News of November 28, 2001
Shanghai GM Launches Buick Sail Recreational Vehicle Providing A New Choice For China's Private Car Market
Shanghai, China - Building on the initial success of its popular Buick Sail compact car, Shanghai General Motors (Shanghai GM) kicked off nationwide sales of a recreational version, the Sail S-RV. The new model is aimed at China's growing legion of individual car buyers.
"Private car consumption is a driving force behind the rapid growth of China's automotive industry. As the market grows, it is becoming more and more diverse," said Chris Gubbey, Executive Vice President of Shanghai GM. "The launch of the Buick Sail S-RV continues Shanghai GM's tradition of introducing innovative products that meet the demands of the changing market."
Positioned as a multi-purpose recreational vehicle and priced between RMB 122,500 and RMB 135,500, the five-seat Sail S-RV (or Sail Recreational Vehicle) is designed for urban dwellers in their 20s and 30s who are looking for an affordable vehicle that is more functional and stylish than a traditional notchback sedan. Notchbacks currently account for the majority of cars purchased by private users in China.
The Sail S-RV has a flexible and spacious interior that suits a variety of uses. Rear seats fold flat, providing up to 1,190 liters of cargo space. The Sail S-RV is powered by a 1.6-liter engine that complies with Euro II emission standards. It comes with a choice of automatic or manual transmission.
Like the original Sail, the Sail S-RV is a leader in safety. Dual airbags, anti-lock brakes, 4-door steel safety beams and child safety locks are standard. Two rear compartment stowage cases, roof rails, rear windshield wipers and body-side RV graphic stripes give the Sail S-RV a recreational feel.
During the launch period, Shanghai GM is teaming up with the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China and the Bank of China on a special financing package. Those who purchase a Sail can receive a 5-10 percent interest rate reduction and an extended financing period of up to five years.
Shanghai GM expects the Sail S-RV, like its predecessor, to become a popular choice among consumers. The Sail compact car was introduced in June. Nearly 19,000 had been sold through the end of October. The Sail has quickly captured a 20 percent share of China's small car market.
Shanghai GM is a 50-50 joint venture between General Motors and Shanghai Automotive Industry (Group) Corporation (SAIC) with total investment of $1.5 billion. In addition to the Sail family, the vehicle assembly and distribution company also produces a family of Buick mid-size sedans and the Buick GL8 executive wagon. Last year, Shanghai GM sold about 30,000 vehicles.
(November 20, 2001)