Despite the company’s chief, Carl-Peter Foster, telling a press conference earlier today that the maker needed £3bn urgently, the marque has issued a statement saying its UK factories are ‘not under threat’.
The boss had told Sky News that urgent funds were needed – as we reported – but had added that the despite both factories being ‘very lean’ the next step would have to be ‘closure’.
But a statement, released by the manufacturer, a few minutes ago tried to clarify the situation.
‘In response to reports today that there is a threat to GM’s manufacturing operations at Ellesmere Port and Luton, it was highlighted during an official press conference at the Geneva Motor Show that Vauxhall was a very strong and successful brand in the UK and there are no plans for it to be axed,’ it said.
‘The decision to continue manufacturing operations in the UK was reviewed two years ago and this has proved to be the correct decision.
‘Both Ellesmere Port and Luton are very lean and efficient plants and as a result Ellesmere Port remains the lead production plant for the next generation Astra that is scheduled for launch in quarter 3 of 2009.
‘The comments made relating to plant closures were in response to General Motors Europe’s request for financial support from a number of European governments.
‘This was specified in the GM viability plan handed to the German government and does not just relate to the UK.’