GM to bring compact Opel back to America?

2010 Opel Corsa – Click above for high-res image gallery

Think of German automakers and you're likely to conjure up names like Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Volkswagen, Porsche and Audi. Those are the ones we get on this side of the Atlantic. In their home market, they are joined, most notably, by Opel. The reason we don't get that brand in the States is because it's General Motors' European division, and GM already has plenty of brands operating in its own home market. But that hasn't always been the case, and may not be for much longer – if the latest reports prove accurate.

The German GM subsidiary marketed in the United States between 1958 and 1975. Since then, various Opel models have been sold Stateside as Buicks, Saturns and even Cadillacs. But with Saturn long gone, and the Omega-based Catera replaced by the stand-alone CTS, the only Opel product making it to these shores these days is the Buick Regal (née Opel Insignia).

Recent reports suggested once again that GM could be looking to sell off Opel, but a proposal reportedly being fielded within the GM hierarchy could see Opel returning to American shores. The idea would be to have GM fending off its import rivals with an import of its own, bringing a small hatchback to the U.S. market wearing an Opel badge and a nameplate such as Junior (let's hope not...) or Allegra (hm, let's hope not again).

Whether it would be an all-new product specifically targeted at American consumers or one based on a current model like the Corsa pictured above remains to be seen, but sources indicate that, if the proposal is taken up in Detroit, we could be seeing Opels on American roads as early as 2013.

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