Chrysler's Chinese Production Hits The Great Wall

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt
chrysler s chinese production hits the great wall

Things are either rapidly falling apart for Chrysler in China. Or someone is tidying up for the rumored asset transfer to Beijing Auto. Place your bets.

Anyway, China’s Great Wall Motor has terminated its small-car joint venture project with Chrysler, Gasgoo reports. Why? “Due to changed situations,” said Great Wall’s president Wang Fengying.

Chrysler had signed a memorandum of understanding with Great Wall Motor in July 2008 to explore the viability of a long-term strategic relationship. The two companies have since developed an A-class car model that was scheduled to be produced by Great Wall and sold around the world as a rebadged Chrysler. What now?

“Now instead of manufacturing a small car model for Chrysler, we have decided to make a redesigned model under our own brand in the second half of this year or early next year,” Wang Fengying said. In other words: The small Chrysler will be a small Great Wall.

This is another abortive attempt to have Chryslers made in China.

In July 2007, Chrysler LLC signed a deal with Chery China to sell a series of small cars made by Chery under the American auto maker’s Dodge brand. In December, the deal was cancelled.

Chrysler also has a deal with Fujian Motor to make the Grand Voyager minivan, although production is said to have slowed to a trickle. Fujian is also to be bought by Beijing Auto.

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4 of 5 comments
  • Superbadd75 Superbadd75 on Mar 12, 2009

    So Chrysler helps develop a car with a Chinese company and then when it's done, they get the boot? I'd assume they lost quite a bit of money in this process. Why does the U.S. allow this stuff to happen? Chinese companies routinely make counterfeit products without any regard to patents or copyrights, and they also have a record of partnering with foreign companies and stealing their technology. Why is this allowed to continue? Then again, Chrysler probably shouldn't have been stupid enough to jump into a partnership with them to begin with. Either way, it's shameful and an embarassment, and another hit to a company that can't afford any more hits.

  • Bertel Schmitt Bertel Schmitt on Mar 12, 2009

    @superbadd75: You got it wrong. Great Wall would have LOVED to build this car for export in large quantities, not having to worry about marketing it. Chrysler is broke. They cannot pay their bills. There most likely is an unpaid bill story behind that story also. The prez of Great wall politely said: "Due to the recent downturn in the global car market, both companies have gone through major changes since they entered into the agreement, and the market slump makes further steps difficult to take." Translation: No money.

  • Menno Menno on Mar 12, 2009

    You're probably absolutely right, Bertel. So using my word picture, not only is the crip (Chrysler) a bad dancer, has B.O. (whoops, was that a pun?), has UAW disease (emaciation), has one wooden leg and a false hand, but has bad teeth and is totally broke, and up to his cheeks (you choose which ones) in debt! Great dance partner. NOT.

  • Superbadd75 Superbadd75 on Mar 12, 2009

    Bertel: Well, that makes sense, and I feel a slight bit better about it if that is the case. Certainly wouldn't be a shock, considering Chrysler's poor shape, but what happened to all that taxpayer money? And really, the more I think about it, I wouldn't know who to feel sorry for if it was a case of stealing intellectual property. Would it be Chrysler for getting duped, or Great Wall for stealing designs from Chrysler? Hell, maybe I should feel worse for Great Wall in that case!