GM axes Kappa II Platform
There’s no secret that General Motors is trying to find solutions to find the road back to profits. After announcing that the company will focus on small cars, GM has now announced that there will be no Kappa II platform; meaning we will not see in the future models like Pontiac Solstice, Saturn Sky, Daewoo SX2 and Opel GT roadsters.
When the Pontiac Solstice and Saturn Sky came to the market, GM was losing around $10,000 per unit built. Why? Because, according to GM, this models are “image cars” for their respective brands, which is how GM justified the losses on them.
The Kappa architecture is hydroformed as part of the fabrication process to achieve the dimensions and frame rails needed. Many of the body panels (namely the hood, deck-lid, and fenders) are hydroformed as well. Hydra-forming is a costly fabrication method, particularly for vehicles that have such low starting prices and low volume to boot. Add on the fact that the Kappa vehicles are largely “hand built” cars (at least by today’s standards); it becomes quite evident why GM will likely never get a return on investment with the Kappa products.
Source: GM Inside News