WASHINGTON D.C. – General Motors Corp. (GM) signed an agreement with Shanghai-GM, its whole vehicle joint venture in China, to export more than $800 million worth of U.S.-built Buick Enclave crossover SUVs along with other vehicles and components to China beginning in 2008, according to a company statement on September 24.
The all-new Buick Enclave is built at GM’s Lansing Delta Township assembly plant in Lansing, Michigan. Introduced earlier this year, the Enclave has helped increase GM’s recent sales in its home market.
According to Shanghai-GM president Ding Lei, “These new Buick premium sports utility vehicles will strengthen our lineup and enable us to continue to meet the changing needs of our growing base of customers.”
Assistant Vice Minister of Commerce Chen Jian added, “The Chinese government will continue to work with the U.S. government and enterprises to create a better market environment, ensure a smooth channel for U.S. companies’ business development and actively promote American exports to China for more balanced trade.”
The Buick agreement is the second of two export agreements with China signed by GM this year. The first is a deal sealed in May to export $700 million worth of the Cadillac brand and automotive components to China from the U.S.
GM China Group president and managing director Kevin Wale said in the statement, “It will take the value of GM sourcing contracts from the United States for the China market to more than $1.5 billion this year.”
GM’s China operations have already imported about $3.5 billion worth of vehicles, components, equipment and machinery from North America over the past 10 years.
The Enclave is Buick’s first luxury crossover to be exported to China since the early part of the last century. Shanghai-GM will sale the model through its network of nearly 400 Buick dealerships across China. The new model will complement Shanghai-GM’s Buick lineup, which includes the Park Avenue, LaCrosse, Excelle and Regal sedans, and the GL8 and FirstLand executive wagons.
In 2006, sales of vehicles by GM and its joint ventures in China rose 31.8 percent on an annual basis to a record 876,747 units. In the first half of 2007, Shanghai-GM alone reached cumulative sales of 223,429 units , up 11.62 percent from the same period last year, according to CBU-Autostats.