TodayApril 17, 2022

Who owns whom, Car companies and mergers

Who owns whom

Who owns whom – The rumors are always the most interesting; General Motors got out of its purchase option with FIAT by paying them $2 Billion. Now both Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp(SAIC)(a Joint Venture with General Motors and Volkswagen in China) and TATA Motor Group are rumored to be interested in purchasing FIAT, the parent company of Ferrari and Maserati. This would give either company a foray into Europe and Latin America and, possibly, a footprint into the United States, slicing the domestic marketshare pie just a little more.

Any company with ambitions to go global has to be in China. But, how long will it be before China feels the pressure and wants to increase its marketshare by going global? Obviously, sooner than most thought. Rumor has it that the companies to watch out for are Changan, Chery, and Geely. Changan is the top producing car company in China and has dealings with Ford, Suzuki, and Mazda. Chery is the eighth largest automaker in China and has a deal with Malcolm Bricklin, the founder of Subaru USA and Yugo USA to sell cars in the US. Geely owns 5 percent of the Chinese market. Cars are priced around USD 5,000. There is a report that Geely recently signed a deal with Malcolm Bricklins Chery to start selling its vehicles in the United States by 2006.

General Motors and Ford are in the news for losing marketshare while Nissan and Toyota are in the news for gaining marketshare. They should all be competitive and not talk to each other at all, right? Wrong, synergy between companies can save big on technology and the savings are in the billions when platforms are shared. Sometimes the platform sharing is with the strangest bedfellows until you realize who owns whom.

Car companies and mergers

Acura Motors:

