Beijing Auto Show

Beijing Auto Show

Lost in the hooplah surrounding the more highly-touted models in Hyundai ’s sedan line - we’re looking at you Genesis and Sonata - is the kid brother in the family, the Hyundai Accent - or Verna, depending on what part of the globe you’re in.

Well, kid brother finally got his chance in the spotlight after Hyundai unveiled the Accent at the 2010 Beijing Motor Show as the Verna. With design cues that look eerily similar to the Sonata, the Hyundai Accent comes with a number of engine platforms, including 1.4-liter and 1.6-liter variants that, according to Hyundai, would come with either a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission.

The Accent is scheduled to drop in China at the latter part of the year with the other markets scheduled to follow suit sometime in the next year. In the meantime, you can check out this video of the 2011 Hyundai Accent getting his moment in the sun in Beijing.

Source: YouTube

Volkswagen has decided that out of the many markets available, they would choose China as the place to, not only introduce their electric vehicle, but to launch an e-mobility program. Sounds like a good decision to us. China is so grossly overpopulated that, based off of a 2008 census, one out of every five people in the world lives in China. So, the decision of many to introduce hybrids and electric vehicles to China isn’t a big shocker. Volkswagen’s choice is the E-Lavida which made its debut at the Beijing Auto Show as one of the first previews for the future Volkswagen’s strategy for e-mobility on the Chinese market. The first electric models on the Chinese market will be revealed between 2013 and 2014.

"The Volkswagen Group has its global strategy for the development of e-Mobility launched in March this year and will soon begin mass production in the e-mobility," said Prof. Dr. Martin Winterkorn, CEO of Volkswagen AG, at the Auto Fair. "The heart of the brand will soon also beat electric. Our goal is market leadership in the e-Mobility 2018. China is the world’s most important market for the Volkswagen Group, and the success of e-mobility in China is crucial to the global implementation of e-mobility strategy."

The Volkswagen E-Lavida is based on a Golf MKIV platform and is powered by an electric motor and batteries, but there are no other details on it just yet.

"The e-mobility strategy for China is perfectly tailored to local needs. Volkswagen will provide its entire BlueMotion technology to the two Chinese joint ventures for local production. The Volkswagen Group China has a hundred percent committed to the aim of providing Chinese consumers with innovative, energy-saving and environmentally friendly technologies available to achieve sustainable development. We are confident that will develop the Volkswagen Group China through our commitment to the market leader for e-mobility technologies in China," said Winfried Vahland, CEO of Volkswagen Group China.

Another simple, itty-bitty car to quench the spacial thirst of the ever-growing population. MG unveiled the Zero Concept today at the Beijing Auto Show and according to the official press release "the MG ZERO concept previews the design direction of the brand and demonstrates how MG can expand into this high-volume sector of the market." Really it is just another answer to the question of how we are going to make space for the crowded world. Their portion of the answer; a car that is 4 meters in length and which looks similar to the Ford Start Concept revealed yesterday.

The concept uses high-tech materials inspired from ultra high-performance sports equipment. The interior features the latest technology touch screens to allow occupants to interact with the world around them and features a striking ‘floating console’ design around the driver.

Commenting on the exterior style, Design Director Tony Williams said “This concept shows a bold, individual soul. The bonnet is formed around the famous octagonal badge, the graphics flow into striking lamps and the large lower grille completes the confident, sporty character. The body-side has a strong shoulder, a dynamic scalloped feature in the doors and flared arches to give a wide stance and strong road presence. The feature lines have been designed to give a strong relationship to the wheel arch demonstrating the fun nature of the cars dynamics."

MG is certainly speeding up and attempting to produce more than its solitary model. Right now, the MG TF is the only MG in production and will see North American sales in 2014 . Later this year, however, the four- and five-door MG6 will emerge and the rumormill is producing an idea about an MG3 family car that will rival the Volkswagen Golf . The MG Zero is expected to go on sale in the UK in 2012 for about £9000.

Press release after the jump.

