US Carmaker Ford Says No Plans For Now To Hike China Prices

Marco Green
July 9, 2018

China's foreign ministry says retaliatory tariffs on US goods "took effect immediately" after Washington raised import duties on billions of dollars of Chinese goods.

For now Ford says it will not increase its manufacturer's suggested retail price or MSRP, for its lineup of cars sent to China.

German automaker Daimler AG said last month that its 2018 pre-tax profits would fall versus previous year because new import tariffs on cars exported from the United States to China would hurt sales of high-margin Mercedes-Benz sports utility vehicles.

As a response, Beijing is expected to impose retaliatory tariffs on Friday against the USA, which could escalate the trade war between the world's two biggest economies and have a spillover effect on other regions. Those new duties are bad news for Ford, which shipped roughly 80,000 vehicles to China a year ago.

The Commerce Ministry on Friday criticized Washington for "trade bullying" following the tariff hike that took effect at noon Beijing time in a spiraling dispute over technology policy that companies worry could chill global economic growth. A couple of hundred Chevy Camaro sports coupes are made in the US for China, but almost all of the vehicles GM sells in China are locally built, according to a spokesperson with the automakers.

Because of that decision, Ford will be assuming the new additional costs for the import duties, though the majority of vehicles that are sold in China are built in factories located there, said Ford.

Ford and Lincoln both cut prices on imported models in May after China announced steep tariff cuts for automobiles and auto parts that took effect on July 1. Lincoln, the luxury unit of Ford, said that it has no plans at this time to increase prices.

Other firms that export USA -made cars to China include BMW, Daimler's Mercedes and Tesla.

That took sales for the first half of the year to 400,443 vehicles, down 25 percent from the same period a year ago. Those automakers did not immediately respond to requests for comment. A GM spokesman said that aside from a very small number of Chevrolet Camaro cars, virtually all of its vehicles and parts sold in China are made there.

Fiat Chrysler has man vehicles produced in China, but some of the models, such as its Jeep Wrangler, are exported to other markets in China.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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