Review Category : Spy Shots

Next Generation Octavia Heading to China Under ‘Ou Ya’ Name, To Gain LWB

Although Europe is already on the receiving end of the latest Octavia China will have to wait until early next year for the new Octavia according to news reports. The new Octavia, made by Shanghai-VW, will also known as the Ou Ya in the Chinese market and will probably be sold alongside the old Octavia which is known as the ‘Ming Rui‘,…

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Great Wall’s Haval H9 Spotted Out – Potential Land Crusier Material?

The Haval range of vehicles from Great Wall has been exploding in fame, they first found fame with the body on frame based Great Wall Hover which morphed into the Haval H3 when the Hover range expanded considerably thanks to strong sales, but Great Wall went to passenger car platforms for its smaller city SUV’s leaving them without a full size Body…

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Chinese Fathers Rejoice: Ford Mondeo Wagon Sighted in Chinese Patent Office

Ford’s Chinese sales are on fire right now, the Mondeo itself garnered just under 10,000 sales in September in its first month on sale and could well see sales of 15,000 at its peak per month once more cars get out onto the road. One thing: The Mondeo is a sedan only in China with no hatchback offering as of yet consumers are forced into the Kuga SUV,…

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Lifan X50 Shows Us That Lifan Can Design Cars

Lifan’s car range to date has been a little bit underwhelming, with designs that fail to resonate but keen pricing Lifan has become a popular brand in overseas developing markets but has remained a minnow swimming  with sharks in its own domestic market. The X60 SUV was one of the best looking vehicles to date from Lifan but it will probably be outshone…

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2014/15 Chevrolet Cruze Road Testing

It would be an understatement to say that the Cruze has been a big hit for Chevrolet China and GM, the compact sedan has driven sales for the Chevrolet brand considerably with a strong showing month after month, tied only with Chevrolet’s Sail sedan for total sales volume.

The Cruze however is no spring chicken, it has been on the market for a while…

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Stretched Nissan Teana/Altima Gives Nissan a Touch of Class

Dongfeng Nissan are jumping on the stretched bandwagon with the introduction of a stretched wheelbase Teana specifically for the Chinese market. The Teana itself was launched only several months ago but Nissan are planning to follow up the car with this new stretched model that measures in at 5003mm long, putting it in the same class as the Audi A6L…

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Citroen’s DS4 Sedan Spotted Road Testing

Smart money seems to be mad about the Chinese luxury auto segment right now, which is why several automakers are rushing to try and break the monopoly that the German Three have on the Chinese market, Volvo, Infiniti and of course Citroen’s DS range are plowing their way into the market. Citroen have so far set up a joint venture with Chang’an Auto…

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Geely’s KC Concept Continues To Merge Into Production Vehicle

Development on Geely’s flagship KC  vehicle is well underway with the car being spotted several times over the course of the past two weeks on China Car Times. The new sedan is gaining flavor with its four coupe styling which will eventually be powered by a 2.0T engine and also a 2.4L naturally aspirated engine, think of this as Geely’s Passat CC,…

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Audi A3 Saloon Spotted Prior to Chinese Production

A few weeks ago I saw an Audi A4 All Roader, a European import, parked alongside the Chinese made and stretched Audi A4L, it was remarkable to see how the A4 had grown in China compared to the Euro version, then a little while later I saw the last generation B5 model which wasn’t stretched for China and looked like a tiddly compact. This is where the…

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Besturn’s B90 Continues To Update

The Besturn brand is performing, kind of, in the Chinese market, August sales for the entire brand reached just over 6100 vehicles. VW on the other hand reached over 187,000. During August the B90 sold 313 units, raising yearly sales from Jan to August to just over 6540 units (of which over 5000 belonged to the new X80 SUV), hardly figures to get excited…

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Geely’s Flagship EC9 Spotted Again

When Geely aired the KC concept at the Shanghai Auto Show this year waves were sent out, Geely had undergone a transformation in 2008 when the company decided to shed its low cost car stereotypes and started making vehicles that were on par with international rivals, the EC7 and then later EC8 were born. The EC7 sedan and hatch became highly popular…

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Chery’s Riich Range Not Quite Yet Dead

Chery terminated the Riich range of cars in which it sunk several hundred million RMB’s worth of funds into after the brand failed to perform and left the core Chery range without any new metal for nearly two years. Chery decided to create the Arrizo range as a means to show the world that Chery was still in the car making business and serious about…

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Chang-an’s A301 Is One Of The Best Chinese Cars We’ve Seen To Date

What is happening at Chang’an Auto? It seems to be one of the few Chinese auto companies that seems to be producing auto designs that are capable of making car designs that will fit with Western and Eastern consumer tastes. Have a look over the new, as of yet unnamed, A301 hatchback below.

