Countless companies have been trying to bring Chinese models to the United States with little success. That trend continues as HAAH Automotive Holdings is going bust.
This is a surprising development as the company signed a letter of intent in April, which was set to pave the way for Vantas and T-GO branded vehicles to come to the United States. As part of that announcement, the company said the Vantas VX and TXL would be assembled in China and arrive in America by the end of 2022.
However, that’s not happening as HAAH Automotive Holdings is slated to file for bankruptcy today. CEO Duke Hale spoke to Automotive News and said “We don’t see a way forward right now for Vantas and T-GO.”
Also Read: Vantas Launch Pushed Back To Late 2022, First Models To Be Built In China
Hale went on to explain worsening relations between the United States and China effectively scuttled their plans as imports would have faced steep tariffs and a negative sentiment towards Chinese products as “Americans aren’t very fond of where they believe COVID came from.” Given these and other challenges, investors bailed right as the company needed a “big infusion of cash” to finalize a joint venture with Chery-owned Shanghai Sicar Automotive Technology Development Co.
While it’s not hard to understand why investors got cold feet, would-be dealers are left holding the bag as the publication says they’ll lose their deposits of between $100,000 (£73,126 / €84,750) and $175,000 (£127,970 / €148,312) per store. Adding insult to injury, a few dealers reportedly put deposits down for as many as five dealerships.
As a refresher, Chery-based Vantas and T-GO models were originally slated to cost 15-20% less than their competitors and be available with “one-price, no-hassle, no-haggle pricing.” There were also plans for an extensive T-GO lineup that included everything from crossovers and SUVs to a pickup and a car.