Nanjing to build MG's in Oklahoma - China Car Forums
chinese cars - china car forums, chery, geely CCF - The Chinese Car Community China Car Forums - Zhonghua Junjie
Home :: Forums  :: Manufacturers :: Articles :: About Us :: Vendors :: Analysis Reports

Go Back   China Car Forums > Chinese Car Manufacturers > SAIC (Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation) > Nanjing Automobile

ChinaCarForums.com is the premier Chinese Car Forum on the internet. Registered Users do not see the above ads.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-12-2006, 01:08 AM   #1
Raul
Senior Member
 
Raul's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Finland
Posts: 546
Exclamation Nanjing to build MG's in Oklahoma

"Today Nanjing Automobile Group will announce that the company will build the MG TF Coupe at a factory in Ardmore, Oklahoma by 2008 and locate its American and European headquarters 90 miles north in Oklahoma City. The new plant will create 500 new jobs for the area. The MG TF Roadster, meanwhile, will be assembled at MG's plant in Longbridge, England."

http://www.autoblog.com/2006/07/12/m...ooooooklahoma/

"DETROIT, July 11 — Can the mystique of a British sports car be recreated by a Chinese company in America’s heartland?

Following in Japan's Tracks That’s the bet by Nanjing Automobile Group, which plans to resurrect the fabled MG marque in a tricontinental demonstration of how truly global the automotive industry has become.

Nanjing, which purchased the assets of the bankrupt MG Rover Group last year, aims to be the first Chinese carmaker to open a factory in the United States. The company has scheduled a news conference for Wednesday in Oklahoma to announce plans to build a newly designed MG TF Coupe there, starting in 2008. It said the coupe would compete with cars like the Mazda Miata, which sells for $20,000 to $25,000.

It also will assemble a convertible TF Roadster version at MG’s now-shuttered factory in Longbridge, England, and three sedan models in China. American and European operations for MG Motors will be based in Oklahoma City, 90 miles north of the new factory in Ardmore, Okla.

MG’s rebirth under Nanjing, which said it had $2 billion in financing for the endeavor, comes as several Chinese companies are setting their sights on the United States, the world’s largest car market.

Several Chinese carmakers have said they are two to three years away from exporting vehicles to the United States. One, Geely Automobile, displayed a $10,000 sedan at this year’s Detroit auto show, although the car fell short of American safety and emissions standards.

Geely and Chery Automobile, a state-owned company that has sparred with General Motors over the similarity of its name to the Chevy nickname for the Chevrolet brand, plan to sell cars in the United States in 2008. Only Nanjing, however, has said it intends to build vehicles outside China, where it will face higher labor costs than in its home country.

“We want to be a global company,’’ said Duke T. Hale, a former executive at Mazda, Isuzu and Lotus who will be chief executive of MG Motors. “We don’t want to be a company that simply exports out of China. We don’t want to be seen as just another Chinese car company.’’

Nanjing also is unique among the Chinese car companies in its plan to revive an established brand with a Western following. Mr. Hale called that a critical advantage the company held over its Chinese rivals. “I’ve got a brand name that still resonates,’’ he said.

The company says its lineup will be true to MG’s heritage, to the delight of enthusiasts such as Roger Parker, a technical consultant with the MG Owners’ Club.

The club, run out of a large MG parts shop near Cambridge, England, has about 40,000 members worldwide. Many live in the United States, despite the brand’s 26-year absence here.

“If they don’t get the product right, they will certainly do damage that will be difficult to recover from,” said Mr. Parker, whom Nanjing officials consulted about their plans. “It’s clear that they are very committed and very conscious of the rich history that they have bought.”

MG’s limited appeal will ensure that Nanjing remains merely a niche player here.

But construction of the first Chinese auto plant in the United States, which will create more than 500 jobs, carries a great deal of symbolism about the industry’s future.

“It wasn’t very long ago that nobody believed the Japanese would build plants in the United States,” said David E. Davis Jr., who co-founded Automobile magazine and now runs an online publication for car lovers called Winding Road. After Lee A. Iacocca, the brash chairman of Chrysler, challenged them to do so, Mr. Davis added, “they did, and they blew everyone’s pants off.”

MG, originally called Morris Garages, began selling cars in the 1920’s. Its iconic TC convertible was a big hit in the United States after servicemen grew attached to earlier MG models in Europe during World War II.

“MG was really an integral part of the foreign car revolution that started in the late 40’s and early 50’s,” Mr. Davis said. “They weren’t terribly good cars, but they were so different and they were so much fun to drive that we all forgave them for their lack of reliability and fragility.”

The brand withdrew from the American market in 1980, leaving a generation of enthusiasts longing for its return. Sales continued in other countries as ownership passed through several hands, including Honda and BMW, until production ceased in April 2005 and all 6,000 workers at the factory in England were let go.

“It’s the first sports car that I remember as a child,” said Paul Fucito, who grew up around the corner from an MG dealership in New Jersey and remembers its closing.

Mr. Fucito, 34, a spokesman for George Washington University, has never lost hope that he will one day own an MG, although the company’s bankruptcy last year raised doubts for him about the chances of that happening. He participates in several online forums devoted to the brand and fantasizes about a new MG, painted British racing green, with wire wheels and chrome accents.

