Rüsselsheim/Szentgotthárd. The serial production of the new Small Gasoline Engine family (1.0 ECOTEC Direct Injection Turbo) ceremonially started at the newest and most flexible Opel engine plant in Szentgotthárd, Western Hungary in the presence of Joachim Koschnicke, Opel Vice President Government Relations and Public Policy and Hungarian Deputy Minister of Foreign Economy Peter Szijjarto. With this addition, the new engine plant builds three different engine families on the same line offering a wide range of powertrain for the new Opel models.
“The Szentgotthárd Flex plant plays an important role in our product strategy. Between this year and 2018, 27 new Opel models and 17 new engines will hit the market and many of these engine novelties will be built here”, said Joachim Koschnicke, Vice President Government Relations and Public Policy. “We show very clearly that Opel is back. Opel is on the attack. Our model offensive is in full swing, and engines are a very important part of this offensive.”
Koschnicke also spoke about the longer term strategy of the company: “We are setting clear targets that stretch all the way to the year 2022. Our first target is to go from being third in the European passenger car market to being second. We aim to achieve this with a market share of 8 percent in Europe and 10 percent in Germany in 2022.”
Hungary is one of the 11 countries where Opel increased market share in the first half of 2014. Opel has not only been the number one brand in three consecutive years on the Hungarian passenger car market but in the first half of this year, the brand could grow its sales in the country by 68 percent. That is more than twice of the average growth of the market and secures an over 13 percent market share and clear number one overall position for Opel in Hungary.
Tamás Solt, Plant Manager and Launch Director of the Flex plant said: “Last year, in our old facility building mainly 1.6 115 hp engines and Flex Plants, we manufactured 354,000 engines and only 15,000 of them were Flex products. In comparison, this year 100,000 of the 400,000 engines will already be Flex engines. Next year, more than the half of the 500,000 engines will be Flex products.”
The new Szentgotthard Flex plant is a 700 million Euro investment with a capacity to build 600,000 engines a year. The technology implemented there makes the plant one of the most flexible automotive manufacturing facilities in the world capable of producing three different engine families on the same line. Opel’s new 1.6 gasoline turbo, 1.6 diesel turbo and now the new small gasoline engines are built there. All of these engines are characterized by high performance and low emissions, plus outstanding smoothness and very low noise levels.
The one liter turbo engine with 90 and 115 horsepower is just the first member of the small gasoline engine family, which will include many different applications between 1 and 1.4 liter displacement. The three-cylinder engine will have its debut in the ADAM and new ADAM ROCKS – the mini Opel crossover – and it will also be introduced in the fifth Generation Corsa coming to the markets at the end of this year.