The week in one story
24 November 2006

This week we've been looking east, to the Chinese motor show in Beijing. It's been packed with unusual stuff – and not just odd-named rip-offs of existing designs.

In fact this year it seems it's the names that have been borrowed as much as the styling. Take the new M3, for example. That's the Zhonghua M3, of course, and nothing to do with BMW's coupe. You certainly won’t get them confused if you look at the pictures.

Whatever critics of BMW design boss Chris Bangle might think, we know his new M3 is going to be much prettier. Watch his thoughts on the cars of tomorrow here.

On a more positive note for Chinese design, Chery brought us the A3 and A5, which like their Audi namesakes are both quite stylish.

That's more than you could say for the original Porsche Cayenne, which though brilliantly able was never exactly a looker. Porsche's hoping the facelifted version will be better-received, though the fact that it has so far only released photos of the car in the dark suggest that it's still physically challenged.

The Cayenne's sister car, the VW Touareg, has always been better-looking, and this week it also showed that it's also amazingly muscular. VW hooked a Boeing 747 to the back of a V10-engined Touareg and towed it along a runway. Watch the video – it's pretty amazing stuff.

Come back next week to read what Chris Harris thinks of the new Porsche 911 GT3, and watch our footage of him struggling to keep it in a straight line on a soaking track.

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