By on April 23, 2013

When the Chinese government invited Western carmakers to China, the trade was a huge and untapped Chinese market for access to Western technology. Foreign carmakers had to form joint ventures with Chinese. This triggered fears that the laowei would be kicked out in short order, while the Chinese would flood western markets with cheap cars made with expropriated intellectual property. It didn’t work out that way. At the Shanghai Auto Show, new attempts of the Chinese government to gain technology for free have the smell of death. (Read More…)

By on April 22, 2013

 

And here the part you have been waiting for (especially those of our readers who suffer from Yellow Fever): This year’s round-up of the show’s product specialists. After last year’s  excesses at Chinese auto shows, the calls for a more family-oriented posture show disappointing results:  This year, the racy part is mostly left to the choice of cars on display. (Read More…)

By on April 22, 2013

The Shanghai Auto Show truly is a reflection of the Chinese car market: It is huge, and it is one big disorganized mess. This year, the media days were shrunk to one, with the effect that nearly 20 press conferences ran at the same time.  If you went to Audi, you could not go to Fiat, Chery, Nissan, and a host of others. Getting admitted was a whole other matter. (Read More…)

By on April 21, 2013

BMW Mini’s former chief designer Gert Hildebrand and Volkswagen’s former North America vice chief Volker Steinwascher enjoyed the adolations of the adoring masses when they unveiled their new Qoros brand at the Shanghai Auto Show. (Read More…)

By on April 21, 2013

FAW evokes the bad old times when China’s leaders, tired of the Long March, ordered hand-made parade limousines. The originals had been chronicled by Tycho de Feyter. Now they are re-lived as the Red Flag L5, L7, and L9. (Read More…)

By on April 21, 2013

In the past, Toyota had tried to resist the urges of the Chinese government to establish new joint-venture brands. The company also had been highly skeptical of the viability of the electric vehicle. All doubts have been tossed over board. Toyota launched two new brands and two new EVs in China. (Read More…)

By on April 21, 2013

The booths of Japanese automakers were mobbed today just like those of any other automaker at the Shanghai Motor Show. The action at the showrooms are a different matter. Sales of Japanese cars in China remain problematic more than half a year after rowdy crowds took to the streets last September to torch Japanese cars and showrooms. Sales of Japanese cars in China were down 14.3 percent in March while sales of U.S. carmakers were up 31.1 percent. Sales of German brands rose 24.6 percent.

Toyota does not expect to reach positive territory until August this year, Hiroji Onishi, head of Toyota’s China operations, told a small circle of reporters this morning at the Shanghai show. Asked why August, another Toyota executive quipped: “After previous riots in 2005 and 2010, it took half a year to recover. We figure, this time it might take twice as long.” (Read More…)

By on April 20, 2013

Buick shows  a few interesting concepts in Shanghai. One, a business MPV attracted the interest on GM’s competition at Toyota. Soon-to-be Toyota chairman Takeshi Uchiyamada came for a quick visit, eyed the prototype for a few seconds, and left. (Read More…)

By on April 20, 2013

The Denza shows its stripes

So Denza, the odd couple joint venture between Daimler and BYD, lifted the veil of its upcoming all-electric SUV. A car in heavy camouflage rolled on stage here at the Shanghai Motor Show. The car looked, well, like the old B-Class from which it is derived. (Read More…)

By on April 19, 2013

Unfortunately, this is just a design study meant for the Shanghai Auto Show. But GM, how about an Alpha-based Riviera? This concept is supposedly a plug in hybrid, but the new twin-turbo V6 would fit nicely under the hood of this thing. More live pictures to follow.

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