Holden brand not going anywhere

SAM HALL
Last updated 17:27 11/12/2013

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If you own a Holden or are considering buying one, there is no reason to panic.

The company will still be present in Australia even after its manufacturing operations close in 2017.

Just as Nissan and Mitsubishi have done in the past following their respective manufacturing closures in Australia, Holden will continue to operate exclusively on an import basis and its sale and aftermarket service centres are expected to remain unchanged following the closure, confirmed by the company today.

Like Ford, which announced it was closing local production by 2016, Holden will also exist in an engineering capacity in Australia beyond 2017.

For owners of the locally produced Commodore or Cruze models, Holden is legally obliged to continuing supplying parts for those vehicles 10 years after the factories are wound down in 2017.

The biggest negative could be that the resale values of the Commodore, particularly - a relatively weak commodity in the second-hand market - could take another hit.

Anyone looking for a new car bargain could be disappointed as well; Holden only recently released its new VF Commodore and won't be changing its pricing strategy in the foreseeable future.

"Holden will continue to have a significant presence in Australia beyond 2017, comprising a national sales company, a national parts distribution centre and a global design studio," the company said in a statement.

"The sale and service of Holden vehicles will be unaffected by this announcement and will continue through the extensive network of Holden dealers across Australia and New Zealand. Warranty terms and spare parts availability will remain unchanged."

Already, the majority of Holden's cars come courtesy of factories in South Korea and Thailand.

Ironically, the ease of importing Holden cars into Australia, due to low import tariffs and the high Australian dollar, has contributed significantly to the company's local manufacturing demise.

At the time of its manufacturing closure announcement, Ford Australia said it would actually sell more cars as an importer. Obviously, Holden shares the same view.

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- Sydney Morning Herald

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