SAIC Maxus (Datong) celebrated its first successful attempt at cracking the market of developed countries as an order of 210 LDV V80 vans was shipped to Australia on October 26.
According to an agreement signed in July this year, SAIC would supply 7 versions of the V80 van to Australian customers, including both goods and people carriers that have a short or long wheelbase, low, medium, or high roof, 3, 10, 11 or 15 seating positions. The products, said to be designed specifically for the local market, would bear the LDV nameplate as they would in other Commonwealth countries and Europe, where "LDV" is an established brand. In the rest of the world, "Maxus," originally referring to a specific LDV model, will be used.
Besides Australia, SAIC has so far exported the V80 to South Africa, Chile, and a few Southeast Asian countries. It prepares to enter the European market, and bring the vans back to their home in the UK, in the near future.
SAIC bought the British van maker LDV (through an agency) in 2009, and launched the Maxus (Datong) brand in February 2011 for the LDV models reborn in China. The first Maxus product, the V80 series, was debuted at the 2011 Shanghai Auto Show and went on sale in the September of 2011. SAIC said 6,000 units of it were sold in the following year.