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Chery Automobile Co. Ltd. is a prosperous Chinese car manufacturer with powerful operations in mainland China and abroad. Unlike the majority of western producers, Chery is a totally state-owned brand with headquarters in Wuhu, Anhui Province. The company is known throughout the world basically due to passenger cars, SUVs and minivans; yet, it also blew up with a line of commercial vehicles under Karry emblem.
Chery enters the list of ten most influential Chinese car manufacturers with more than 500.000 units output per year. Despite a relatively short history of existence (established in 1997), it has managed to expand its facilities to all continents. Its major operations are located in Anhui; this plant specializes in the production of gearboxes and engines.
The company’s abroad works can be found in Brazil (estimated production volume of 150.000 units per year), Egypt, Iran, Middle East, Pakistan, Uruguay, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam, Russia, and Ukraine. The lion’s share of those plants assembly vehicles from knock-down kits, imported from Chery. Since 2003, the maker has become the largest Chinese exporter of cars; as of 2011, its exports volume made up 25% of the entire production.
The first vehicle under Chery brand, Fengyun, was launched in 1999. It was based on Volkswagen Seat Toledo chassis and sold in the amount of 30.000 units. In order to promote in the foreign markets, the company decided to seek for a partnership with automotive gurus. Hence, they succeeded to reach a deal with Israel Corporation, Qoros in 2007 and with Chery Jaguar Land Rover in 2012. The manufacturer runs both ventures on 50:50 template.
Cooperation with Qoros makes it a point to fabricate and sell cars to younger generation not only in China and Europe, but in Middle East region as well. Upmarket vehicles developed by Qoros are equipped with components supplied by western companies, i.e. French Valeo, US Visteon, Arvin Meritor, PPG Industries, Delphi Automotive or German Siemens VDO. In its turn, partnership with a UK-based Jaguar Land Rover was called to establish a joint venture that will design and sell cars under Jaguar and Land Rover brands in China.
Apart from these two strategic ventures, Chery negotiated with manufacturers from other countries in order to enlarge its own lineup and increase overall output. For example, it built a plant in Turkey in cooperation with Mermerler Otomotiv, estimated for about 100.000 units output by 2017.
Chery is nowadays working at the development of passenger sedans, SUV’s, microcars, and commercial vehicles. During 2009-2013 the company’s lineup consisted of four brands: Chery, Karry, Riich, and Rely. The latter two had to be phased out due to a poor customer response.
The list of available offerings includes: city cars (QQ, QQ3, QQme, QQ6, A1, M1), sedans (Cowin, mid-size Eastar, A5, A3, compact E5, mid-size E8, mid-size Arrizo 7), SUVs (compact Tiggo, X1, X5), vans (Q21, Q22, H5), MPVs (Karry Youyi, S22).
Chery Automobile Co. Ltd. is also working at the design of electric technologies. In 2010 the manufacturer signed an agreement of understanding with an American-based Better Place company; the partnership is called to facilitate in the development of prototype electric vehicles. However, a year earlier Chery introduced its own all-electric solutions – the S18 and Riich M1.
In 2003 Chery QQ city car became a subject of litigation. An American ‘monster’ General Motors accused Chery of duplicating the design of its Daewoo Matiz 1st gen model – a claim that Chinese manufacturer denies. After an official support from the Chinese authorities, Chery claimed that General Motors hadn’t patented their technology in a right way. As a result, in 2005 the suit was resolved.
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