General Motors has confirmed it's plans to pull out of the South African market, ending production of the locally manufactured Chevrolet by end 2017.
The company is negotiating the sale of its local manufacturing facility to Isuzu Motors.
CapeTalk's Africa Melane, standing in for John Maytham, spoke to Mark Smyth, the editor of Motor News.
They have been here since I think 1926, so very much a fabric of South Africa.— Mark Smyth, editor of Motor News.
Smyth says while there is speculation that the decision is related to South Africa's downgrade to junk status, the company is adamant that they are chasing higher margins and profits.
Just incidentally, an announcement will be made on the 8th of June at a press conference in South Africa on the future of Opel in the country with possibly an independent distributor taking over. They are chasing more money and also at the same time almost sort of restructuring, possibly under the Trump administration being seen as a more American company...— Mark Smyth, editor of Motor News.
There has been a decline in the sales volumes of General Motors.
Once upon a time, it was one of the top selling motor brands in the country and these days we have seen Opel sales decline, Chevrolet sales decline.— Mark Smyth, editor of Motor News.
Over 1 500 people employed by the company could be affected by the exit.
Click on the link below to listen to the full interview...