Vietnam gets into the car business

Riley Riley

While Australia has wound up its car production lines, other countries are just getting into the act.

A new Vietnamese car company, VinFast, plans to develop a range of “world-class” vehicles at an all-new state-of-the-art plant in northern Vietnam.

Spearheading the company’s launch, a SUV and a sedan – both developed by Pininfarina – will debut at the Paris Motor Show in October.

With Vietnamese spirit, Italian design and German technology, the two models have been developed to international standards after the Vietnamese people voted for their favourite designs from a range of options in 2017.

Paris is expected to significantly raise the profile of the brand, which plans to start domestic sales as soon as September next year.

In addition to the models being presented at the show, VinFast is also rapidly developing other vehicles which it plans to export to foreign markets in coming years.

To achieve this goal, it’s working with world-leading European design, engineering and production technology partners to create products that meet international standards as well as customer expectations in terms of design, quality, dynamics, premium in-car features — and the ownership experience.

VinFast has also recruited senior executives from some of the industry’s leading automotive companies.

The company is at an advanced stage of constructing a purpose-built, state-of-the-art 335-hectare plant in Hai Phong.

It is one of Vietnam’s biggest industrial projects to date, with ground-breaking starting in September 2017.

The ultra-modern facility will employ world-class production equipment and processes to ensure its output meets the most exacting international standards.

“We have the resources, scalability and commitment to become a significant new player in the global automotive industry,” CEO James DeLuca said.

“We are immensely proud to be the first volume automotive manufacturer in Vietnam, and the first to participate in a major international motor show.

“We look forward to introducing our new brand and two new models in Paris.

“Our show stand will also prominently feature the best of Vietnam, demonstrating the passion and tenacity that we will bring to the global automotive stage.”

VinFast is a subsidiary of Vingroup, one of Vietnam’s largest privately-held businesses, with annual revenues in 2017 of US$3.8 billion.

The group, which celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, is a leader in the Vietnamese construction and real estate sectors, and also has major interests in the country’s education, healthcare, agriculture, tourism and consumer retail sectors.

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