About Foton

Foton overview

In August 1996, with a clean sheet of paper, we set out with a goal: to become a leading player in the world’s largest and most demanding logistics market, China.

To do this, we knew that we had to be different from the competition and provide a world-class alternative product solution for both logistics operators and drivers.

“We believe that technology is the soul and DNA of the automobile”

Our guiding principle became ‘Technology leading into the future’.

Brand Values

Inspired by the qualities of a diamond, the Foton logo signifies 4 major core values:

  • Technology

  • Quality

  • High value

  • Durability

Joint ventures

We then set about establishing strategic joint ventures with the ‘best of the best’ in the commercial vehicle industry. Foton’s three key strategic alliances has allowed access to global technological insights from:

  • Cummins, a global icon in the heavy-duty truck market and the world’s largest independent engine manufacturer
  • Germany’s Daimler Truck, the world’s largest manufacturer of premium commercial vehicles
  • ZF, the world’s largest supplier of transmission and chassis technology.

These three strategic alliances – with Cummins and Germany’s Daimler and ZF – provide a combination of attributes unique to Foton trucks. We call this Foton DNA.

Continually striving for excellence and innovation, Foton operates R&D centres in China, Germany and Japan and have garnered the combined efforts of 6500 engineers from over 40 countries and witnessed 5000 R&D patents.

Daimler Truck

In 2003 Foton entered a 50/50 joint venture with Germany’s Daimler Truck, a highly respected global industry leader in the premium heavy-duty truck market. A short time later, the Foton Auman EST-A range of heavy-duty trucks was born.

Selected as the China 2017 Truck of the Year, the Foton Auman EST-A has quickly established its credentials as the leading heavy-duty truck to emerge from China.


Cummins wrote the book on high-performance diesel engines. A global icon in the heavy-duty truck market, renowned and respected for powerful, efficient, light-weight and highly durable diesel engines, Cummins became a 50/50 joint venture partner with Foton in 2006.


In 2019, ZF Friedrichshafen AG – the world’s largest supplier of transmission and chassis technology – established a joint venture with Foton with the main objective of producing ZF’s heavy-duty automatic ZF TraXon transmission and integrated Intarder systems. The ZF TraXon automatic transmission is fitted to Foton’s flagship model, the Auman EST-A.

Foton DNA

Foton’s high profile strategic alliances – coupled with a blue chip supply chain strategy with leading global automotive suppliers (Wabco, Bosch, etc) – provide Foton with the cutting-edge technology that is integral to Foton’s DNA.

Foton engineers have created a new benchmark for product design attributes, challenging its JV partners to deliver innovative solutions which provide an exemplary operator experience, in both look and feel.

A prime example of this DNA can be seen in our latest generation Aumark and Auman range of trucks.

Research & development

As well as being able to access innovations from its strategic alliance partners, Foton operates its own R&D centres in China, Germany and Japan. With Foton’s focus on offering world-class, quality products and staying ahead of the competition, a staggering 5000 R&D patents have been secured, through the combined efforts of 6500 engineers from more than 40 countries.

This emphasis on excellence includes the establishment of a world-class product test centre for vehicle testing, along with verification of vehicle and key components. This centre provides Foton with industry-leading virtual simulation capability – including crash safety, aerodynamics, NVH (noise-vibration-harshness) simulation and optimization.

By 2020 the total investment in this test centre will reach nearly NZD 2 Billion, an impressive indication of Foton’s commitment in this area.

Global parts

Foton has established three major parts logistics centres in China, covering nearly 400 acres, and a total investment of more than 2.5 billion dollars. Foton has achieved a high degree of automation and efficiency, with elevated three-dimensional warehouses and modern equipment. Also utilised is a world-class warehousing management IT system, which incorporates bar code technology and PDA mobile terminals.

In addition to the three major parts distribution centres located in China, Foton has established parts distribution centres in Thailand, Australia, Russia, Kenya and other countries.

Local parts

From strategically located premises in Hamilton, Foton Truck New Zealand operates its national parts distribution centre. With over 2200 lines in stock and the ability to source parts from Foton in Australia and China, Foton Truck New Zealand are well placed to support the more than 3000 Foton vehicles on the road in New Zealand.

Aumark S

GVM 5995kg – 8995kg

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Auman EST-M

GVM 12000kg

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