China’s largest automaker SAIC Motor group is in initial talks with General Motors Co on buying one of its India plants to produce its Wuling vans in the country, an informed source told the Oriental Morning Post on Thursday.
The source said negotiations are still in very early stage and no quick decision would be made very soon. Spokesmen from SAIC and GM China unit declined to make any comment on the matter.
GM currently produces minivans and Chevrolet Sparks at its mini-commercial-vehicle joint venture with SAIC and Wuling Automobile Co in Guangxi province.
Sales in the venture have been steadily increasing this year spurred by the halving of a purchase tax on smaller vehicles. Sales at its SAIC GM Wuling Automobile Co rose 123% to 88,711 units in August or almost a third of GM’s total China sales.
GM has a 34% stake in the Wuling and is seeking to increase its holding in the booming mini-van venture. The US automaker maybe willing to help SAIC explore the Indian market in exchange for that stakes, according to the source.
In mid-August GM said it will expand sales of the Wuling N200 made by the SAIC GM Wuling in South America, the Middle East and North Africa, building up the auto maker’s use of China as an export hub.