- Thailand leads the way with YTD (year-to-date) growth of 112 percent
- Colorado remains the leader amongst non-Japanese pickup trucks
- Production and powertrain facility upgraded to increase capacity and meet increasing demand
Bangkok, Thailand – Chevrolet Sales Thailand (Chevrolet) has posted a record-setting performance in the first half of 2012 in both domestic Thai and SEA markets. Dramatic sales growth was boosted by a portfolio of exciting products, in addition to the recent launch of the all-new Trailblazer SUV and Sonic sub-compact sedan.
In Thailand, Chevrolet sold 32,285 vehicles from January to June 2012, a year-to-date (YTD) increase of 112 percent compared to the same period last year. This exceeded the total number of vehicles sold in Thailand for all of 2011 (31,595 units). June 2012 sales soared to 5,607 units, a Year-on-Year (YOY) increase of more than 100 percent compared to June 2011 (2,645 units).
“This is our best first half sales ever: we blew away all previous sales records in Thailand and SEA,” said Antonio Zara, Vice-President of Sales, Marketing and Aftersales, GM Thailand/SEA and Chevrolet Sales Thailand. “We are confident this growth will continue, with the introduction of the new fun-filled Sonic in Thailand this month, and eventually, in other SEA markets.”
Chevrolet sold 3,444 Colorados, a YOY increase of 245 percent. Since January 2012, Chevrolet has sold 18,354 Colorados, making it the most popular non-Japanese truck amongst Thai customers, and ranking a strong fourth in its segment.
Hailing the strong, continuous growth, Martin Apfel, President of GM Southeast Asia and Chevrolet Sales Thailand, said, “The latest figures prove that GM has a winning strategy for Thailand, and Southeast Asia. We are taking advantage of our global architectures to field highly competitive vehicles in every major market segment.”
“Customers in Thailand and across the region are responding to the dependability, performance, enjoyment, value and safety that Chevrolet vehicles offer, whether it’s a fuel-efficient compact for city streets or a tough pickup for farm work,” Apfel noted.
Overall mid-year sales in SEA reached 39,810 units, an impressive YTD increase of 90 percent compared to January to June 2011. Sales for the month of June 2012 rose to 6,955 units, a sharp YOY increase of 86 percent compared to June 2011.
In view of the increase in capacity due to increasing demands for Chevrolet products and the production of newly-launched models, General Motors Thailand (GM) has extensively upgraded its production facility in Rayong. This includes upgrades and new tooling to the robotic press line, body and paint shop and the general assembly areas. As a result, the press line can now produce seven panels per minute, or 2.3 million panels per year
A new material delivery system has also been implemented and this, in addition to other upgrades, make GM’s facility one of the most flexible in the industry. Its production lines can now accommodate the production of a vast variety of models in different orders, variants, configurations and combinations. For the six vehicles built in Rayong, 15 different engines and 47 transmission will be used to produce vehicles for local and export markets. In total, the two lines can accommodate a total of 1,394 variants.
To ensure quality meets GM’s stringent standards, laser scanning technology is employed. Additionally, special customer quality checks are also positioned throughout the manufacturing system, using state-of-the-art vehicle electrical and dynamic test equipment, to ensure every vehicle built meets quality standards.
GM is now operating two shifts on the passenger vehicle line while the truck line is now on three shifts. The Rayong facility now employs more than 5,200 employees.
GM has also recently launched a new block line at its Powertrain facility. The latest USD36 million-addition to the facility is the latest expansion of GM’s manufacturing capacity in Thailand. The new line will machine high-precision engine blocks for four-cylinder Duramax turbo-diesel engines for the Colorado and Trailblazer. Launched one year ahead of schedule, the new line has the capacity to produce 440 engine blocks in a 24-hour, three-shift period. The new block line will enable GM to ensure better quality control, cost saving and improved local content.
“The various upgrades to both our production and powertrain facilities reaffirm our commitment to Thailand, and to our growth in the local and regional markets. The upgrades will ensure that Chevrolet continues to deliver new and exciting products, such as the Sonic, and that these products are built to the highest quality standards, for the benefit of our customers,” Apfel said.
Chevrolet has also recently announced the pricing for the Sonic sub-compact four-door notchback in the Thai market. Prices start from THB548,000 for the entry-level LS variant, to THB679,000 for the top-of-the-line LTZ, notchback variant. For the hatchback, prices start at THB601,000 for the LT variant to THB687,000 for the LTZ. Powered by a new-generation, E20-capable 1.4L DOHC (Dual Overhead Camshafts) engine, the Sonic will be available with either a five-speed manual or a six-speed automatic transmission, the latter making the Sonic the first-in-segment to feature a six-speed, torque converter-based transmission on a sub-compact.
The LTZ variant will be equipped with 16-inch alloy wheels and 205/55 tires, in addition to a six-speaker premium sound system, integrated on-board computer ABS and passenger side airbag (in addition to the standard driver airbag). Pricing for the Sonic are as follows:
|Chevrolet Sonic Model Variant||THB|
|NB 1.4 MT LS||548,000|
|NB 1.4 AT LA||578,000|
|NB 1.4 MT LT||588,000|
|NB 1.4 AT LT||615,000|
|NB 1.4 AT LTZ||679,000|
|HB 1.4 MT LT||601,000|
|HB 1.4 AT LT||632,000|
|HB 1.4 AT LTZ||687,000|
|*NB = 4-door Sedan|
|*HB = 5-door Hatchback|
|*MT = 5-speed Manual Transmission|
|*AT = 6-speed Auto Transmission|
The new sub-compact is now available for booking at all dealers nationwide, and delivery of the notchback is slated to start by the end of July 2012. Delivery of the hatchback will start one month later. All model variants of the Sonic qualify for the Thai Government’s first-car buyer scheme.
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About Chevrolet Sales (Thailand) Limited
Chevrolet Sales Thailand (Chevrolet) was established in January 1, 2000 as a subsidiary of General Motors Limited, one of the major automobile manufacturers in the world. The first vehicle launched was the Chevrolet Zafira, the first Multipurpose Vehicle (MPV) launched in the Thai market. Today, Chevrolet has a comprehensive range of vehicles including the Aveo, Aveo CNG, the latter touted as the ‘people’s eco-car’, the award-winning Cruze and Captiva, and the best-in-class, all-new Chevrolet Colorado. Chevrolet is committed to offer the best cars and trucks to its customers in terms of quality, performance and economy. The company is also equally committed to ensuring second-to-none aftersales service for its customers, backed by a growing dealer network in Thailand and Southeast Asia.
Founded in 1911 in Detroit, Chevrolet is now one of the world's largest car brands, doing business in more than 140 countries and selling more than 4 million cars and trucks a year. Chevrolet provides customers with fuel-efficient vehicles that feature spirited performance, expressive design, and high quality. More information on Chevrolet models can be found at www.chevrolet.com.