Daimler AG’s joint venture with Beijing Automotive Industry Corp (BAIC) established a partnership with BetterLife and Fortis for the development of the new business. New cars produced by Beijing Benz will be leased by BetterLife for terms between three and thirty six months, with the actual financing being provided by Fortis.
The tie-up offers customers the possibility to opt for a buy-back scheme, allowing them to buy the vehicle or trade it in for a new one at the end of the lease contract. The cars that remain in the business’ possession after the leasing process ends will be sold as certified Mercedes vehicles.
The new development’s offer will focus on large-scale customers, such as government organizations and multinational corporations. An initial lot of 100 vehicles has already been delivered to BetterLife.
The new financial development is just one of Daimler’s efforts to take full advantage of the booming Chinese automotive market. The company also plans to produce electric vehicles in the country, through its joint business with BYD. The two companies will build a research & development center for the project and will create a Chinese-dedicated electric car. In addition to that, Daimler has established a joint venture with the Chinese commercial vehicle producer, Beiqi Foton Motor, in order to build trucks in China and other countries. The tie-up’s Chinese production site will become operational in 2012.