TAIYUAN, China — Ford continues to grow in China now expand its portfolio to include heavy trucks. Jiangling Motors Corporation (JMC), of which Ford owns 30%, recently broke ground on its heavy-duty truck engine plant, officially entering the segment in China.
About nine months ago, JMC signed an equity transfer agreement for Taiyuan Changan Heavy Duty Truck Co. Ltd, acquiring a 100 percent stake in the company to build a new manufacturing base in northern Shanxi Province, making Taiyuan Heavy Truck part of the JMC and Ford family.
On May 20, JMC broke ground on an engine plant that will drive its expansion from light-commercial vehicles to heavy trucks, marking a new chapter in Taiyuan Heavy Truck’s transformation into a stronger player in China’s heavy truck segment.
“We have an aggressive plan to serve all our Chinese customers in both passenger and commercial vehicle markets. Expanding our partnership with JMC in the commercial vehicle business is an important part of our growth strategy in China. Taiyuan Heavy Truck represents the next step in expanding our 17-year partnership with JMC,” said John Lawler, Chairman and CEO, Ford China.
JMC will invest 400 million RMB (USD 60 million) in the new engine plant. The 280 hectare first phase of the engine plant will produce engine bodies, with initial annual capacity of 10,000 units. The first engine is expected to come off the line in the second half of 2015.
“Ford is fully committed to support JMC in making Taiyuan Heavy Truck a success. I am confident that with continued support from Taiyuan and Shanxi government, and with the vision and leadership of Chairman Wang, JMC will turn Taiyuan Heavy Truck into an engine of growth for JMC, Ford and Taiyuan!” Lawler added.
More than 600 people witnessed the milestone event. Distinguished government leaders were also present including Xiaopeng Li, deputy party secretary and governor of Shanxi Province, Yanbo Geng, mayor of Taiyuan, as well as JMC executives Xigao Wang, Jiangling Motor chairman, York Chen, JMC president.