Business / Auto Quality

Chinese firm denies supplying Aston Martin parts

( Updated: 2014-02-10 17:31

Chinese Kexiang Company has denied that it supplied low-grade plastic parts to sports-car maker Aston Martin. The Shenzhen company is even denying having any business links at all with the British sports carmaker.

On Wednesday, Aston Martin announced the recall of over 17,000 cars, that's around 75 percent of all its cars sold since 2007. The recall was due to the poor quality of accelerator pedal arms. Aston Martin says the faulty parts were made by Kexiang and that the company deliberately used counterfeit plastic.

Shenzhen Kexiang's plant on the outskirts of Shenzhen sits empty for Chinese New Year. CCTV reporter managed to speak to one of the company's managers on the phone. Zhang Ronghui says Kexiang has no direct ties with Aston Martin.

"We're fine. We don't make anything for Aston Martin. Another company does it."

But Aston Martin has a different story. It says Kexiang has been making accelerator arms for its cars since 2007. It's now discovered that the company used counterfeit DuPont plastic material, making it easy for the pedal arm to break.

DuPont polymers are high-end, and high quality. There are thousands of plastic trading firms here at the Dongguan Zhangmutou Plastic Market. Many supply DuPont polymers. But at least one manager here claims there are fake DuPont plastics being made, that cost around 2,000 yuan less per ton.

"DuPont is a more expensive brand. But you can replace it with some other materials. I think fake DuPont definitely exists."

The Aston Martin recall has affected over 7,000 cars in Europe and over 5,000 in the US. The recall covers cars sold in 41 countries. Aston Martin says it's now switched suppliers to a registered direct supplier of DuPont plastics.

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