(Yicai Global) Nov. 5 -- The first China International Import Expo(CIIE) will be held at the National Convention and Exhibition Centre (Shanghai) on Nov 5, 2018.
Sponsored by the Ministry of Commerce and the Shanghai Municipal Government, CIIE is aimed at firmly supporting free trade and economic globalization and actively opening up Chinese market to the world. As the world's first large-scale national exhibition with import as its theme, CIIE is composed with exhibition and forum.
Organizing CIIE is a significant measure taken by China to firmly support free trade and economic globalization and open its market to the world. It promotes economic and trade exchanges and cooperation among nations in the world, drives global trade and world economic growth, and boosts the development of an open world economy.
Recently, SAIC Volkswagen officially delivers hundreds of PHIDON vehicles at CIIE reception vehicle hand-over ceremony in Shanghai Exhibition Center.
This is not the first time that PHIDEON serves as a reception vehicle. It has been favored by the domestic political and business VIPs for its luxurious yet low profile quality since its launch and is frequently making appearance in VIP reception and important high-end conferences.
SAIC Volkswagen PHIDEON has been recognized by the market. According to the data from CPCA, from January to September 2018, the company has sold 18147 PHIDEON vehicles, 241.6% increase YOY. PHIDEON has successfully established itself in the luxury vehicle market according to the Federation.
This year marks the 34th anniversary of SAICVolkswagen; SAIC Volkswagen is the fruit of Sino-Germany cooperation after the Reform and Opening-up. The company laid its foundation upon a JV contract signed between SAIC and Volkswagen Group in October, 1984. It is one of the long-lasting automobile JVs in China. On Oct 29,CBN has an exclusive interview with David Powels, the First VP and EVP of SAIC Volkswagen to learn more about PHIDEON and SAIC Volkswagen.
Yicai: Why does CIIE select PHIDEON as its reception vehicle for the first China International Import Expo?
David Powels: Phideon is the first C-class premium product for SAIC Volkswagen, launched in 2016. It's a premium product in terms of design, craftsmanship, material and safety. It is the successor product for Volkswagen Phaeton, and has many features of D-class premium vehicles such as air suspension and in-car refrigerator. We believe this is a suitable product to be the flagship vehicle of this very important event.
In my opinion, CIIE represents the progress that China, as a country, has made in development. And this product also shows the progress that our company has made in terms of development. We believe it's an appropriate product. As the reception vehicle of CIIE, PHIDEON has also served previously as the official vehicle for transportation of VIP guests for Two Sessions and Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation. So I think this vehicle has proved its credential as a high profile, high craftsmanship VIP vehicle.
Yicai: As the CIIE reception vehicle, PHIDON has been widely recognized in the luxury car market. What action will SAIC Volkswagen take in other market segments in 2018?
David Powels: The automotive market in China is developing very fast, new technologies, new competition. SAIC Volkswagen has been a dominant player and, in fact, a leader in this industry for a very long period of time. And for us to maintain our position of dominance and leadership in this market, we are also undergoing process of renewing all of our vehicle platforms to bring the latest technology into the market. For example, in the recent past, we've launched AllNew Lavida, AllNew Gran Lavida; we will be launching, this week, AllNew Passat. We have also launched a number of products in the Skoda brand: KAROQ and KAMIQ, and we will, in the near future, launch KODIAQ GT.
SAIC Volkswagen has a continuing program of bringing new technologies, new platforms into the Chinese market to accompany and lead the technological developments that are happening in the market. In addition, we are also focusing on plug-in hybrid vehicles and in the near future we will also be launching 2 very important plug-in hybrid vehicles: TiguanL PHEV as well as Passat PHEV. The comprehensive product renewal brings the latest technology to our customer base in China.
Yicai: With the rapid development of leading-edge automotive technologies, what SAIC Volkswagen contributes to attract consumers especially on new energy vehicle?
David Powels: The market in China is the biggest and fastest growing in the world for new energy vehicles. Once again, for SAIC Volkswagen to maintain its position of dominance and leadership, we will also be focusing on this growing segment. On Oct 19, just 2 weeks ago, we commenced the construction of VW Group's first dedicated electric vehicle factory in Anting, in Shanghai. This factory has an entire investment of 17bn RMB, will have a capacity of 300,000 new electric vehicles. It will be the first plant in Volkswagen world globally to be unique and dedicated MEB factory with production of the first MEB vehicle for the Chinese market from 2020 onwards.
SAIC Volkswagen will continue to focus both on improving significantly the fuel consumption and CO2emissions of its existing combustion engine vehicles; simultaneously, focus on MEB vehicles. Our goal is to have a complete portfolio of products, combustion vehicles, plug-in hybrids, as well as full battery electric vehicles from 2020 onwards, to participate fully and maintain our position of dominance and leadership in the Chinese car market.
Looking back, PHIDEON has gone through a glorious course. In December 2016, PHIDEON was selected as the designated car for state guests' reception to provide distinguished and comfortable experience for foreign guests visiting in Shanghai. In 2017, PHIDEON had its highlighted moment by serving the Two Sessions and the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation and defined the new standard of state guest vehicles. In 2018, PHIDEON made quite an appearance in the special event by Chinese People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (CPAFFC) called "stepping on the ancient silk road again and let the chorus begin" and established itself as a good example of Made in China. PHIDEON always play an active role in important conferences with the German-style elegance and privileged experience. Meanwhile, its ample experience of serving a number of high-level political and business activities has also made PHIDEON a benchmark reception vehicle for political and business events.
The first China International Import Expo is approaching. It is worth mentioning that SAIC Volkswagen has been strictly checking and inspecting the reception vehicles of this Expo, ensuring the quality and reliability of every vehicle. Meanwhile, it also mobilizes a lot of manpower and material resources, coordinates with 4S stores and spares no effort to provide driver training, vehicle maintenance, inspection and first-aid repair. By virtue of its powerful strength, SAIC Volkswagen will offer extraordinary and detailed service and spare no effort to show its powerful strength and brand new charm to guests from all over the world.