TOKYO Aug 6 Japan's Isuzu Motors Ltd
plans to stop developing a next-generation engine for Opel, the
ailing German unit of General Motors, and to pull out of
a joint venture in Poland with GM, the Nikkei business daily
The Japanese truck maker has been making diesel engines for
Opel's Astra Corsa and Meriva in Poland since 1999 through a
joint venture with GM, in which Isuzu has a 40 percent stake.
Isuzu plans to halt the engine development because of the
slumping European market, and the Japanese truck maker also
wants to cut the workforce of its European business by around 10
percent, the Nikkei reported, without saying where it got the
Eiji Mitsuhashi, a spokesman at Isuzu, declined to comment
on whether development of the next-generation engine for Opel
will be halted.
He denied that Isuzu is pulling out of the venture and that
it is cutting its workforce in Europe.
Isuzu shares rose 5.1 percent to 409 yen as of 0403 GMT,
outperforming the benchmark Nikkei's 1.8 percent gain.
GM said last week that its Europe unit swung to an operating
loss of $361 million in the second quarter from a profit of $102
million a year earlier. But that loss was smaller than some
analysts had anticipated, helping the group to post a
GM at one point owned as much as 49 percent of Isuzu before
selling its stake. Isuzu said in May that it was not in talks on
forming an equity alliance with GM, dismissing reports that such
discussions were taking place.