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the etsong story:

a UK company called RDS (Rig Design Services) saw what looked like an opportunity - acquire the tooling and rights from a Bulgarian entity that had bought them and invest it into a JV with Etsong Tobacco to try to make them. Eventually they made a few Maestros and quite a few more of the vans. I drove one once,

Along the way they tried hard to get a tie up with FAW, indeed the cars ran 1.4 litre engines from FAW (Toyota design). But eventually it came to nothing as FAW didn't put their heart into it.

Finally the factory (In Qingdao) was sold to SGMW - which is the minivan producing JV between SAIC, GM and Wuling. I think they now make those SGMW minivans now, although since the Spark is made by SGMW (though sold as a Chevrolet) it could be that they produce that as well/ instead. I will be in the area next week, will ask the question.

cheers, FT.

(Just arrived in Japan, next week in China, first time in Asia for just over a year and first time with this new job, looking forward to it!)

The Morris Ital Made in China
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