The recent PSA Group takeover of the Opel and Vauxhall brands has forced the former General Motors (GM) subsidiaries to shelve plans for a flagship SUV, according to a new report out of the UK.
Auto Express claims the change of ownership, which was completed on August 1, has seen the two brands commence the write-up of their business plans for PSA – parent of French brands Peugeot and Citroen – and one future model that faces an uncertain future is a new SUV based on the Insignia (coming to Australia badged as the new Commodore).
The crossover, reportedly referred to as the Monza – the same name as the swoopy coupe concept that debuted in 2013 – would share its underpinnings with the Insignia liftback and wagon, and be pitched as a rival to the likes of the Ford Edge.
Auto Express says the flagship model would have featured dramatic exterior styling and a plush interior, likely in an effort to compete with offerings from premium brands like the Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Mercedes-Benz GLC.
Pictured: Opel Grandland X
Speaking with the British publication at last year’s Paris motor show, Karl-Thomas Neumann, CEO of Opel, said the new model would be built alongside its Insignia sibling at the company’s German plant.
“The large SUV will be built in Russelsheim. It makes sense because if you have the Insignia there you also want the SUV there”.
However, it’s reported that PSA will freeze all of Opel and Vauxhall’s GM-related projects – indicating that the Monza, or whatever it was to be called, has been canned for the time being.
It is possible, though, that the project could be revived but on a PSA-derived chassis – such as the EMP2 platform. Perhaps the new Peugeot 5008 could serve as the basis for the Opel Monza – we’ll have to wait and see.