The Geely MK 1.5-litre sedan will be the nation's equal cheapest car, matched by the 1.3-litre Proton S16. A shipload of 100 sedans arrived in Perth this week and go on sale within a fortnight.
Australian distributor, Perth-based John Hughes, says the MK will only be sold in WA. The high profile dealer, the state's biggest, has built a new showroom close to the city centre for Geely.
He says the MK will only be sold in WA primarily because it currently is the sole Geely product. "I can't get dealers to commit finances to a new showroom to support one model," he says. "When other models arrive, then the brand will be available across the country."
The second reason for the containment of sales in WA is because the MK doesn't have electronic stability control and won't meet the 2011 vehicle standard of Victoria.
"But the next Geely model, the Panda LC, will go on sale around the middle of this year as an automatic and with stability control," he says.
"This will be followed by the bigger 1.8-litre EC7 sedan in the third quarter."
The MK is a four-door sedan with only a five-speed manual. Its standard features include a five-year warranty, airconditioning, two airbags, remote central locking, alloy wheels and electric windows. A second shipment of 100 cars is expected next month.
Mr Hughes, who has huge success with his multi-franchise dealerships, was the original distributor and retailer of Hyundai in the mid-1980s. He has frequently been Australia's biggest selling Hyundai dealer by volume, not capita.