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Jaguar Land Rover to build SUV model in China

Le 27 juillet 2017, 05:55 dans Humeurs 0

British automaker Jaguar Land Rover has announced it will build its new E-PACE compact SUV in Austria and China.


The company said its plants in the United Kingdom are close to full capacity, and it expects there will be high demand for the five-seat E-PACE after the F-PACE performance SUV became the fastest-selling car in the company's history, with 80,000 sold so far this year.


JLR launched the E-PACE in London on Thursday, with a stunt driver making it into the Guinness Book of World Records after making a 15.3 meter jump and 270-degree barrel roll in the vehicle.


Chinese automaker Chery, JLR's joint-venture partner in China, will build the cars at its factory in Changshu, Jiangsu province. Vehicles produced there will be for Chinese customers. The car will go on sale in China in 2018.


Automaker Magna Steyr will build the E-PACE in Austria, starting late 2017, and also make the all-electric Jaguar I-PACE model from 2018.


Wolfgang Stadler, JLR's executive director of manufacturing, said:"The UK is the heart and soul of our manufacturing, design and engineering capabilities. However, with our UK facilities operating close to capacity, our contract manufacturing partnership with Magna Steyr and our joint venture in China provide additional volume, agility and flexibility to deliver the new Jaguar E-PACE, alongside our other exciting vehicle launches this year."


JLR signed a joint venture with Chery in 2012 and has made the Range Rover Evoque, Land Rover Discovery Sport, and Jaguar XFL in China.


China, where 120,000 JLR vehicles were sold in 2016, is the company's largest single-country market, generating one-fifth of global sales. Retail sales for June were up 65.3 percent year-on-year in China, with UK sales up 3.8 percent, Europe up 3.7 percent and North America up 3.2 percent.


Andy Goss, JLR sales operations director, said: "Jaguar Land Rover saw another positive performance in June, led by strong sales in China, both from imported vehicles and our Chinese joint venture."


JLR, which manufactures vehicles under the Jaguar, Land Rover, and Range Rover brands, said Jaguar sold 15,343 vehicles in June, up 16.4 percent from last June. The company said sales of the new Land Rover Discovery continue to grow, following its launch in North America and China.

Faraday Future's dreams of mass production hit a bump in the road

Le 20 juillet 2017, 05:06 dans Humeurs 0

One Chinese internet tycoon who has vowed to make luxury electric vehicles faces a bumpy road to survive the race for investment, as Jia Yueting, founder of Chinese technology company LeEco, is seeking to reboot his currently failing Faraday Future project.


Electric vehicle startup Faraday Future has publicly admitted its $1 billion plant construction plan has been dropped after work halted on its site outside Las Vegas in November, despite its founder Jia previously saying the plant work had been relocated to fulfill the plan to produce the electric FF91 model in 2018, according to a letter through his WeChat public account.


Industrial insiders said Jia was caught in a dilemma of whether he should burn through more cash to finally get the volume product on the road, or quit the game by selling his equity at a much lower price than his initial, huge investment.


"Jia made a large equity investment in Faraday Future. He needs this volume production in a brick and mortar plant, so as to get a higher valuation in the way a conventional carmaker does," said Shu Chang, a partner of Roland Berger Strategy Consultants.


"Without mass production, a company without a history, but only his story, won't get a high valuation, so his equity in Faraday Future would be worth very little. Jia may even struggle to find a buyer."


Shu said he foresees the best scenario as the FF91 rolling off the production on time in the United States.


Then Jia would share the brand's halo effect, resources, experience and advantages with his LeSEE project, and finally boost the market performance of the LeSEE Pro model.


Jia is also operating a LeSEE electric supercar project in China almo nature.


The company's public relationship department said that an announcement is "coming soon".


But similarly, the LeSEE Pro vehicles have not been put into mass production, despite the company announcing last August it had bought 2.87 square kilometers of land for an auto park, with plans to invest 20 billion yuan ($2.95 billion).


"But it's a tough job to establish a positive cycle among vendors and suppliers, and to realize technology breakthroughs in the United States," Shu added.


There were estimates that Faraday Future's failed Nevada plant plan has cost more than $120 million. Those sources, who declined to be named, said that Faraday Future is operated by the same team of people who launched Tesla, so both the FF91 and LeSEE Pro are going to be built on a similar electric vehicle chassis LPG M6.


The sources said Jia's opportunities depend on whether he has a constant supply of cash to put into the full-electric supercar projects.


The reason is that developing an automobile propulsion system requires a huge amount of investment, much larger than an internet player's imagination. The existing example is Qoros Auto, which burned money for about six years from its establishment in 2007 to its first product, the Qoros 3 sedan, launched on the market in 2013. Industry insiders estimate investment totaled about 20 billion yuan for the Sino-Israeli company, but the emerging brand is still losing money Sensodyne.


Tesla China is mulling local factory

Le 6 juillet 2017, 05:29 dans Humeurs 0

Electric carmaker says it is in talks with Shanghai, but no clarity yet on deal


Elon Musk's Tesla Inc-the highest valued car producer in the United States with a market capitalization of over $60 billion-never fails to surprise people, and this time it is the electric carmaker's localization plans for China.


A Tesla China senior spokeswoman said late Thursday night that events were moving into high gear.


"We expect to more clearly define our plans for production in China by the end of the year," she said.


Before that, Tesla had been silent for days about media reports that it would sign a deal on Thursday to build a plant in Shanghai's Lingang development zone.


Tesla China's senior public relations manager Duan Zhengzheng said the company was working with the Shanghai municipal government to explore the possibility of establishing a manufacturing facility, but did not comment on whether a deal had been signed.


Tesla's comments came after Shanghai Lingang Holdings Co Ltd, in the wake of a surge in its share price over the last few days, denied any negotiations of a possible partnership with the US electric carmaker after the stock market closed on Thursday.


Shanghai Electric Group Co Ltd, another rumored partner, also denied negotiations over a possible partnership with Tesla on Friday. Lingang's shares plummeted to their daily limit on Friday and Shanghai Electric shares halted trading Alipay HK.


The 21st Century Business Herald newspaper reported on Thursday, without providing details, that Tesla has been in talks with the Shanghai authorities for two years, but Tesla has been demanding too much.


John Zeng, managing director of LMC Automotive Consulting Shanghai, said the extended talks might have something to do with Tesla's intentions to partner with a non-auto company to protect its car-building technologies.


If Tesla wants to produce cars in China, it would need to set up a joint venture with at least one local partner, under existing rules SmarTone Care.


Yale Zhang, managing director of Automotive Foresight, said the government may not give its approval if Tesla insists on a joint venture with a partner that is not a carmaker.


"Electric cars are not rocket science and there is no need for the government to make an exception," he said.


Zeng said Tesla may win approval with the help of local authorities, but added there was no need for them to give too much away in the negotiations dr bk laser.


"The fact is that Tesla needs China, not China needs Tesla," Zeng added.


Tesla sold 10,399 cars in China in 2016, up 181.7 percent year-on-year, LMC statistics show.


Zheng said, however, that BMW Brilliance's Zinoro and Daimler and BYD's Denza were not inferior to Tesla models in terms of quality and driving ranges.


He said localized Tesla models would not have a big impact on China's new energy vehicle sector.

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