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March 10, 2010

US: BYD eyes California sales HQ and assembly plant

Chinese carmaker BYD is considering setting up an assembly plant and North American sales headquarters in California.

Chinese carmaker BYD is considering setting up an assembly plant and North American sales headquarters in California.

The state is seen as a good base for the firm in the US following the planned commencement of sales of its e6 electric crossover model in the US market from early 2011.

BYD executives told reporters at the Geneva Motor Show last week that it is thinking ahead to overseas assembly facilities in regions where it will be selling cars – including Europe and North America.

It also used the Geneva show to announce plans to work with Daimler on a new electric model.

Analysts say that California has been hard-hit by the recession and the planned closure of NUMMI – the state’s last remaining car plant – may mean that local authorities are especially keen to woo BYD. California is also likely to be a sales hot spot for the firm’s electric cars.

Reports suggest that officials from the Los Angeles area have already met with BYD officials, but other potential locations in the state remain very much in the mix.

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