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Preview of new passenger vehicle models to be launched in 2006

Launching new models has been one of the increasingly used tools by passenger vehicle manufacturers to stimulate market demand. The rate of annual new model launches has increased significantly in recent years.


In 2005, according to incomplete statistics, more than 80 new or upgraded passenger vehicle models were launched. That equates to about one new model every four days.


The year culminated with the arrival of two significant and much-anticipated new models, the Toyota Prius and Mercedes-Benz E-Class. The Prius is the first hybrid car made by Toyota outside of Japan to go on sale in China. The Mercedes-Benz E-Class joins Audi A4 and A6 and BMW 3- and 5-Series in the full line of luxury cars made in China.


The year 2006 will be no different. More than 30 new passenger vehicle models are expected to hit the market soon and nearly 100 upgraded models will be launched. Several global best selling models, such as the Peugeot 206, Honda Civic and Toyota Camry, will be available to Chinese consumers. A host of independently developed models such as the Splendor, Chery A520, Lifan 520 and Xiali C1 will also arrive in the market. The following is a preview of new models to be launched in the Year of the Dog.


 


Economy segment (1.6L)


Model: Peugeot 206 hatchback


Make: Dongfeng-Peugeot-Citroën


Launch date: January 19, 2006


Engine: 1.6L


Max power: 78 kW


Max torque 142 Nm


Transmission: 4-speed Tiptronic


Dimension: 3,873 x 1,673 x 1,435 mm


Price range: ¥86,800 ($10,850) to ¥108,800 ($13,600)


Dongfeng-Peugeot-Citroën released the Peugeot 206 on January 6 in Beijing and officially launched the model on January 19. 


 


Model: Honda City


Make: Guangzhou-Honda


Launch date: first half 2006


Engine: 1.3L/1.5L


Transmission: AT/MT


Price range: ¥90,000 ($11,250) to ¥110,000 ($13,750)


The Honda City will be the follow-up model of the Fit economy hatchback/sedan currently produced by Guangzhou-Honda. It will have a longer exterior length than that of the Fit.


 


Model: Hyundai Accent


Make: Beijing-Hyundai


Launch date: March 2006


Engine: 1.6L DOHC CVVT/1.4L


Max power: 110 hp (1.6L)


Transmission: MT/AT


Price range: ¥80,000 ($10,000) to ¥100,000 ($12,500)


Beijing-Hyundai will launch its first entry-level compact model, the Accent in March, which debuted at Auto Guangzhou 2005 last November. A 1.4L variant will be released at a later date.


 


Model: Chevrolet Lova


Make: Shanghai-GM


Launch date: February 2006


Engine: 1.4L Twin-TEC DOHC


Max power: 69 kW


Max torque: 128 Nm


Transmission: MT/AT


Dimension: 4,310 x 1,710 x 1,500 mm


Price range: ¥80,000 ($10,000) to ¥100,000 ($12,500)


The model debuted at Auto Guangzhou 2005 last November and will be launched worldwide this year. It is redesigned and optimized by Giugiaro and a team of engineers at the Pan Asia Pacific Technical Automotive Center (PATAC), a GM joint venture in Shanghai.


 


Model: Lifan 520


Make: Lifan Industry Group


Launch date: January 19, 2006


Engine: 1.6L Tritec


Max power: 85 kW


Max torque: 149 Nm


Tranmission: MT


Dimension: 4,370 x 1,700 x 1,473 mm


Price: ¥77,777 ($9,722)


The Lifan 520, the first car model made by leading private motorcycle producer, Lifan Industry Group, was launched on January 19. Lifan received government approval to produce the model on December 16, 2005 after one year of waiting. Lifan owns more than 70 national patents on the design of the model.


 


Model: Xiali C1


Make: Tianjin-FAW-Xiali


Launch date: first half 2006


Engine: 1.4L


Dimension: 3,810 x 1,670 x 1,480 mm


Price range: ¥80,000 ($10,000) to ¥100,000 ($12,500)


The C1 hatchback first appeared at Auto Shanghai 2005 last April. It is the first independently developed model by Tianjin-FAW-Xiali after Tianjin and FAW merged in 2002. The model may have a new name when it is officially launched.


 


Model: LG-1


Make: Geely


Launch date: first half 2006


Engine: 1.6L


Price range: ¥80,000 ($10,000) to ¥100,000 ($12,500)


The LG-1 will be a 1.6L sedan model positioned between the Freedom Ship and FC-1. The model may also come in an SUV variant. It is expected to be launched in the first half of 2006 with an output target of 60,000 units in the first year.


 


Model: CV6/CV7


Make: Chang’an


Launch date: first half/second half 2006


Engine: 1.3 (CV6)/1.6L (CV7)


Price range: <¥100,000 ($12,500)


The CV6 and CV7 will be the first two independently developed economy car models launched by Chang’an. The engines, chassis and body design are conducted independently by the Chang’an Automobile Institute.


