GWM WANTS TO BUY JEEP

Great Wall Motors, the China-based automaker commonly known as GWM, is very interested in buying American brand Jeep. Currently Jeep is part of the Fiat Chrysler Automotive group and includes brands such as Alfa Romeo, Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat, Maserati and Ram. However, GWM is only interested in Jeep and nothing else. This makes sense because it has long been hypothesised that every potential suitor for Chrysler Jeep has actually been after Jeep.

 

According to a report by European publication Automotive News, GWM has not yet made a firm offer to FCA Chairman Sergio Marchionne, but is keen to do so at the earliest possible moment. Marchionne previously remarked that it would be possible to spin off Jeep on its own, in the same way the Ferrari was also spun off.

 

 

“We are deeply interested in the Jeep brand and have paid close attention to it for a long time” Xu Hui, a spokesman for Great Wall, is quoted as saying. “Our strategic goal is to become the world’s largest SUV maker. Acquiring Jeep, a global SUV brand, would enable us to achieve our goal sooner and better”. Besides the mother brand GWM itself, the company also owns and sells Haval-branded vehicles as well. It says just over 1 million of its products were sold in 2016.

 

Because Jeep is part of the FCA group, there have not been external valuations for the brand. But some analysts reckon the business could be worth up to US$35 billion (about R460 billion). Last year Jeep sold 1.4 million vehicles globally on the back of names like Renegade, Compass, Cherokee, Grand Cherokee. A bigger, more luxurious vehicle called the Grand Wagoneer is rumoured to be under development for release in 2019.

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