FAW Vehicle Manufacturers SA (Pty) Ltd has notched up another record in its ever-expanding success story. The latest milestone added to the company’s history is the 3 000th locally built vehicle to roll off the production line.
Besides the fact that FAW SA started modestly over 20 years ago selling trucks locally, it has in recent years truly stepped up its expansion plans for the SA market.
FAW SA has made a major commitment in the last four years amounting to over 100 million USD in the local plant, infrastructure, job creation and training. The Coega-based plant and body-building facility have only been in full operation for just over three years.
Recently when the production line was geared for the new FAW 33.420, the line integration went off without a hitch. The 33.420FT truck tractor is the newest truck to be built by FAW SA.
It follows a tradition of very sturdy trucks with high-performance levels, low operating costs, high efficiencies, easy driveability and low cost on maintenance and repair. Its predecessor was one of the top sellers in the FAW stable.
The Coega plant has become renowned for its built quality since it first opened in July 2014.
Subsequently, it has increased production to include almost all FAW commercial vehicles sold in the local and Southern African regions. Customer demand specifically for locally built FAW trucks has increased exponentially in the last three years.
This most recent achievement was pegged in the calendar earlier this month when the Coega plant employees cheered as the 3 000th locally built truck was signed off at the last quality inspection gate, giving rightful claim to the company’s motto – “Built in South Africa, for Africa.”
A growing number of African truck dealers who traditionally placed their orders for vehicles built by FAW China continue to move their orders to originate out of South Africa owing to the shorter lead time for delivery, the high levels of quality from the South African plant, and the reduced cost of sourcing FAW vehicles on the same continent.
Jianyu Hao, CEO of FAW SA adds; “What is most gratifying is that many of our units being bought by sub-Saharan customers are now 2nd and 3rd generation repurchases. This affirms our commitment to service and support into the African regions.”
The Coega-plant has also been the bedrock for further investments in the Eastern Cape region as a number of China-based industrial giants have visited Coega to see first-hand what the region can offer in infrastructure, logistics and labour.
The FAW SA plant was the first large-scale investment by a China-based company in the Eastern Cape region. A number of China-based companies are considering following suit, based on FAW SA’s successes.