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by Tim Beissmann

After launching its first three models in Australia in 2011, the local distributor of Chery, Ateco Automotive, says 2012 will be about consolidation for the Chinese brand.

Ateco’s Daniel Cotterill said at least the first six months of 2012 would be spent focusing on the J1 light car, J3 small car and J11 compact SUV before any new models were considered. He said the brand had a number of targets for the New Year, but declined to elaborate on exactly what it hoped to achieve or what it would deem as success.


With one month of sales results still to come for 2011, Chery has sold 1654 vehicles across Australia since launching the J1 and J11 in February and the J3 in September, putting it ahead of better-established brands like Alfa Romeo, Citroen, Renault and Ssangyong.

Year-to-date, the J1 has outsold cars like the Proton Savvy, Smart Fortwo and the Fiat 500, while the J11 is well clear of the Jeep Patriot, Renault Koleos, Ssangyong Korando and the Suzuki Jimny.


While Chery Australia is still working on equipping its cars with electronic stability control (ESC), at this stage there is no confirmation of when the potentially life-saving safety feature will become standard on any model. Until it fits its cars with ESC, it will continue to be banned from selling them in Victoria.