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Union expects the end of the Holden Commodore -

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The union for engineers says Holden has foreshadowed the end of the Holden Commodore as an
Australian designed car. If Holden does decide to stop making Commodores here hundreds of jobs are
at stake.

TONY EASTLEY: The Commodore has helped define the modern era of General Motors Australia and it's
been the vehicle of choice for tens of thousands of Australians for decades.

But the popularity of the six cylinder sedan has slipped in recent years and its days may be
numbered.

The engineers' union believes Holden is about to either axe the Commodore's production or send its
design overseas. The union say hundreds of jobs are at risk.

As Simon Lauder reports the car maker hasn't denied the union's claims.

SIMON LAUDER: For decades the Holden Commodore has come with a heavy dose of Australiana.

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SIMON LAUDER: The union representing engineers says that could all be about to change.

CHRIS WALTON: If you think about the Bathurst race - the famous Ford versus Holden race - imagine
in the future it being Ford versus a medium-sized front wheel drive potentially designed in Korea.

SIMON LAUDER: Chris Walton is the chief executive of the Association of Professional Engineers,
Scientists & Managers, or APESMA, representing the engineers who design Holden cars.

CHRIS WALTON: Senior management have confirmed to APESMA that it is highly likely that the 2014
Commodore will be the last one engineered in Australia.

SIMON LAUDER: Mr Walton says when APESMA met with Holden's managing director Mike Devereux
yesterday the claim was not denied. He says such a decision would mean redundancy for 250 to 350
engineers who work at Holden's Port Melbourne plant.

CHRIS WALTON: What appears to be happening is Holden is looking at making a decision to move to a
global architecture, a global basic engineering and design platform for future cars, and that
engineering and design being done overseas.

SIMON LAUDER: How sure are you that this is actually Holden's plan? I understand they haven't
confirmed it.

CHRIS WALTON: Unfortunately, we think it is highly likely they are going to make this decision but
it is not too late if the State and Federal Governments and the Australian community send a loud
and clear message to Holden. There is a hope of this being avoided.

SIMON LAUDER: In response to the union's claim Holden has issued a statement which doesn't confirm
or deny it.

In June this year Holden's managing director Mike Devereux warned that the Government's decision to
axe the Green Car Innovation Fund threatened the motor industry's long term viability, and Mr
Devereux made a commitment to Holden's Australian operations.

MIKE DEVEREAUX: We will viciously defend not just the right to build here but the right to design,
engineer and build in this country.

SIMON LAUDER: Chris Walton says if Holden stops designing the Commodore in Australia, it won't get
away with calling it an Australian car.

CHRIS WALTON: I think Holden is likely to say that because a car is still bolted together in
Australia, even though it is design engineered overseas and largely produced overseas, that they
may try and still argue that they are producing an Australian car. That would be simply conning the
Australian community.

SIMON LAUDER: Mr Walton says the end of the Commodore would have flow on effects for Holden's
manufacturing plant at Elizabeth in South Australia.

CHRIS WALTON: That is only a small step to losing production altogether in Australia.

SIMON LAUDER: Holden says the issues the union raises have to do with long-term decisions which are
yet to be finalised.

TONY EASTLEY: Simon Lauder reporting.