Carlos Alberto de Oliveira Andrade is Rewriting the History of the Brazilian Automobile Industry

Carlos Alberto de Oliveira Andrade automobile factory

The entrepreneur is one of the important leaders in the national automotive sector.

On Aug. 5, journalist Boris Feldman, who, since 1966, has specialized in vehicles and motor racing, and who hosts the car radio show called “Car Talk” on radio stations all over Brazil – spoke again about the businessman Carlos Alberto de Oliveira Andrade, founder of CAOA, the largest car distributor and manufacturing conglomerate in Latin America.

Feldman created and produced the TV program “Vrum,” broadcast on national network by SBT TV network, and, for 20 years, he was the editor of several automobile magazines as well as the host of the TV program “Car Talk” n TV Bandeirantes, a Brazilian broadcast network. Recently, in the Car Talk portal ( he recalled an interview entitled “Dr. Caoa’s dream” that was published in 2012 with Carlos Alberto de Oliveira Andrade as the interviewee — the term “Dr.” is a reference to the degree in medicine of the current Chairman of the Board of Directors of CAOA, who is also one of the leaders of the automotive sector in Brazil.

The article quotes excerpts from the 2012 article, such as: “The [2012] article began: ‘No businessman in the automobile industry in Brazil generates as much controversy as Dr. Caoa’ and it ended like this: ‘In addition to importing and selling automobiles, the Caoaoup went further and invested heavily in setting up a factory in Anápolis (GO). It has a license from Hyundai itself to manufacture the HR and HD 78 trucks. It also assembles an older model of the Tucson brand and is preparing to produce the new iX35 in the coming months. And he has a dream: to make a fully Brazilian car. ‘

The editor-in-chief of the Car Talk portal also stated that, at the time, he asked Carlos Alberto de Oliveira Andrade about his dream and the executive’s response was on the tip of his tongue: “We already have a design agency in Italy creating a new and modern body for the Tucson. I am negotiating with Fiat (which already provides diesel engines for the HD 78) to give us a national engine with which to equip the new car. I am taking a page from the Korean playbook and repeating what they did to the Japanese: they started manufacturing and copying Japanese products, and later developed their own Korean cars.”

In the 2012 article, Feldman ended with a question mark — “Is Dr. Caoa the João Gurgelho succeeds?” Six years later, the journalist revisited the subject matter to answer the question: “It worked. He did not copy the Koreans, rather he went much further: he took over Chery’s operation in Brazil last year, kept the Chinese as partners, and continues to manufacture his models in Jacareí and Anápolis (GO), where he also produces Hyundai models,” reported Boris Feldman. “Masterstroke,” he also wrote in his new article about Carlos Alberto de Oliveira Andrade — “what was seen as a challenge for the Chinese, was a piece of cake for the Caoa Group. The consumer, hitherto distrustful of the Chery brand and its precarious dealership network, was convinced by the Caoa group’s credibility and know-how in the market,” he added.

In Feldman’s view, Carlos Alberto de Oliveira Andrade is rewriting the history of the Brazilian automobile industry, “which never had a big national factory, only failed attempts like those of Eike Batista (JPX jeeps in MG), João Gurgel (jeeps and compact cars in SP), Mario Araripe (Troller, in Ceará), Puma (sports cars in SP) and some others that closed their doors or are in a downward spiral.”

According to the journalist specialized in the automotive sector, Carlos Alberto de Oliveira Andrade is not just another adventurer, because he has real experience in the area in which he operates — “from the assembly line to the development of a dealership network, distribution, marketing, after-sales and spare parts,” he added. Feldman also stressed that the entrepreneur represented important brands such as the French Renault, before Renault established its own factory in the country; the American Ford; the Korean Hyundai; and the Japanese Subaru.

Boris Feldman also wrote about a conversation he had about the CAOA executive — “When Hyundai was still building its factory in Piracicaba, I visited the company headquarters in South Korea. In an interview with its directors, I made a comment about their importer in Brazil. About how a doctor from Paraiba became the most important businessman in the Brazilian automobile industry. And to get a reaction from them, I mentioned the controversies caused by their importer’s over the top approach to advertising. I mentioned his arguments with the press (including me) and with the institution responsible for advertising ethics in Brazil, Conar. The Koreans pretended to pay a lot of attention to what I was saying, and, in the end,  they responded — pragmatically – that, for them, the ‘doctor’ delivers the best results in institutional brand marketing in the world…, wrote Feldman.”

This time, however, the journalist ends his article with a statement: “The press has always wondered why Brazil has Embraer, with its highly complex aeronautical technology, much more sophisticated than the automobile, and no genuine Brazilian company among our dozens of automobile factories. The person who answered that question was Dr. Caoa…”.


Founded in 1979, CAOA, owned by businessman Carlos Alberto de Oliveira Andrade, is now a leader in the Brazilian automotive sector, present in every region in Brazil and owns Ford, Hyundai and Subaru dealerships, as well as being a sole importer of Hyundai vehicles and Subaru in Brazil since the late 1990s.

CAOA also produces the Tucson, iX35 and New Tucson SUVs in addition to the HR and HD80 trucks at its factory – CAOA Assembly Plant, located in the city of Anápolis (GO).

In nearly four decades of activities, the company founded by Carlos Alberto de Oliveira Andrade has already sold more than one million vehicles in the Brazilian market.

Read more about Carlos Alberto de Oliveira Andrade in this article:

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