• Mar 6, 2009
If, like us, you've been following the Volvo saga pretty closely, you'll remember that several Chinese companies are considered to be among the top bidders for the Swedish automaker when Ford officially opens the bidding. Although Geely has said they aren't interested, that didn't rule out other Chinese outfits.
Well, today we have word via Chinese news reports that Chery, for one, has been given the greenlight to enter the Volvo lottery by the Chinese government. Other interested parties are rumored to be Dongfeng Motor Group and Chongqing Changan Automobile Co, along with a "European constellation," whatever that means.

Ford is looking to recoup the bulk of its initial $6.45 billion investment when it sells Volvo, so that might put it out of Chery's league. But who knows? Chery Auto just got a 10 billion yuan ($1.47 billion) loan to help it grow globally and was also given a line of credit by the bank, so only time will tell.

[Source: Gasgoo]


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  • 69 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Right now Hyundi is kicking everyones a**.

      So all this anti American/Chinese BS from the Japanese/European fans means nothing.

      The Chinese are comming!

      I will drive GM/Ford or Chrysler for life as long as they are offered.
      • 5 Years Ago
      hmmm, I dunno about this.
      Certainly, this will help the Chinese automaker to improve their products,
      but I'm honestly not too fond of this idea.
      This story probably isn't familiar to most of you, but look what happened between Ssangyong Motors of Korea and Shanghai Motors (I believe it was).
      Shanghai bought Ssangyong, took all the goodies/technologies from Ssangyong, didn't pay the R&D money they initially promised, then when Ssangyong was in trouble due to declining sales, Shanghai simply abandoned Ssangyong without showing any effort to save Ssangyong.
      This happened only 2 months ago, and it was a huge controversy in Korea.
      I'm afraid that same or similar might be done to Volvo.
      We'll have to see.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Swedish government isn't stupid. There is a provision in the original acquisition clause that Swedish government must approve if Ford resells Volvo.

        If Ford finds a European or Japanese buyer, then the deal is approved.
        Chinese, no.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Then Ford will ditch Volvo and it will fail anyways.
        Regardless, I doubt they would disapprove it if Chery (or any Chinese company for that matter) can come up with the money.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Sektor:

      "You also fail to understand that they bought failing companies; which was the case of Ssangyong and MG/Rover. Ssangyong failed because it couldn't compete in its domestic market against Hyundai-Kia, and there was nothing SAIC could do about that. MG and Rover were very bad when SAIC bought them, and I will risk to say they are in better shape now. I will try to find some numbers."

      Currently Volvo, as well as many other automakers, are also in bad shape.

      I'll ask this again. What exactly do they have to give to Volvo? What do they have that would help Volvo in it's current situation?
      • 5 Years Ago
      Is this confirmed or is it just a rumor?
      • 5 Years Ago
      Hopefully, Chery will not treat Volvo as SAIC treated Ssangyong, though that hope seems almost foolish.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Which is not exactly wrong considering they paid for it.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @ cj

        > Hopefully, Chery will not treat Volvo as SAIC treated Ssangyong, though that hope seems almost foolish.

        Of course Chinese will do Chinese thing on their foreign acquisition; transfer out all the tech and strip assets, then ditch the remainder.
        • 5 Years Ago
        No I'm not saying it's wrong, they paid for it and they have every right to do w/e they want. But I love Volvo and I was just hoping Chery will not cut funding for Volvo products.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Prejudiced and unfounded? Enlighten me, what impressive automotive technology have the Chinese developed so far? Volvo relies heavily on technology from ford atm because they're just too small to to develop it all inhouse at a profit. Volvo's next parent company or partners will need to provide them with state of the art technology for them to survive in the long run. I'd don't see the Chinese automotive companies do that for at least the next 10 years. It's more likely they're after the technology Volvo (and perhaps the brand) can provide to help them catch up more rapidly than to make Volvo survive and stay competitive in the premium car segment.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Thank you, I was wondering the same thing! Sektor must be smoking the whack stuff or drank the blue kool-aid. The only thing he can come up with is that the Chinese company "will benefit from the technology Volvo has to provide, and hopefully increase the quality, safety and competitiveness of their cars, and bring them to the US."
        What a load of bollocks! Exactly what most of us suspected, they will suck the life out of Volvo, and it will be just a shell of its former self once they're finished "benefiting from the technology Volvo has to provide."
        And I don't give a damn what any of you do-gooders say about any disparaging remarks in regards to Chinese automakers. I don't like them, don't think they're worthy of playing in the big leagues, and will continue to say so. Just because someone doesn't like the auto manufacturers, does not mean they are racist against Chinese people. That would be like people who don't like GM, and then someone accusing them of hating all of humanity. Stupid asses!
        • 5 Years Ago
        Investors don't have to provide technology. I'm an investor and I sure as hell don't provide new technologies to the companies I invest in. That's not my job. I'm providing capital PERIOD.

        Whether Chery wants to buy Volvo for the tech or to establish the brand name is still to be seen. To me this is nothing but speculation at this point. We'll have to wait and see what actually happens.
        • 5 Years Ago
        There is little doubt that Volvo will not be the same after being purchase by a Chinese company; but at least they will benefit from the technology Volvo has to provide, and hopefully increase the quality, safety and competitiveness of their cars, and bring them to the US.

