Chrysler signs pact with Great Wall of China

American car manufacturer Chrysler looks set to "enter the dragon" after signing an agreement to work with one of China's leading automobile companies.

Chrysler, which is owned by private equity firm Cerberus, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Great Wall Motor Company, in a move that will allow the pair to explore long-term business development opportunities.

Not only will it boost Chrysler's push into China - where it already sells ten models - it will also help the US company boost its knowledge of the local market and local production techniques.

It will also allow the two companies to discuss distribution, component sharing and technology.

Of the ten models it sells in China, only four are manufactured locally via partnerships, and the agreement with Great Wall Motor may allow this to increase.

A spokesman for Chrysler said: "The MOU represents part of Chrysler's ongoing efforts to explore opportunities to expand its involvement in the development of China's auto industry".


Chrysler is America's third largest car manufacturer, and has struggled, like rivals Ford and General Motors, in recent months to cope with the increasing shift in demand for smaller cars as the price of petrol continues to rise.

Earlier this week, the company saw a 36pc fall in vehicle sales in June in the US, but Chrysler president Jim Press insisted the firm is exceeding all of the financial targets set by its private equity owner.

Mr Press's comments came a day after it emerged that the firm said it would shut the plant that manufactures it mini-van - previously its best-selling vehicle - in St Louis and eliminate a shift at a nearby truck plant.

The firm is not alone in restructuring its operations, with Ford and GM both having previously announced drastic changes in production and factory closures as part of their efforts to stem heavy financial losses.


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