Reuters reports Ford may be considering launching vehicle brands just for the Chinese market in an attempt to capitalize on continued sales growth in the region. Last year, buyers brought home 18.5 million cars and trucks in China, and Ford aims to carve out a larger share of that figure for itself. The American automaker already produces Fiesta, Mondeo and Focus models in China through a partnership with Chongqing Changan Automobile Company and Mazda, and Jiangling Motors Corp produces Transit van in the country. Currently, analysts expect China to see auto sales grow by five percent this year, but Ford says its vehicles will outrun that estimate.
Last year, Ford sold around 519,390 passenger cars in China. That figure marks a seven percent increase over 2010, and Ford expects a similar jump for 2012. Foreign automakers often create market-specific brands for China. The move allows companies to comply with government regulations allowing for production within the country's borders. While Ford says it is currently in discussions with its Chinese partners, no official decision has been made on any new brands for the country.