Tag Archives: China
Toyota Motor Corp said during the 2017 Shanghai Auto Show that it will begin testing its hydrogen fuel cell cars in China by October. The move is for the company evaluate the feasibility of bringing the Mirai in the giant Asian country’s market.
According to Reuters, Hirohi Onishi, Toyota’s head of business in China, revealed that the automaker is planning to construct a hydrogen fuel station in Changshu City in the eastern part of Jiangsu province during the testing phase. He stated that promotional activities will be made in line with the arrival of their product in the country to gauge how receptive are the Chinese consumers to the vehicle.
The Japanese brand finds putting the hydrogen fuel cell-powered Toyota cars in China challenging though. Automotive News reported that there are only five hydrogen stations in the country. The facilities are centered around the cities of Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou. The Toyota station would be the first in Changshu.
Presently, the Toyota Mirai is sold in Japan, United States of America and Europe. From the said regions, the company has sold 3,000 units of the car. Australia, United Arab Emirates and Canada will also be the location of the other testing areas for the hydrogen fuel cell Toyota cars.
Lately, the Chinese government has implemented strict measures to curb the alarming pollution in the country. As a result, more automakers are investing into bringing their electric cars in that location. Recognizing the strong demand for EVs, even luxury car makers like Mercedes-Benz and Audi are taking their game into the electric car segment of the Chinese market.
With such a stiff competition looming in the electric car business, it remains to be seen how the Mirai will be received by China’s consumers. Everything will be made clear once it arrives in the Chinese roads for testing.
The BMW 5-Series is in it is seventh generation for the 2017 model year. At this year’s Shanghai Auto Show, a new model of the car was just unveiled called the BMW 5-Series Li.
Here are 4 stuff you should know about the BMW 5 Series Li, which was manufactured under the Brilliance-BMW alliance:
In a nutshell, the BMW 5-Series Li is the long wheelbase model of the 5-Series. It follows all the design cues of the car where it is based.
The 5-Series Li’s wheelbase is five inches longer than its standard version though. The extra space gives its rear passengers more legroom.
The target market of the series are the wealthy people who prefer to be chauffeured to their destinations. Thus, the extra room in its rear seats.
The long wheelbase car follows the interior elements of the 5-Series. It is adorned with Nappa leather and dark wood trims on the side panels.
However, its rear seats feature added soundproofing, electronically adjustable seats, two 10.5-inch touchscreens and Sky Lounge Panorama glass roof. In between the rear passenger seats of the luxury vehicle is another touchscreen display integrated with the center armrest.
The powertrains of the BMW 5-Series Li follows that of its standard version. Buyers of the long wheelbase models can choose among the two gasoline-fed 2.0-liter turbo inline-four engines and 3.0-liter turbo inline-6 engine versions of the luxury vehicle. The respective outputs of the units are 224 hp, 252 hp and 340 hp.
Sources in China claimed that there is also a BMW 5-Series Li M Sports. But do not get your hopes up too much on that one because it only offers a new set of bumpers and wheels.
Unfortunately for most fans of BMW, the 5-Series Li will only be available in the Chinese market. As of writing this article, there is no official confirmation yet about the market release of the long wheelbase car.
The smallest sedan in the BMW lineup, called the 1-Series, has been unveiled during the 2016 Guangzhou Auto Show. The compact sedan was first shown in July.
Here are three things to know about this new sedan from the German auto brand:
1. BMW 1-Series will only be available in China.
During the show, BMW also confirmed that the 1-Series will only be available in China, where it is assembled by the joint partnership between BMW and Briliance, the Chinese automaker. This will go against the Acura ILX, Audi A3 and Mercedes-Benz CLA.
This sedan is based on the UKL platform, the BMW Group’s front-wheel-drive that is used on the X1 and the 2-Series Active Tourer and Gran Tourer models. The latest models from Mini are also using the same platform.
2. BMW 1-Series has three powertrains.
During the launch of the BMW 1-Series, the German group also introduced three powertrains for the newest sedan. The base is the turbocharged 1.5-liter inline-3 in a 118i that produces 136 horsepower. Above this sits the turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-4 in a 120i that can cough up 192 horsepower. At the top of this range is the turbocharged 2.0-liter option in a 125i that churns out 231 horsepower.
The standard transmission is a 6-speed manual while an 8-speed automatic is also available.
3. BMW 1-Series has a typical BMW interior.
Inside the 1-Series, you’ll find everything you could ever want in a BMW sedan. The controls are facing the driver and the dashboard has a layered design that stars an 8.8-inch screen for the infotainment system.
To control the system, the driver will have access to a rotary dial in the center console. Upward, there’s a panoramic sunroof. At the back, the rear seats can be folded to expand the cabin.
Other features include LED headlights, run-flat tires, and collision, lane departure and pedestrian warning systems.