Sure it has a hint of an enlargened Chevrolet Spark about…

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Guangzhou Fiat’s Viaggio Hatchback Sighted in Plain Sight

The Viaggio has not been a major success for GAC Fiat as of yet, but the company is still young at just three years old and has a small dealership network – just 150 at the current count but aiming for 200 at the years end, furthermore Fiat’s line up is made up of 3 products and only one of which is made in China which makes the Journey and Fiat 500…

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2014 Regal Buick GS Spied Prior to Launch

The Chinese version of the Buick Regal GS offered so much prior to launch where it was thought that it would be packing something more akin to the European versions where VXR models are given 325bhp (242 kW) from a 3.0L turbo engine and ride on 20inch alloys. The Chinese version used the same 2.0T petrol engine as the regular 2.0T Regal which was at…

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Buick Regal Gains Nip and Tuck

The face lifted Buick Regal has been aired in the USA but hasn’t yet made it to China, an unusual turn of events considering that China usually receives Buick products first before the North American market.

For 2014 no considerable updates have been made, like the Lacrosse the Regal has gained an enlarged grill which gives the Buick nose a more…

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MG5 Turbo Undergoing Mild Transformation

The MG5 was expected to be on the market in early 2013, but here we are towards the end of 2013 without the turbo and MG5 sales sagging. The MG5 is a disappointing drive, the heavy car is saddled with a weak engine and body roll that would be normally associated with an Escalade rather than a hatchback vehicle, the Turbo version is expected to change…

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Stretched Teana Heading to the Chinese Market

Dongfeng-Nissan are prepping to launch a stretched wheelbase Teana to join the race for ‘L’ cars in the Chinese market. The new Teana was launched just several months ago, the Teana has been in the Chinese market for three generations of car but the latest generation has become a world car for Nissan where it is known as the Altima in the North…

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Chinese Made Skoda Yeti Gains Stretched Wheelbase

The Skoda Yeti has just been introduced into China as an imported model but the compact SUV is expected to be rolling down Shanghai-Volkswagen production lines in the coming weeks where it will gain an extra 60mm in its wheelbase to account for Chinese consumer love for extended wheelbase vehicles.

The Shanghai made Yeti will measure in at 4275mm,…

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Geely Emgrand EC9 Breaks Cover – Geely’s New Flagship Car

Geely is apparently working on a new flagship car that is set to be named the EC9 according to Chinese automotive sources, the new car is set to be named the EC9 which will sit above the current EC8 which is currently on par with the 8th generation Honda Accord in terms of size. The EC9 is likely based on the KC concept car that was aired at the Shanghai…

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Dongfeng’s Own Cadillac Takes Shape in China

Dongfeng is a company with many arms and many hands, sometimes it seems as if the head doesn’t quite know what the arms and hands doing, hence the introduction of some strange looking cars from Dongfeng’s smaller subsidiaries. The below V20 comes at a time when more manufacturers are placing a greater emphasis on the design of their cars, but Dongfeng…

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Unknown Lifan Hatchback Spotted Ahead of Launch

Lifan’s efforts at car design are improving at a rapid rate that is both interesting and helping them stay ahead in the export race, this new hatchback seems to have a hint of Kia at the rear but elsewhere its all Lifan’s own design.

The new car has yet to be named but we suspect it will be the new Lifan 530 hatch, we will know for sure at this…

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BMW-Brilliance’s First Car Looks a Yema Product

Plucky Sichuan based auto upstart, Sichuan Yema, which is trying to became the 2nd tier solution to Tesla is often mocked for its weird looking products that are built on the back of the 1980′s Austin Maestro that has changed more hands than a Beijing taxi cabs steering wheel.

