Opel/Vauxhall has appointed Michael Klaus, one of its top sales experts, to lead the General Motors Co. unit's expansion outside Europe.
Klaus, 46, is Opel's new executive director of international operations, with a brief to develop new business for Opel in global markets.
Opel is suffering in a weak European market where the brand's new-car sales fell 4 percent to 340,888 in the first four months, according industry association ACEA.
Opel CEO Nick Reilly has said he is considering expanding Opel's lineup in China, where it sells the Corsa subcompact and Zafira minivan, and launching in new markets such as South America, Australia and South Africa, where Opel has a strong image and dealers are asking to sell the brand.
Opel's high regard
"Opel is not a direct rival to other GM brands. For German brands with German technology, there's an especially high regard throughout the world," Reilly told the Berlin Tagesspiegel daily newspaper in an interview published May 3.