Buick's top U.S. executive wants to bolster the brand's U.S. lineup with a rebadged Opel/Vauxhall Adam, which would compete in the market against the Fiat 500 and BMW's Mini brand. But the prospect is likely several years off.
"I've looked at the possibility of fast-tracking that into the Buick range sooner than later," Duncan Aldred, U.S. vice president of Buick and GMC and former boss of Vauxhall, said in a recent interview. "I think it would make a great Buick."
The problem, Aldred said, is that General Motors didn't plan for the U.S. when it engineered the car. It would be "cost prohibitive" to revamp the current-generation Adam for the U.S., though Aldred hinted that any future redesign would be tailored for the states.
The Adam was launched in Europe in early 2013. The next generation would arrive between 2018 and 2020 under a normal product cycle.
With a starting price about $15,500, the Adam is "probably the most premium model in the Opel and Vauxhall range as far as content and materials," Aldred said.
"In terms of changing expectations of the brand, that would be another absolutely jaw-dropping moment for Buick," he said.
In 2013, former GM CEO Dan Akerson lamented that the Adam and the Opel/Vauxhall Cascada convertible had not been engineered with the U.S. in mind. GM is making the investment to gear the Cascada for the U.S., though, with plans for an early 2016 launch.