BAICâ€™s first car, the E-Series hatchback which overly looks like a Mercedes B-Class will hit the market in March according to media reports. Media testing is already underway in Hainan with media being able to test drive the car around the island, initial reports seem to be overly in favor of the car. The second car from Beijing Auto will be the Beijing B40 SUV which you may remember looks somewhat similar to the Jeep Wrangler, the B40 hits the market in September 2012 and the C70G will hit the market at the same time, December 2012 will see the launch of the E-Series sedan.
The C70G has already gone through a test production phase at the end of 2011, although we will have to wait until towards the end of the year before we see it on the market, the Beijing Auto Show will likely be the big platform for the cars launch, especially as the show is in BAICâ€™s own back yard.
A BAIC insider was quoted by Auto Sohu as saying â€œWeâ€™ve kept the Saab 9-5 platform intact, but we have reengineered the body and design. Weâ€™ve spent a lot of effort in redeveloping the 9-5, its on par with 5-Star crash test levels in a head on collision and at least 4 stars in side impact tests.â€
Wind tunnel tests have indicated that BAICâ€™s redesign maybe paying off, wind drag coefficiency has been lowered from the 9-5â€™s original 0.30 to 0.28 which should have a minor increase on power and fuel efficiency. The interior has also been given a major make over and apparently has nothing in common with the original Saab 9-5 which was positively aged when the car was on the market in 2008. BAIC are eager to show that the cars they are making are 100% Chinese made, including the components. Some systems such as the electronic injection systems have been upgraded to new systems for 2012 as the newer ones