Paccar Opens Second China Office.

US-based OEMs have been somewhat reticent on the subject of China. But that now looks about to change, with the announcement by Paccar of the establishment of a second Chinese office in Shanghai. Paccar has maintained a sales office in Beijing for the past 15 years.But what is the Seattle-based manufacturer going to do with its new facility? Interestingly, the press release speaks only of a growing ‘demand for high-quality, reliable commercial vehicles’. As to whether or not DAF, Peterbilt or Kenworth would meet such a demand remains to be seen.

We take a dim view of China. Many of the more recent deals there seem to have been struck more out of vanity than anything else – vid DaimlerChrysler and Beiqi Foton. But Paccar obviously believes in the place, and seems ready to bump up its purchasing operations within the country. Granted, there was a rather odd looking China-bound, Kenworth-badged 8x4 at the Mid America Show this year, but we struggle to see much by way of potential for a Chinese Paccar on-highway product at present. India - where Paccar is rumoured to be sniffing around a piece of Ashok Leyland - is an altogether different matter. But, in the meantime, at least Paccar shareholders can comfort themselves with the knowledge that there’s no mention of JV or technology transfer - as yet.

CB radio licencing requirement removed

25 years after CB radio became legal in the UK, the need to licence sets has finally been removed. Ofcom, the regulatory body responsible, deregulated CB radio in the same changes that saw the use of approved (ie CE marked) low-power FM transmitters legalised. These are used to transmit wireless signals from MP3 players and I-pods to car radios. The new rules came into effect on 8 December 2006.