Great Wall Motor Company will assume control of its New Zealand and Australian operations on July 1, pledging continued service for the existing customer base and dealer network.
Great Wall Motors will re-enter the market with an all-new Great Wall utility.
“This signals the beginning of an exciting new era for China’s most successful utility manufacturer in the region,” said GWMA managing director Parker Shi.
“As demand for utilities continues to grow, Great Wall Motors decided now was the time to take the brand to the next level by establishing a direct OE presence here.”
Shi said the company would deliver solutions to any customer and dealer issues with the backing of the company’s impressive resources.
“Our emphasis will be customer service. We have a car park of more than 45,000 vehicles in Australia and New Zealand, and we would like all past and present owners to join the new organisation as we start down this exciting new road.”
“We are having discussions with the entire Great Wall dealer network and we are confident the vast majority will become part of the new business.
“Those discussions have revealed an enormous amount of goodwill for the GWM brand in both countries.”
Shi said a new Great Wall ute would go on sale early in Q4, promising a combination of outstanding value and great reliability.
The line-up will be headed by a 4x4 turbo diesel matched to a six-speed manual transmission, Borg-Warner torque on demand intelligent four-wheel drive system, and Eaton differential lock.
It will also feature high levels of safety, with ESP and six airbags as standard equipment.
“On behalf of GWMA I would like to thank the previous distributor for the work they did in establishing the brand.”
Shi said the company would be headquartered in Melbourne, sharing offices with sister company Haval Motors Australia. The Australian and New Zealand operations will be headed by Tony Carraturo as General Manager.
“Great Wall will focus solely on light commercial vehicles, with HAVAL concentrating on SUVs.
“We are confident this strategy will allow both companies to dedicate their resources into the two fastest growing segments in the Australian automotive market.”
It is expected the move will also see the introduction of some Haval vehicles into the New Zealand market.