BEIJING (Reuters) – Volvo Car Group plans to export a Chinese-made midsize sedan this year to the United States, and is starting to weigh the possibility of building a vehicle factory in the United States, people familiar with the Chinese-owned automaker’s plans said.
Both moves would be significant for the auto industry and Volvo’s parent, Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co. So far, global automakers have chosen not to ship vehicles made in China to the US market in any significant numbers, and efforts by Chinese automakers to export vehicles to the United States have foundered.
Volvo is also behind rivals BMW and Mercedes in establishing production in the United States, which insulates the German brands from currency fluctuations.
Volvo might also export a large “strategic, flagship” sedan based on a newly developed underpinning technology, said the executives, who work for Zhejiang Geely. That car would be shipped out of China in addition to the Volvo S60L, a long wheelbase version of the S60 sedan Volvo began producing in the southwestern China city of Chengdu more than a year ago.