Chinese auto website, auto.163.com, have rendered the forthcoming BMW-Brilliance…

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Is Lifan’s New SUV Their Best Looking Vehicle So Far?

Lifan is famed for its low cost cars and its export prowess, it is not famed for its eye catching designs but that might change with the introduction of this new SUV compact. Lifan’s current SUV, the X60, will remain the biggest SUV offering from Lifan with this new as of yet unnamed trucklet sitting below it.

Chinese media reports indicate that…

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Luxgen’s New L5 SUV Road Testing

Luxgen entered the Chinese market with their 7 SUV, followed by the Master CEO MPV and the regular 7 seat MPV,  and then followed it up with the Luxgen 5 sedan. Consumer reaction to the 7 SUV was fairly good but we have to wait and see if consumers take to the sedan. The forthcoming 5 will see the proportions of the 7 shrunk down to a more compact…

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Peugeot 2008 Spotted in China

Although PSA were early arrivals in the Chinese market they have been slow to react to the needs and requirements of Chinese consumers, in recent years they have speed up the introduction of new models which have turned around the companies activities in the Chinese market for the better but work is still required, hence the introduction of the new…

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Jiangsu Ou Lu Puts VW Tiguan Back Through the Patent Office

Once upon a time small Chinese car manufacturers would have to wait until a certain model of car was on the market somewhere in the world before they would buy one immediately and ship it back to China with a customs label of ‘Research’ before they would pull it to pieces for a period of reflection before sending it down their own production lines for…

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Suzuki’s SX4 S-Cross Spied Naked

The Suzuki SX4 S-Cross was unveiled at the 2013 Shanghai Auto Show as a concept but it seems that concept was closer to reality than what most people actually thought. The inflated SX4 Crossover is intended to compete against the likes of the Nissan Qashqai and Hyundai ix35 crossover models but it seems the S-Cross is somewhat smaller and lacking in…

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Haima’s Compact SUV Sighted Testing

Haima’s S7 SUV has become a major seller for the island based car marker, hence their decision to introduce a smaller SUV named the S5 which will have a more compact size and a lower buy in price compared to its larger Mazda Territory based brother. The new S5 will be powered by an all new 1.5T engine that will be packing 210Nm of torque – enough for…

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7th Gen Volkswagen Golf Spied in Beijing

The 7th Volkswagen Golf has become one of the most anticipated cars in the Chinese market, the Golf first came to China as the fourth generation at the FAW-VW but skipped a generation and then came back to China as the sixth generation. The 6th generation has been a highly popular model for Volkswagen China, the rapid introduction of the seventh generation…

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New Suzuki S-Cross SUV Road Testing in China

A new compact SUV from Suzuki was spotted road testing in China over the weekend, the new model is thought to be the Suzuki S-Cross that was sighted at the Shanghai Auto Show earlier this year.

The S-Cross is a larger vehicle comparative to the Nissan Qashqai in size and will be the first SUV put into production by Chang’an Suzuki, Suzuki’s Chinese…

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Former Nissan Versa/Tiida Gains Crossover Kit

Dongfeng-Nissan’s sub brand Venucia has been on the receivign end of several older Nissan products and will eventually house the Nissan Leaf within its range. Like all sub brands to date, with the exception of Baojun, the goal is to get the brand out there and then bring in the EV vehicles. The first vehicle to enter the Venucia range was the Tiida…

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Beijing Auto’s G-Wagon Inspired V-Wagon Looks The Business

Before we get into details, it seems that commentators on Chinese auto sites where these pictures first appeared have been overly critical of Beijing Auto for a lack of self development in the creative process that lead to the aforementioned B80V, if consumers don’t want a cloned car why are manufacturers so hell bent on making one? Who knows.

