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The Harbin Aircraft Manufacturing Corp. was established in 1952. Hafei Motor Co. Ltd. has existed from 1995, and both companies were merged through state intervention by the People’s Republic of China. Initially its vans were made with the Songhu­ajiang brand under licence from Suzuki. Songhu­ajiang also produced a licensed version (the HFJ6330) of the Daewoo Tico from 1998. Pininfarina designed a Hafei minibus in 2000, the Zhongyi. Cooperation with Mitsubishi began the same year as Hafei licensed the Mirage Dingo and called it the Saima. By 2002, the Hafei marque was used for all models. The Saibao, a three-box sedan styled by Pininfarina, was shown in 2004, using Mitsubishi engines.

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