On July 13, 1956, under the guidance of the China's Central Committee and with assistance from the former Soviet Union, construction of China's first automotive production base was completed. Known at that time as First Automotive Works (FAW) and now as FAW Group Co., Ltd., this sprawling car and truck manufacturer headquartered in Changchun, China firmly launched the country into the automotive age.
After fifty years of development and refinement, tremendous changes have taken place within FAW. In stark contrast to the early days of producing a single model of medium truck, FAW now produces hundreds of models of light, medium, and heavy trucks for every vocation. In the late 1950's, FAW quickly responded to market demand and commenced automotive and bus production, soon making FAW the leading producer of buses and luxury tourist coaches in China. In stark contrast to our early days, overall production volume has swelled from 30,000 units to an annual figure approaching one million. Under an evolutionary development of corporate infrastructure from that of a traditional state enterprise to a profitable and diversified group organization with the right combination of lean and progressive qualities, FAW is solidly in place to become a global player in the automotive industry.
After surpassing the one million unit annual sales figure in 2005, FAW Group Co., Ltd. has set exciting new goals as the company makes use of the latest in information technologies to keep our people and customers connected worldwide, thus ensuring an important competitive edge in the marketplace.
The period between 1988 and 2001 witnessed a renewed focus on enlarging the company's automotive offerings. The company created two separate automotive concerns, that being the FAW Passenger Car Company and FAW-Volkswagen Automobile Co., Ltd. This climax of municipal bus, luxury tourist coach, custom bus chassis, and light, medium, and heavy truck manufacturing, combined with an extensive portfolio of proprietary and jointly-produced automobiles, firmly solidified the position of FAW Group as a top world player. Heavy truck production surpassed that of medium trucks for the first time, and the ratio of car to truck production reached 50%. Overall production finished 5.1 times higher in 2001 over 1988. Corporate income increased 22.8, landing FAW a spot in the top 10 of China's largest companies
Additional cooperation overseas with automotive suppliers and manufacturers, and the expansion of FAW's overseas sales organization, both led to the creation of many significant joint venture companies between FAW Group and overseas partners. Now exporting complete vehicles, CKD/SKD vehicle kits, and oem/aftermarket parts to more than 70 countries, FAW had successfully transformed itself from a famous domestic vehicle manufacturer to a formidable participant in the global automotive arena.
FAW also engaged in an effective campaign to reduce quality defects and improve the cost-effectiveness of factory operations and procedures. Through an internal audit, FAW discovered new ways to streamline internal company procurement and reduce cost. Factory inventory levels were also adjusted to follow a leaner "just in time" philosophy.