The BMW 1-Series will be available to the Chinese market in the first half of 2017.
Alibaba just started as an e-commerce business, but expanded to other areas which included launching its own electronic payment system, as well as the “world’s first smartcar.”
Essentially, the Alibaba smartcar features an integrated operating system that identifies the vehicle and allows it to pay for gas, parking and toll fees. It can even recommend drive settings and destinations for each occupant.
The smartcar was introduced by Alibaba last Wednesday. According to a source, will be available in China starting this August with a starting price of RMB148,800 or about $22,300 in current exchange rates.
Based on the Roewe RX5 compact SUV, Alibaba’s smartcar was built by state-owned Chinese automaker SAIC. It is running on Alibaba’s operating system, YunOS. Alibaba Chairman Jack Ma said his company aims to inject “human wisdom” to machines in the coming decades.
Smartphones have become smarter, thanks to operating systems, he added. The same can be done for the smartcars. YunOS can make them an indispensable part of human life in the years to come.
The operating system will allow the smartcar to automatically pay for toll charges, parking and fuel refills. The car itself can also access booking, navigation and entertainment via online. The YunOS will be able to recognize individuals through unique IDs, allowing it to recommend music, air temperature and nearby restaurants based on the occupant’s preference and past trips.
YunOS is open to third-party developers, so expect more apps to be compatible with the smartcar in the coming months. That means more features, functionality, etc.
Alibaba said it hopes the launching of the smartcar will start the development of connected transportation and infrastructure, where everything can be connected through the Internet of Things, or IoT, a concept where everyday objects are connected to a network that allow them to send and receive data.
Google and Apple are currently developing their own versions of a smartcar.
NextEV is getting ready to reveal its first car “somewhere in Europe” before the year ends. The car is reportedly going to be fully-battery-powered, a testament to the Chinese-backed electric vehicle startup company headed by former Ford President for Europe Martin Leach.
The car will rival both the McLaren P1 and Ferrari’s LaFerrari in terms of performance and price. Reports indicated that the hypercar has been developed at the company’s Munich design center for the past two years. Production, however, will start at the new UK branch.
NextEV was a product of an agreement between Chinese Internet billionaire William Li and Leach at the 2014 Paris Motor Show. Leach was Ford’s head of product development before becoming its president for Europe operations. Since that agreement, the startup hired Cisco System’s former chief technology officer, Padmasree Warrior, to run its US operations.
Warrior is heading the software development for the hypercar.
NextEV is gaining ground in concept competitions, too. It won the inaugural Formula E championship for the all-electric, single-seat race cars.
The problem, however, is that NextEV’s market seems to be targeted at the billionaire circle. This would mean ordinary mortals won’t even have the chance to get their hands on the supercar.
But Leach maintained the company’s vision is actually more than just targeting billionaires. It aims to widen its supercar market in the future.
He maintained that the production of the brand’s first hypercar is aimed at attracting and gaining attention, and to show what the company can do technology-wise. Over time, NextEV is expected to showcase more than just supercars.
The first NextEV supercar has been compared to the Tesla model, but Leach said his creation would definitely offer more convenience and accessibility.
We won’t be seeing this hypercar in US soil anytime soon, however. NextEV’s main market would be China, which is under immense pressure to cut down car emissions.
We might have dreamed about it until the day came. It was quite hard to imagine that the luxury SUVs have finally arrived. The three-pointed star marque has once again hinted that it might join the ultra elite group of carmakers with a Mercedes-Maybach SUV.
Merc is the latest in the long line of luxury carmakers that bit into the trend. Bentley has the Bentayga. Rolls Royce has the Project Cullinan. Lamborghini has the Urus by 2018. Aston Martin has a plan based on the DBX concept.
However, a Merc official said that although Mercedes is willing and even able to build a luxury SUV, it cannot be done on the current platform. So, if ever Merc does build a luxury SUV, it would be on the next generation platform.
This makes sense, of course, since Maybach’s release, which was based on a completely different portfolio than the previous version, has been widely successful in places like China.
In China, the automaker sold more of the new long-wheelbase Mercedes-Maybach S-Class in a month than it was able to do so during the old Maybach’s “best year.” This renaissance was the push Merc needed in order to plan ahead again.
An SUV based on this current lineup is a wise decision, especially because the SUV has been slowly catering to Merc drivers as well. Since bringing back the M-Class in 1997, the SUV segment has been successful.
Ola Källenius, a Merc board member, said there is an unbroken trend in SUV because people love the high seats, sporty image and all-around usefulness for outdoor adventures. He believes the SUV trend will continue in years to come.
In Mercedes, 30 to 40 percent of the portfolio are SUVs, which Källenius said all carry the Mercedes imaging, meaning there’s no actual conflict in creating a Maybach SUV.