Ongoing research and development (R&D) is key to the sustained growth and survival of any vehicle brand.
The same goes for FAW Trucks, which has over its 27-year history in South Africa become renowned for its quality products and ability to cater to the unique needs of the South African commercial vehicle market.
With China’s oldest and largest vehicle manufacturer FAW Group Corporation as its majority shareholder, the local operation is able to provide South African customers with products that have been researched and developed to excel in even the harshest working environments, without compromising on innovation, technology and comfort.
FAW Trucks places a high premium on R&D in order to not only maintain its leadership in the Chinese market, but also to ensure that it keeps up with the rapid advances being made in technology. Its R&D facility is based at the FAW Trucks manufacturing facility in Qingdao, China.
“The R&D centre greatly enhances the brand’s technological research and development capabilities, accelerates development of new products, and strengthens its position in global markets. One such global market is South Africa, where FAW Trucks is consistently ranked amongst the top sales performers on the sales charts,” says FAW South Africa CEO Jianyu Hao.
The brand’s local popularity can, in part, be attributed to the fact that all models sold in South Africa undergo testing to prove that they can withstand the unique – and often harsh – working conditions associated with African markets.
In order to ensure that products live up to their reputation of being trucks that are built in South Africa, for Africa, most of the current model range, such as the 6.130FL and 8.140FL as well as newer models such as the JH6 28.500FT, are Euro 3 compliant. FAW Trucks offer warranties of up to three-years/600 000 km.
“In the highly competitive South African commercial vehicle market, durability and quality are key factors. Customers expect their trucks to withstand a rough operational environment, but also expect the vehicles to be fuel efficient, lightweight and technologically advanced. They also want a wider choice,” explains Hao.
A prime example of this continued innovation and progress is the fact that FAW Trucks is on the verge of introducing a new automatic model in the heavy commercial vehicle (HCV) segment of the local market. A new model in the 8 t segment will also go on sale here before the end of the year.
“These new models will carry all the hallmarks that FAW products are renowned for, namely strength, reliability and ease of operation. They will also bolster our sales performance even further as we head into the second half of the year,” Hao notes.
FAW Trucks achieved a significant milestone in its local history by taking the top spot in the HCV segment of the local market for the first time in the first quarter of this year. It has performed consistently well in the segment ever since.
“As China's leading producer of commercial vehicles, FAW Group has earned a reputation for leading that country’s automotive industry with the latest innovations. The company continues to steer its own course rather than simply imitating others. Thanks to the work done at the Quingdao R&D facility, FAW Trucks is able to lay a clear path for the future. It goes without saying that FAW Trucks here in South Africa will also reap the benefits,” Hao concludes.