Local production of its model range is highly looked upon to improve Lincoln’s sales graph in China drastically. Fingers crossed!
You and I both know that China is geographically the largest country in the world and, thus, hosts a larger automobile market than the United States. Reuters reports the excess in size to be around 60 percent more than the U.S. market But what needs to be said in particular here is that the Chinese market is also one that is immensely receptive and welcoming to new cars.
Lincoln has been in the Chinese automobile arena for quite some time now, but has so far been catering to their Chinese customer demands by getting the cars shipped directly from the United States. This had then made competing with rival brands like Cadillac, that had already been having local production setups in China, quite a challenge. Though, things are now seeming to take a turn for the good under the automaker’s new CEO.
Reuters sheds some light on the automaker’s plans to manufacture as many as five vehicles locally in China by 2022 – a measure that would help it amass better sales by keeping prices in check. This would happen all thanks to the import tariffs that would be chopped off at the head. We have recently found out about Ford‘s plans of setting up an SUV production line in China sometime next year, but the Lincoln plant’s piece of news is definitely a newbie.
A recent interview with Joy Falotico, the esteemed CEO, made her project the rapidly booming sales of Lincolns in China. She also made use of the occasion to tell us how perfect the Aviator is to the Chinese markets, with its extra third row.
"“All of that design, those cues, those luxury touches, were informed by the Chinese customer. This vehicle really works for China and the U.S. equally,” said Falotico."
Reuters also reports that Lincoln would begin manufacturing the Aviator in China starting late next year, followed by a redesigned MKC crossover and the next-generation MKZ sedan. Also scheduled for Chinese production is a new version of the Nautilus. The brand reportedly has plans to build a smaller crossover-coupe, set for the year 2022.
Zhu Kongyuan, head of the China Auto Dealers Chamber of Commerce, told Reuters. “As long as Lincolns are not manufactured in China, the brand’s sales will no doubt suffer continuously.”
Lincoln is reportedly putting in a strong effort to reduce the number of vehicles it sells to rental car companies.
Robert Parker, Lincoln’s head of sales, told Automotive News.
"“Those are very deliberate efforts to really focus on residual values as our new products come out. What happens is those cars come back in six to 12 months. That’s problematic on our residual values because that’s when all the depreciation occurs. The longer they stay out, the better.”"
The recently redesigned Navigator has seemingly had a very successful run so far amassing impressive sales figures worldwide.
Refresh your memory with the sneak preview of the all-new Lincoln Aviator below.
What are your thoughts of Lincoln’s plans for China and its automotive market? Let us know in the comment section below. Have your voice heard!