FAW SA Enjoyed a Record Year Despite Touch Conditions
FAW SA says it enjoyed a record year of sales in 2017, with 1,200 units (including exports) finding new owners during the year.
This is the highest sales achievement for the company in what is a tough and highly competitive commercial vehicle market.
According to Jianyu Hao, CEO of FAW SA, the local market in 2017 was the most competitive since his company started operations in SA more than 23 years ago, but he says that FAW’s wide range of heavy and extra-heavy offering are well tailored to local and southern African customer needs which contributes to its continued growth.
Through customer interaction and endorsements, FAW has ensured it offers the appropriate model line-up to cater for the farming, mining, construction, distribution and long-haul sectors.
With the introduction of its 420hp FAW 33.420FT 6x4 truck tractor in the third quarter of 2017, and the showing of its future products — the long-haul JH6 truck tractor, 33-seater bus, and FAW 8.140 full automatic — at the Automechanika/Futuroad commercial vehicle trade show, FAW says it expects a busy year in 2018.
Among many notable achievements in 2017, the Coega-based factory witnessed the 3,000th locally built truck roll off the production line. The company says that its assembly plant, which was inaugurated in 2014, has maintained such high quality standards that the global corporation recognised and awarded FAW SA with the global distributor of the year award in 2017.
Looking ahead to 2018, the commercial vehicle sector faces many challenges and Hao agrees with the sentiments and predictions of the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of SA that the market could go up to 27,000 units subject to certain provisos.
Hao also agrees that provided SA manages to avoid a further credit downgrade, and provided the economic growth rate in 2018 picks up to about 1.2% from the low level of 2017, sales of medium and heavy commercial vehicles could improve by between 2.5% and 3.0% in volume terms in 2018.
"We at FAW SA are taking a longer-term view, that upward movement in local and African vehicle sales is probable, albeit a bit slow over the next 18 to 24 months," says Hao.
FAW SA, however, is staying committed to building on the reputation of "Built in SA for Africa" through the promise of product backup, highest vehicle uptime and lowest total cost of ownership with a duty-bound commitment for parts supply, service support and technical assistance whenever and wherever needed, says Hao.
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