The Mercedes E-Class has been quite popular in China recently with 122,000 sold in 2008 and an expected 200,000 sold in 2010 with close to 90% being the long version. With this type of popularity, it’s no wonder that Mercedes Mercedes would boost the E-Class’ length and wheelbase by 140 millimeters to further entice the Chinese market and catapult sales even more. Today, Mercedes unveiled the E-Class L (Lembodies) at the Beijing Auto Show . The new version will be produced locally at Beijing BenzAutomotive Co.,Ltd (BBAC) with a local share in value terms of more than 40%.

Along with the jump in length, the new E-Class L will benefit from a choice of two refined petrol engines and three trim levels: E260 CGI Elegance, E260 CGI Avantgarde, and E300 Avantgarde. All models will be offered with automatic transmissions.

Standard options will include: bi-xenon headlamps, adaptive ILS (Intelligent Light System), electric sliding sunroof, automatic air conditioning, and COMAND DVD system. The E 260 CGI AVANTGARDE version will add a THERMATIC air conditioning system, heated rear seats, and residual heat system while the E 300 Avantgarde goes a step further to include a Rear Seat Entertainment System (two large 20.3 cm screens in the backs of the front seat head restraints), KEYLESS-GO electronic drive authorization system, and remote boot closing.

Press release after the jump.

BMW unveiled the Concept Gran Coupe today at the Beijing Auto Show, China. It is an elegant 4-door vehicle that previews the company’s future Mercedes-Benz CLS competitor. The concept was intended to highlight BMW’s unique design and philosophy by creating a combination Gran Turismo and sports car.

The Concept Gran Coupe features a long wheelbase, a vaulted bonnet with forward-pointing lines, a set-back greenhouse, a flat silhouette and a coupe-style roof line. The front section is defined by the BMW kidney grille formally separated from other BMW icons such as the headlights and air inlets. The entire rear section appears slimmer and lighter at the center, though still exuding power and dynamic performance since the volume is reinforced towards the sides.

The company revealed not even an inkling on the concept’s specifications. No engine stats. No interior options. We must say, its long build and low-lying structure would be an attainable production model. That is, if BMW ever decided to actually produce it and not just dangle it in front of our faces as a tasty possibility.

Press release after the jump.

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Ford Mondeo

Yesterday, we talked about Ford’s EcoBoost technology in their Start Concept . Now at the Beijing Auto Show, Ford has announced that they will also include their EcoBoost Technology in Europe’s Ford Mondeo . The Mondeo will receive the 2.0L I4 EcoBoost engine mated with the new Ford Powershift six speed automatic transmission. This single turbocharger with a direct fuel injection delivery system delivers torque comparable to a V6 engine while fuel economy is boosted by 10%.

“Customers have embraced EcoBoost technology because of its ability to deliver power and performance with uncompromised fuel economy,” said Derrick Kuzak, Ford group vice president for global product development. “We’re committed to bringing this technology to multiple vehicles so that more customers can take advantage of the no-compromise Ford EcoBoost combination of power, performance and fuel economy. Ford EcoBoost works in any gasoline engine, so adding a 4-cylinder engine to complement our V6 line-up was a logical development.”

Along with that announcement, Ford also announced that the 2.0L I4 EcoBoost will be the first EcoBoost engine to go global with the 1.6L and the 4 cylinder following shortly thereafter. They have already revealed the Europen lineup featuring the 2.0L engine: Ford S-Max , Galaxy , and Mondeo will start off the transition. The Ford Edge will receive the engine later this year while Australia’sFord Falcon will inherit the 4 cylinder engine in 2011.

This announcement comes as no surprise to us. We figured Ford would be running full steam ahead with this technology that cuts CO2 emissions by 15% compared to larger displacement engines with similar power. Cutting CO2 emissions seems to be an important trend and we are sure Ford will be taking advantage of that as any other automaker would.

Press release after the jump.

Lamborghini unveiled the special edition Murciélago LP 670-4 SuperVeloce China Limited Edition at the Beijing Auto Show. As its name suggests, this will be a Murcielago built exclusively for the Chinese market and will be limited to only 10 units. Somewhere in China, probably at the auto show, a bunch of Chinese people are saying, "Nani, Nani, Booboo".

The LP 670-4 SuperVeloce China is painted in flat gray with an orange stripe that symbolizes the strength of an erupting volcano (think Icelandic eruption). Also, in a touch of superior identification, all units will feature a numeration badge with the name of its owner.

