Isuzu eyes GM’s commercial truck business

Will Isuzu purchase General Motors’ medium-duty commercial truck business now that a deal with Navistar has fallen through? Isuzu Commerical Truck president Susumu Hosoi said at a recent Tokyo press conference that while there have been no formal talks between Isuzu and GM, the companies’ successful, long-term, 35-year relationship and the current GM product line fit Isuzu Motors’ “aggressive alliance strategy” to boost sales volumes globally. Hosoi added that if another company were to acquire the GM assets, Isuzu would “have to turn to other opportunities” to find those volume increases. But, Hosoi added,”If working further with GM can give us that incremental volume, then we will consider a new form of alliance with them.” Saying he disliked using the term “aquistion” because of its negative perception in the Japanese language and business culture, Hosoi stressed that Isuzu is “interested” if “GM proposes selling off its commercial vehicle assets” and would continue to monitor the situation accordingly.
In other news, Hosoi noted that Isuzu would seek additional “alliance strategies to boost volumes and combat cost issues,” most notably those associated with ever-tightening diesel exhaust emissions around the globe. “No one company alone can absorb those costs,” Hosoi added, “and that presents a question mark about business viability among all medium and light-duty truck players,”
Looking specifically at North American, Hosoi said that while Isuzu was looking at additional smaller diesel vehicle opportunities, including a possible heavy-duty, commerical urban delivery van, a light-duty pickup truck was not in the companies’ future plans for the U.S. market.