In a big step forward for Chinese automakers, Chery Automobile has had its first European-assembled car roll off the production line at a brand new €11.8 million factory in Italy. The Chery Tiggo 3, a mid-sized SUV, is being assembled from kits imported by DR Motor from Chery to be sold in the Italian market as a rebadged DR5.

CEO of DR Motor, Luca Falasca, says there are plans to launch the DR5 in Germany, France and Spain by next summer, reports Automotive News. They also intend to boost production from 12,000 to 40,000 units by 2009.

The DR5 is being sold in Italy with both diesel and petrol options. The 1.6L petrol version costs €16,900 and comes packed with 109hp (81kW), while the 1.9L diesel with its 120hp (89kW) output is priced at €21,900.