Jeep Wrangler
Jeep Wrangler
  • Jeep
    Jeff Bell, Vice President of Marketing
  • Maybach
  • Mercedes-Benz
    Paul Halata, President and CEO
    Number of dealers: 329
    2004 sales: 221,610
  • Smart DongFeng
    Chinas 2nd largest automaker, a state enterprise that’s owned by the central government. They have Joint Ventures (JVs) with Nissan, Peugeot, and Honda
  • FIAT S.p.A. – Fabbrica Italiana Automobili Torino (Italian Car Factory of Turin)
    Sergio Marchionne, CEO
  • Fiat
    see SAIC and Tata – both are rumored to be interested in purchasing FIAT S.p.A. This would be a footprint into Latin America, Europe and possibly the United States for either if they did buy FIAT SpA.
    General Motors had an option to buy Fiat but divested its interest in February 2005
  • Abarth (no more individual models, only styling/sports kits)
  • Alfa Romeo
    In February Fiat took over Maserati and merged it with Alfa Romeo
  • Ferrari
    Ferrari is part of FIAT S.p.A., not FIAT auto FIAT S.p.A. owns a controlling interest in Ferrari
  • Lancia
  • Maserati
    Maserati is part of Fiat Auto, linked to Alfa Romeo. Maserati’s distribution in the USA is dependent on the Ferrari channel
  • First Auto Works (FAW)
    Chinas largest automaker of trucks and cars, including a car named Hongqi, which means Red Flag. JVs with VW and Toyota.
2009 Ford F-150
2009 Ford F-150
  • Ford Motor Company
    William Clay Ford Jr, Chairman of the Board and CEO
  • Aston Martin
    Mike ODriscoll, President, Aston Martin, Jaguar, Land Rover North America
    Ford bought Aston Martin in 1994
  • ChangAn Ford (Ford and ChangAn Motors)
  • Ford
    Stephen G. Lyons, President
    Number of dealers: 3,799
    2004 sales: 2,778,678
  • Jaguar
    Mike ODriscoll, President, Aston Martin, Jaguar, Land Rover North America
    Number of dealers: 173
    2004 sales: 45,875
    Ford bought Jaguar in 1990
  • Land Rover
    Mike ODriscoll, President, Aston Martin, Jaguar, Land Rover North America
    Number of dealers: 164
    2004 sales: 35,506
    Sold to Ford in 2000 from BMW the Range Rover had a BMW engine till this year when it switched to a V-8 from Jaguar.
  • Lincoln
    Darryl Hazel, President
    Number of dealers: 641
    2004 sales: 332,600
  • Mazda (33.4% controlling interest)
    James O’Sullivan, President, and CEO
    Number of dealers:702
    2004 sales:263,883
    The hot new Mazda 3 shares its underpinnings with the upcoming Mazda 5, Volvo S40 and V50 and the European version of the Ford Focus. The Mazda 6 is the basis for the 2006 Ford Fusion, Mercury Milan and Lincoln Zephyr
  • Mercury
  • Volvo
    Anne Belec, President and CEO
    Number of dealers: 353
    2004 sales: 139,384
    Ford bought Volvo in 1999 for $6.5 billion. Since then the same platform has been used for the S80 sedan, S60 sedan, XC90 SUV, and two generations of V70 wagons. The same platform was recently used for the Ford Five Hundred, Ford Freestyle, and the Mercury Montego. Geely
    The second most likely Chinese company to come to America. A private Chinese company started 7 years ago that specializes in affordable compact cars, such as Huapu and Haoqing, for the masses. Now has 5 percent of the car market in China. Cars priced around USD 5,000.
    Geely Automobile Holdings Ltd signed a partnership agreement in May, with Malaysian manufacturers Information Gateway Corporation SDN BHD (IGC), to assemble it’s own brand cars in Malaysia, the first car will be the Freedom Cruiser.
    General Motors G. Richard “Rick” Wagoner, Jr., Chairman and CEO
  • AM General
    (government vehicles produced as HUMMVs; not sold to private individuals)
  • Buick
    Number of dealers: 2,758
    2004 sales: 309,639
  • Cadillac
    Number of dealers: 1,482
    2004 sales: 234,217
  • Chevrolet
    Number of dealers: 4,145
    2004 sales: 2,763,238
    The Chevy Malibu spans the globe by sharing parts with the Pontiac G6, Saturn Aura, Saab 9-3, and the European Cadillac BLS. Daewoo (sold as Chevrolet, Holden or Suzuki outside North Korea)
    GM Daewoo Auto and Technology provides vehicles to Chevrolet, Holden, Buick and it’s alliance partner Suzuki. In Korea and Vietnam, GMDAT products are sold under the GM Daewoo brand.
  • GMC
    Number of dealers: 2,249
    2004 sales: 602,064
  • Holden (Australia)
  • Hummer
    Number of dealers: 164
    2004 sales: 29,345
  • Isuzu (10 % interest)
    Minoru Matsushima, Chairman
    Number of dealers: 350
    2004 sales: 27,188
  • Opel
    (Europe excluding the UK, also India and Africa)
  • Pontiac
    Number of dealers: 2,786
    2004 sales: 474,179
    Shares the platform and parts with the Toyota Matrix, but priced higher. Entered into a joint venture with Toyota in 1984. GM put up an abandoned factory in Fremont, CA, and Toyota added cash and the Corolla platform. Now known as NUMMI, this was Toyotas first foray into the American market.
  • Saturn
    Jill Lajdziak, Vice President, Sales, Service, and Marketing
    Number of dealers: 445
    2004 sales: 212,017
  • Saab
    Number of dealers: 249
    2004 sales: 38,159
    the all-wheel-drive Saab 9-2X is based on the Subaru WRX, known now as the Saabaru. The 2006 Saab 9-7X SUV is built on the same platform as a Chevy Trailblazer, Buick Ranier, and GMC Envoy. The Saab is built in Moraine, Ohio.
  • Shanghai GM (GM and Shanghai Auto Industry Corp-SAIC) GreatWall Motors
    The maker of pickup trucks and SUVs based in a town about 100 miles south of Beijing. Also listed on the NYSE in 2003.
  • Hyundai Kia Automotive Group:
  • Hyundai Motor America:
    Hyundai Motor America is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hyundai Motor Company, headquartered in Seoul, South Korea
