With this week’s news that Holden will cease production in Australia at the end of 2017, speculation has emerged that General Motors may retire the brand completely and have it replaced by Chevrolet. The Holden lineup already consists primarily of Chevrolet models, so the thinking is that Chevy's bowtie replaces Holden’s lion badge beyond 2017 in order to take advantage of Chevy’s global marketing strategies as well as to quell any backlash in Australia towards Holden once production stops.

The information was revealed by a Holden insider during a recent interview with News Corp Australia (via Carsguide).

“There will now be the biggest fight ever to save the Holden brand from being shelved,” the insider is quoted as saying. "Now that [Holden] won't be making cars and there won't be anything unique about the vehicles, the debate is going to come up again and it will be hard to win.”

The insider explained that General Motors Company [NYSE:GM] wanted to disband Holden as early as 2008’s global financial crisis, but the Aussie subsidiary’s boss at the time, Mark Reuss, who is now GM’s global product chief, fought to save it.

But Holden’s outgoing boss Mike Devereux is reported to have said that the Holden brand was here to stay and that GM was committed to the brand. Devereux has also previously stated that Holden’s Commodore nameplate was also here to stay, though going forward it will have to be used on an imported vehicle.

One reason that GM may end up keeping Holden is the cost of rebranding its 233 dealerships across Australia. The cost is estimated at between $500,000 and $1 million per dealership.


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