Opel's new CEO is talking up the possibility of a new, small urban car to take on the Ford Ka and the Volkswagen Up. Details inside.

Opel/Vauxhall is ramming through development of a new city car meant to compete with the Ford Ka and the Volkswagen Up!.  The company has also begun research work on a fully electric vehicle to be sold alongside the Opel Ampera plug-in hybrid.

But it is the city car that is the company's "top priority," according to company CEO Nick Reilly.  "In my view, Opel needs a mini in today's market.  That will be our top priority," Reilly said.  He qualified his comments by pointing out that more customers are choosing smaller cars than in the past.

It is unclear if Reilly wants the small car to also be released as an EV, or if a completely new electric model will be developed.

These comments about Opel have been made before.  Near-miss Opel purchaser Magna International was planning on releasing a new Opel city car in 2012.  Magna had also considered distributing this as an all-electric.

Reilly is a relative newcomer to Opel, having been placed temporarily in the Opel hot seat on November 10, when GM decided not to sell the brand to Magna.  He has worked for GM for almost 35 years, and is considered to be a possible successor to General Motors' interim CEO Ed Whitacre.

Be part of something big