Honda launches standalone upmarket brand for Chinese market
21 April 2008

Honda stunned car industry observers in Beijing by announcing the establishment of a new standalone brand aimed exclusively at the Chinese market. Li Nian is modelled on Toyota’s successful North American brand, Scion, and is planned to support a range of youth-orientated models – the first of which is this five-door mini-SUV that is planned to go on sale in 2010. Based on the same front-wheel drive platform as the Jazz, its edgy styling, which some show goers speculated was inspired by the recently unveiled Ford Fiesta, was created at Honda’s Chinese design studio and is said to set the tone for other future models. There is no official word on specifications, Autocar has it on good authority the new Honda will use a 1.8-litre, four-cylinder petrol engine.Li Nian was created in a joint venture with Honda’s long-time partner, the Guangzhou Automobile Group. Together they have spent heavily to create the infrastructure to support the new line-up, which is also expected to include both city cars and small hatchbacks by the middle of next decade.

Greg Kable

Go to the next Beijing motor show article.

Join the debate


21 April 2008

At least honda has got into the Chinese car maker tradition of ripping off other car makers designs! The Fiesta has bearly been launched, and this is a total copy! Mind you thats no bad thing, as both Fiesta and this Li Nian are pretty neat designs.

If I were Ford I wouldnt be too happy at the moment

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Subaru Impreza
    First Drive
    17 November 2017
    The fifth-generation Subaru Impreza is much improved from top to bottom, but a poor engine and gearbox keep it trailing in this competitive class
  • Ford Fiesta Vignale
    First Drive
    17 November 2017
    We get a first taste of Ford’s poshest Fiesta in turbocharged diesel form
  • Seat Arona
    Car review
    17 November 2017
    Seat is on a roll but can the Arona, its new junior SUV, cut it in such an ultra-competitive class?
  • Maserati Ghibli S
    First Drive
    16 November 2017
    The Italian saloon gets its most comprehensive update yet, but is that enough to make it a match for rival offerings from BMW and Mercedes?
  • Ford Fiesta ST-Line X
    First Drive
    15 November 2017
    We get our first taste of Ford's sporty 1.0-litre Fiesta on British roads