China’s largest electric vehicle manufacturer negotiates to buy Ford’s factory, globalization ambition

China’s largest electric vehicle manufacturer negotiates to buy Ford’s factory, globalization ambition

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2023-02-01 15:00:41

According to the Wall Street Journal, several senior Ford executives in Germany are planning to travel to China next week to negotiate directly with BYD over the sale of the Saarlouis plant, which will be closed by 2025.

However, the new deal is in the early stages, it is not certain whether BYD will buy Ford’s plant in Germany. In addition, other companies are said to also want to negotiate with Ford to buy this plant, including Magna International – a Canadian company specializing in the production of leased cars.

Ford in the past time has accelerated the electrification of the lineup, leading to the death of engine-powered models, and the old factories that assembled them are no longer used. On the other hand, Chinese automakers are ready to acquire international car assembly facilities to expand their operating areas as wide as possible.

The assembly line of the Ford Focus model at the Saarlouis factory (Source: Bloomberg).

For BYD, this acquisition, if successful, will be an important step in its efforts to conquer the difficult European market.

Previously, BYD planned to build a factory in Vietnam to produce car parts with a capital of more than $250 million – a move to reduce the company’s dependence on China and strengthen its supply chain. in Southeast Asia and towards global expansion.

An unnamed source told Reuters that negotiations are underway to choose a site for the Vietnamese factory, with construction scheduled to begin in the middle of this year. It is not yet clear what parts BYD will make in Vietnam and whether it will include batteries or battery packs.

BYD is currently the largest electrified vehicle company in the world. BYD’s sales of pure electric vehicles (BEVs) are lower than Tesla’s, but if you include plug-in hybrids (PHEVs), the Chinese automaker is far ahead of its American rival. In 2022, BYD sold a total of 1.86 million vehicles – three times more than a year earlier.

References: Wall Street Journal, Reuters

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