Chinese car maker plans aggressive push into SA with R11bn factory in Port Elizabeth

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BAIC, the car brand owned by the Beijing Automotive Group Co. from China has announced that it plans to make a R11 billion investment in a vehicle manufacturing plant in Port Elizabeth, which is expected to be operational in 2018.

In April 2017, BAIC announced its entry to the South African motor vehicle market through the launch of its D20. The group has now also launched its SUV – the X25 – to the local market, which is currently being produced in China ahead of going into local production in Port Elizabeth.

Within the next two weeks, the X25 will be sold and served by BAIC dealers in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Polokwane and other cities.  The carmaker said it plans to have a chain of dealers in 22 South African cities by the end of 2017.

Founded in 1958, BAIC Group is one of China’s four largest automotive groups with multiple business interests, the main of which are vehicle manufacturing, automobile R&D, parts manufacture, auto service and trade, education, investment and finance.

In 2016, BAIC Group sold 2.85 million cars in over 80 countries around the world. BAIC has increased its production bases and assembly plants dedicated to passenger vehicles, commercial vehicles and electric vehicles in more than 20 countries.

Since 1984, the group has established a series of joint ventures partnerships with Jeep, Daimler and Hyundai.