One year after announcing that the Chrysler Group would license China Motor Corp. (CMC) to produce the Chrysler Town & Country
, the first customer-ready vehicle is rolling off the production line at CMC’s Yangmei facility.
Tom LaSorda, Chrysler Group President and CEO, made his second trip to Taiwan in eight months to review the Chrysler Town & Country production launch and celebrate the first customer-ready vehicle.
"Thanks to the hard work of the men and women of CMC and the Chrysler Group to help prepare this launch, the Chrysler Town & Country produced here meets our high worldwide standard and is ready for our customers in Taiwan," said LaSorda. "With the roll-off of the first customer-ready vehicle, CMC joins the family of Chrysler minivan production facilities in the U.S., Canada and Austria. I’ve been in hundreds of plants, and helped launch dozens of vehicles, and I can tell you that this is a world-class operation, and we are proud of our ongoing partnership with CMC."
"Today is another milestone for DaimlerChrysler in Northeast Asia, and we believe there are tremendous opportunities to continue to grow the business of all our vehicle brands here," said Dr. Till Becker, Chairman and CEO of DaimlerChrysler Northeast Asia. "Licensed manufacturing is a very efficient way to bring vehicles to the market quickly. Working together, we were able to combine the best attributes of the world’s best minivan with features tailor made for the Taiwanese market. We appreciate the partnership and support of CMC for this and other projects."
"Our team has been working closely with the Chrysler Group colleagues to ensure that every vehicle that rolls off the line meets the high international standards customers in Taiwan expect," said Mr. Kai Tai (Kenneth) Yen, Vice Chairman of CMC. "We are proud to produce the best-selling minivan in the world, and are pleased that Tom is here to help us celebrate the first vehicle. It underscores the importance of the Chrysler Group’s plans in Taiwan, and the expansion of the cooperation between CMC and DaimlerChrysler."
CMC and DaimlerChrysler officials celebrated the first customer-ready vehicle at CMC’s production facility in Yangmei, with hundreds of guests and CMC employees. Employees from U.S. and Canadian operations where Chrysler minivans are produced welcomed CMC into Chrysler Group’s minivan production family through videotaped greetings.
The locally assembled Chrysler Town & Country was specifically adapted by CMC to meet the needs of Taiwanese customers, including detailed touches on the exterior that better cater to Taiwan customers’ preferences, and adjustments to provide safety and comfort for the driving environment of Taiwan.
In addition to LaSorda, Becker and Yen, other executives in attendance included: Chairman of Lei Shing Hong Ltd. Datuk CK Lau; Managing Director of Lei Shing Hong K.S. Gan; CMC President Huang; CMC Executive Vice President Huang; Chrysler Group Executive Vice President Frank Klegon; Chrysler Group Vice President Bill Russo; Chrysler Group Vice President Steve Walukas; DC Taiwan President and CEO Wolfram Geisler; CGTSL President Matt Chang.
In addition to licensing Chrysler Town & Country production, DaimlerChrysler Taiwan and CMC created a joint venture last year called Chrysler Group Taiwan Sales Ltd. (CGTSL) to manage sales and distribution of Chrysler Group vehicles for the local market. CGTSL is tripling the number of Chrysler Group retail outlets over the next two years.
"Chrysler vehicles are known around the world for their combination of eye-catching design and outstanding value," added LaSorda. "From fashion to architecture to cars, take a look at urban Asia today and it’s obvious that successfully combining bold design and superior value is a winning formula."
China Motor Corporation was established in 1969 and is based in Taiwan. It has multiple subsidiaries and affiliates involved in automotive distribution, parts manufacturing and related services. It is a publicly traded subsidiary of the Yulon Group. DaimlerChrysler Taiwan is a joint venture between Lei Shing Hong and DaimlerChrysler AG.