It seems Lotus has struck a deal with some Chinese investors who go by the name of Goldstar Heavy Industrial Co. Ltd.
That means both Proton and Lotus will be producing cars in China, which is a part of the automaker’s plans to become a more prominent player in the industry.
Rumors began surfacing regarding Lotus after a recent troubled past left them rather crippled and on the brink of failure. Those rumors include a possible crossover, sedan, and even the return of the Esprit, which we’ve all been waiting for. The crossover and sedan might not sound appealing (though to us, the sedan certainly does), crossovers are hot sellers and help automakers making money, allowing them to stay a float.
Ultimately, this means things are heating up with Lotus, and we’re excited to see what’s coming.
Check out the press release after the jump.
PROTON, LOTUS GROUP AND GOLDSTAR
SIGNED JV AGREEMENT
KUALA LUMPUR – PROTON Holdings Berhad (“PROTON”) the ultimate holding company of Lotus Group, announced that it has signed a Joint Venture (“JV”) Agreement with Lotus Group International Limited, United Kingdom (“Lotus Group”) and Goldstar Heavy Industrial Co.Ltd. (“Goldstar”) for a possible business expansion of Lotus cars in the People’s Republic of China.
The collaboration seeks to accelerate the development of Lotus cars in the premium sports segment in China, leveraging on the incentives offered by the Fujian Provincial Government.
Both PROTON and Lotus Group are subsidiaries of DRB-HICOM Berhad. Signing on behalf of PROTON was the Honourable Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Chairman of PROTON and former Prime Minister of Malaysia and witnessed by Dato’ Abdul Harith Abdullah, Chief Executive Officer of PROTON. Signing on behalf of Lotus Group International Limited, United Kingdom was Jean-Marc Gales, Chief Executive Officer and witnessed by Mr Rohime Shafie, Director of Lotus Group and Chief Financial Officer of PROTON; and signing on behalf of Goldstar was Mr Zheng Qianghui, Chairman of Goldstar and witnessed by Mr Zhai Wenliang, President of Goldstar.
Dato’ Abdul Harith Abdullah said “The JV Agreement will see the establishment of a new JV Company for the purpose of undertaking research and development (R&D) activities in the use of efficient and advanced technology. The JV Company will then produce and sell Lotus branded passenger cars as well as provide after sales services in connection with its products in the People’s Republic of China.
“The automotive market in China is the single largest in the world today, and is still growing, therefore it is only natural for an established iconic company like Lotus to embark upon the possibility of expansion, venture into the market and seek the available opportunities, in light of the keen interest shown by the many enquiries received thus far. It is very difficult to ignore the market and Lotus will fill the gap in providing a lifestyle alternative to the growing demands of the affluent and market conscious local community,” Dato’ Harith added.
“On April 7, 2015, Lotus announced 55% increase in car sales for its 2014/15 financial year, compared to the previous year with 36 new dealers appointed during the period 2014/15. And China has appeared to be the top key growth market for Lotus exports and is expected to grow at a very fast rate. Lotus Group is excited about the opportunities of this new Joint Venture,” JeanMarc
Gales commented further.