General Motors South Africa

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General Motors South Africa
Wholly owned subsidiary
Industry Automotive
Predecessor Delta Motor Corporation (1987-2003)
Founded 1913 (formation)
2004 (reacquisition)
Headquarters Port Elizabeth, South Africa
Products Automobiles
Number of employees
Parent General Motors

General Motors South Africa, or GMSA, is a wholly owned subsidiary of American automobile manufacturer General Motors. It manufacturers and distributes automobiles under the Chevrolet, Opel and Isuzu brands. The company is headquartered in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.

Founded in 1913, GMSA initially distributed Chevrolet vehicles before beginning to manufacture and distribute vehicles of all of GM's brands in 1926, with the Chevrolet Series AA Capitol. By the 1960s this included the British Vauxhall marque.[1]

In 1986, it was sold off and rebranded the Delta Motor Corporation as a result of the passage of the Comprehensive Anti-Apartheid Act in the United States and subsequent divestment of General Motors from apartheid South Africa.[2] Delta continued to use the Opel, Isuzu and Suzuki brands under licence from GM as well as pay for the supply of assembly kits.[3]

Following the transition to democracy in the 1990s, GM acquired a 49 percent stake in the company in 1997, and in 2004 the company once again became a wholly owned subsidiary of General Motors, reverting to its original name.[4]

It also assembles vehicles for export to other right hand drive markets in the region, such as Zimbabwe, Zambia, Mozambique, Malawi, Kenya and Mauritius.[5]

Although GM divested the last of its ownership of Isuzu, it still owns the dealership network in South Africa, and builds/assembles the Isuzu pickups and trucks.


(As of September 2014)

Current Passenger Cars[edit]

Chevrolet Cruze
Opel Astra GTC

Current Commercial Vehicles[edit]


In 1974, General Motors South Africa Ltd. began constructing GM-designed locomotives rather than importing them from the United States. In January 1987, GMSA was sold to local management which continued production as the Delta Motor Corporation. The company failed after one order of 11E-Type locomotives were constructed using GMSA leftovers. Delta Motor Corporation focused instead on automobile engines rather than locomotives, shutting down the plant where the locomotives were constructed.

The locomotive customers for GMSA (1974–1987) were:

Locomotive models[edit]


  1. ^ "Firms Eying African Strife". The Milwaukee Sentinel. 13 April 1960. Retrieved 20 February 2013. 
  2. ^ General Motors South Africa Overview, General Motors, 10.12.2013
  3. ^ Sanctions Against Apartheid, Community Agency for Social Enquiry (South Africa), New Africa Books, 1989, page 230
  4. ^ GM TO SLIP INTO DELTA’S DRIVING SEAT, CAR magazine, October 30th 2003
  5. ^ The Business of Sustainable Mobility: From Vision to Reality, Paul Nieuwenhuis, Philip Vergragt, Peter Wells Greenleaf Publishing, 2006

External links[edit]