Coventry, England – Chinese automaker Geely will enter the U.K., with its first models arriving at the end of 2012.
British firm Manganese Bronze Holdings (MBH) will distribute new Geely cars, supply parts, establish a dealer network and provide after-sales service under the name Geely Auto UK. MBH and Geely already jointly build the iconic London black taxicabs. Cabs for the U.K. market are built in Coventry by the London Taxi Company, a division of MBH, while cars for other world markets are produced in China by Geely.
The first cars will be the Geely Emgrand EC7 sedan and hatchback, with 1.5- and 1.8-litre gasoline engines, and with an expected starting price of approximately £10,000. The company plans to introduce a new model range every year for the next four to five years. The company is also considering using former Rover dealerships or sharing dealer sites with other franchises.
Geely Auto UK will be headquartered in Coventry and share the London Taxi Company’s offices. Although Geely also owns Volvo, the new venture will be entirely separate.