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Wednesday, September 22, 2021

General Motors Holden : Historical recap & imported GM global car model recalls

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Holden, also known more predominantly as General Motors-Holden, is a prominent Australian based automobile marque which was involved in the manufacturing of cars within the borders of Australia prior to importing cars after manufacturing in Australia ceased under the Holden brand. Holden was Australia’s top selling car brand right up to the turn of the century, which was driven by Australian consumer trends that favoured large cars. Holden held on to 40 % of the automotive market that was also kept alive partly due to the Holden / Ford tribalism which was nostalgic for the most part whilst it lasted as Australians bickered about which car brand was a part of their growing years. Cars such as the Commodore were the all Australian typical family car and Holden was held so dearly by the entire country that the Australian government and as well as General Motors which was Holden’s American parent company continued to financially aid the company during downturns. It was not until the rise of the millennial generation that the Australian automotive ‘taste buds’ were altered as they succumbed to the ‘lifestyle’ marketing concepts that saw Sports Utility Vehicles taking centre stage.

Brief History

Founded in 1856 as a manufacturer of saddles and other riding equipment before the company moved into the automotive sector in 1908 right up to 1931 when the company officially became a subsidiary of GM (General Motors) based in the United States and renamed General Motors-Holden’s Ltd. The company eventually moved into agreements with major automotive manufacturers such as Isuzu, Chevrolet, Opel and Nissan which enabled Holden to offer badge-engineered models. The company’s expansion efforts went only as far as owning assembly plants in New Zealand which initially belonged to General Motors until 1990. The company continued operations from 1994 to 2017 where all Holden vehicles were built and assembled in Elizabeth, South Australia as the engines were assembled in Melbourne. Holden’s operations ended in 2017 ending an over century old Australian legacy that will not be so easily forgotten. However, certain components of the Holden company is still operational as the entire construct of the company is only set to wind down (Including sales and local design and engineering operations) which are set to wind up by the year 2021.

Recent Recalls

Quite recently Holden placed a recall on 9188 Barina and Trax Holden models along with 3116 Colorado SUVs. The recalls involve repairs that need to be made on these vehicles (free of charge). The recent recall by Holden has nothing to do with the company winding down and is more of a safety issue than anything else. Owners are advised to avoid their workshop manuals for car repairs and proceed directly to the dealership for repairs at no cost to the owner. Even the Holden Commodore was recalled five times in 2019 alone whereas the Holden Cruze was recalled twice. The faulty ignition switch that was cited as being among the reason for the recalls after 46,000 export versions of were recalled in the US which was in fact a component of a safety campaign that involved 2.6 million cars in the US. Holden insists that the recall was unnecessary which otherwise could have resulted in Holden being a name involved in the biggest single recall in Australian automotive history.

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