Local distribution of the Foton Tunland range has moved to Sydney-based Ateco, which already handles the Chinese company’s larger truck range in Australia.
Launched here in 2012, Tunland distribution was initially managed by Queensland company FAA Automotive after an earlier deal with Sydney’s WMC fell apart.
Ateco says it plans to relaunch the Tunland in Australia in the coming months, bringing an already promised range expansion and a sharpened pricing structure.
The company added today that its Foton focus will initially be on the Tunland ute range, although the Chinese brand’s SUV and passenger vehicle range “may enter the Australian market in the future”.
The Foton range will be managed in Australia by Alex Stewart, who joined Ateco from truck maker Hino.
“I am under no illusions about the challenges ahead in a market as tough and competitive as Australia’s,but I am also confident that the outstanding value offered by Foton will drive a steady increase in sales and expansion of our dealer network over time,” Stewart said today.
“This is an exciting ‘ground floor’ opportunity for me and I am greatly encouraged by Foton’s commitment to continually adapt their product to the requirements of our market.”
The wider Foton Trucks Australia range includes two cab widths, two Cummins engines, three wheelbases and GVMs ranging from 4.5 to 8.6 tonnes.
The Tunland is powered by a 2.8 litre Cummins turbodiesel engine, producing 120kW and 360Nm.
Foton’s previous distributor FAA did not publish sales figures for the Tunland, although it is believed that its 2013 year-end sales ended on a paltry 170 units.
In 2012, the company confirmed a goal of 1350 sales in 2013, mostly through a planned dealer expansion - from 12 in 2012 to 31 in 2013 - that never eventuated.
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