VinFast, Vietnam’s first domestic car manufacturer, just debut two of their very first car productions in Paris Motor Show: a sedan and an SUV. David Beckham and Miss Vietnam, Tran Tieu Vy, stood in the stage as they launched the sleek and elegant looking cars.
The sedan is called the Lux A2.0, and the SUV is the Lux SA2.0. Both vehicles rely on a 2.0-liter turbocharged I4 gas engine, but the sedan is offered with two separate outputs — 174 horsepower or 228. The SUV, being larger, only comes with the higher power output.
Just last year, the company has no car. Not even a design, a sketch, or engineering. And nothing to build them in.
A year ago VinFast asked European design houses such as Pininfarina, ItalDesign Giugiaro and Zagato to submit sketches for a saloon and an SUV. Then, they put 20 designs online for the Vietnamese public to vote. The winning two designs have been designed by Italian design house Pininfarina – which has designed several Ferrari in the past and the engineering has been done with BMW.
Looking to expand after winning Vietnamese’s hearts
“We’re looking to expand both within ASEAN and outside,” said Jim Deluca, CEO of VinFast.
The car company is part of Vingroup, which is the country’s biggest private corporation. In just 25 years it’s built up dozens of subsidiaries, in all turning over several billion pounds a year and employing 40,000 people. Vingroup covers real estate, shopping malls, amusement parks, convenience shops, house building, and many more. It also operates several schools and hospitals as non-profits.
Vingroup says it only embarked on creating VinFast a little over a year ago and has earmarked about $3.5 billion for the project.
Reuters reported, from a standing start, VinFast will have the capacity to produce 250,000 cars annually in the next five years or so. This equivalent to 92 percent of all the cars sold in Vietnam in 2017, according to data collated by the Vietnam Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (VAMA).
“We are driving the rapid expansion of the domestic automobile market so we are absolutely focused on winning here first,” CEO Jim Deluca said ahead of the Paris Motor Show this week, where VinFast will reveal its first export markets.
VinFast has also started on the development of a battery electric vehicle with Germany’s EDAG Engineering, to be introduced in the future, Deluca added.