GM “will close Södertälje plant”

General Motors Corp wants to restructure its engine productions in Europe and will close its plant at Södertälje in Sweden as part of it, weekly AutomobilWoche said, citing sources.

It said about two-thirds of the estimated 60,000 SAAB engine units will be transferred this year to the production facility in Kaiserslautern, Germany.

AutomobilWoche also said GM vice chairman Bob Lutz told the weekly in an interview that GM is studying the possibility of developing four new Opel models. A final decision has not yet been made, he said.

He said one of the models will be an SUV that will be smaller than the Opel Antara, which would be launched in the market by end of this year, and would have an annual production of about 200,000 units.

“We are examining the market chances for a global, small SUV that will be positioned below the Opel Antara,” Lutz said, adding GM wants to enter the market for smaller SUVs during this decade.

He said the production facility for any such new SUV positioned below the Antara segment is not expected to be in Europe but is likely to be in Thailand, Mexico or India.