China is the world’s largest market for heavy trucks. People who are suicidal enough to have personal experience with Chinese highways will readily agree. Nearly 1 million units of the heavy (and usually blue) units were sold last year, more than in North America, Europe and South America combined. Ford wants a chunk of this interesting market.
5 years ago, disturbing news reached Germany. A Chinese company called Jiangling had the nerve to disturb the peace of the Frankfurt Motor Show IAA by displaying a Chinese SUV, with the intent to sell the vehicle. With dispatch, a crash test was arranged by the ADAC, the German equivalent of the AAA. The car failed miserably, the video became a hit on Youtube, and turned into an example for all that’s wrong with Chinese cars. Landwind was done. Never mind that rumors wouldn’t die that ADAC’s Landwind test had used, shall we say, “enhanced techniques.” Never mind that Germany’s TÜV, the company that officially tests cars for the German government, tested the car later and certified that it met all mandatory safety criteria. Never mind that the ADAC has a sometimes incestuous relationship with German auto makers. Landwind was destroyed, the first attempt to invest European soil with Chinese cars was repulsed. Later, ADAC did the same to Brilliance, again under questionable circumstances, again with the predictable results: Brilliance was dead, had to leave Europe. Well, Brilliance is coming back. And so does Landwind. (Read More…)