 


Model: Citroën T21


Make: Dongfeng-Peugeot-Citroën


Launch date: second half 2006


Engine: <1.6L


Price range: <¥100,000 ($12,500)


The T21 will be similar in size as that of the recently launched Peugeot 206 and may share the same production line. 


 


Model: Suzuki YY5


Make: Chang’an-Suzuki


Launch date: March 2006


Price range: ¥100,000 ($12,500) to ¥150,000 ($18,750)


Chang’an president Yin Jiaxu confirmed the launch of a mid-level car codenamed YY5 at the company’s 2006 Business Forum. This would be a new Suzuki model launched worldwide at about the same time.


 


Model: Focus Hatchback


Make: Chang’an Ford


Launch date: second half 2006


Price range: ¥100,000 ($12,500) to ¥150,000 ($18,750)


The hatchback model would be a match with its sedan counterpart, which was launched last September.


 


Model: Mazda 3


Make: Chang’an Ford


Launch date: March 2006


Engine: 1.6L


Max power: 105 hp


Dimension: 4,405 x 1,745 x 1,465 mm


Price range: ¥120,000 ($15,000) to ¥160,000 ($20,000)


The Mazda 3 sedan will be one of the three new models and the first Mazda model to be launched by Chang’an-Ford this year. It is expected to be distributed through the FAW-Mazda Motor Sales network.


 


Model: Polo GP


Make: Shanghai-Volkswagen


Launch date: first half 2006


Engine: 1.4L


Max power: 55 kW


Max torque: 126 Nm  Transmission: MT


Dimension: 3,916 x 1,650 x 1,465 mm


Price range: ¥100,000 ($12,500) to ¥150,000 ($18,750)


The Polo GP, which will adopt an exclusive Chinese name similar to the Passat Lingyu, will incorporate design changes made by German and Chinese engineers and designers at Shanghai-VW to better suit conditions in China. Production of the existing Polo is expected to end.


 


Model: Fiat 311


Make: Nanjing-Fiat


Launch date: second half 2006


Engine: 1.7L


Price Range: ¥100,000 ($12,500) to ¥150,000 ($18,750)


The 311 is defined as a mid-level sedan based on the current Siena but longer in size. 


 


Mid-level segment (1.7L-2.0L)


Model: Splendor


Make: Brilliance Jinbei


Launch date: March 2006


Engine: 1.8L/1.8T


Transmission: MT/AT


Dimension: 4,600 mm (length)


Price range: ¥100,000 ($12,500) to ¥150,000 ($18,750)


The much awaited Splendor, previously codenamed M2, will be launched next month, nearly one year after it first appeared at Auto Shanghai 2005 last April. It will be available in 1.8T, 1.8L and 1.6L variants. The engines are jointly developed by Brilliance Jinbei and FEV of Germany.


 


Model: A520


Make: Chery Automobile


Launch: January 10, 2006


Engine: 2.0L ACTECO


Transmission: MT/AT


Dimension: 4,552 x 1,750 x 1,483 mm


Price: ¥88,888 ($11,111)


Chery Automobile officially launched the A520, its newest mid-level car model, on January 10 in Beijing. This is the first of Chery’s new A-series model platform.  The A516 is expected to follow in a few months.


 


Model: FC-1


Make: Geely


Launch date: first half 2006


Engine: 1.8L all-aluminum DOHC 16V CVVT


Max power: 98 hp


Dimension: 4,602 x 1,725 x 1,480 mm


Price range: ¥100,000 ($12,500) to ¥120,000 ($15,000)


The FC-1 will be Geely’s first mid-level model powered by a 1.8L all-aluminum engine developed by Geely itself. It has an estimated fuel consumption rate of only 6.5 liters per 100 kilometers. Sales target for 2006 is 10,000 units.


 


Model: Honda Civic


Make: Dongfeng-Honda


Launch date: June 2006


Engine: 1.8L i-VTEC


Max Power: 103 kW


Max Torque: 174 Nm


Transmission: MT/AT


Dimension: 4,488 x 1,752 x 1,435 mm


Price Range: ¥140,000 ($17,500) to ¥180,000 ($22,500)


The Civic assembled in China will be the 8th generation launched in global markets last year. Honda defines the Civic as a “2.0L model with fuel consumption of a 1.5L model.”


 


Model: Golf GP


Make: FAW-Volkswagen


Launch date: second half 2006


Engine: 1.8L/2.0L


Transmission: MT/AT


Dimension: 4,204 x 1,759 x 1,483 mm


Price range: ¥120,000 ($13,300) to ¥180,000 ($22,500)


The exterior dimensions of the new generation of the Golf to be produced by Volkswagen are longer, wider and higher by 57, 24, and 39 mm respectively compared with those of the existing model. The wheelbase length is 2,578 mm, longer by 67 mm.


