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PLA SUV on Sale Here

Monday, 24 April 2006 12:00 AM

The ongoing trade war between China and the United States was not resolved by the recent meeting between PRC President Hu Jintao and President Bush.

At the edge of the debate is the fact that the Chinese army manufactures many of the goods sold in America. However, the acceptance of cheap products made by the Chinese army inside U.S. markets is about to accelerate into the fast lane. Stand by for the Rodedawg - a competitor to the U.S. made Hummer.

According to the company importing the new super SUV into the U.S. market, the Rodedawg "is a land and water vehicle; and is new to the civilian world market. It is important to understand that this vehicle has been used extensively and successfully by the Chinese military for many years."

In short, a Chinese army SUV is now ready for sale in the United States. Rodedawg officials and media representatives did not respond to multiple requests for an interview or statement for this article.

The Rodedawg is the brainchild of Luis Pallais, the commercial attaché to the Nicaraguan Consul General's Office in San Francisco. Of course, Luis has some help from pals inside Beijing.

The Rodedawg is made by Beijing Jeep Automotive Works and is known to the People's Liberation Army as the BJ5022XZHE, a variation on the BJ2020 series. The BJ2020 series is used by the Chinese army as an armed troop carrier; several versions carry missiles and machine guns.

"The Rodedawg is probably the only mass-produced amphibious, off-road 4x4 vehicle to enter the market. The Rodedawg's tremendous adaptability makes its usefulness almost unlimited in both work and recreational activities. In a work environment, the Rodedawg could be anything from a security vehicle patrolling and cruising the Rio Grande River bordering Mexico and the U.S., or a simple land and water rescue vehicle. The Rodedawg fills a unique niche in the emergency rescue land and water applications," states the official press release from Pallais and his company.

Even better - Hollywood has joined the Red banner wagon, promoting the PLA-made vehicle for sale in America.

"Rodedawg International Industries Inc., the corporation which holds the rights to distribute and market this Chinese military vehicle that has turned into the hottest, newest off-road contender announced the signing of Ice T, hip hop music pioneer and accomplished actor-star in the award-winning series Law & Order SVU, to a major spokesperson agreement to represent the Rodedawg."

Clearly, with the triple-threat combination of a Hollywood TV/hip hop star, the commercial attaché to the Nicaraguan Consul General and the People's Liberation Army (PLA), the Rodedawg is a guaranteed success story.

That is until the U.S. public understands exactly who BJC is and why a Chinese military vehicle is now on sale in America.

Beijing Jeep has been involved before with U.S. auto companies and proved its worthlessness. It has used U.S. technology to enhance and improve the military version of the BJ2020 and by remote, the Rodedawg. The fact remains that Chrysler found out exactly how unreliable the Beijing Jeep Corporation is when it comes to commercial deals.

According to the Commerce Dept. report, in 1995 Chrysler had an exclusive deal with the Chinese army company making Jeep Cherokee 4-wheel drive vehicles at a People's Liberation Army (PLA) owned auto-plant.

The Chinese army auto plant produces the BJ2020SJ, BJ212 and BJ5022XZHE (Rodedawg) 4-wheel drive vehicles for the PLA.

"Despite almost a decade of relative success in producing both the Jeep Cherokee and a wholly locally produced military style jeep [the BJ2020 series], by 1995 Chrysler had pulled out of its bid to build a new minivan joint venture in Shanghai out of complete frustration," states a January 1999 U.S. Commerce Dept. report on technology transfers to China.

"Chrysler executives were expressly concerned over licit and illicit technology transfers," noted the 1999 Commerce report.

"Chrysler's concerns were amplified when Chrysler CEO Robert Eton was made aware that knock-offs of Chrysler's Jeep Cherokee had been seen on the streets of Beijing. When complaining about this to Chinese officials, he reportedly was told that this [the ability to copy Chrysler's Jeep Cherokee] was a good sign of progress in China's auto industry, about which he should be pleased. Apparently, he was not, and Chrysler soon canceled plans to go ahead with the Shanghai plant," states the report.

In addition, the Chrysler deal with Beijing had a further twist that sent it over the edge. The Chinese army interest in advanced vehicle manufacturing technology from Chrysler was a special indication of the reality of doing business with Beijing.

"Chinese officials were demanding more advanced technology than seemed appropriate or necessary to Chrysler," concluded the Commerce report. Chrysler was at that time the maker of the U.S. Army M-1 tank.

Chrysler officials quickly realized the advanced assembly and manufacturing technology demanded by the Chinese was far more applicable to making armored vehicles than vans for soccer moms.

"According to interviews conducted for this study, given the experience in Beijing, Chrysler executives were made even more wary of the technology transfers, proposed licensing deal and export quotas being requested as part of the Shanghai deal and decided that the risk was simply too great when it came to what was for Chrysler a relatively new [the minivan] and, therefore, advanced technology. Chrysler currently has no plans to expand its investment ventures in China," stated the Commerce Dept. report.

Of greater concern is the fact the BJC is using its American technology and funding to produce a new 4 wheel vehicle for the PLA. The Chinese People's Liberation Army General Armament Department announced that Beijing Jeep Corporation Ltd. has been selected to develop its next generation multi-role lightweight cross-country vehicle.

BJC unveiled the PLA's lightweight cross-country vehicle, called "Brave Warrior", during an international science expo held in Beijing in May 2005. The initial production of "Brave Warrior" is scheduled to begin in 2006.

The Brave Warrior will replace the current BJ2020SJ and BJ212 vehicles in service with the PLA for command and liaison, transport, reconnaissance, and weapon platforms. The first Brave Warrior is expected to enter service by 2007.

The vehicle is partially based on the technology of the BJC's cancelled "Challenger" sport utility vehicle introduced in 1997. The Brave Warrior is also based on Western technology obtained from a joint venture with U.S. automaker Chrysler.

What lessons will be learned from the new Rodedawg? Will Ice-T support a vehicle used by Chinese ally Sudan to raid African villages in Dafur?

Will America fund the Chinese army Brave Warrior program with purchases of the Rodedawg? Will fire, rescue and even border patrol units equip themselves with a vehicle that has "been used extensively and successfully by the Chinese military for many years"? Only time will tell. Stay tuned for the next episode of greed, folly, and ignorance.


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The ongoing trade war between China and the United States was not resolved by the recent meeting between PRC President Hu Jintao and President Bush. At the edge of the debate is the fact that the Chinese army manufactures many of the goods sold in America. However, the...
Monday, 24 April 2006 12:00 AM
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