Zotye may not be a familiar name however they’ve been in the car business for a while. They’ve had dealings with Ford in the past and now, they’re planning on breaching the US market.
Chinese automakers have had their eye on the US market for years. We’ve seen many of them (BYD, Changfeng and Geely) display cars at the Detroit Auto Show but until now, only one had supplied semi-concrete dates in relation to their official arrival. Guangzhou Automotive Corporation (GAC) announced last year they will be selling cars to Americans by the 4th quarter of 2019.
To sell cars, at least in North America, a carmaker needs a network of dealerships, or points of sale. It is with this in mind that Zotye has presented its 19 first dealerships that will be distributing vehicles to consumers before the end of 2020. These dealerships will belong and be operated by existing groups throughout the country, from the South West to the North East including a number in highly rural areas such as Wichita and Oklahoma.
The first vehicle to hit US soil will be the T600 SUV. A quick glance reveals heavy previous generation Volkswagen Touareg influences both inside and out. The official specs speak of a 160-horsepower turbocharged 1.5-litre 4-cylinder, a 5-speed manual, FWD, the absence of stability and traction control. Zotye spokespeople have stated that engineering, development, and homologation work is currently underway to adapt the product to the US market.
Zotye’s plan involves not only vehicles Americans are likely to want but they will be roughly 20% less expensive than the competition and will be sold with a no-haggle price policy, à la Saturn. For those curious about the brand, here a link to HAAH Automotive Holdings and Wangsheng Zhu, the company that owns Zotye.
What do we think about this piece of news: Simply put, if the Koreans did it, the Chinese will certainly make it too.