        The more, the merrier. I hope Chinese and Indian cars can hit the US market as soon as possible. Competition drives improvement, and we, as customers, will be benefited in the end.

        Besides, as a poster mentioned above, it is better for us if Volvo is taken by a real automaker rather than an equity firm.
        • 5 Years Ago
        "The more, the merrier. I hope Chinese and Indian cars can hit the US market as soon as possible. Competition drives improvement, and we, as customers, will be benefited in the end."

        What competition? American companies are at a competitive disadvantage right out of the blocks because of labor costs. The only thing that would save the American companies from a wipeout is the fact that Americans are suspicious of cars that are too cheap, e.g. the Yugo. However, if China/Chery buys Volvo, pulls a Ssangyong and builds the $12K Chery Volvo C30 with cheap labor and slightly cutrate materials in China, Americans will be suspicious until, say, Inside Line tests the Chery C30 and declares it's 90% as good as the original for 50% of the price.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Who developed the current platform Ford builds their cars on? The correct answer is Volvo and Mazda.
      • 5 Years Ago
      NOT THE CHINESE!!
        • 5 Years Ago
        @tekd

        Ford has provided ALOT for Volvo. GM for Saab, not so much. GM just pillaged Saab's technology instead while giving them a Trailblazer and a Subaru and not only letting their volume models rot, but continuously decontented them to save on costs.

        The problem is whether this would turn into a Ford/Volvo situation or a GM/Saab situation.

        We still don't know the effect on MG's sales. Also, how did MG cut costs while still maintaining both sales and quality? Keep in mind... cheaper does NOT automatically = better

        Even though Volvo needs to save on costs, they can't afford to decontent their cars. They need quality materials and features in order to compete with their competitors.

        And people calling Ssangyong a failing car company, how was their pre-SAIC situation any different from where Volvo's is now or many other automakers during this current economic crisis?
        • 5 Years Ago
        @hypermiler
        Let us recall MG Rover?
        Yes I recall how SAIC made MG actually competitive again price-wise, and still assembles cars at the Longbridge plant in England.
        And I recall that the MG brand is alive and well, and tons of new cars are slated to launch under the brand.

        How exactly was the Chinese takeover of MG and Rover's assets a bad thing at all? The two options were basically to not exist, or to have a running factory in England and a healthy brand that's expanding globally...the fact that you're so biased against the Chinese that you would choose the former is ridiculous.

        What exactly do you want from people who buy companies anyway? Rainbows and unicorns? If it's so damned easy to buy failing car companies and refuse to ever cut them off like Ssangyong why don't you go and buy Volvo with your piles of infinite cash to burn.

        So seriously, all the whiners, why don't you step up with your giant bags of fantasy money to run fantasy businesses that don't need to make money or sell cars in volume to survive. Oh wait, because in the real world you invest in businesses because you want to make money, not cater to the racist fanboys of failing brands. And you try to do it as nicely as possible, but it's not like turning yourself into a sinking ship to save some obscure brand you bought (Ssangyong) is a great business idea. Ssangyong made and makes pretty terrible cars, and continued to bleed money, so what do you want SAIC to do? How is what they did anything different from what Ford is doing to Volvo or GM is doing to Saab? If someone wants to buy Ssangyong they can, but their parent company can't afford to just prop them up.

        But because they're Chinese it's a double standard? They're expected to keep failing brands on-board forever and ever? Jackass.
        • 5 Years Ago
        What difference does it make if they are bought by a Chinese company? They'll be competitive eventually; if they buy Volvo it just means a bit sooner rather than later.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @ Sektor

        Chinese loot technology and assets, then ditch the remainder. Let us recall MG Rover and Ssangyong.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Many people have the wrong perception that the government gives them unlimited amounts of money which is false. Right now our own communist leaders here in the US are giving out more money to companies than the central government in China is to their auto companies.

      I just don't see Chery biting off this much but then again Tata bought Jaguar Land Rover......



      • 5 Years Ago
      Almost everybody is screwed if the Chinese get Volvo (or Saab).

      Then again, the thought of a $12K Volvo C30 makes me all warm inside.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The title should read "Beware Chinese"...and half the comment is Sektor's? this is ridiculous..
      • 5 Years Ago
      Just let us recall the Fiat-Chrysler takeover deal.

      As desperate as Chrysler was for cash, Chrysler passed SAIC's multi-billion offer to be taken over by Fiat for no cash in exchange for free access to Fiat models(Fiat, Maserati, and Alfa Romeo) .

      Why? Because the Chinese takeover doesn't improve the long term survival at Chrysler. To the contrary, it seals the fate of bankruptcy delayed by a few more years or even months.

      The same reasoning applies to Volvo.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Chrysler is doomed regardless of a partnership with Fiat - which, let's not forget, is not even in the US. Besides, I never heard of SAIC's "multi billion offer" to take over Chrysler.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @ Sektor

        As slim as Chrysler's chances of survival maybe, Chrysler deemded that a deal with Fiat offered a stronger chance of survival than SAIC's billions.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @hypermiler: Well, we could go on and on with this and it will be nothing but speculations. Let's wait and see what happens.

        BTW, do you actually hypermile? I tried to do it, and I got an almost 50% increase in mileage. But after a while, seeing all those cars flying by got me right back to the Left Lane.
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