Chinese Cars Inch Closer to US

Gone from Detroit this year were previous Chinese exhibitors like Chamco, the short-lived American distributor for Hebei Zhongxing Automobiles, Geely and Changfeng.

Published: 19-Jan-2009

AT the Brilliance Jinbei Automobile display in Cobo Center on Monday, journalists and guests were served that quintessential American form of refreshment, Coca-Cola -- in 6-ounce glass bottles.

The Chinese are keen observers of American tastes. The country’s automakers can be expected to cater to those tastes while working to enter the United States market. But Chinese cars are still not here, despite promises from some of the companies at last year’s Detroit show that their arrival was imminent.

Some of those carmakers are already out of business; others are struggling to survive. Analysts said that while the remaining companies still had a long way to go in producing a car that met American tastes and safety standards, they should not be underestimated.


BYD F3DM at 2009 North American International Auto Show. Photo credit: EV World.Com

Over the last 10 years, China has spent nearly 2 billion yuan ($294 million U.S. dollars) developing cars using alternative energies.

BYD E6 is all electric crossover that will is likely to be first sold to US fleet operators.

BYD will begin by selling the e6 directly to US fleet customers before developing a dealership network.


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