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Volkswagen’s Taigun Goes Through The Patent Office

Volkswagen’s rival to the Ford Ecosport and Buick’s Encore has arrived in the Chinese patent office indicating that a launch is not too far away. It hasn’t yet been revealed which Chinese partner to Volkswagen will receive the Taigun when it goes on the market in early 2014 but we suspect it will be First Automobile Works and produced in the new Foshan…

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Sichuan Yema’s Lamborghini Concept Leaks Out The Back Door

The Lamborghini Urus SUV was a much talked about concept when it first came to the Beijing Auto Show last year, so much so that plucky Sichuan based car company Yema wanted to bring the Urus to the people at a more affordable price than the expected 5 million RMB the new SUV was expected to command in China.

Previously at the 2012 Chengdu Auto Show,…

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BYD’s Pure EV Light Truck ‘T5′ Offers 400km Range – Spy Shots

BYD have been at the forefront of electrifying vehicles in the Chinese market for several years, first their E6 passenger car which they handed over to taxi fleets, and the K9 bus which seems to be have been welcomed all over the world and then comes the T5 electric light truck.

Information beyond spy pictures is limited at the moment but from what…

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Changan’s CS75 Full Size SUV Out Road Testing

Chang-an launched their latest CS35 SUV several months ago but that compact SUV is about to be dwarfed by the introduction of a larger CS75. This new SUV shares its platform with the new Raeton sedan which was also launched earlier this year.

Not much information is available on the new model, although we believe it is based on the CS95 concept that…

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Besturn B70 Redesigned and Nearly Ready

The Besturn B70 was the Besturn brands first model before the introduction of the B50, B90 and SUV models. The last generation was based on the first generation Mazda 6, whilst this new B70 is thought to be based upon the second generation Mazda 6 with 1.8L, 2.0L and 2.3L engines being offered along with 6 speed manual and automatic gearboxes.

This…

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Volkswagen Gran Lavida Cross Sneaks Out

The Gran Lavida has only just hit the market in China with deliveries happening as soon as the dealers begin to receive the products, but that doesn’t mean that Shanghai VW are sitting around twiddling their fingers. Volkswagen are prepping a crossover version that will feature a higher ride height and the soft crossover treatment, no word on AWD drivetrains…

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Foton Readying Tunland Based SUV for China and International Markets

Several months ago Foton launched their first full sized truck, the Foton Tunland (actually, it would be a midsize truck in the North American market, but Foton insist it is full sized in China) with Cummins diesel power under the hood and AWD or RWD options. At the time Foton mentioned they were planning to make an SUV version of the truck, we didn’t…

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Beijing Auto Takes Shine To Ford Ecosport In New SUV Design

Did you think China’s auto cloning days were behind us? Perhaps you – and us – were a little too optmistic in that front! With Beijing Auto putting a strong front on former Saab platforms, we thought the next round of vehicles would be as independent and unique as their current Sa-Bo/Senova range. I guess not. The future compact SUV from Beijing Auto,…

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Qoros Wheels Hatchback Through the Patent Office

Qoros are a brand to watch in the Chinese market, their recent airing at the Shanghai Auto Show saw them scoop a stand in the much coveted VAG Group hall where they faced off VW, Seat, Skoda and Audi, having a stand there gave the all important Chinese consumer a large dose of optimism and confidence in the fledgling brand.

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JMC’s New Mini SUV

JMC are planning a new compact SUV according to these pictures leaked to the Chinese media, the new SUV is called the N330 and will be powered by a 2.0T engine that is also shared with JMC’s foreign partner Ford. The N330 appears to be a compact SUV in a similar vein to the current Forda Kuga (Escape in North America), the front is overly sporty but…

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Stretched E-Class Road Testing in China

The latest W213 was unveiled at the Shanghai Auto Show earlier this year and now it is road testing ahead of a launch later this year, likely via the Guangzhou Auto Show. When compared to the all conquering Audi A6L and the ever improving BMW 5-Series the E-Class is playing catch up, however this latest model which drops the ‘dual headlights’ look is…

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First Model From BMW-Brilliance ‘Zhi Nuo’ Sub Brand Sighted

Last week AutoCar aired pictures of the first car from the BMW-Brilliance joint venture’s new sub brand: Zhi Nuo. Zhi Nuo is the JV’s plans to create a range of new energy vehicles for the Chinese market, the first of which will be based upon the current BMW X1 which is made in China. The first Zhi Nuo X1 was sighted just over a week ago, but now we…

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Ford Transit Connect Airs Via Patent Office Boasting Panel Rear Doors

The Ford Transit Connect didn’t come to China in its first generation, its larger Transit cousin did however and has become a big seller for the partnership between Ford and Jianglin which focuses on Ford’s commercial vehicle products. The Transit Connect has unofficially aired via the Chinese patent office where it seems to be showing both aspects…

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Facelift Buick Regal GS Is Packing 250bhp

The 2014 Buick Regal GS is nearly upon us, it has already been aired at the Shanghai Auto Show along with the refreshed Lacrosse, of course the GS is practically upon us.

