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British brands on road to success in China

Updated: 2015-04-21 10:58
By ZHANG CHUNYAN (China Daily)

British brands on road to success in China

Employees work at the production line inside the Chery Jaguar Land Rover plant in Changshu, Jiangsu province. A strong brand heritage and government support have helped British cars win acceptance in China. [Photo/Agencies]

The fast-growing Chinese market has been one of the important factors boosting the British car sector in recent years. A strong brand heritage and government support have helped British cars win acceptance in China and made the auto industry boom again.

China is the second-largest market for British-built cars, with the domestic market being the largest. Exports of British cars to China have increased seven-fold since 2009, according to the British Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.

As China's economy matures and changes, Chinese consumers' demand for high-quality vehicles increases. And a well-known brand heritage has placed the United Kingdom in prime position to take advantage of the emerging market.

German and Japanese car producers have good reputations and solid market shares in China, but the British car industry is succeeding in the region thanks to brand value and positioning.

UK-based car producers boast of a long tradition of engineering excellence and a highly skilled workforce, and it shows up in the sector's performance. Here are just some of the numbers:

・ Significant investment in brands such as Aston Martin, Bentley, Jaguar Land Rover, McLaren and Rolls-Royce means that 60 percent of all UK-built models offered in China are from premium manufacturers.

・ In all, 137,410 UK-built cars were exported to China in 2014. Exports to China exceeded the total shipments to Brazil, India and Russia combined.

・ Direct employment in the sector is about 160,000 people, with a total of 770,000 across the wider industry.

・ The industry's revenue last year was 64 billion pounds ($96 billion).

・ The UK surpasses France in terms of vehicle output, and it is in third place after Germany and Spain in Europe.

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