Holden, the iconic Australian brad, under GM provided some of the cars sold under GM Wuling. Now, it's up for sale.
From China Car Times:
From China Car Times:
This is quite concerning. Holden have a big reputation down here and should Dongfeng actually buy Holden, that repuation might be tarnished.A recent media report coming directly from Australia’s own media has said that Dongfeng might be interested in taking over the iconic Australian brand, Holden
According to the Sydney Morning Herald on Thursday, Li Shaozhu, the vice-president of Dongfeng Motor Corp., revealed an interest in Holden after leading Australian Trade Minister Simon Crean and Industry Minister Kim Carr on a tour of the company’s factories in Wuhan. Dongfeng, China’s third-largest carmaker, is said to have held talks with GM already. Australian officials strongly denied the report, saying they had no plans to sell the Australian automaker.
Chinese carmakers are eyeing Opel, Saab, Hummer and other GM brands. Beijing Automotive Industry Holding is competing with Canadian car parts maker Magna International to acquire Opel, and if that deal falls through it will acquire Saab, according to a recent report by the South China Morning Post. Meanwhile, Chinese automaker Geely has begun talks to buy Sweden’s Volvo brand from Ford.
This has then been swiftly denied by just about everyone
AN EXECUTIVE at China’s third-largest car maker says the company has made contact about buying Holden from its distressed American parent, General Motors, prompting immediate denials from Holden and the Federal Government.
The vice-president of Dongfeng Motor Corporation, Li Shaozhu, revealed his interest in Holden after taking the Trade Minister, Simon Crean, and Industry Minister, Kim Carr, through his factories in Wuhan.
Asked whether his company had considered buying an Australian car maker, Mr Li said: “We are paying close attention to the impact the financial crisis has had on the international automotive industry and we’re keen about utilising such resources.”
Asked specifically about Holden, he said: “We’ve been paying attention and there have been contacts” - at which point Mr Li’s translator offered her own explanation. Mr Li told the translator, again in Chinese: “You don’t say what I didn’t say”, and the interview, recorded by the Herald, abruptly ended.
The Federal Government appears to be particularly sensitive about talk of selling the Holden brand, after it recently pledged $6.2 billion to the car industry.
“The Australian subsidiaries of Ford, General Motors and Toyota are not for sale,” Senator Carr told the Herald.
Why Dongfeng would want to take over Holden is a mystery, they have a few self designed vehicles, whilst the majority seems to have been plucked from GM’s portfolio and badge engineered for the Aussie market. What Dongfeng could gain is the Holden brand, but should it fall into Chinese hands patriotic Australians are more than likely to jump over onto the Ford bandwagon.