By on March 13, 2013

Attentive readers of TTAC have known it since the Beijing Auto Show last year that Toyota will launch a separate brand for its “new energy” (read plug-in hybrid and EV) that are produced in China. A not quite officially announced, but de facto policy wants it that way. Now we have the brand. It’s called Ranz.

The name most likely comes from the same German-loving folks at Toyota that brought us Vitz, Netz, Voltz, Platz and Raum. According to Carnewschina, “the Chinese name for Ranz is Lang Shi, which means ‘Bright Life’, as in dancing on green grass.”

The Rantz logo is designed to resemble a handshake, which again must be a European thing. The Chinese aren’t big on shaking hands, Carnewschina remarks, and neither are the Japanese. “When meeting Chinese,” explains Carnewschina, “a simple ‘ni hao’ is all it takes.”

The Ranz cars are made by the FAW-Toyota joint venture, a first prototype is expected at the Shanghai Auto Show. Maybe we’ll see the second new brand there also, the one by the GAC-Toyota joint venture.

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