China’s Geely Cars To Enter UK Market In 2012

Geely Emgrand EC7
Geely Emgrand EC7 - coming to the UK in late 2012

Chinese car manufacturer Geely is set to enter the UK car market in 2012. The first model to go on sale will be the Geely Emgrand EC7, a medium-sized model available as a four-door saloon and five-door hatchback.

One of the Emgrand’s main attractions will no doubt be its selling price, which is expected to start at about £10,000 – including a five-year, 100,000 mile warranty. It will initially be sold with a choice of 1.5l and 1.8l petrol engines and is also likely to have high levels of standard equipment.

Geely has confirmed that the Emgrand already meets the necessary Euro 5 emissions standards and has EU whole vehicle type approval. It has also gained a 4* Euro NCAP safety rating, demonstrating Geely’s clear commitment to producing a product that is fit for the European market.

Geely’s initial ambition is to replicate the success of Korean brands Kia and Hyundai, and this seems entirely reasonable – it is not that long since Kia and Hyundai cars were decidedly basic. Now, they compete on equal terms with mass-market European models.

It’s worth noting that Geely is a car company that should probably be taken seriously – it owns Volvo and is also in a partnership with the oddly-named UK company Manganese Bronze Holdings, which is the manufacturer of London black taxis. MBH builds London taxis in Coventry for the UK market, Geely builds them in China for the rest of the world. MBH will be the UK distributor for Geely cars and will be responsible for developing its UK dealer network.

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