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Old 04-14-2007, 19:54   #1 (permalink)
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Ford Motor China Sales Growth Continues In First Quarter 2007

New products enjoy market acceptance



Ford Motor Company's wholly-owned brands in China (Ford, Lincoln, Volvo, Jaguar and Land Rover) posted total retail sales of 42,746 unitsin the first quarter of 2007, a 16.4 percent growth over the same period of 2006.
Ford brand vehicles, both imported and domestically produced, passenger and commercial purpose, grew 15.1% to 38,576 units.
Ford Motor's passenger car joint venture, Changan Ford Mazda Automobile Co., Ltd., reported a 40.8 percent year-on-year sales growth to reach 38,908 units.
Luxury brands of Volvo, Jaguar and Land Rover retail sales grew 29.8% percent for the first 3 months, to 4,061 units.
Introduction of new products including S-MAX and the 2007 Ford Focus, and the rapid development of auto financing business strongly support the sales growth in the first quarter of 2007.

SHANGHAI, April 11, 2007 - Ford Motor Company in China has successfully maintained sales momentum in the first quarter of 2007, with 42,746 vehicles sold (under Ford, Lincoln, Volvo, Jaguar and Land Rover brands) and 16.4% growth over the volume of same period in 2006, above the average growth rate of the auto industry. By combining sound business strategy, state-of-the-art technology, attractive design and excellent products together, Ford Motor China is progressing steadily towards the goal of being a top tier auto player in China.


"With the quick introduction of S-MAX into China shortly after its world debut, and the launch of the refreshed 2007 Ford Focus, Ford Motor China accelerated the tempo of introducing new and upgraded products in last quarter," said Mei-Wei Cheng, chairman and CEO of Ford Motor (China) Ltd. "The all new Ford S-MAX adds to the lineup of Ford products in China, making it more versatile and interesting. The refreshed 2007 Ford Focus extends its popularity in the China C-car segment. Both of these demonstrate Ford's determination of its Chinese prominence in near future."


Ford brand vehicles, both domestically produced and imported, passenger cars and commercial vehicles altogether, achieved total sales of 38,576 units, a 15.1% percent increase on a year-on-year basis, growth rate considerably ahead of most key auto manufacturers in China.


By the end of this year, the total production capacity of Ford Motor Company in mainland China will amount to 546,000 units, with Changan Ford Mazda Automobile Co., Ltd 410,000 units and Jiangling Motor Corporation 136,000 units respectively.


Changan Ford Mazda Automobile launched 2 new products


Changan Ford Mazda Automobile Co., Ltd (Changan Ford Mazda Automobile), a Ford Motor Company joint venture in China, recorded quarterly wholesale volume of 38,908 units. This marked a 40.8% increase over the same period of 2006, well ahead of the whole auto industry's quarterly wholesale volume growth of 26.8%, which was released by China Passenger Car Association.


Ford Focus has been the biggest star in the product lineup. Its quarterly retail sales volume, 20,482 units representing a 24.3% growth over same period last year, made a significant contribution to the overall performance of Changan Ford Mazda Automobile. Only 6 months after the launch of the 5-door hatchback in August 2006, Changan Ford Mazda Automobile launched the facelifted versions for all Focus models in mid March 2007. Such an amazing upgrading speed demonstrates the market popularity of Ford products, and reveals that Ford Motor China is striding forward to become one of the most important business engines for Ford Motor Company.


S-MAX is another rising star from Changan Ford Mazda Automobile. As the first SAV (Sport Activity Vehicle) Ford Motor introduced to China market, S-MAX creates a brand new market segment. Being the first production Ford model to include elements of kinetic design form language, the car has more space and seating configurations than a sedan, and more driving fun and precision than an MPV. Just honored "Car of the Year 2007" in Europe, it was immediately launched in China market in mid March. In only 2 weeks' time, S-MAX has gained very positive market response and popularity.

11,384 units of Ford Mondeo were sold in the China market from January to March in 2007, growing 23.5 percent compared to the same period in 2006. Mondeo was Car of the Year 2005 in China and popularity of the model continues to grow over time.


The total monthly shipment of Changan Ford Mazda Automobile in March amounted to 16,372 units, which indicates the capacity in Chongqing is increasing steadily. Combining the new manufacturing plant in Nanjing, which is going to put into production by the end of 2007, and the Chongqing assembly, Changan Ford Mazda Automobile is going to boost its annual production capacity to above 410,000 units. Such will soothe the market thirst for Ford products to a great extent, and provide needed capacity for new products that will be introduced to the market.


