Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Buick Town East

The 2007 Riviera concept car that was born in China.

Flint Expatriates has written about China's love affair with Buick before:
"Of course, G.M. isn't exactly picky when it comes to lovers these days. The automaker is as desperate as a balding, recently divorced, middle-aged guy hanging out at the White Horse Tavern with an unemployment check burning a whole in his pocket.
And today The New York Times has a good piece on how G.M. ended up designing the new LaCrosse in China. Clifford Ghetti writes:

"But today’s commercial imperative is more compelling than nostalgia: sales of Buicks in China first outpaced sales in the United States in 2006, and the margin is considerable today. For the first nine months of 2009, for instance, Buick sold 312,798 vehicles in China; in the United States, it sold 72,389.

"In 1997 General Motors established two joint ventures with the Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation in China. One was for manufacturing. The other venture, for design and engineering, is the Pan Asia Technical Automotive Center. The center has done the engineering to adapt various G.M. global models for the Chinese market."
Read the entire article here, and go here for an interactive graphic on the new LaCrosse.

1 comment:

  1. The Japanese also had a love for the Buick. Gary Godin might remember hearing of a special refitting plant that they built quite sometime back for millions of dollars. The cars would be shipped over there and the body parts would be refitted,fenders,hoods,trunk lids and you couldn't get your thumbnail in the gaps afterward. They did like those LeSabres. unclebuck


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