…
11 May 2022
Best electric cars to buy 2022
Best electric cars
Electric cars

Best electric cars to buy 2022

There are more electric cars than ever to choose from, so we've picked some of the best you can buy in the UK now
28 Apr 2022
New Lucid Air 2022 review
Lucid Air - front tracking
Lucid Air

New Lucid Air 2022 review

Lucid's first model intends to make a lasting mark on the luxury EV market
13 May 2022