Chongqing Lifan Automobile Co said it has secured its biggest overseas export deal when it won a contract for 2,000 units of its 520 sedan from the Philippines.
Lifan, a former motorcycle maker, said the total export value would exceed 100 million yuan (US$14.6 million) and the 520 mid-class sedans, powered by a 1.3 or 1.6-liter engine, would serve as taxis in the southeast Asian country.
Lifan said the 520 sedan costs about US$10,600 in the Philippines, lower than other mainstream foreign models.
But the firm is aware that besides the competitive price, product quality and after-sales service are becoming more crucial selling points, said an official surnamed Luo from its export division.
"We strive to improve quality and services so that we can have better access to the market and keep the growing momentum," he told Shanghai Daily via telephone.
Chongqing-based Lifan has established 10 sales offices in the Philippines in partnership with a Filipino vehicle importing firm.
(Shanghai Daily August 12, 2009)