    Bob Cosmai, President and CEO
    Number of dealers: 664
    2004 sales: 418,615
  • Kia:
    Peter Butterfield, President, and CEO
    Number of dealers: 650
    2004 sales: 270,055
    Mitsubishi Motors North America
    less than 20% owned by DCX, no longer a controlling interest
    Rich Gilligan, President, and CEO
    Number of dealers: 52
    2004 sales: 161,609
    The Mitsubishi Raider will be built by Dodge in the Warren truck plant, using the Dodge Dakota platform/powertrain.
  • Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.
    (44% shareholding by Renault)
  • Nissan
    (Known as Datsun from 1932 to 1983)
    Jed Connelly, Senior Vice President Sales, and Marketing
    Number of dealers: 1,072
    2004 sales: 855,002
    In North America, Nissan has vehicle manufacturing plants in Smyrna, Tenn.; Canton, Miss.; and Aguascalientes and Cuernavaca, Mexico. Globally, Nissan vehicles are produced in plants in Japan, the United Kingdom, Spain, Thailand, China, Taiwan, the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, Pakistan, South Africa, Kenya, and Egypt.
  • Infiniti
    Jed Connelly, Senior Vice President Sales, and Marketing
    Number of dealers: 172
    2004 sales: 130,067
  • Renault (15% held by Nissan)
  • Renault Samsung Panoz Porsche
    Wendelin Wiedeking, Chairman of the Board of Management, Porsche AG
    Number of dealers: 204
    2004 sales: 33,289
    The Porsche Cayenne and Volkswagen Toureg are built on the same platform that was designed by Porsche and built-in Volkswagens Czech Republic plant
  • Lotus PSA Group
  • Citroen
  • Peugeot Saleen SGM Wuling (China)
    Three-way Joint Venture with GM, Shanghai Auto Industry Corp and Wuling Motors that produces micro trucks and micro cars, including the Chevrolet Spark, based off the Daewoo Matiz.
  • Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp(SAIC)
    Joint Venture with General Motors and Volkswagen in China. Rumored to be interested in buying Fiat.
    A state enterprise owned by the city of Shanghai.Subaru Fuji Heavy Industries, Ltd (20% interest owned by General Motors)
    A descendant of the Nakajima Aircraft Company (est. 1917), Fuji Heavy Industries (FHI) was established on July 15, 1953, when five Japanese companies joined to form one of Japans largest manufacturers of transportation equipment.
    FHI has an aerospace division that provides Boeing with infrastructure. FHI applies a great deal of its aircraft technology to its automotive division, most notably the horizontally-opposed boxer engines used in all modern Subaru automobiles.
    Kyoji Takenaka, President, Fuji Heavy Industries, Ltd.
  • Subaru of America
    Subaru is the Japanese word for the star cluster the Pleiades that is depicted in the company logo
    Number of dealers: 580
    2004 sales: 187,402
    All Impreza models, 2.5i, WRX sedan and wagon, Outback Sport, and STi are on the same platform, built-in Gunma, Japan
    All Legacy models (2.5i, GT)and all Outback models (3.0 R sedan, 2.5i wagon, XT, L.L.Bean, and VDC) and all Baja models are built on the Legacy platform, built-in Lafayette, Indiana. The all-new B9 Tribeca is based on a highly modified Outback platform, but it’s much longer and wider, with different suspension components. Suzuki (20% interest owned by General Motors)
    Sokichi Nakano, Chairman
    Number of dealers: 540
    2004 sales: 73,946
    Tata Motors:
    Rumored to be interested in buying Fiat. If so, that would give TATA their first footprint into America
    Seven out of ten medium and heavy commercial vehicles in India are made by Tata. The Indica V2 is Indias only fully designed and manufactured passenger car.
    In 2004 Tata Motors bought Daewoo’s truck manufacturing unit in South KoreaToyota Motor Corporation:
  • Daihatsu
  • Lexus:
    Denny Clements, Group Vice President, and General Manager
    Number of dealers: 210
    2004 sales: 287,927
  • Scion:
  • Toyota:
    Yukitoshi Funo, President and COE
    Number of dealers: 1,210
    2004 sales: 1,772,122
    same platform – matrix and corolla?
  • Volkswagen Group:
  • Audi:
    Johan de Nysschen, Executive Vice President
    Number of dealers:262
    2004 sales:77,917
    The Phaeton and Audi A8 share some similar technologies such as air suspension, 4.2 V8 and W12 engines.
  • Bentley:
    Andrew Stuart, CEO
    Number of dealers:39
    2004 sales: 2,479
    Purchased by VW in 1998. The Bentley Continental and Flying Spur share bits of the platform and hardware of the 12-cylinder Volkswagen Phaeton. Bentley has said they could assemble the Flying Spur at the Phaeton factory in Dresden, “The Glass Factory”, Germany, but the factory at Crew, England has sufficient capacity right now to handle the demand of the Bentley for the next two years.
  • Bugatti
  • Lamborghini
  • SEAT
  • Skoda
  • Volkswagen
    Frank Witter, CEO and Chief Financial Officer
    Number of dealers: 611
    2004 sales: 256,111
    VWAG has a Joint Venture with First Auto Works but none of those vehicles are exported resources: Most Manufacturers listed above
    fact file
    Automotive Resources Asia, based in Shanghai, Beijing, and Bangkok
    National Automotive Dealer Association (NADA) Magazine China Daily
Lou Ann Hammond

Lou Ann Hammond is the CEO of Carlist and Driving the Nation. She is the co-host of Real Wheels Washington Post carchat every Friday morning and is the Automotive, energy correspondent for The John Batchelor Show and a Contributor to Automotive Electronics magazine headquartered in Korea. Hammond is a founding member of the Women's World Car of the Year #WWCOTY, and board member of the Women in Automotive.


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