China’s Nissan GT-R, a new brand for Honda and signs of a green movement
21 April 2008

Li Nian: Honda’s new standalone brand for the Chinese marketRoewe: New 550 officially unveiledAudi: New Q5 to be first Audi hybridHong Qi: Upmarket division of FAW show new SUV conceptJAC: New A138 small saloon styled by Pininfarina due in 2009Great Wall: New Feelfine hatchback due for Russia and ChinaGeely: GT-R-inspired coupé concept due for production in 18 monthsFirst Automobile Works: New TFC-M2 sports hatch revealedBrilliance: Established B6 model gets new wagon variantBYD: Rally-inspired concept lacks the performance to match its looksNew saloon and coupé for BAHPorsche Cayenne hits 542bhpFirst among the surprises at this year’s Beijing motor show was Honda’s new premium brand, Li Nian. It is targetting the domestic Chinese market and revealed a mini-SUV that should be on sale there by 2010.Meanwhile, there were plenty of green vibes surrounding the show as Audi confirmed that it will produce a hybrid Q5, the first to join Stuttgart’s line-up. Following on from the success of the A6 saloon in China, the new Q5 SUV got a warm reception at Beijing this year. Great Wall also wanted to highlight its green credentials by showing a plug-in electric version of the Peri, its Fiat Panda-based supermini. Great Wall’s eco-friendly stand also featured stop-start and regenerative braking technology.Stylish coupés were equally prolific at Beijing, with Geely’s GT-R-inspired 300bhp sports coupé stealing the spotlight for much of the show. Beijing Automotive Holding got in on the sports car act with a pair of saloon and coupé twins. They’ve been described as an image-building exercise, but if reaction at the show is anything to go by, BAH could do worse than make them.

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