Holden boss Dave Buttner has hit out at reports that General Motors could sell its Australian import operations.
Earlier this month, a report from the Australian Financial Review asserted that GM was considering an externalization of its importing activities to Australia’s largest car importer and distributor, Inchcape Motors.
However, Car Advice reports that, on Friday, Buttner told the audience at the company’s national conference in Melbourne that there are no plans to change distribution.
“I’m looking directly at you. Believe me, it’s not going to happen. There is no plan (to change distribution). I did not join the company to close Holden.”
A confidential dealer source reiterated Buttner’s fierce denial of reports.
“Dave gave a very strong denial about the reports about Inchcape and you know what? I believe him. I think it is scuttlebutt. He stood there and looked us all in the eye and said it wasn’t happening.”
Carscoops contacted GM about the Inchcape reports last week and were simply told that the automaker “is focused on supporting Dave in building a strong Holden for the future, as it remains an important part of GM’s business.”
Holden has been facing an uphill battle in Australia ever since local production ended. The company now solely imports vehicles built overseas, including the latest-generation Commodore that is also sold elsewhere as the Buick LaCrosse and Opel Insignia. Consequently, we weren’t overly surprised when we heard reports that General Motors was reportedly willing to turn its back on Holden.
Well, this doesn’t seem to be happening. At least not now.