BRAZIL: Lifan may move Tritec to China
Tritec Motors will not comment on reports that Chinese manufacturer Lifan wants to acquire the currently idle Brazilian engine manufacturing operation and move it to China.
AFP news agency reported that the director of Chongqing Lifan Holdings, Ying Mingshan, was keen to move the plant from Campo Largo to China. But according to Brazilian automotive industry consultants, AutoData, Tritec will not confirm the report.
Tritec Motors ceased production on 15 June. The company was established as a joint venture between Chrysler and BMW at the end of the 1990s to supply small petrol engines to both companies. However, demand from both has declined. Chrysler originally needed the engines for the PT Cruiser but soon after the start of production at Tritec, Chrysler was acquired by Daimler-Benz giving it access to small petrol engines from Mercedes. It has since gained access to engines from a three-way joint venture with Hyundai/Kia and Mitsubishi.
BMW originally needed Tritec engines for the Mini but the second generation hatchback model uses petrol engines - developed in conjunction with PSA- from its own Hams Hall engine plant in the UK.
Tritec is continuing to try to win new orders and is reportedly targeting Chinese and Russian vehicle manufacturers, and the newly independent Chrysler.