Global Marketing

Why aren’t Chinese Car Companies coming to the US?


As an American with a view of the US car market filled with brands from around the world, the most noticeable absences from this market is a major Chinese brand. The vehicles sold in the US coming from the US market our held with high value, quality, and prestige. The ability for Chinese car companies to develop and sell low priced quality vehicles that could be popular in the US, seems like a logical expansion of their business.

One major problem with bring a Chinese car company to the US, might be the general prejudice toward Chinese brands. Americans have two views of the Chinese brands and markets. One narrative is of poor quality or cutting corners to produce a low price product, and the US media highlights recalls of companies with products produced in China. The resulted could be that US customer will be weary of buying a Chinese car because of a fear about how dangerous the vehicle could be. The second narrative prominent in the US about China is that we’re in direct competition with Chinese, and that US are in a constant economic battle for the world economy. The introduction of Chinese car companies into the US market could be met with a cold reception. Chinese brands would have to overcome these two narrative before moving into the US market.


Chinese automobile industry started comparatively later than western brands. However, benefiting from the fast-growing economy, Chinese domestic auto market has been dramatically expanding. Several Chinese brands took the chance and became world-class sized automobile manufacturer. Brands like Geely, BYD, and Great wall, initiated their international strategies, also worked with well known auto brands like Volvo, Mercedes-Benz, and BMW to either form joint ventures on new product, or strategically acquire companies to plant roots in foreign markets.  For example, Volvo brand is 100% owned by Chinese auto brand Geely. Moreover, Geely just purchased 10% of Benz’s stock on Feb 2018. Chinese brands have decided not to build their image in the US market, in favor of more strategic brand acquisition entry approach. This shows the strength of the Chinese auto industry and how it has become more influential in the world.

American customers have a very close relationship with the car business. Like the American community and social activities are based on cars. No doubt the people in the US have the most diversified and unique understanding about their cars. For Chinese auto brands, entering US market with a clear eastern image will be difficult. Instead of building new marketing structure, Chinese brands will also need to learn more about American culture, also offer the opportunity to the foreign customer for them to know more about the Chinese brands.