 


Model: Peugeot 307 hatchback


Make: Dongfeng-Peugeot-Citroën


Launch date: March 2006


Engine: 1.6L/2.0L


Transmission: MT/AT


Price range: ¥120,000 ($13,300) to ¥190,000 ($22,500)


The original Peugeot 307 hatchback is expected to hit the market in March. The sedan version, exclusively redesigned for Chinese consumers who prefer a “three-compartment” car, was launched by Dongfeng-Peugeot-Citroën in July 2004.


 


Model: 2006 Honda Accord


Make: Guangzhou-Honda


Launch date: January 7, 2006


Engine: 2.0L/2.4L/3.0L


Max power: 110 kW/125 kW/177 kW


Max torque: 186 Nm/220 Nm/288 Nm


Transmission: MT/AT


Dimension: 4,854 x 1,821 x 1,463 mm


Price range: ¥199,800 ($24,975) to ¥299,800 ($37,475)


Guangzhou-Honda officially launched the 2006 Accord to the market on January 7. The mainstream variant of the model will be powered by a new 2.4L L4 I-VTEC engine. The 2006 Accord has updated LED headlights and taillights, as well as new exterior styling and interior features.


 


Mid- to luxury segment


(2.0L-3.0L)


Model: Toyota Camry (Kaimeirui in Chinese)


Make: Guangzhou-Toyota


Launch date: June 2006


Engine: 2.4L


Transmission: AT


Price range: ¥200,000 ($25,000) to ¥250,000 ($31,250)


The Toyota Camry, one of the world’s top selling car models and a leading imported model in China, will be available to Chinese consumer by summer time as a domestic-made model. It will be the 5th generation of the Camry with a new Chinese name Kaimeirui. It will be distributed through an exclusive Guangzhou-Toyota dealership network.


 


Model: Sagitar


Make: FAW-Volkswagen


Launch date: first quarter 2006


Engine: 2.0L/1.8T


Transmission: MT/AT


Dimension: 4,554 x 1,760 x 1,461 mm


Price range: ¥180,000 ($22,500) to ¥240,000 ($30,000)


Inside sources from VW China has confirmed to CBU/CAR the launch of the Sagitar by FAW-Volkswagen in the first quarter of 2006. The model is known as the Jetta A5 marketed in other countries such as the U.S.


It is widely seen as the newest generation of the Bora currently being produced by the company, although the production of Bora will not be immediately stopped.


 


Model: Buick LaCrosse/Lucerne


Make: Shanghai-GM


Launch date: May 2006


Engine: 3.0L


Transmission: AT


Price range: ¥200,000 ($25,000) to ¥350,000($43,750)


Like that of the Lova, the design of the locally assembled LaCrosse will be altered to suit Chinese consumer tastes and road conditions. The model will also adopt a new Chinese name.


 


Model: Bluebird Silphy


Make: Dongfeng-Nissan PV


Launch date: August 2006


Engine: 2.0L/2.3L


Transmission: AT


Dimension: 4,610 mm (length) and 1,510 mm (height)


Price range: ¥170,000 ($21,250) to ¥230,000 ($28,750)


Codenamed “L11K,” the Bluebird Silphy will be one of the six new models to be launched by Dongfeng-Nissan before 2007.


 


Model: Passat B6


Make: FAW-Volkswagen


Launch date: third quarter 2006


Engine: 2.0L/2.0T/2.4L


Transmission: MT/AT


Price range: ¥250,000 ($31,250) to ¥350,000 ($43,750)


FAW-Volkswagen has been authorized to produce the newest generation of the Passat, the Passat B6, which debuted at the Geneva Motor Show last February.  Most likely it will adopt a new name to differentiate it from the Passat Lingyu that was launched last November by Shanghai-Volkswagen.


 


Model: Mitsubishi Galant


Make: Southeast (Fujian) Automobile


Launch date: first half 2006


Engine: 2.4L


Price Range: ¥180,000 ($22,500) to ¥240,000 ($30,000)


The Galant sedan will most likely become Southeast’s first model to bear the Mitsubishi logo. It is also the company’s second car model after the Lioncel and one of the three new Mitsubishi models to be launched in 2006. Mitsubishi is in the process of acquiring a direct stake in Southeast.


 


Model: Citroën B53


Make: Dongfeng Peugeot-Citroën


Launch date: mid 2006


Engine: 2.0L


Dimension: 4,800 mm (length)


Price range: ¥150,000 ($18,750) to ¥200,000 ($25,000)


The internally named B53 is a brand new mid- to luxury-level sedan developed by Citroën to be launched simultaneously worldwide. China is expected to be the first country for its worldwide launch.


