BERLIN – The last vehicle has rolled off Opel’s production line at its flagship factory in Bochum, which General Motors is shuttering as it restructures its lossmaking European subsidiary.
The dpa news agency reported Friday that with the production of the last Opel Zafira compact van, the factory, which employed 22,000 in its heyday, is closing after 52 years. Around 300 of the plant’s 3,000 workers are expected to remain employed at the facility in a parts operation, but the others face an uncertain future.
Detroit-based GM is trying to get Opel to break-even by mid-decade, and is plowing 4 billion euros ($5 billion) into the European business.
As part of its agreement with unions, GM has guaranteed that through 2018 workers at three other Opel plants in Germany won’t face layoffs.