Thursday, March 02, 2006

China's Lifan Auto to Buy Brazilian Engine Plant

BEIJING-Chongqing Lifan Group, one of the leading domestic motorcycle makers, said it plans to buy an engine plant in Brazil to speed up the research and development needed to make its own cars.
The private company, which received government approval to start making cars in China in December, is the only bidder for Tritec Motors Ltd in Campo Largo, Brazil, which is now owned by BMW Motors Corp, according to company officials who declined to specify the purchase price.
Tritec Motors is a US$5 million joint venture formed by BMW and DaimlerChrysler Corp, producing one of the most technologically advanced and fuel-efficient engines.

The engines are used in BMW's Mini Coopers and in DaimlerChrysler's PT Cruisers and Dodge Neons.

"After the purchase, we plan to buy the whole production line, take it apart and ship it back in pieces. It will be re-assembled in Chongqing City in China," said a marketing department executive surnamed Lu.

"We hope to acquire more core and advanced technology and shorten our time for developing our own engines as we've come to the market later than others and the cost of doing it ourselves would be too expensive."

Lu added, "We are exploring a different way of developing our own cars."

Other private Chinese automakers create their own technology or borrow it from their foreign partners.

Lifan currently uses imported engines in its first model, the Lifan 520. Its next three products, however, will make be powered by the new engines. Buying the engine plant is only the first chapter in Lifan's plan to build its own cars and catch up with other domestic automakers such as Chang'an Group, Chery Automobile Corp and Geely Automobile Corp.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

i wonder why brazil...could they choose a place more remote..i guess they want south america industry

2:58 PM  

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