The LP670-4 SV is powered by a 6.5 liter V12 delivering a total of 670 hp. With a weight reduction of 220 lbs, the Murciélago LP 670-4 SV boasts a power-to-weight ratio of 2.3 kg (5.1 lbs) per hp. It vaults itself from 0 to 62 mph in just 3.2 seconds and hits top speed at 212 mph. This little sassy sportscar is faster than the Gallardo LP 570-4 Superleggera . Nice.

There will definitely be 10 very ecstatic people in China when they come face to face with their unique vehicle. There might also be 10 very paranoid vehicle owners putting added security on their magnificent rides.

Press release after the jump.

While waiting for the production version of the Volt , Chevrolet decided to tease us with a new electric concept carrying the same nameplate. This time, it’s a crossover. It made its world debut at the Auto China 2010 and comes to demonstrate the potential of the Voltec propulsion system.

The MPV5 concept features the same design as the Volt: a closed grille and aero-optimized lower air dam, a full-underbody belly pan, along with rocker claddings, creased tail lamps and specially designed blades on the rear quarter. The crossover is painted in Sonic Blue Metallic paint and sits on 19-inch Volt-inspired wheels.

And, of course, under the hood there is the same propulsion system with a total of 150 Hp and an autonomy of 300 miles on a full tank of gasoline. The MPV5 can hit a top speed of 100 mph.

We are curious to see what other Volt-like creations are up Chevy’s sleeve, especially since this crossover looks quite dashing. Check out the interior shots.

Press release after the jump.

There’s no end in sight to China’s auto-cloning ways, is there?

Chinese automaker Huatai is on its way to debuting yet another piece of work: the B35 SUV, or as we’d like to refer to it as the part-Porsche Cayenne , part-Bentley SUV.

Seriously, we can’t, for the life of us, figure out why China auto brands can’t seem to develop styling elements of their own and rely mostly on combining elements between two pre-existing cars to make it look like they came up with something so grandiously unique. This B35 is no exception to that. If the similarities to the Porsche Cayenne isn’t enough, they had to make it look a wee-bit more updated by installing a large chrome grille that, we’re quite certain, came straight out of a Bentley.

In any case, there’s pretty much nothing we can do about it and we’ll just have to wait for the Beijing Auto Show to see how the car-loving public reacts to these China-made vehicles, though as far as we’re concerned, we kind of hope that they’d stop with all the rip-offs and copycats and make their own designs.

Source: The Tyco

Ford unveiled the Start Concept today at the Beijing International Auto Show. This marks Ford’s first concept car in over three years and its simple design addresses the growing problems we have with fuel efficiency, traffic congestion, and parking space. "Our ambition with the Ford Start Concept was to design a car that goes beyond the practical realities of commuting in these mega cities, to go beyond just dressing the technology. We wanted to design a car you would also love," explained Freeman Thomas, Design Director, Ford Motor Company.

The Start Concept is powered by a 1.0-liter Ford EcoBoost engine that delivers the same amount of power and torque as a normally-aspirated I-4 powerplant. This engine is coupled with a six-speed manual transmission which permits gear spacing to deliver performance without sacrificing fuel economy.

The concepts gets a smooth exterior shell constructed with lightweight composite body panels that snap-fit on an aluminum structure. "With the Ford Start Concept, we didn’t set out to design some sort of utilitarian concept to save the world, nor were we interested in following the competitive trend toward an overly noisy design language. What we did set out to do was design a personality driven car that exudes warmth, charm and aspiration…to design a car worth bonding with," said J Mays, Group Vice President Design and Chief Creative Officer, Ford Motor Company.

This concept reminds us of a little beetle big, although not of the Volkswagen variety. Simply put, the car can be described as cute which may lead to a hard sell for the more masculine portion of our urban community. It’s not ideal for passengers either. Sorry kids, mommy has to save on gas. All kidding aside, we do think this is a great combination of fuel efficiency and simplistic design. We also see how this attractive car could appeal to the masses. Ford may be on to something and the possibility of this concept’s engine transferring over to Ford’s smaller vehicles like the Fiesta and the Focus, is something we can see happening. We have to wonder what this will do to the likes of Chevrolet. Do we see a slightly modified Chevy Cruze or Eco in our future?

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