UTRECHT, Netherlands -- Jiangling Motor Corp.'s European distributor has relaunched the Chinese company's Landwind brand in Europe with a new minivan, five years after an SUV built by the automaker was pulled from European markets after it failed a crash test run by the ADAC, Germany's largest auto club.
Landwind Europe started sales of Jiangling's CV9 in the Netherlands earlier this month. The minivan will be introduced in five other European markets including Germany, Italy and Belgium over the next two years, said the company's CEO, Peter Bijvelds, speaking at the minivan's European press launch here.
Bijvelds said the CV9 has European type approval that allows it to be sold across Europe as well as Euro 5-compliant engines. The CV9's body structure has been designed to meet European crash-test standards and Bijvelds expects the minivan to earn least a three-star rating out of five when EuroNCAP releases its next batch of results in the autumn.
"I don't think people will remember the bad publicity from the crash test five years ago. The important thing is that the CV9 has full European type approval for emissions and safety," Bijvelds told Automotive News Europe.
The CV9 is based on the Fashion minivan that was unveiled at the 2006 Paris auto show. It was designed by IDEA of Turin and will be offered with a 1.6- or 2.0-liter gasoline engine developed by Jiangling with the help of F.E.V. Motortechnik GmbH, of Aachen, Germany. The engine is mated to a five-speed manual transmission from Getrag of Germany.
With a overall length of 4410mm on a 2710mm wheelbase, the CV9 is comparable in size with the Opel/Vauxhall Zafira but its price, which is expected to be 11,950 euros in Germany, is much lower than the Zafira's German base price of 20,295 euros.
Landwind Europe, of Brasschaat, Belgium, has decided to roll out the CV9 in European markets step-by-step. The distributor will start sales of CV9 in Belgium and Italy in the autumn, with launches in other major EU markets, including Germany, taking place over the next two years.
Landwind Europe aims to sell 1,500 CV9s in the Netherlands this year through 23 dealers.
Jiangling, based in the central Chinese province of Jiangxi, makes and sells light trucks and pickups as well as Ford Motor Co. commercial vehicles and associated spare parts.