Transit continues to be the market leader


As for commercial vehicles, Ford Transit produced by Jiangling Motor Corporation in Nanchang, of which Ford Motor Company holds a 30 percent share, is poised to hold the championship of this segment again. Retail sales of 5,780 units indicate a 1.14 percent increase over the same period last year.


PAG remains a top performer in luxury vehicle market


Ford Motor Company's Premier Automotive Group (PAG), consisting of Volvo, Jaguar and Land Rover in China, keeps leading position in the first quarter. Total PAG retail sales grow a significant 29.8% on the year-on-year basis, to 4,061 units. PAG is now a major player in the country's luxury vehicle market and its market share will undoubtedly grow in the future.

Auto financing keeps expanding


As an indispensable arm for vehicle sales, Ford Automotive Finance ( China) Ltd. (FAFC) expands its presence progressively. By the end of the first quarter 2007, FAFC has expanded retail financing services to consumers in 8 more cities in China, reaching 34 major cities overall through 80 Ford Brand authorized dealerships.


Ford Motor to display enterprise strength at Auto Shanghai 2007, in April


Ford Motor Company's brand alignment --- Ford, Lincoln, Mazda, Volvo, Jaguar and Land Rover will jointly participate in the 12th International Automobile and Manufacturing Technology Exhibition (Auto Shanghai 2007) on April 19, 2007. With total show space amounting to 5,000 square meters, the company will display 52 vehicles, including 5 concept cars among them, which indicates the determination and enterprise strength of Ford Motor Company. Ford Motor Company is scheduled to make major product announcements at the show.


Inspired by the brilliant prospects of the company, Mei-Wei Cheng says: "Ford Motor China is on the expressway to a fruitful future. With more and more exciting and competitive Ford products joining the China family, we are taking the Chinese customers to a joyful ride."

Appendix:

Sales Record of Ford Motor Company in China (2007 first quarter)


2007
Jan - Mar
2006
Jan - Mar
Year-on-year growth

Ford Brand / Lincoln
38,685
33,605
+15.1%

Changan Ford Mazda (Retail)
Changan Ford Mazda (Wholesale)
32,088

38,908
27,008

27,636
+18.8%

+40.8%

PAG
4,061
3,129
+29.8%

FMC in China total
42,746
36,734
+16.4%


* All sales data provided here are actual retail sales figures except those indicated "wholesale".

Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., U.S.A., manufactures and distributes automobiles in 200 markets across six continents. The company’s automotive brands include Ford, Jaguar, Land Rover, Lincoln, Mazda, Mercury and Volvo. Its automotive-related services include Ford Credit and QualityCare. Ford Motor Company celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2003.

Ford’s history in China can be traced to 1913, when its first Model T was imported and sold in Shanghai. Presently, Ford owns 30% of the shares of Jiangling Motors Corporation Ltd., which produces Ford commercial vehicle Transit and other products. Ford Motor Company also has a 50-50 passenger car joint venture with Changan Automotive Corporation Ltd., which is called Changan Ford Automobile Corporation Ltd. Changan Ford has successfully launched two Ford passenger cars models, Fiesta and Mondeo, to the market. Ford Mondeo won Motor Trend "2005 Car of the Year, China". Its third product, the all-new Ford Focus, has been built in Chongqing since the 3rd quarter of 2005. In early 2005, Changan Ford's second passenger car plant in Nanjing started construction. On April 19, 2005, Ford, Changan and Mazda announced a new three-way engine plant joint venture, Changan Ford Mazda Engine Company Ltd.

In March, 2006, the Chinese government approved Mazda's investment in Changan Ford. The restructured company has been renamed as Changan Ford Mazda Automobile Co., Ltd. (CFMA). Changan, Ford and Mazda holds 50 per cent, 35 per cent and 15 per cent shares in CFMA respectively.

On the import business, Ford Maverick, a member of the world-renowned Ford SUV product line, has also been on sale in China. Lincoln Navigator, a premium full-size SUV was launched in China market in May 2005.

Products of the other Ford Motor Company affiliated brands, including Jaguar, Land Rover, Mazda and Volvo are on sale in China as well. Ford's service brand, Ford QualityCare, is also serving the customers in China.
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