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Local car maker to import BMWs starting in 2018

HCM CITY — Trường Hải  Auto Corporation (THACO) will become the new official importer of BMW and MINI vehicles in Việt Nam starting in January 2018.

THACO and BMW AG signed a Letter of Intent on Tuesday outlining the plan, THACO communications director Nguyễn Một confirmed to the Việt Nam News. As planned, BMW Group Asia will be ending its four-year partnership with Sime Darby Motors, the majority investor in Euro Automobiles Corp (EAC), in Việt Nam on December 31, 2017.

“Our customers are our number one priority, and until further notice, EAC will continue to provide high quality after-sales services for all existing BMW, MINI and BMW Motorrad customers in Việt Nam,” said Paul de Courtois, Managing Director of BMW Group Asia.

Workers assemble at an automobile plant in the Chu Lai-Trường Hải Industrial Complex in Quảng Nam Province. BMW and Thaco agreed to begin cooperation in 2018.
Workers assemble at an automobile plant in the Chu Lai-Trường Hải Industrial Complex in Quảng Nam Province. BMW and Thaco agreed to begin cooperation in 2018.

Sime Darby Motors is the second largest BMW dealer group in the world and continues to be a key partner for the BMW Group in multiple markets throughout the region.

THACO has been an exclusive agent for imported Peugeots since the French car giant returned to the local market in 2014.

The Quảng Nam-based car producer has invested US$400 million in constructing the Chu Lai-Trường Hải Industrial Complex, which has a logistics centre, car production factories, a vocational training college, a seaport, storage facilities and shipping services.

Last year, THACO earned total revenues of $2.8 billion, contributing $796 million to the State budget.

The nation’s biggest automaker plans to build three more plants with a total annual capacity of 215,000 trucks, vans, commercial cars, and achieve a localisation ratio of 16 to 46 per cent.

It currently manufactures and distributes South Korea’s Kia model, Japan’s Mazda and France’s Peugeot. It has exported its cars to Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar and Colombia.

THACO expects to earn revenues of $3.1 billion in 2017.