Unimo Enterprises Limited (UEL) a fully owned subsidiary of United Motors Lanka PLC recently received the licence to assemble Zotye SUV's in Sri Lanka under the Mahinda Chinthanaya programme. Zotye holding group is one of the leading small and medium sized jeep manufacturers in China. The company currently exports its vehicles to over 50 countries covering the Middle East, West Asia, Russia, Latin America etc. However it continues to pay close attention to developments in international automobile circles in order to constantly upgrade its technology for new product development.
The Zotye Nomad as it was previously known when imported in completely built form, has now been re-launched as Zotye Extreme for the local market. As part of a strategic decision taken by the UEL management to enter the local vehicle assembly industry, the Zotye Extreme is now imported to Sri Lanka in Semi Knocked Down (SKD) form and assembled incorporating more than 30 % local value addition, as per the requirements set out by the Ministry of Industries. Body trimmings, paint, tyres, battery, seats, radiator and badges are all sourced locally from well reputed suppliers who ensure export quality standard. The company continues to search for more local suppliers with a view to increasing the share of local components.
The Zotye Extreme is equipped with a 1.3 Litre engine which allows it to be marketed at Rs. 1,850,000 upwards making it the most affordable brand new SUV in Sri Lanka. The Zotye is ideal for Sri Lankan terrain due its high ground clearance.
The locally assembled vehicle was inspected by the former minister of Industrial Development Hon. Minister Kumar Welagama and the current Minister of Industries Hon. Minister Rishard Badrudeen, who have both expressed their satisfaction about what this project has achieved.
According to Mr. Chanaka Yatawara, Director of Unimo Enterprises Ltd., vehicles have been pre-booked and the company is now taking orders for the year 2011. He further stated that the company is also looking at the possibility of exporting vehicles to other countries in the region.