The Unite trade union said on Tuesday it had struck a deal to secure the future of GM Opel car plants in Britain after the planned sale of the carmaker, which makes Vauxhall cars in the UK, to Canada's Magna (MGa.TO).

Unite said Magna had agreed there would be no compulsory redundancies among the carmaker's 5,500 staff in Britain, the majority of whom are employed at plants in Luton, southern England, and Ellesmere Port in northwest England.

The union said the agreement secured the plants' futures.

This agreement removes the uncertainty surrounding our plants and our people's jobs. It gives both plants job security and a future through to 2013, providing a good basis for a long-term future beyond that, said Tony Woodley, joint general secretary of Unite.

Unite said production at the Ellesmere Port site would grow significantly from the level originally proposed to nearly 148,000 units and Luton would remain a key manufacturing site.

It added that 600 jobs that would have lost have now been preserved as a result of the agreement.

In return, the workforce has agreed to a two-year pay freeze.

(Reporting by Matt Scuffham; Editing by Paul Sandle)