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Chinese Automaker Brings Jobs To Plymouth
Company Wants To Expand In North America

POSTED: Tuesday, January 18, 2011
UPDATED: 7:36 pm EST January 18, 2011

changanupPLYMOUTH TOWNSHIP, Mich. -- Chinese automaker Changan Motors is breaking into the U.S. market and plans to bring jobs to Plymouth Township.

Changan builds about six different vehicles in China and is looking to go global. Executives said the company is coming to Michigan expecting to hire chassis and suspension engineers at first.

 

A Changan spokesman said the company will spend $7 million on its first North American facility in Plymouth Township. The company received nearly $2 million in state tax breaks after negotiating with both the state and township.

Changan expects to fill 161 positions at the new facility.

Wayne County Executive Robert Ficano said the county needed a dozen meetings and a Chinese trade mission to seal the deal, as well as another automaker's help.

 

"What helps us is the OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) say you may do business with us in China, but if you want to do business with us in the U.S., we need you to locate around us," Ficano said.

Jiaman Gu, a University of Michigan engineering graduate and company spokesman, said Changan's long-term plan is to expand.

"All Big Three suppliers are here," Gu said. "We can use, or take advantage of, the resource supplies and maybe a testing facility."

Changan was founded in 1862. The company originally built military equipment.

The company said it has no firm plans to build cars in the U.S. within the next ten years. The current plan is to design and build parts in Michigan and ship them to China.

 

Changan said it will take about two weeks to get their jobs website functional. Applicants should check the Changan website in a couple weeks, the company said.