Detroit Bureau on Twitter

Posts Tagged ‘PATEC’

GM Aiming for 5 Million Sales in China

Maker planning investment of up to $7 billion in bid to dominate booming market.

by on Apr.19, 2011

The Chevrolet Malibu gets its official launch in Shanghai.

General Motors plans to invest between $5 billion and $7 billion in a bid to double what are already record sales in the booming Chinese automotive market.

Last October, the maker became the first ever to top 2 million sales in China during a single year, ending 2010 with a grand total of 2.35 million.  But the carmaker’s top China hand says the goal is to pump that up to around 5 million units by 2015.

The new Chevrolet Malibu, getting its official launch at the 2011 Shanghai Motor, is one of the keys to GM’s planned growth.

A Smart Source for Auto News!

“We have set some aggressive goals with our five-year plan,” said GM China President and managing director Kevin Wale. “We are confident that we will achieve every one of our goals by providing local consumers great products and compelling designs relevant to the China market and by following our strategy of working in China, with China, and for China,” he said during the opening of the 2011 Shanghai show.


GM And Chinese Partner SAIC Will Significantly Expand Alliance

Is the deal a payback for SAIC’s investment in GM IPO?

by on Nov.03, 2010

GM and SAIC will expand cooperation on future products. They've already developed a number together, including the Buick Riviera Concept.

General Motors and its Chinese partner, SAIC Motor Corp., have announced a potentially significant expansion of their decade-old partnership, one that could reach well beyond the fast-growing Asian nation.

The non-binding agreement calls for the makers, among other things, to cooperate on the development of “new energy vehicles,” such as the Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid.  It also expands their joint effort to penetrate other emerging markets, such as India.

“Strategically, this is about GM getting a leg up in China without having to pay for it all on its own,” said Jim Hal, chief analyst with Detroit-based 2953 Analytics.  The deal is also about expanding access to India, “which may mimic the huge growth we’ve seen in China in recent years.

Click Here for Free Subscription!

But several observers, including sources within GM, tell that the new venture may also be a quid-pro-quo for a possible investment by SAIC in the upcoming General Motors IPO.  The maker, according to recent reports, will stage its long-awaited stock offering on November 18th, with shares to be offered at somewhere between $26 and $29. (Click Here for the full story.)

“The Chinese desperately want access to the technology we’ve been using in the Volt,” said a ranking executive involved in the U.S. maker’s electrification efforts.  “But so far, anyway, we’ve been reluctant to share it with them,” he added, requesting anonymity because of his sensitive management position.

Whether SAIC actually will invest in GM could be a potentially hot potato for a company that survived last year’s bankruptcy only with a $50 billion federal bailout, and which has become known to critics as “Government Motors.”  In light of this week’s elections, such a move by SAIC could be even more politically charged.


Buick Back From the Dead

Maker planning three more models.

by on May.06, 2010

With sales of the 2010 LaCrosse up 214%, so far this year, Buick officials are betting the brand can double its overall volume.

“I just don’t understand why General Motors kept Buick and killed Pontiac,” suggested the gentleman sitting next to me on the flight back from Los Angeles, yesterday.  There are a lot of folks who echo that sentiment, though they might substitute Saturn or even long-gone Oldsmobile as the brand that should have survived GM’s bankruptcy.

Until recently, there was really just one reason why thye long-troubled Buick brand remained part of the automaker’s shrinking line-up.  In a word, said GM design czar Ed Welburn, “China.”  While Buick has shrunk to little more than an asterisk on the sales charts in the U.S., it is one of the top sellers in what is now the world’s largest and fastest-growing auto market.

But those who’ve written off the Buick brand for dead, at least here in the States may be in for a surprise.  Indeed, the once-grand nameplate is not just treading water but looking to grow, with three new models on tap.

Sign Up...It's Free!

Signs of a turnaround began to appear, several years ago, with the launch of the big Buick Enclave crossover. Last year brought the launch of an all-new LaCrosse, and the midsize sedan has been exceeding even Buick’s optimistic expectations, LaCrosse sales climbing steadily for seven months and hitting their highest retail mark in April – sales for the year up 214%.

“We are starting to gain traction in sales,” proclaimed Buick’s marketing chief, John Schwegman, during an “immersion” meeting, this week.  “But we’re not declaring victory yet.”