100 New Ford Dealers In China

2011 Ford Fiesta

Ford Motor Co. is pursuing its plans on expanding and will add 100 new dealerships in China which will bring the number to a total of 340. According to Joe Hinrichs who is Ford’s Asia and Africa operations president, the plan was to have 310 dealerships but the growing demand convinced the company that an additional 30 dealerships will fully satisfy the continuous growth of the Chinese market.

The company is currently targeting inland cities with the new showrooms and there zones will be replacing the big coastal regions as the most important growth driver in the world’s largest auto market. According to a statement made by Hinrichs to Reuters, “we did a pretty thorough study and looked at where our opportunities were and decided we need to be more aggressive.” He also added that in 2011, Ford will be opening more dealerships if plans go smoothly.

Due to the reason that the economy of China is continuously growing and people are becoming wealthier, the smaller cities in the west and in the north are attracting the attention of many car manufacturers that are already dominating the coastal cities. The officials at Ford affirmed that they are expecting a healthy 70 % growth for the upcoming 10 years from the African and Asia-Pacific region.

In 2009 the commercialization of automobiles in Tier 3 and 2 markets increased with 67.7 % and 56.5 %, respectively, in comparison with a Tier 1 market increase of 42.6 % – according to Xu Changming who is a senior industry researcher at the State Information Center.

2011 Ford Fiesta

A large reason for the growth of Ford’s market in China is the Fiesta subcompact that has a very low selling price, $11,700 – $16,000 (approximately 78,800 – 110,000 yuan). The Fiesta is very popular especially in the smaller cities where the drivers have the tendency to be more attentive about the money they pay for automobiles.

Ford is not the only country that is currently focusing on the Chinese market. General Motors recently launched a new brand – Baojun, a brand that will manufacture very affordable cars based on older generation General Motors cars. Their first model is the 630 Sedan, a car based on the older generation Buick Excelle – in turn inspired by the Lacetti model manufactured by Daewoo. GM with its partners, the SAIC Motor Corporation, has similar plans, planning on introducing 100 new dealerships in the first half of 2011 to sell the new 630 Sedan and other models the manufacturer will launch. Most likely, the next model will most likely be a very affordable SUV.

Nissan along with its partner – Dongfeng Motor Group, recently launched a joint venture brand exclusively for the Chinese expanding market, naming it Venucia.

Ford is the only American manufacturer that escaped bankruptcy in 2009, but its response to the Chinese market is coming rather late because Volkswagen AG and General Motors have already gained a significant lead. However, Ford is rapidly gaining ground and expanding as it already built an engine plant with its partners – Changan Ford Mazda Automobile Co. in the SW part of Chongqing, China. Ford is also planning to build a new engine plant there and a 30 % owned company by the name of Jianling Motor will be expanding by constructing a new $300 million facility.

For the first 10 months of 2010, Ford along with its partners managed to sell about 470,000 cars in China which is 39 % more in comparison to the same period of last year, outperforming a 34.8 % gain of the entire Chinese market. In the same period, Toyota managed to sell 643,599 cars, 17% more cars to the similar period of 2009.


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