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Beijing Benz - Daimler Chrysler Automotive Co Ltd (simplified Chinese: 北京奔驰汽车有限公司) is a Chinese car manufacturer.

This joint venture is co-owned by Daimler AG and Beiqi.[1]

It assembles[2] and manufactures[1] the Mercedes-Benz E-Class and C-Class[3] in Beijing. 2011 will see the GLK-Class crossover added to its model line.[4] Some Mercedes-branded offerings sold in China, like the S-Class, are imported by Mercedes-Benz (China) Ltd.[5]

Sales in 2010 were expected to reach 50,000 units[4] a small reduction from the 67,000 of the prior year[6] in a highly-competitive marketplace.[7] 2008 production capacity was estimated at 100,000 units/year.[8] Production capacity figures may consider engines and vehicles as discrete.

While Beijing Benz does not produce all the Mercedes-branded autos sold on the Chinese market, such cars currently enjoy a reputation for high quality and popularity.[

HistoryEdit

Having its roots in the oldest of the Chinese auto-making joint ventures with a Western partner,[10] Beijing Benz was established in 2005 between BAIC and Daimler AG.[3][8]

Prior foreign partnersEdit

Daimler AG is only the latest in a long line of co-owners.

American MotorsEdit

Beijing Benz has its origins in Beijing Jeep Corporation (simplified Chinese: 北京吉普汽车有限公司), which became China's first Sino-western automotive joint venture when it was established in 1984[10] with American Motors Corporation.[11]

American Motors began negotiations in 1979 to sell its vehicles in China and to gain access to then low-cost Chinese labor.[11] The Chinese wanted access to more-modern automotive technology, and Beijing Jeep suited both needs and produced the American Motors Jeep Cherokee (XJ) in Beijing.[11]

Assembly of the Cherokee continued after Chrysler's buyout of American Motors as did the UAZ-469-based SUVs (BJ212).[11]

Chrysler Edit

Chrysler's buyout of American Motors and its Jeep brand came with an unexpected boon, Beijing Jeep. A few Chrysler models were subsequently added to its product line including Jeep Grand Cherokee, Mitsubishi Pajero Sport, Mitsubishi Outlander, and other Beijing Jeep-branded but locally-developed vehicles. Production was limited to military use until the 1990s.

Its factory was relocated and integrated into Beijing Benz - Daimler Chrysler Automotive Co Ltd in 2005.[citation needed]

Chrysler pulled of the joint venture in early 2009.[12]

Production of newer Jeep models in China is planned to resume in 2011 with a joint venture between Guangzhou Automobile Group and Fiat.[13]

Daimler AGEdit

In 2004 Beijing Jeep Co was renamed Beijing Benz-DaimlerChrysler Automotive Co Ltd, as the owner of the Jeep brand name, Chrysler, was in a short-lived partnership with this German automaker at that time.[10] Then German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder was a presence at the naming ceremony.[10]

It started Mercedes-Benz E-Class and C-Class production the next year,[10] and 2011 will see the GLK-Class crossover added to its model line.[4]

Prior to 2010 the E-Class may have been assembled from complete knock-down kits,[14] and the localization rate for production was a scant 30%.[15] This will rise to 70% and production capacity will increase to 100,000 units/year,[15] although these figures are suspect.[citation needed]

In 2009 Chrysler was removed from this joint venture although not from its legal name.[12] Until at least 2008 the company continued to produce Chrysler-branded models in addition to its Mercedes offerings.[8] One of the models it made (and also imported) was the 300C.[16]

Government procurementEdit

As of 2009 Beijing Benz products, alongside those of several other makes, are purchased for use by Chinese state officials such as ministers and provincial heads.[17] A First Automobile Works Audi is the traditional choice for this purpose

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