Zotye expanding lineup
source: Gasgoo.comOctober 17, 2008 - Zotye Holding Group, a small startup automaker in China, will launch Fiat-based cars Multipla, Lybra next month and in early 2009 respectively, said Beijing Times today. The company has decided to launch four sedan platforms, including the previous Jiangnan Alto, Zotye 2008 and Zotye 5008.
The four platforms will produce cars of the A-series, Z-series, L-series and M-series. The A-series is based on the Jiangnan Alto that Zotyoe acquired in 2007, the Z series includes the small-car Zotye 2008 and crossover Zotye 2008 which now are available in the market, and the L-series and M-series are derived from Fiat's Lybra and Multipla sedans whose production line and technology have been bought by Zotye.
The Multipla made by Zotye is an all-new crossover model that combines the sedan's comfort with MPV spaciousness and SUV sportiness, and will be launched next month. The Lybra car will be positioned as a mid- to high-end sedan and will go on sale in 2009. The Fiat-born vehicles will be produced under a new brand and will be sold in Chinese and export markets.
Wu Motuo, Zotye Holding CEO, said that the company plans to build 11 Fiat-based models. Production of the Lybra stopped in Italy in July 2005, and then Zotye Holding bought from Fiat Auto the assembly line tooling and intellectual-property rights for the Lancia Lybra mid-sized sedan, and by 2008 the company may have bought about ten other Fiat models, including Multipla, to reach its output target of 100,000 vehicles.
Zotye Holding was formed in 1992 in Yongkang City, Zhejiang province, as an automotive sheet metal supplier and entered the auto industry as of 2006. It launched its new Zotye 5008 model at the Chengdu auto show last month, and is expanding its main manufacturing base in Changsha city of Hunan province, where the Zotye Multipla is to roll off line later this month.
The company sold 31,577 units of its small car Zotye 2008 during 2007. The automaker aims to sell 500,000 vehicles a year with sales revenue of 50 billion yuan ($7.3 billion) by 2012.