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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Do you know when China started to manufacture cars ?? I thought it was in the 1940's but I was wrong. In 1924 "Shanghai Horse Bazaar & Motor Company, Ltd." manufactured a total of six Studebaker's in their Shanghai workshop.

http://www.hemmings.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/articles.editorial/article_id/442



"Shanghai-Studebaker wasn't the only foreign car manufacturer in China. General Motors established a branch office to Shanghai in 1922 !!
 

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I do not think Korea has become a great automobile nation.
 

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I think China's industry is fundamentally different than that of Korea. Korea has only had four major brands, and they've only existed since the 1970's. Prior to that Korea had little or no history of building cars.

Like China, Korea's early cars were licensed built clones of European cars or modified versions thereof (though the first car, the Hyundai Pony, was largely original). But unlike China there was little or no domestic competition. Korea's industry developed more like Sweden's - small players in the local market who grew out of larger industrial manufacturers (Saab from Saab Aeroplane, Volvo from SKF bearings).

China's industry now is probably more akin to the French industry. There are a large number of small players just as there were in France in, say, 1918. But already there are emerging some big players with more advanced products - just as Peugeot, Citroën, Renault, Mathis, and later SIMCA emerged in France as the mass producers. Smaller players rely too heavily on reworked versions of other people's cars - you might have seen the same thing in France in the twenties, where a Bignan might have actually been a Salmson in different clothes, or a BNC might've used a Delaunay-Belleville Chassis, or a Chenard-Walcker might've been a reworked Ford Pilot.

As in France, the industry trend in China will be towards consolidation, originality, and mass production.

China, of course, also has more of a history with cars than Korea. The first cars made in China to Chinese designs were built around the time of Dr. Sun Yat Sen's republic, but they were little more than one-offs. The industry really began in the 1950's with the Shanghai SH-760, the Hong-Qi, the He-Ping, the Jin-Bu, the Jingganshan, and the Xi'an-Jin. Surprisingly, some of the makers of these cars are still with us - Hong-Qi being most prominent. Shanghai is now Shanghai-VW and what was Jangganshan, named for Chairman Mao's first army base in the QingKang mountains, is now the Isuzu-affiliate Jiangling.

Ford also contemplated making cars in China but found Singapore to be a more suitable location - less instability in the 1910's and 1920's.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Tiggo said:
I do not think Korea has become a great automobile nation.
Hyundai produces over 2,000,000 cars a year. It is now the seventh biggest car manufacturer in the world. Hyundai is aiming to enter the top five global carmakers list by 2009. Hyundai is producing more and more cars in the US.

Kia is the fastest growing make in European market, last year sales increased over 40%. A new factory is being built in Czech Rebublic.

General Motors of USA has many Korean made models in it's line-up, like the new Chevrolet Aveo, Suzuki Reno, Forenza, Verona etc.

South-Korea is definetily one of the greatest automobile nations in the world after US, Japan and Germany.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
jikki said:
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
The above words were mentioned by Giorgetto Giugiaro, one of the greatest car designers ever. Here is my version and explanation of it.

Japan: First cars of Japanese design were designed after WWII. Some car production was tried even before 1920 (like Datsan, Mitsubishi and Isuzu) but it was in the late fourties when Toyota's (then Toyopet) first designs took shape. In the early 1980's Japanese cars were spreading all over the world, especially in the USA and Asia.

South-Korea: In 1975 Hyundai Pony introduced designed by Giugiaro. It was Hyundai's first own model (before that they made Ford Cortina's). Kia produced passenger cars from the 1970's but these were mainly Mazda designs. It was not untill the early 1990's when Kia introduced their own Sephia and Sportage models. By the year 2000+ Korea is becoming a great automotive nation.

China: First cars were made between the wars but these were handmade built small quantities. From the late Fourties China built some Russian and French designed trucks in mainly rural areas. It was in the late 1980's when Guangzhou-Peugeot and Xiali started to build passenger cars for ordinary people (Hongqi was for party-leaders). During the 1990's China's auto industry grew steadily. In 1998-1999 passenger car production really started to take off and I became interested about Chinese cars. Now China's car production is expanding rapidly and like Giugiaro said "it will take China as little as 10 to 15 years" to be a top automotive nation. I would estimate that by the year 2015 Chinese cars are seen everywhere in the world.
 

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from "shrimp among whales", to mighty maker of fine cars

Raul said:
South-Korea is definetily one of the greatest automobile nations in the world after US, Japan and Germany.
Here's a good website to tell the long story of that country's AI history.
http://www.auto-of-parts.com/article/Korean automobile

Giugiaro designed the first Hyundai Pony. In 76' it became Korea's first car to be exported.
It seems he custom designed it for Koreans who were short in stature in those days (that's ancient history now). But for tall foreigners who caught a Pony taxi ride, it was head konking time when the first bump in the road came up. There just wasn't any headroom in the rear at all.
 

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Raul said:
Do you know when China started to manufacture cars ?? I thought it was in the 1940's but I was wrong. In 1924 "Shanghai Horse Bazaar & Motor Company, Ltd." manufactured a total of six Studebaker's in their Shanghai workshop.

http://www.hemmings.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/articles.editorial/article_id/442



"Shanghai-Studebaker wasn't the only foreign car manufacturer in China. General Motors established a branch office to Shanghai in 1922 !!
Sometimes it makes you wonder about what would have happened if the communist revolution never occurred. Japan and Korea would never have strengthened through the Vietnam and Korea wars, and Chinese automobile industry would never have been put back.
 

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What if questions are ..... ehh quite interestingly boring. :D
 
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