GM kept its 270BHP motor behind the curtains for its own Cadillac models rather than giving the Chinese made GS the big boy it had to make do with the regular 2.0T with just 220bhp…

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GAC GA3 Sedan Looks Sweet and Compact

GAC’s big brand aspirations seem to going to plan, perhaps slower than expected but certainly on track. The state owned corp bought the last generation Alfa Romeo 166 platform which it quickly recycled and redeveloped it into a handsome midsize sedan and then an SUV with the SUV becoming a strong seller. Next up to obtain the Alfa DNA is this new GA3…

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MG5 Gaining FaceLift For 2013/14

The MG5 arrived in concept form in early 2011 and give us a taste of what a compact MG might look like, sadly the MG5 didn’t live quite up to MG’s sporting expectations thanks to a soft ride and a weak engine. The forthcoming MG5 with a 1.5T and a dual clutch will likely live up to all that is required from any car that carries the MG label. The turbo…

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BMW Prepping 316i With 1.6T Engine

BMW have thrown down the gauntlet to their luxury rivals with the launch of the X1 SUV and stretched and short wheelbase 3-Series, both models have contributed considerably to BMW’s rapid sales in the Chinese market over the past few months. BMW currently offers the 3-Series in a domestically made stretched version which is sold alongside a short wheelbase…

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Sichuan Yema Does it Again – Finds Inspiration From the Lamborghini Urus

Sichuan Yema, which means Mustang, are based in Chengdu city down in South West China. The company bought in Austin Rovers Maestro platform which they put into production fairly quickly two years ago, they then announced a quick round of soon to arrive concept vehicles which mimicked vehicles we had seen before from existing brands. Now the company…

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MG CS SUV To Receive 2.0T Engine

The MG CS SUV concept may have headlined at teh Shanghai Auto Show last week but this week we can share the cars specification with MG’s legions of fans. The first SUV to come from MG is to be powered by a 2.0T engine capable of producing 150kW of power and having 280Nm of torque on tap, taking it from zero to 100km/h in just 7.8 seconds, top speed…

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Last Generation Honda CRV Set to Return to China?

Are Honda planning to learn from other manufacturers to sell older models alongside new models to increase sales? We only need to look at the success of the Ford Focus twins to see what a combined model duo can do to boost sales, in March Ford shifted 38,000 Ford Focus models, a mixture of ‘Classic’ and New Focus models. The same sales trick happens…

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Is the New Jetta Heading to the Taxi Market?

The New VW Jetta has been out on Chinese roads for a few weeks now along with the New Santana which look virtually indistinguishable from each other and look fairly similar to the larger Bora and Lavida, the only real differences being the FAW-VW and SH-VW badging on the rear of the car. Autohome.com.cn are running with spy pictures of a ‘poverty specification’…

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Toyota’s New Yaris Gains Silver Handlebar Moustache in Shanghai

It was in China that I transformed from spotty faced youth to a handsome man (still debatable), the Toyota Yaris seems to be going through its own period of transition with a puberty that has brought it green skin and a silver handlebar mustache.

It’s not yet clear if Toyota were aiming for the mustachioed female segment when developing the new…

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JAC HeYue A20 has its interior revealed; more details surface

Early this month we reported JAC was bringing a new compact sedan (A0) to the Shanghai Auto Show; a car named JAC HeYue A20. Today, more details emerged along with new renderings and a picture of its interior.

The dimensions are set: 4250mm long, 1690mm wide, 1505mm tall and a 2490mm wheelbase. This places it to compete against the Chang’an YueXiang,…

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