Shanghai General Motors Co. Ltd. launches a new phase in its operations as it begins exporting Chinese-made vehicles to other markets.

The auto maker begins shipment of the first of 10,000 units of its popular Chevrolet New Sail small car to Chile from the Chinese Port of Yantai this week. The vehicles are produced at GM Shanghai's Yantai manufacturing complex.

The cars will be sold in Chile through Chevrolet dealerships.

Eventually, they will be exported to other South American countries, as well as the Middle East and North Africa, a company spokesman says.

“The Chevrolet New Sail is the first locally developed and manufactured passenger car from an international brand to be exported,” Terry Johnsson, Shanghai GM vice president-vehicle sales, service and marketing, says in a statement.

“It represents a breakthrough in our strategy to create products for China and other emerging markets.”

The New Sail is an all-Chinese product developed at the Pan Asia Technical Automotive Center in Shanghai, which is a joint venture between Shanghai GM and Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp.

The Chevrolet New Sail was launched in China in January with a base price of RMB60,000 ($9,000). Shanghai GM has sold 90,000 units in the first nine months, which placed it as No.1 in sales for the small-car segment in China.