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The X65, a popular model in Mexico. The X65, a popular model in Mexico.

Chinese automotive firm BAIC plans 12 new dealerships in 12 months

The Chinese automotive company BAIC Group is forging ahead with its plans for Mexico: it plans to open 12 new dealerships in the coming 12 months.

BAIC has already opened 20 sales outlets in Mexico, where the firm is seeing the fastest growth, said its Mexico manager.

“During the first four months of this year we sold 750 cars in Mexico, far more than the 186 sold in the same period of 2017,” said Jimena Saenz.

Sales of the two models that are assembled in Veracruz, the D20 and X25, have been good, but demand for the X65 SUV, imported from China, is increasing the most, she said.

The two first models represented 87% of BAIC’s 2017 sales, but this year that percentage has dropped to 74%.

Despite the uncertainty around the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Saens asserted that BAIC is still interested in installing an assembly plant in Mexico from which to export vehicles to Latin America and the United States.

A company official said off the record in late April that a US $2-billion plant was being planned and that an announcement regarding the investment could come within a month.

BAIC first ventured into the Mexican market in June 2016 through a partnership with Grupo Picacho. One year later, it forged an agreement with AT Motors through which it was able to assemble 6,000 vehicles per year in a Veracruz plant.

Source: El Financiero (sp)

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