It is expected to hit the market in mid 2006.


 


Model: CV11 (MPV)


Make: Chang’an


Launch date: second half 2006


Engine: 2.0L


Price range: ¥100,000 ($12,500) to ¥150,000 ($18,750)


The CV11 will be a sister model of the Landwind Fashion (also known as CV9). 


 


Luxury segment (>3.0L)


Model: Red Flag HQ3


Make: FAW Car


Launch date: July 2006


Engine: 4.0L


Price Range: ¥250,000 ($31,250)


to ¥350,000 ($43,750)


The HQ3 debuted at Auto Shanghai 2005 last April. It was developed based on the Toyota Crown Magesta. The HQ3 is expected to compete with the Audi A6L and BMW 5-Series.


 


Model: Chrysler 300C


Make: Beijing


Benz-DaimlerChrysler


Launch date:


fourth quarter 2006


Engine: 2.7L V6/5.7 V8 HEMI


Max power: 142 kW/250 kW


Max torque: 257 Nm/525 Nm


Transmission: AT


Dimension: 5,015 x 1,880 x 1,475 mm


Price range: ¥300,000 ($37,500) to ¥480,000 ($60,000)


The 300C will be one of the two Chrysler models to be put into production in China this year and the first Chrysler model assembled by Beijing Benz-DaimlerChrysler.


 


Mercedes-Benz C-Class


Make: Beijing Benz-DaimlerChrysler


Launch date: fourth quarter 2006


Engine: 2.4L


Dimension: 4,526 x 1,728 x 1,427 mm


Price range: ¥400,000 ($50,000) to ¥500,000 ($62,500)


The C-Class, Mercedes-Benz’s lowest level sedan, is expected to be launched in November 2006. 


 


Model: Volvo S40


Make: Chang’an-Ford


Launch date: second half 2006


Price range: ¥300,000 ($37,500) to ¥40,000 ($50,000)


Chang’an-Ford will produce the Volvo S40 at its Chongqing plant later this year. The model currently sells in China as an import.


 


MPV and SUV


Model: Landwind Fashion (MPV)


Make: Jingling Holding Ltd.


Engine: 2.0L


Dimension: 4,100 mm (length)


Launch date: first quarter 2006


Price range: ¥100,000 ($12,500) to ¥150,000 ($18,750)


The Landwind Fashion officially rolled off the assembly line on December 30, 2005. The independently developed 7-seat model has 133 technology patents, combining efforts from both Chang’an and Jiangling. It will be produced at Jiangling Holding Ltd., a Chang’an subsidiary that currently produces the Landwind SUVs.


 


Model: B14 Crossover (MPV)


Make: Chery Automobile


Launch date: second half 2006


Engine: 2.4L Mitsubishi 4G64


Max power: 99 kW


Max torque: 201 Nm


Transmission: MT/AT


Dimension: 4,662 x 1,820 x 1,590 mm


Price range: ¥110,000-¥160,000


The B14, recently named the V3, will be Chery’s first MPV model and China’s first MPV model with complete independent intellectual property rights. It is also one of five models that will hit the U.S. market in 2007 based on Chery’s cooperation plan with Visionary Vehicles of the U.S.


 


Model: Chrysler Grand Voyager (MPV)


Make: Southeast


Launch date: second half 2006


Price range: ¥250,000 ($31,250) to ¥300,000 ($37,500)


The imported Grand Voyager enjoys good sales in China as an import.


 


Model: Hyundai Santa Fe


Make: Huatai


Launch date: mid 2006


Engine: 2.0L/2.7L


Transmission: MT/AT


Price range: ¥180,000 ($22,500) to ¥200,000 ($25,000)


Huatai is expected to launch the newest generation of the Santa Fe based on a technical agreement signed last December with Hyundai. The existing generation of the Santa Fe as an import has sold 40,000 units.


 


Model: Suzuki Escudo


Make: Chang’an-Suzuki


Launch date: first quarter 2006


Engine: 2.0L/2.7L


Max power: 107 kW/135 kW


Max torque: 193 Nm/250 Nm


Transmission: MT/AT


Price range: ¥140,000 ($17,500) to ¥180,000 ($22,500)


The Suzuki Escudo recently showcased at the Tokyo Motor Show 2005 may well be the “global strategic vehicle” model Chang’an-Suzuki announced that it would launch in China in 2006.


 



Model: Mazda Tribute


Make: FAW-Haima (Hainan-Mazda)


Launch date: first half 2006


Price range: ¥150,000 ($18,750) to ¥200,000 ($25,000)


The Mazda Tribute will be Mazda’s first SUV model produced in China.

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