sales numbers, new factories, mergers, take overs, government regulations, laws

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Volvo to invest $11 billion in new cars and factories

April 9, 2012 by Joey Wang

Volvo China

Swedish carmaker Volvo, owned by China’s Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co Ltd, plans to spend $11 billion on developing new products and boosting its manufacturing footprint in the next few years, a company spokesman said on Thursday.

Earlier in the day, German magazine Wirtschaftswoche said Geely would invest the money, but spokesman Per-Ake Froberg said that funding would come from Volvo itself and include financing from cash flow and borrowing. “It is not Geely investing $11 billion,” he said.

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Chery: Brazil supply chain to aid local production

April 9, 2012 by Joey Wang

Chery Brazil

Carmaker Chery Automobile Co plans to build a complete supply chain in Brazil as it prepares to make cars in the South American country in 2013. In-country component manufacturing will help Chery avoid the high taxes levied on imported cars and assembled vehicles with little local content.

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Brilliance profit up 43% in 2011

April 7, 2012 by Joey Wang

Brilliance China

Brilliance Automotive, BMW’s Chinese partner, reported full-year profit rose 43 percent after demand for luxury vehicles outpaced deliveries in the country’s overall automobile market. Brilliance also has a minibus joint venture with Toyota, and they sell their own cars under the ‘Brilliance‘-brand.

Brilliance’s net income rose to 1.81 billion yuan ($285 million) last year, the company said in a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange on Friday. That matched the 1.81 billion yuan average of 14 analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Sales fell 28 percent to 6.44 billion yuan.

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China’s Ma aims for F1

April 7, 2012 by Joey Wang

Ma Qinghua

Ma Qinghua (m) set his sights on becoming the first Chinese driver to race in Formula One after being announced as a member of the HRT team’s “young driver development program” on Thursday.

In a deal timed to generate interest ahead of next week’s grand prix in Shanghai, Ma’s home city, struggling HRT held out the possibility of the 24-year-old testing its car later in the year.

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GM’s China sales hit record high for March

April 6, 2012 by Joey Wang

Chevrolet China

US auto giant General Motors said Thursday that its China sales set a record for March, despite an overall slowdown in the world’s biggest car market.

The company, the world’s biggest automaker by sales, sold 257,944 vehicles in March, up more than 10 percent from the same month last year, and its highest total for the month, according to a company statement.

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Ford to invest 600 million USD in China Factory

April 6, 2012 by Joey Wang

Ford China

Ford’s China unit will invest about $600 million to increase the capacity of one of its passenger-car factories by almost 60 percent as it looks to expand its operations in the world’s largest auto market.

The automaker, along with joint venture partner Changan Automobile, will raise capacity at its factory in the southwestern Chinese city of Chongqing by 350,000 units to 950,000 vehicles annually by 2014, Ford said in an e-mailed statement yesterday. Construction is expected to begin immediately, it said.

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Agenda: the 17th Beijing Automotive Trade Fair

April 5, 2012 by Tycho de Feijter

Beijing Automobile Trade Fair

A small local auto show in Beijing, not the Beijing Auto Show 2012 (aka China Auto 2012). The nicely named ’17th Beijing Automotive Trade Fair’ (web) is basically a dealer show sexed up with babes and customizing clubs from around town. Not big, but always good for a few hours of cars. Location: Beijing Agricultural Exhibition Center (web). Date: from today April 5 until Sunday April 8. Pic from the 2011 edition, so you know what to expect…

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China is Bentley’s biggest market worldwide

April 5, 2012 by W.E. Ning

Bentley China

China has surpassed the U.S. to officially become Bentley’s largest market, with sales in the region increasing by 84.9 percent in the last quarter, according to the company. Bentley’s overall first quarter results showed a 46.6 percent increase in deliveries for the first three months of 2012, the company said.

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Brilliance-BMW planst to sell 150.000 cars in China this year

April 5, 2012 by Joey Wang

The Brilliance-BMW joint venture plans to sell 150,000 BMW sedans in 2012, up 40% compared to 2011. Brilliance-BMW sold 108,190 BMW sedans in 2011, up 53,5%, outclassing China’s passenger car sales rise of 5.2%.

“I believe sales in China’s luxury car market should rise 15 to 20 percent this year as this segment is still small in China and more consumers are chasing for premium brands,” chairman Wu Xiaoan told reporters at a results briefing. “We will grow faster than the market.”

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Fiat to make 170,000 cars a year in China

April 5, 2012 by Joey Wang

Fiat Viaggio

Fiat and Guangzhou Automobile will begin selling the first car made under their joint venture in China in the second half of 2012 at a plant with a capacity to make up to 170,000 units a year, the head of the Italian automaker said Wednesday.

“That will be the first phase,” Fiat Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne said at the automaker’s annual shareholders assembly in its hometown in northwestern Italy, referring to the number of vehicles to be produced.

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