Dealer opens Sh200m FAW trucks showroom in Nairobi


TransAfrica Motors showroom. FILE PHOTO | NMG

Transafrica Motors has invested Sh200 million in a new showroom for its Chinese trucks franchise First Automotive Works (FAW) in Nairobi’s Industrial Area as part of its expansion plans.

The motor dealer does not report its sales performance but trucks of 3.5 tonnes and above are among the fastest-selling and account for about 40 percent of all orders in the new vehicle segment, according to data from Kenya Motor Vehicle Industry Association (KMI).

“We have invested Sh200 million to put up this showroom for FAW trucks. It is part of our continued investments in our vehicle brands,” Ali Zubedi, Transafrica’s managing director, told Business Daily.

Besides FAW trucks, Transafrica also holds the local franchise for Indian Sonalika tractors, Japanese TCM forklifts, Fawde generators, SANY machinery and Honda cars.

Upcoming policy changes are, however, set to benefit the FAW trucks business the most as local assemblers of commercial vehicles get more protection and incentives from the government.

Tranasfrica in 2014 invested Sh700 million in an assembly plant in Mombasa with a capacity to produce 600 FAW trucks per annum. The company says it plans to invest an additional Sh1.2 billion to scale up capacity of the plant to 2,000 units in the near term in response to increased demand.

The draft of the National Automotive Policy says the government will give priority to the production of commercial vehicles (buses, trucks and minibuses). The document, for instance, proposes a total ban on importation of used fully built commercial vehicles.