Shanghai GM will be putting a hybrid version of their Buick LaCrosse on the market next year, prior to the Olympic games to be held in Bejing, according to the Xinhua News Agency of China.
According to GM’s information, the vehicle will be based on the Saturn Aura Green Line’s hybrid engine, a 2.4 liter Ecotec which, in the Saturn, increases fuel economy about 25%. Toyota is currently the only manufacturer with a hybrid on the Chinese market, though Honda has announced introduction of a hybrid. A local Chinese company also produces a hybrid, one which reportedly can meet European emissions standards.
The Buick LaCrosse sold in China is not the same model available in the United States. Instead, it’s better looking and has nicer interior appointments. It is smaller, as well, than the American LaCrosse, appearing to be more in the Aura/Malibu size and idiom. In China, the Buick nameplate has been extraordinarily successful, with the brand holding a large chunk of the premium market and GM increasingly committing the development of the product to local Chinese engineers and designers.