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Holden NZ responds to Australian speculation

Suggestion that General Motors aims to firesale remaining Holden stock at any cost after announcing the brand’s retirement has met with strong reaction from the brand’s New Zealand distributor.

Holden New Zealand communications manager Ed Finn has labelled as speculative a report by Australian motoring website CarAdvice out today.

For all that he does not deny that it is very possible that discounting of product will likely occur.

However, talk that Holden may not make it to the end of 2020 because GM intends to clear remaining stock as quickly as possible as part of its $1.1 billion right-hand-drive bailout package was being steered clear of today.

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In the and now “the only price that matters is the quote that a customer receives from a dealer – everything else is speculation.”

11112010 NEWS CAMERON BURNELL/Taranaki Daily News. Holden Commodore Calais V V8.

Cameron Burnell

11112010 NEWS CAMERON BURNELL/Taranaki Daily News. Holden Commodore Calais V V8.

According to the CarAdvice website, Australia’s dealers will know with he next 24-48 hours just how far they can discount to clear remaining stock – and showrooms may shut by the middle of the year rather than make it all the way to the end of 2020.

It says it knows this from having spoken to several Australian dealerships on condition of anonymity.

Finn suggests the story is not fully valid.

“I understand it has been changed a couple of times so I suspect that the information that the journalist has received isn’t necessarily correct and is literally speculation.”

Yet when asked if it was possible New Zealand Holden dealers will be given opportunity to sell off remaining stock at discounted prices, he conceded as much.

“I anticipate that dealers will have the option of selling vehicles are reduced prices. Exactly what those prices are? I don’t have that information yet.

“But I would expect that there will be some significant opportunities for customers to purchase these vehicles.”

In respect to there being truth to suggestion dealers were anticipating ceasing as Holden sales outlets by June, rather than year-end, he offered: “I couldn’t comment on the Australian situation.”

He was unable today to pinpoint how much unsold Holden stock is held in New Zealand, but said more is set to arrive. Holden takes cars from Germany, South Korea, the Colorado and Trailblazer from Thailand and its sports utilities and crossovers from the United States and Mexico.

Holden Colorado Rox.

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Holden Colorado Rox.

“We certainly have product on the way to New Zealand – on ships. This will be landing here as scheduled.

“With regards to production in the pipeline, we need to find out from our partners – the manufacturing plants – what the situation is.

“I anticipate we will be working with them to reach some sort of outcome.”

There will be more clarity on all this in the next week or so.

“At this point in time it’s only been a couple of days since the actual announcements (of Holden being dropped and GM curtailing right-hand-drive vehicles) so there are a lot of considerations and things to yet work through.”

According to CarAdvice, GM is allowing discounts that will be generous to help move metal as quickly as possible.

Anyone who has signed a contract to buy a new Holden in the lead-up to Monday’s shutdown announcement may also be able to renegotiate the final drive-away price, it quoted the Australian Holden dealers as saying.

New Zealand has 31 Holden dealerships, most also operating as multi-franchise outlets though a handful are solely dedicated to the Australian brand.

General Motors has estimated the axing of the brand – and winding up its Thailand factory operation – will cost $1.1 billion.

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