In 1992, the Chinese company Lifan was founded. Today it is known as a manufacturer of budget cars, but its first activity was motorcycle repair. After some time, having gained experience, the company ventured to start producing its own motor vehicles, and it was right. Due to their low cost, motorcycles "Chongqing Hongda Auto Fittings Research Center" (and this is what the current "Lifan" was called then) became very popular in China, and after only 5 years the company already owned ten of its own factories. In 1997, the management decided to change the name to the one by which we know it now.
At the same time, the company first looked towards the production of passenger cars. The first models of the brand were licensed automobiles of the brands "Honda" and "Mitsubishi". In addition, an agreement was concluded with the Japanese firm Daihatsu, which transferred its technical know-how to the Chinese brand, which made it possible to launch the production of the company's first own models in 2005.
The first of these was the Lifan 6361, produced in a pickup truck. However, by the end of 2005, production began on the Lifan 320 hatchback and the Lifan 520 compact sedan, which became the best-selling cars in the Brazilian car market in 2006. In the same year, supplies of Lifan models to the automotive market of Eastern Europe began, which led to the creation of a number of factories in Ukraine and Russia. In addition, a joint production of power units with the Japanese brand Mazda was established. Lifan did not leave its original direction of activity either, producing more than 1.3 million motorcycles annually by this time.
In 2008, the Lifan Smiley subcompact model was introduced, equipped with a new generation of 1.3-liter power unit and 89 horsepower. A year later, the Breez model was presented, under the hood of which was a 1.6-liter engine with a capacity of 106 horsepower.
In addition to the production of passenger cars, the Chinese brand Lifan started the production of buses and trucks under its own brand. However, in reality, these were the models of the Korean company Hyundai, which invested significant funds in the creation of a joint venture with Lifan to produce its cars for the Chinese market, and the step to transfer large equipment was a kind of barter to provide financial guarantees for construction. new production facilities.
In 2010, work began on the creation of military off-road vehicles of the brand. The result of these developments was the release of the Lifan X60 crossover, designed to compete with the Toyota Rav4 mid-size crossover, which is very popular in China.
By 2012, construction began on 6 new plants, among which the release of the first joint models with the French company Renault was announced in 2015.