ZHANGZHOU, China, Nov. 17, 2011 /PRNewswire-Asia/ -- China Zenix Auto International Limited (NYSE: ZX) ("Zenix Auto" or "the Company"), the largest commercial vehicle wheel manufacturer in China in both the aftermarket and OEM market by sale volume, today announced that in January 2011, Zenix Auto introduced its patented "Bridge Arc" wheel, which is based on the new architectural design concept borrowed from the legendary thousand-year-old stone bridge in Northern China. This new product features heightened strength with substantially lighter weight. The standard steel wheel for heavy-duty trucks weighs 50 kilograms while "Bridge Arc" wheels weigh only 40 kilograms. This weight reduction benefits wheel producers with raw material savings and truck operators with fuel consumption savings. Together with the standard tubeless products, Zenix continues to expand its market share in the growing aftermarket wheel sector in China.
Since its debut in early 2011, the "Bridge Arc" designed wheels have received positive reviews from drivers and logistic companies which are plagued by rising fuel prices. In May, after collecting feedback from commercial vehicle operators, Zenix began increasing its marketing effort to pursue additional aftermarket opportunities. The Company held a number of seminars on the merits of this new design at industry events. Due to the "Bridge Arc" wheel's proven functionality and cost-saving benefits, monthly unit sales experienced robust growth from approximately 3,500 units in April 2011 to nearly 60,000 units in October 2011. To adjust for the raw material price rise in 2011, the average selling price of the "Bridge Arc" wheel for the Chinese domestic aftermarket also increased from RMB 551 in January 2011 to RMB 580 in October 2011.
Mr. Jianhui Lai, Chairman and CEO of China Zenix, commented, "The early success of the 'Bridge Arc' wheel is another important example of how Zenix wins market share with the product strategy of improving wheel performance to aide the end users. Despite sluggish commercial vehicle and wheel demand in the Chinese OEM truck market, the aftermarket sector has proven its resilience as China has millions of trucks and other commercial vehicles operating on the road, many of which are using incumbent wheel models hindering fuel efficiency. While we are pleased with the 'Bridge Arc' wheel's rapid growth in the Chinese aftermarket, we strongly believe that the future of the Chinese OEM and export markets is just starting."
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