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Ford to recall 236,643 sedans in China

June 17, 2010 by Tycho de Feijter

China’s top quality supervisor said Monday that Changan Ford Mazda Automobile Co. has started a recall of 236,643 Focus cars over a problem that caused vehicles to stall.

The recall covered vehicles manufactured from August 18, 2008, to May 28 this year by the joint venture owned by Ford, Chongqing-based Changan Automobile and Mazda Motor Corp., the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine said in a statement on its website.

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Volkswagen plans to Sell 3000 Phaetons in China this Year

June 17, 2010 by Tycho de Feijter

“We will be delivering over 3,000 Phaetons this year in China,” said Peter Thul, head of brand and product communications for Volkswagen based in Germany. Mr Thul made his remark at a test-drive event for the new Phaeton in Sanya on Hainan island in southern China.

Volkswagen sold 14oo Phaetons in China in 2009, making China the largest market for the luxury sedan. The brand new Phaeton, introduced at the Beijing Auto Show, has to make sure another 1600 make it to the Chinese market.

VW will likely hit the 3000-target. The Chinese economy is booming again, it never really slowed down, and customers will especially appreciate the long-wheelbased car. And this time I can check it personally, the TheTycho.com-towers are near VW’s China headquaters.

Phaetons for the Beijing market arrive there first before moving on to dealers around town, they come by boat from Germany via portcity Tianjin. Last time I looked there were 6 new cars on the parking lot, all in a not too flattering brownish color. Likely demonstrators for dealers, but had better been black.

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The Cheapest Benz in China

June 17, 2010 by Tycho de Feijter

Benz brought the new C180K Classic to the Chinese market for 308.000 rmb. The C-class is made in China by Benz’ joint venture with Beijing Auto. The name of the jv is so ‘Beijing-Benz’.

The C180K Classic comes with a 1.6 ‘BlueEfficiency’ engine that makes the Benz the only sedan in its segment to qualify for the government’s vehicle sales tax discount for clean and energy-efficient cars. Fuel consumption is 7.7 liters per 100 km.

Chinese consumers buy whatever Benz can sell so this entry-level C will likely be a succes. Benz never took the ‘A’ and ‘B’ class to China, they are trying the Smart now but so far without much succes.

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China extends ‘old car for new’ subsidy to Dec 31

June 17, 2010 by Tycho de Feijter

China’s Ministry of Commerce (MOC) said Sunday it will extend the auto replacement subsidy from May 31 to Dec 31. The move aims to accelerate the elimination of high-emissions and polluting vehicles, and stimulate automobile consumption, said the MOC in an online statement.

Consumers who trade-in their used small-and- medium-sized trucks and some types of mid-sized passenger cars for new ones can receive subsidies ranging from 3,000 ($349.2) to 6,000 yuan. The government rolled out the “old car for new” subsidy last June, to encourage people to replace their old cars. It was initially scheduled to end May 31, 2010.

As of May 31, relevant departments had handed-out 1.7 billion yuan in subsidies that had resulted in 127,000 vehicles being replaced, boosting domestic automobile spending by 15 billion yuan, according to MOC data.

Souce: ChinaDaily.

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Volkswagen Shows 3 new Electric Cars at Shanghai World Expo

June 15, 2010 by Tycho de Feijter

Volkswagen brought 3 new all-electric cars to the Shanghai World Expo; the Up! e-motion, the Lavida blue e-motion and the Golf blue e-motion.  The Up! e-motion is a concept, the Lavida blue e-motion will see production in China “soon” and production of the Golf blue e-motion will start in Germany in 2013. First up, the Up!

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Who are those men in the Back of a BYD-dealer?

June 14, 2010 by Tycho de Feijter

A normal BYD-dealer somewhere in China. Left: BYD president Wang Chuanfu accepts BusinessWeek ‘Star of Asia’ award from former US president Bill Clinton in 2007. Right: president Wang with investor Warren Buffet. Message: president Wang had powerful friends, so his cars are good.

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Geely-Emgrand EC8 Interior

June 14, 2010 by Tycho de Feijter

The Geely-Emgrand EC8 debuted at the Beijing Auto Show. The EC8 was formerly known as Geely-Emgrand EC825, Geely decided to ditch ’25’. Geely said the EC8 would be on the market ‘in the second half of 2010’. Well, ain’t that now?, but yet no trace of the EC8 at the dealers. It won’t be long though before it finally gets there, these pictures show the interior of the poduction version of the EC8. Chinese like fake wood, check. Chinese like fake alu: check. Chinese like fake wood and fake alu in the same interior: check. A Geely-job wel done.

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Spy Shots: new Guangzhou-Toyota Yaris

June 14, 2010 by Tycho de Feijter

The Guangzhou-Toyota Yaris has been going for a while and not very strong. Competition from local Chinese brand is fierce and the Yaris was loosing out. Time so, for a new one. But it ain’t too new, it got a new front with a strange looking grille and some changes on the dashboard. This might be not good enough to get sales up, and even worse: no new engines. Toyota will offer exactly the same 1.3 and 1.6 as in the current car.

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JAC YueYue Priced

June 14, 2010 by Tycho de Feijter

JAC’s new YueYue minicar debuted at the Beijing Auto Show, it will hit the market in August for a very cheap 30.000 to 40.000 rmb. Size: 3535×1640×1475, wheelbase is 2390. Engine a 1.0 litre 4-cilinder with 50kw and 95nm, 5-speed manual or auto. Top speed is 150km/h.

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Volkswagen Stretches Magotan/Passat

June 11, 2010 by Tycho de Feijter

Mid level government officials wake up, VW got a new car for you. This is the stretched Magotan, Passat in Europe. Wheelbase is stretched from from 2709mm to 2830mm, all new cm’s go to the passengers in the rear. Budget for mid level government men is 250.000 yuan, they also get a driver. Price of the stretched Megotan will stay jut below that. Engine is the 1.8TSI.

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