Excuse the terrible pun.
The Red Flag, or Hong Qi as it’s known in China, car company a part of First Automotive Works (FAW) has finally produced a new car. The original Hong Qi was based on an old Audi 100 design. You see FAW and Audi have had a relationship going back to 1986. FAW used Audi’s 100 design to make their ‘own’ cars for use by the Chinese government and rich Chinese folks. You can still see the old style Hong Qi come Audi 100 on the streets today, but sadly various city governments dropped the Hong Qi like an ex girlfriend in exchange for a newer, racier model from Europe (namely the Audi A6 and VW Passat) The old Hong Qi looked pretty crazy – it had a metal pole going up over the wheel arch, a top of the metal pole was a little red plastic flame that would light up, on the bonnet (thats the cars hood for you American devils) there was a plastic red flag but I’m unsure if that lit up too. Hell, the Chinese government loved it so much, FAW even made a pick up version of it! The Hong Qi didnt really change all that much throughout the Audi relationship, body colored bumpers here and there, and an engine change from Audi to Nissan and then back to Audi in the late 1990′s but nothing until now!
The new Hong Qi, the HQ3, looks absolutly amazing – styled from the Toyota Crown Majesta, but still looking unique enough. Although the HQ3 has come to the dinner party a bit too late, as most of the Chinese elite are busy driving around their A6′s and A8′s now I think in the next 5 years or so, the government will probably want to look for a domesticly produced car, and I think they will look at the HQ3! The HQ3 is by no means a toy – the basic engine is a 3.0L V6 and a larger 4.3 V6 engine , however, the price tag is by no means a toy price, a whopping $75,000USD. The HQ3 went on sale on November 16th, if anyones pockets are deep enough, if you wait a while and your pockets run deeper than $75k, you can get yourself a bullet proof version.