BMW to launch new sub-brand for China at 2013 Shanghai Auto Show

BMW, along with Brilliant Auto of China, are planning to launch a sub brand exclusively for domestic markets. This new sub-brand will offer cars based on the older gen 3 Series platform and will be marketed under ‘Zhi Nuo’, meaning The Promise in China, starting later this year.

BMW to launch new new sub-brand for China at 2013 Shanghai Auto Show

The launch of this sub brand is not really BMW’s plan, but is something that foreign car manufacturers like BMW are forced to undergo in China.

In accordance with certain Government norms levied on foreign manufacturers present in China, it is mandatory for foreign automakers to enter into contracts with local auto companies so as to enable them to market their own brand of cars. This joint venture should be in 50:50 between foreign manufacturers and their local Chinese counterparts.

Failure to enter into this deal with Chinese partners, will mean that the Chinese Government levying higher tariffs, which in turn will send prices of their vehicles sky high.

But this will also mean that brands like BMW will have to share their technology with Chinese firms for free. But, foreign brands are eager to keep their latest technology a closely guarded secret and hence BMW is embarking on this sub brand project on older platforms. BMW has also ensured that they are likewise compensated in receiving permission to set up a new plant with Brilliance Auto in Shenyang.

CarScoops reports that the new sub-brand will be launched officially at the 2013 Shanghai Auto Show, scheduled to start from 21st April 2013.