Powerstar sold around 420 trucks in South Africa last year, with the Chinese brand aiming for 500 units this year, says Everstar Industries CEO Bob Wang.
The growth will come from the brand expanding its product portfolio from the extra-heavy and heavy commercial vehicle (EHCV, HCV) segments to the medium commercial vehicle (MCV) segment, while also expanding its presence in the HCV market.
The expansion into these segments will come from a partnership agreement with another Chinese manufacturer, Foton, to rebrand Foton’s 3 t, 5 t and 8 t trucks as Powerstar models.
“We spent four years to select the right partner,” says Wang. “We believe we have made the right decision with Foton.”
Powerstar trucks are assembled in Pietermaritzburg. The company strongest foothold is in the local mining and construction sectors.
Powerstar, as a brand, is 100% Chinese government owned. It has been in South Africa since 2006.
There are 28 Powerstar dealers in South Africa, of which 13 are full service dealers.
Powerstar trucks are currently sold in Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Malawi and Swaziland. Wang aims to expand to Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo by the end of next year.
Medium-duty Powerstar trucks are set to enter the South African market by the end of this year, with sales to begin in February.
The range will initially include a 3 t and 5 t truck.
The 8 t truck will arrive by the middle of 2018.
Wang is positive the arrival of the new fleet will be able to push Powerstar to sales of 1 000 units a year.
“My first step is to reach 700 EHCV and HCV units, and 300 MCV units by 2018, 2019. I’m confident we can achieve this.”