May 2, 2006
Ford marks five years of growth in Chinese market
Shanghai, China – Changan Ford Mazda Automobile Company Ltd., a Ford Motor Company joint venture in China, celebrated its fifth anniversary with a ceremony at its Chongqing assembly plant, which built its 150,000th vehicle, a Ford Focus, last week. Production at the site began in January 2003.
The plant has grown from its initial annual capacity of 20,000 units to its current capacity of 200,000 units. The company has also grown, expanding from a joint venture of Ford and Changan Automotive Group to include Mazda Motor Corporation. The partnership will complete a new vehicle assembly plant in Nanjing in 2007, which will have an initial capacity of 160,000 units annually; it is adjacent to a new engine manufacturing joint venture that will have an annual capacity of 350,000 engines.
The company has confirmed plans to produce the Mazda3 and Volvo S40 in Chongqing, and will produce both Mazda- and Ford-branded products at the new Nanjing site. In the first quarter of 2006, Changan Ford Mazda was among the fastest growing car companies in China, with sales of 33,511 units, up 121 per cent year-on-year and well ahead of the industry growth average of 54 per cent.