The final British-built Vauxhall Astra has rolled off the firm’s Ellesmere Port production line, ending a run that has seen more than four million models produced since 1981.

Production of the seventh-generation Astra came to a halt on April 6 of this year, with the final model to come off the production line being an Astra Sports Tourer SRi Nav.

Now, work is being undertaken to transition Ellesmere Port into an EV-only manufacturing site in time for production restarting in early 2023. It ties in with Vauxhall’s commitment to switch to selling only electric vehicles from 2028 and forms a part of a wider commitment by Stellantis to become a carbon-neutral group worldwide by 2038. It also plans to halve its carbon footprint by 2030.

Paul Willcox, managing director of Vauxhall and senior vice-president at Stellantis, said: “Over the last 60 years, Ellesmere Port has become one of the great British car plants, producing some of the most popular cars on the roads across generations.

The Ellesmere Port is being converted to produce EVs

“With one era closing, we’re now looking forward to an all-new electric era at Ellesmere, with the site becoming the first Stellantis plant to produce solely electric vehicles. Vauxhall is fast moving towards an electric future and I’m pleased to see the next generation of Vauxhall electric vehicles made in Britain.”

Ellesmere Port opened in 1962 and has, since that time, produced more than 5.2 million vehicles. Its new transformation will see £100 million invested into the plant to allow it to produce the very latest electric vehicles.

When Ellesmere Plant reopens it will commence production of the Vauxhall Combo-e and its Opel-badged equivalents, as well as Peugeot e-Partner and Citroen e-Berlingo vans. The new Astra, meanwhile, will now be built at Opel’s Rüsselsheim site in Germany.


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