In the frame of another session period of China's People's Congress in Beijing, there is much discussion about the development of PR China's economy. While official sources predict an economic growth of 7.5 %, China is emancipating itself from a nation relying on the import of foreign cars for private use to a powerful manufacturer of fine cars that are meeting global standards.
On German TV it was proclaimed that China's new middle class limousine "Cronos" should compete with products from western manufacturers on the European market. A car like many others in its class but with a rather surprising price below 20.000 €. The German manager who spoke on behalf of the Chinese manufacturer hinted at German engineering competence being involved in the construction of Cronos and that should have made it "impossible for the Chinese to build a bad car". Bad news for BMW and other European competitors who come to note that European know-how, they once brought to China, is now turning against them.
[Source: Tagesschau 24, a German TV news channel on March 5, 2013]
Nevertheless, BWM continues to produce its 3-grade and 5-grade car series in a joint-venture with BMW's Chinese partner Brilliance China Automotive Holdings. Other German manufacturers, as well, are selling high-end luxury cars to the new rich of China.
The above quoted German news source mentioned and showed a Chinese car named "Cronos". However, I had some difficulties in finding further news about that. Most probably it's a joint-venture product or, in other words, a car of mixed origin.
Here now is what looks like a "genuine" Chinese car that might have been constructed especially for the European market:
China's manufacturer Hua Tai Cars 华泰汽车, already successful in the SUV (sport utility vehicle) segment, is launching a new product on the car market. The Lu Sheng 路盛 E70 is a compact limousine and designed "according to European style". It should be available in three versions: The 2.0 L and 1.5 T versions are using a petrol driven engine while the 1.5 D has a diesel engine. The vehicle's length : width : height ratio is 4.777 mm : 1.794 mm : 1.481 mm, its wheelbase being 2.678 mm. The E70 should be equipped with GPS navigation and a G3 internet connection.
[Source: People's Network on March 09, 2013]
According to the Shenzhen Web for the Great World of Cars 深圳汽车大世界网 (March 11 report), the new product brand Lu Sheng E70 should have been renamed from the old brand name B21 of Hua Tai Cars. Some days earlier, price.pcauto.com.cn magazine, another Chinese source, confirmed the B21 or Hua Shang E70 being related to a product of Hua Tai's partner brand Bao Li Ge 宝利格 and which is a SUV. As neither photos nor prices were available for the brandnew B21 of Hua Tai Cars, they showed but a series of photos taken from the related Bao Li Ge product. However, another model from Hua Tai Cars, the B11, is fully documented and showing some similarity with the B21 or Hua Shang E70. Selling prices for the B11 (in China) are lying between 100.000 and 176.00 Yuan which is about 12.360 to 21.750 €.
By the way, Hua Tai Cars 华泰汽车 must not be mixed up with the South Korean car manufacturer Hyundai (Chinese: Huan Dai) 现代汽车 who is making and selling cars in China and has already topped one million car sales there in 2010. On a website of China Car Times some Hyundai products appear with brand slogans like "Euro 2012" or "€", - what a nice coincidence. Anyway, getting through the jungle of car manufacturing and model policy in China seems to be rather tough for an outsider.
at the 2012 Beijing Auto Show.
The phenomenon I tend to call "migration of competence" is not restricted to car production alone. As Chen Hong Qiao, a deputy director of Shenzhen stock exchange [陈鸿桥 深圳证券交易所副总经理], mentioned in an interview with a Chinese financial news service, foreign enterprises related to electricity production and electrical equipment are as well focussed by Chinese investors.
Chen Hong Qiao: Starting what is hard [for] China's new and developing industry.
Jin Feng Science and Technology bought a German wind electricity enterprise, such "buying" as well German technicians and managers. Su Ning Electrical Equipment bought Japan's well-known home electricity chain [market] company.
[Source: finance.ifeng.com on March 5, 2013]
When Chen Hong Qiao referred to the "Japanese home electricity chain" bought by a Chinese investor, he certainly meant LAOX Corporation from where 27.36% of shares had been bought in July 2009.
[Source: sina.com.cn on July 24, 2009]
Official statistics, released in the frame of China's government activity report for the last 5 years, are showing an increasing market for private cars from, both, domestic and foreign production:
The number of private cars has risen from 6 cars per
100 urban households in 2007 to 21.5 cars in 2012.
The highway system has been extended from 28.000 km in 2007
up to 42.000 km in 2012. In the same period, the 5-year rate of
newly built road kilometers has risen from 192.000 km in 2007
to 609.000 km in 2012.
There are two further blogspots of "blueprint news" related to the subject and dating back to December 2011:
East Asia Leading Worldwide Car Production
World Economy: Rise of China - Fall of Europe ?
Localized visitors to "blueprint news" coming from East Asia. Part of global
visitors mapping on March 7, 2013, based on the last 200 localized visitors:
A visitor from Greenland looking for another habitable planet: