The growing Chinese market is pushing some of the country's domestic automakers to look outside the People's Republic as a means of gaining prominence and influence across the globe. This has certainly been the case with Volvo, which was snapped up by Geely. More recent examples include Dongfeng and its investment in PSA Peugeot Citroën.

We last reported on Beijing Automotive, better known as BAIC, back in November, when we told you that Daimler was set to acquire a 12-percent stake in the state-owned manufacturer (you can see chairman Xu Heyi with Daimler bigwig Dieter Zetsche above). Now, BAIC is looking to make moves again, considering targets for a potential takeover bid.

Dong Haiyang, BAIC's head of international expansion, said the company has "candidates" in mind. We previously reported on the company's European prospects, but BAIC is now considering American companies for the first time. According to Reuters, the BAIC rep told a media briefing that snagging a foreign brand would serve as a shortcut to introducing BAIC in outside markets.

As for what brands are being considered, Dong would only say that "mid to-high-end [brands]" were targeted. That doesn't mean there aren't a suitable number of organizations ripe for takeover by an ambitious, Chinese upstart. That's where you come in. What "mid to high-end" manufacturer could a reasonably well-off Chinese outfit acquire? Let us know what you think in Comments.


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  • 101 Comments
      thecommentator2013
      • 8 Months Ago
      I can't think of any american brand being bought, my educated guess: it will be a french brand/conglomerate that will be taken over.
      Gugue
      • 8 Months Ago
      BAIC seems not interested in R&D and technologies at all, but just a well known image instead of start to fight abroad with the stigma of Chinese image already spoiling its quest. BAIC could buy just the rights of one former brand from GM, like Pontiac or even the brand Opel since GM is already showing up its intention to transform its European divisions Vauxhall and Opel into Buick... I don't know if brands like Lancia, Saturn or Oldsmobile would be good choices, the ones from GM was very regional, as well as Lancia, which don't have a good image in the little market it used to be...
        Dmack
        • 8 Months Ago
        @Gugue
        Oldsmobile and Saturn will fall flat on it nose and go out of business in 5 years or less if China bought it.
          free_spirit
          • 8 Months Ago
          @Dmack
          but Pontiac will never fail regards of whom take it
      Street King
      • 8 Months Ago
      Lancia is the only brand I can think of that might be for sale, and that would only be the name and nothing else.
        free_spirit
        • 8 Months Ago
        @Street King
        Opel???
          rsxvue
          • 8 Months Ago
          @free_spirit
          GM selling Opel would be like selling Chevrolet, it won't happen. Opel is way too integrated into the GM pipeline that selling it would mean handing over a bunch of GM IP.
      Avinash Machado
      • 8 Months Ago
      Fisker? PSA? Lancia?
      ocbrad1
      • 8 Months Ago
      Like other commenters, I can't imagine what current US brand would fill the bill for Chinese acquisition. Of the current USDM "native" brands, the only one that could really be ripe for the picking would be Lincoln, and I can't see Ford striking some sort of technology transfer deal. GM seems to be finding its footing in the States, so none of its four brands seem likely candidates. ChryCo is frankly what is keeping Fiat afloat, so I can't picture Fiat giving up their share. Fiat as a whole, on the other hand, there's possibility there. Certainly Lancia could be a candidate, but I don't think they have the requisite "image" that the Chinese are looking for. Alfa could be a candidate, except that Fiat keeps talking like they're "this close" to bringing the brand back. Opel is a possibility (or even Vauxhall), but I don't think either brand is "premium" enough. I really have no idea who they might target.
      Dmack
      • 8 Months Ago
      They miss the U.S fire sale. Buick is a cash cow for GM in China so you can count them out. Ford already sold 4 of it's Euro brands so you can count them out too. Chrysler is not a lux brand and it is own by Fiat so forget out it.
      Brandon
      • 8 Months Ago
      I really can't think of any. I don't think any of the Detroit big 3 would sell them one of their high end brands. People are probably going to say Lincoln but I agree with what Michael said, Ford probably wouldn't do that. So my guess is that they could resurrect a dead brand like Packard or Oldsmobile. As for the European brand, maybe they could buy Lancia or Puegeot/Citroen and introduce them to North America Again.
      Christopher Molloy
      • 8 Months Ago
      Obviously SAAB is a candidate, and I suspect Aston Martin might be another, and Fisker. I also suspect the Chinese aren't stupid enough to resurrect dead brands like Pontiac, Oldsmobile, Saturn, Murcury, or Eagle. Lancia is an interesting choice. I think an interesting twist on a dead brand would be to resurrect Dusenberg as a uber-luxury executive vehicle and build it (or at least partially assemble it) in the USA.
        bootsnchaps60
        • 8 Months Ago
        @Christopher Molloy
        The old Packard plant is still sorta there, would be an interseting blend (not practical though).
        no1bondfan
        • 8 Months Ago
        @Christopher Molloy
        I'd love to see Duesenberg come back, though not this way. It should be 100% American.
        me_not_you
        • 8 Months Ago
        @Christopher Molloy
        SAAB and Fisker have already been bought by Chineese companies.
      The Wasp
      • 8 Months Ago
      I think they are being rather ambitious -- it should be interesting to see if they actually come up with anything. It seems like the only major American or European brand that really wants to buy/sell/merge itself is PSA-Citroen. This would probably be BAIC's best major target. I don't think there are any active American brands they could realistically acquire -- maybe something defunct like AMC or tainted like Hummer but I don't think that would be a great idea. Opel or Lancia would probably be decent targets if GM or Fiat were interested in unloading them -- but the platform/technology basis would be very problematic since the parent companies probably wouldn't want to give that up.
      blaurge
      • 8 Months Ago
      I really love that photo. I don't know why, but something about it makes me smile.
      Zortella
      • 8 Months Ago
      I think that buying a defunct brand, such a Packard, Studebaker, or La Sale would make no sense since the no longer have any distribution and/or manufacturing facilities. I would think, as far as a US company, it would be something smaller than a brand within the big 3; something which is being produced currently in smaller volume, like Panoz, Mosler, Avanti, Delorean.
      stevenh
      • 8 Months Ago
      perhaps they will offer big Yuan's to the Indians to acquire Jaguar and Land Rover from them. The article said brand and not current country ownership
        free_spirit
        • 8 Months Ago
        @stevenh
        Do you think the Indians will give up on those 2 brands they became more stable and got a way new design and new tech with the indians
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