“It’s been that dream car that I’ve always wanted,” he said.

Several automakers have capitalized on demand for nostalgic nameplates in recent years, including BMW with its modernized Mini Cooper. Chevrolet has been deluged with requests to bring back the Camaro after it unveiled a concept version in January.

Jeremy Anwyl, president of Edmunds.com, a Web site that gives consumers advice about buying cars, said MG had the potential to join the list of successfully resurrected marques, as long as Nanjing kept quality high and prices low. “It’s not just a question of slapping an MG brand on something and expecting it to be an automatic success,” he said.

Mr. Anwyl expects to see the new MG models sporting the brand’s distinct vertical grille and octagonal logo but without the flaws of earlier models.

“Hopefully some of the electrical problems you wouldn’t bring back,” he said. “If you really want to go for nostalgia, you put on a leaky roof.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/07/12/bu...tQ&oref=slogin

__________________
"It took Japan 40 years to become a great automotive nation. It took South Korea 20 years. I think it will take China as little as 10 to 15 years."

Giorgetto Giugiaro
Raul is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 07-12-2006, 02:05 AM   #2
proximal
Member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: California
Posts: 66
Default

This doesn't make any sense, but maybe I'm missing something. They're going to build and staff a brand new factory and establish headquarters in the middle of a country they've never been in before? To build a car that could easily be built at an existing factory? It doesn't seem like they're going to be building a whole lot of cars, so it hardly seems worth the investment.
proximal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2006, 06:37 AM   #3
Windy
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Devon, UK
Posts: 469
Default



Forget Bricklin etc - MG is coming to the USA!!!



Another big announcement is due next Monday covering the UK operations.
Windy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2006, 09:21 AM   #4
Andy
Junior Member
 
Andy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 28
Default

Why are there no steeling wheels on the cars and why are the flags flipped left to right?
Andy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2006, 09:50 AM   #5
dragin
Senior Member
 
dragin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,213
Default a marque that endures

Quote:
Originally Posted by Raul
"Today Nanjing Automobile Group will announce that [U]the company will build the MG TF Coupe at a factory in Ardmore.....

....Nanjing also is unique among the Chinese car companies in its plan to revive an established brand with a Western following. Mr. Hale called that a critical advantage the company held over its Chinese rivals. “I’ve got a brand name that still resonates,’’ he said........
The question of NAC keeping the MG name has been discussed a lot on this forum. I think the words of Hale show just how enduring the brand still is among folks in the U.S.. The name MG may mean nothing to the younger generation now, but when lofty words of reminiscence are uttered by the older generation, that is sure to change.
dragin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2006, 10:04 AM   #6
Windy
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Devon, UK
Posts: 469
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by dragin
but when lofty words of reminiscence are uttered by the older generation, that is sure to change.
helped considerable by the history of the brand. Eg. there aren't many other brands that can say - Last time we came to the USA we went to Bonneville and took home a world speed record - http://www.peterstevensdesign.co.uk/speedrecords.htm
Windy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2006, 10:49 AM   #7
edge
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 280
Default

Seems like a great collector's item for car fanatics.
edge is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-13-2006, 06:36 AM   #8
Puppetland
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 66
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by dragin
The question of NAC keeping the MG name has been discussed a lot on this forum. I think the words of Hale show just how enduring the brand still is among folks in the U.S.. The name MG may mean nothing to the younger generation now, but when lofty words of reminiscence are uttered by the older generation, that is sure to change.

Part of the appeal of the MG brand in the USA was the heritage of British production. An MG made in America may not have the same appeal.
Puppetland is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-14-2006, 03:29 AM   #9
MartinW
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Chester, UK
Posts: 83
Default

Presumably that's why the MINI has done so well, owned by BMW, made in the UK, and selling well globally, then, Puppetland. Didn't BMW consider building MINI in China?

An MG, owned by a little known (in the Western world) Chinese company, made in Ardmore is less likely to succeed?

With the right marketing campaign playing on the fact that MG is and was intrinsically part of the US sports car scene will surely help, and with the Made in US tag it can only help.

MINI was a marketing success, the Mini had had a brief appearance in the US between it's launch and 1973, yet its return worked, probably better than the Beetle's return.

MG has an edge, 80% of production went to the US between the 40s and 1980. There are more MG enthusiasts today in the US likely to order one than ever there were Mini fans before the launch of MINI. Sure, some of the MG enthusiasts won't be keen if it is not built at Abingdon, but I would think that the right marketing would work. Even with its various recalls, MINI has succeeded.
MartinW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-14-2006, 07:01 AM   #10
Puppetland
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 66
Default

MINI is not the argument. It has succeeded where as MG is still locked in limbo and the subject of many 'letters of intent' and endless press conferences.

Even with the right marketing campaign I fear and American MG will struggle to make enough impact in the USA to make the operation profitable. I just hope they give it the best start possible; they must get the product right and not launch with a rehashed version of the mediocre MG TF.

I feel extremely under whelmed by the proposed sketches of the 'new' Modern Gentleman I have seen so far.
Puppetland is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

                    
All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:11 AM.



Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.