Opel Automobile GmbH, usually shortened to Opel, is a German automobile manufacturer subsidiary of Groupe PSA since August 2017. From 1929 until 2017, Opel was owned by General Motors. Opel vehicles are sold in the United Kingdom, Isle of Man and Channel Islands under the Vauxhall brand. Some Opel vehicles were badge-engineered in Australia under the Holden brand until 2020 and in North America and China under the Buick, Saturn, and Cadillac brands.
Opel traces its roots to a sewing machine manufacturer founded by Adam Opel in 1862 in Rüsselsheim am Main. The company began manufacturing bicycles in 1886 and produced its first automobile in 1899. After listing on the stock market in 1929, General Motors took a majority stake in Opel and then full control in 1931, establishing an American ownership of the German automaker for nearly 90 years.
In March 2017, Groupe PSA agreed to acquire Opel from General Motors for €2.2 billion, making the French automaker the second biggest in Europe, after Volkswagen.
Opel is still headquartered in Rüsselsheim am Main. The company designs, engineers, manufactures and distributes Opel-branded passenger vehicles, light commercial vehicles, and vehicle parts and together with its English sister marque Vauxhall they are present in over 60 countries around the world.
Opel operates 10 vehicle, powertrain, and component plants and four development and test centres in six countries, and employs around 30,000 people in Europe. The brand sells vehicles in more than 60 markets worldwide. Other plants are in Eisenach and Kaiserslautern, Germany; Szentgotthárd, Hungary; Figueruelas, Spain; Gliwice, and Tychy, Poland; Aspern, Austria; Ellesmere Port, and Luton, Great Britain. The Dudenhofen Test Center is located near the company's headquarters and is responsible for all technical testing and vehicle validations.
Around 6,250 people are responsible for the engineering and design of Opel/Vauxhall vehicles at the International Technical Development Center and European Design Center in Rüsselsheim. All in all, Opel plays an important role in Groupe PSA's global R&D footprint.