Steve Saleen to bring Chinese cars to U.S.

Not that it's much of a surprise, but It didn't take long for Steve Saleen to find a new job. Less than a month after leaving his eponymous specialty manufacturing company, AutoWeek is reporting that Steve has landed a new gig. The somewhat surprising part is that he is the new CEO of ZX Automobile Company of North America (ZXNA). ZXNA is a subsidiary of China America Cooperative Automotive (Chamco), and the New Jersey company has started the process of bringing Chinese vehicles into the States.

ZXNA plans to bring two Chinese models to these shores later this year, a pickup truck and an SUV that will probably be sold in Mexico at first because they don't currently meet U.S. emissions and safety standards. Their pricing will start at around $13,000. ZXNA is trying to establish a network of 150 U.S. dealers, though, and it's at 20% of that goal so far. Eventually the company plans to build an assembly plant in Baja, Mexico that will build those vehicles intended for sale in the United States. They've set a goal of 30,000 vehicles a year by 2009, which is about four times what they produce currently. There's no word on whether the Chinese vehicles will get the trademark Saleen slats, fins and rockers, but we doubt the bumpers will accommodate a serialized production number of up-to five digits.

[Source: AutoWeek]

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