Opel will launch a SUV-styled version of its Adam minicar, a person familiar with the project told Automotive News Europe.
The car will be based on the Adam Rocks concept unveiled by Opel at the Geneva auto show in March. It will have a slightly increased ride height and chunkier bumpers compared with the standard Adam hatchback.
The Adam Rocks production version will compete with models such as the Volkswagen Cross Up, which is an SUV-styled variant of VW's Up minicar, and the Fiat Panda 4x4. The Panda 4x4 is the only one of the three with four-wheel drive.
The Adam Rocks' production name has not been finalized. The car will go on sale in late 2014, helping Opel to capitalize on the growing popularity in Europe of crossover-styled vehicles.
IHS Automotive senior analyst Ian Fletcher said the Adam Rocks production car will help Opel's bottom line because it will be priced higher than the standard model. "Automakers are happy to meet demand for SUV and crossovers as the customer pays a premium," he said.
The Adam Rocks concept shown in Geneva had a fabric roof and previews a potential convertible Adam that would compete against models such as the Fiat 500C and Citroen DS3.
Opel is counting on fresh product to help reverse declining sales in Europe. Sales of Opel and sister brand Vauxhall fell 5 percent to 534,105 units in the first eight-month sales in EU and EFTA markets, according to industry association ACEA.