Terms of the deal between Magna and GM explicitly state that the new owners of Opel will not be able to sell their cars in either the U.S. or China.
New Opel owner Magna says that, for the time being, they will not be able to sell their cars in either the United States or China. Company chairman Frank Stronach says that this was part of the deal struck with former Opel owner GM, but the terms could change in the future.
"...keep in mind that General Motors -- we've been working together for 50 years, we've been great partners, and they still own 35 percent [of Opel]," Stronach said during a press conference. "If it makes economic sense you might persuade people to change something."
Magna takes the managerial role of Opel and Vauxhall, despite owning only 20% of the automakers. However, they have partnered up with Russia's largest bank, Sberbank. The two institutions combine for a 55% ownership stake in the company. Employees of Opel own 10%.
According to Magna, Opel should begin turning a profit by 2013. Just because the numbers look good for Opel, do not think that Magna will try to acquire either Saab or Saturn.
Stronach told reporters, "We have to digest Opel now, and we have got a mouthful, so we'll see how quickly that will take place."
Magna is going after sizable Canadian grants and loans to fund development of all-electric vehicle systems. The company would like to build an EV plant in Canada, at a cost of C$300 million, to begin producing electric vehicles inside of three years. Magna already has a strategic partnership to produce electric systems for Ford prototypes.
"I'm very confident that Magna will be amongst the leaders in selling and building electric cars," Stronach said.