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SAIC Motor launches bid to crack Southeast Asian auto market

New Thai factory key to Chinese automaker's challenge to established Japanese rivals

SAIC Motor's joint venture with Charoen Pokphand Group invested roughly $312 million in the new factory. (Photo by Hiroshi Kotani)

BANGKOK -- SAIC Motor has started up a major vehicle factory in Thailand, a first for a big Chinese automaker, seeking to stake a claim in a Japanese-dominated market as well as export to other Southeast Asian countries.

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