The Chinese automotive industry has come a long way

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Thinking about how Chinese cars looked one decade ago, the Hongqui S9 seems to have arrived from another planet. The S9 was revealed on Monday at the Shanghai Auto Show and believe it or not, it was penned down by the same designer responsible for the Audi R8.

The first-generation Audi R8 came out of Walter da Silva’s creative mind in 2006. 15 years later, the reputed designer - who also had past stints at SEAT, Audi, and the VW Group itself as head of design - is back with a bang. The bang being, of course, the Hongqui S9.

Built in Italy for China by Silk EV-FAW, the S9 comes to play with hypercar-worthy numbers. Power is said to come from a plug-in-hybrid setup that revolves around a V-8 engine.

This Is the Hongqi S9 - A Chinese Supercar With 1400 HP That Will Be Produced In Italy Exterior
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Overall, the S9 is good for 1,400 horsepower, enough for a 0-60 mph sprint dispatched in 1.9 seconds and a top speed of 250 mph.

All-electric range is rated at 25 miles (40 kilometers). On that note, that’s all we know about the S9 at the time of writing.

Hongqi S9 specifications
Powertrain V-8+electric
Power 1,400 HP
0 to 60 mph 1.9 seconds
Top Speed 250 mph
Electric range 25 miles (40 kilometers)
This Is the Hongqi S9 - A Chinese Supercar With 1400 HP That Will Be Produced In Italy Exterior
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Silk EV-FAW plans to build 99 cars at its plant in Modena, Italy, but the masterplan is to move Hongqui production to China, in the same facility that used to assemble limos for Mao Zedong. Orders are already open, but you’ll have to get in touch with the carmaker for pricing details. What is more, this is a road-ready vehicle and not a concept, so we’re eager to seeing it on the road.

This Is the Hongqi S9 - A Chinese Supercar With 1400 HP That Will Be Produced In Italy Exterior Wallpaper quality
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Speaking of sight, the S9 looks very European, and this is an obvious influence of da Silva’s take on automobiles. It’s also an example of smart packaging – look closer and you’ll see that the headlights incorporate air intakes and the windows are of the electrochromic variety.

Tudor Rus
Tudor Rus
Assistant Content Manager - Automotive Expert - tudor@topspeed.com
Tudor’s first encounter with cars took place when he was only a child. Back then, his father brought home a Trabant 601 Kombi and a few years later, a Wartburg 353. At that time, he was too young to know how they worked and way too young to drive them, but he could see one thing – each of them had a different ethos and their own unique personality. As time went on, he started seeing that in other cars as well, and his love for the automobile was born.  Read full bio
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