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Chinese cars coming to U.S.?

Arizona dealer will be the first to sell a full line of Chinese made autos in the United States.
June 28, 2004: 9:17 AM EDT

DETROIT (Reuters) - An Arizona car dealer is gearing up to become the first to sell a full line of Chinese-made vehicles in the United States at Wal-Mart-style prices he hopes will lure tens of thousands of buyers.

David Shelburg and his privately held company, China Motor Corp., want to cash in on China's fast-growing auto industry and cheap labor costs by establishing a network of 100 dealers to sell vehicles from a trio of Chinese manufacturers across the United States by the fall.

The plan is to have the dealers sell as many as 60,000 Chinese-built cars and trucks at prices starting below $10,000, by the end of the year, Shelburg's business associates told Reuters.

Full Story:
http://money.cnn.com/2004/06/27/pf/autos/c...dex.htm?cnn=yes
 

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Nice idea, but federalization costs would push the prices past the established and arguably better competition. Getting Buick GL8's imported with 3400's underhood would be easy as hell, but anything that isn't would be very difficult, when you don't have GM-sized pockets.

But, cheap cars, even ****ty cheap cars can be tremendously successful. May I point out the best-selling overnight success in Canadian automotive history, the Hyundai Pony. All Hyundai did was import their old-generation Pony (dating to 1975) in 1984 to Canada, selling them for 36% less than in South Korea and taking a loss on every one. They sold like crazy. People really liked the Pony, because it was extremely easy to work on (I believe this is the easiest car to do ANY mechanical work on ever), and all the parts are simple and very well located. (ie manual choke (no choke trouble), points distributor (no electronics to go off the wall), rebuild the engine in 30 minutes, etc.)

I haven't seen a Pony on the road or in a salvage yard in at least a year. They sold something like 137 000 units between 1984 and 1987. I see more 1987 Saab 900's (something really small amount sold) on the road than Pony's. Hyundai did the same thing many times throughout the period in many countries, and it really helped to establish the Hyundai name all over the world. But, it wasn't a terribly good establishment (read: infamous).



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Originally posted by surferdude00711@Jun 28 2004, 08:37 PM
I just thought it would be funny if they offered fotune cookies instead of money of an incentives.
:p

I suppose there will come a time when the Chinese begin to offer their wares here in the US - after all, turnaround is fair play. I don't see this happening any time soon for the many reasons elaborated in the article and by GMIers.

When and if David Shelburg develops a plan to take his company public, I would avoid this IPO like the plague.
 

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i want to see one of these things. if it's like any other chinese built machinery, it's probably a blatant copy of something else. they like to take things apart and copy them, from what i understand. that's what all the cheap tools they build are, just copies of something else.
 

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How long though before the current major manufactureres have already and are continueing to set up plants in China start to export them back here? GM is already doing it with engines. Next, they'll be packaging those engines in cars.
 

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As long as there are *incentives* for companies to move factories offshore, instead of incentives to move jobs back here, our standard of living will decline, like it has for the last 25 years. American industry has to realize that after the good-paying jobs are overseas, and the only jobs here are hamburger-flipper jobs, Americans won't be able to buy new cars at all. Detroit is slow to see this because because the auto industry pays well, and its' employees have money to buy their products, but this is not the case elsewhere. I worked in a lawn mower factory where they imported nearly all the parts and only did welding, painting, and assembly. These were professional riding mowers, prices starting at about $5000 each. My point is that if American workers don't have good jobs, they can't keep the economy going like in the past. I recently read an article about the fact that car buyers are going for longer term loans, keeping cars longer before trading them in, thus reducing the demand for cars. It's easy to see that if the average car buyer goes from buying a car every four years, to every five years, demand goes down 20 or 25 %. "free trade" isn't working.
 

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What d oyou mean about fair play?
Since Mao Tse Tung took the reins, China has never been an open market. If any product is allowed to be imported, China's government extracts blood from that company. And piracy is rampant and condoned.
China wants one thing- to build the product themselves and export it to you.
Their constant devaluation of their currency, in the face of world condemnation, is evidence of the lenghts that they will go to be a major manufacturing country.
 

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Originally posted by PURPLEIMPALA@Jul 15 2004, 02:57 PM
As long as there are *incentives* for companies to move factories offshore, instead of incentives to move jobs back here, our standard of living will decline, like it has for the last 25 years. American industry has to realize that after the good-paying jobs are overseas, and the only jobs here are hamburger-flipper jobs, Americans won't be able to buy new cars at all. Detroit is slow to see this because because the auto industry pays well, and its' employees have money to buy their products, but this is not the case elsewhere. I worked in a lawn mower factory where they imported nearly all the parts and only did welding, painting, and assembly. These were professional riding mowers, prices starting at about $5000 each. My point is that if American workers don't have good jobs, they can't keep the economy going like in the past. I recently read an article about the fact that car buyers are going for longer term loans, keeping cars longer before trading them in, thus reducing the demand for cars. It's easy to see that if the average car buyer goes from buying a car every four years, to every five years, demand goes down 20 or 25 %. "free trade" isn't working.
The most significant "incentive" to do this is that the vast majority of Americans shop based on price and although if asked, they may say they support US-built goods, they barely look at where the products they buy are made. If your company isn't selling at or near the lowest price, you will lose sales. If customers don't care where your product is built, just that it's the cheapest, you will take every cost advantage you can get, including overseas low-cost factories.

The biggest thing we could do to combat this is to convince everyone to look for goods made in their own country, or at least a country with a similar cost structure and fair trade practices. Of course, this means that everyone will take a hit in their standard of living, since we won't be taking advantage of cheaper labor rates (and lax environmental/labor laws) of some other countries, but in theory it would provide a more sustainable standard of living.

Of course, it's never easy to convince people to accept a short term loss for a long term gain.
 
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