GM has announced that they will be launching a low-cost brand in China with its joint venture partners SAIC and Wuling. The new brand will be called Bao Jun which means “treasured horse”, will produce passenger cars at an affordable price.
The SAIC-GM-Wuling (SGMW) partnership will try and soak up demand for affordable modes of transport in secondary cities and the outskirts, while big names like VW and even Chevrolet supply the demand for their cars in bigger metropolitan cities.
On the matter of the sales network, GM say that they will build it after the car is launched incorporating existing networks, new distributors and elements of the current structure. Unfortunately the company did not confirm the official release date of the car. Word is that it will be built on GM platforms, specifically the one underpinning the outgoing Chevrolet Lova. The photo below is supposedly a Wuling low cost car first seen in late 2008 but there’s been no more word about the car since.
“Baojun will complement our other brands sold in China including our fastest-growing mainstream nameplate, Chevrolet. It will enable us to better address the increasingly segmented Chinese vehicle market,” said Kevin Wale, President and Managing Director of the GM China Group. “Baojun will become another good example of successful partnership. By combining the best resources that SAIC, GM and SGMW have to offer, we will ensure an outstanding ownership experience for a greater number of consumers,” said Chen Hong, President of SAIC Motor.
SAIC-GM-Wuling started out in 2002 and builds a range of Wuling mini-trucks and minivans as well as the Chevrolet Le Chi mini-car. They have enjoyed record breaking sales of 1,061,213 units becoming the first automaker in China to sell more than 1 million vehicles in a single year.