Tricking the Chinese legislator
Toyota, FCA (Fiat/Chrysler), Honda and Mitsubishi are set to make an unusual move in China. In order to comply with the regulatory obligations to accelerate the production of low emission vehicles, the 4 OEMs will be selling the same vehicle, produced by their common partner Guangzhou Automobile Group.
Same same, but different
The vehicle in questions is the GAC Trumpchi GS4, mid-size crossover that can be declined in a full-electric version (Toyota), plug-in hybrid (Mitshubishi) and gasoline hybrid (Honda and FCA). All vehicles will receive the same badge in front (from the manufacturer), but the name of the joint venture will be shown on the back.
Pricing is similar, somewhat between US$ 20,000 and US$24,000, depending on the level of equipment.
Automakers will receive, from 2019 onwards, a “new-energy score”, linked to the production of low-emission and zero-emission vehicles. Those who don’t comply, need to buy expensive credits to stay in business.
The 4 OEMs hope that their strategy will give them a bit more time to develop and market their own low emission vehicles.