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The future's small for Vauxhall's van engines

Date: 31 October 2007

Small engines are the future for Vauxhall vans, according to GM's European commercial vehicle boss in Europe. The muscle will instead come from clever tech to improve economy.

"We're downsizing engines and improving turbocharging. Even on medium vans you should expect to see downsizing," Jamal El Hout, GM's vice president of product planning and commercial vehicles, told BusinessCar.

Downsizing has already successful in the Combo. "When we launched the 1.3-litre diesel two or three years ago we had concerns that people wouldn't accept it," said Phil Harwood, van product manager. "But there's no prejudice on size any more and it's now our best-selling small van engine."

El Hout also revealed that the long-awaited decision to launch a new Vauxhall pick-up will be made "within the year". GM is expected to rebadge a pick-up from either the States or, more likely, Thailand, where the common-rail-engined Isuzu Rodeo is also sold with a Chevrolet badge.