Best of Auto China: Hyundai, BMW, NIO, Volvo, Ford, Jaguar, Alfa Romeo, Maserati, Mercedes-Benz, MG & IFINITI

China is major car market and there were many announcements from automakers including Hyundai, BMW, NIO


Hyundai Motor unveiled a new strategic model for the Chinese market at the 2018 Beijing International Automotive Exhibition (Auto China 2018) today, as the company embraces the growing younger generation in the world’s largest automotive market.

Beijing Hyundai Motor Co., Hyundai’s Chinese venture, premiered the LAFESTA, which features powerful driving performance packaged in stylish design, as a landmark addition to the aggressively expanding Hyundai line-up in China.

The LAFESTA, which translates to ‘Festival’ in Italian, is a high-performance sporty sedan designed to meet the dynamic and passionate demands of a new mainstream generation from the 80s and 90s. When it arrives in the Chinese market during the fourth quarter of the year, it will offer a smart experience to Chinese customers through its design. The new model shares Hyundai’s new design philosophy of ‘Sensuous Sportiness’ which was first announced at the Geneva Motor Show in March.

BMW Electric Concept iX3

The BMW Group is pushing ahead with its electrification strategy by extending the reach of its all-electric mobility offering to the company’s core brands. The BMW Concept iX3 – presented for the first time at the Auto China 2018 show in Beijing – offers a look ahead to the expansion of the model line-up in this area. The first model from the BMW brand to be driven purely by electric power will be a fully-fledged Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV) – and without compromises when it comes to functionality and comfort.

The BMW Concept iX3 underscores the BMW Group’s resolve to further strengthen its leading position in the field of electric mobility. The expansion of the company’s range of vehicles offering locally emission-free mobility is one of the central spheres of activity defined by the Automated, Connected, Electrified and Services (ACES) technological fields, on which the company is driving forward the transformation of the mobility sector as part of its NUMBER ONE > NEXT strategy.

The expansion of locally emission-free mobility vehicles is one of the key areas of centralized action, alongside with automated driving, high-end connectivity and new digital services, which are driving the company’s transformation of the mobility industry as part of the NUMBER ONE> NEXT strategy. Under the generic term “iNext”, and as an enabler for the entire BMW Group, the future-model-kit is now being developed, in which the BMW Concept iX3 is playing a key role.

The fifth-generation BMW eDrive technology is distinguished by its extremely compact design. The electric motor, transmission and power electronics are now grouped into a single component, making it much easier to integrate them into different vehicle architectures. Plus, their modular construction enables them to be adapted to the performance levels required and the available space. Another notable element is that the electric motor does not need any rare earths, which means the BMW Group is not dependent on their availability.

Volvo Electrification

Volvo Cars, the premium car maker, aims for fully electric cars to make up 50 per cent of its sales by 2025, the company announced today.

The announcement builds on Volvo Cars’ 2017 industry-first announcement that all new models released from 2019 will be available as either a mild hybrid, plug-in hybrid or battery electric vehicle.

Volvo Cars currently produces the S90 and S90L T8 Twin Engine in China. This week marks the start of production for the XC60 T8 Twin Engine in China, meaning that soon all three Volvo Cars China plants – Luqiao, Chengdu and Daqing – will produce either plug-in hybrid or battery electric cars.

China is Volvo Cars’ largest individual market and this year delivered a 23.3 per cent first quarter sales increase, contributing to the company’s first-quarter global sales growth of 14 per cent. Volvo car sales in China last year passed 100,000 units for the first time

The company’s strategy to generate half of its sales from electric cars by 2025 positions it as a powerful player in China, the world’s leading market for electrified cars.

The Chinese government plans to have new-energy vehicles account for more than 20 per cent of the country’s annual car sales by 2025, which equates to more than seven million vehicles, based on Chinese government forecasts.

Ford New Distribution Channel in China

Ford Motor Company announced new key global leadership changes as well as the creation of a single new distribution channel for its Greater China business to accelerate growth.

The new Ford National Distribution Services Division in China, or NDSD, replaces a complex joint venture and dealer network. It will be responsible for the marketing, sales and service of all Ford passenger vehicles sold in China. This means:

Ford dealers in China will be able to offer customers Ford’s full lineup of vehicles, regardless of which company or joint venture builds them, and whether they are locally assembled or imported.

To improve marketing effectiveness, the NDSD will speak with a single and consistent voice to promote the Ford brand in China; it also will accelerate efforts to simplify and improve the Ford customer experience. Ford’s China business will become more operationally fit through reduced duplication and other efficiencies

Jaguar XJ50

Jaguar is marking 50 years of its flagship XJ luxury sedan with the launch of a new special edition model. Revealed at the Beijing Motor Show, the Jaguar XJ50 celebrates half a century of trademark performance, technology and luxury.

Offered exclusively in long wheelbase specification and available with the option of a 340hp 3.0L Supercharged gasoline V6 in RWD or AWD, or a 470hp 5.0L supercharged gasoline V8 powertrain in RWD, the XJ50 celebrates the best of the XJ sedan.

Exterior updates for the XJ50, including unique front and rear bumpers, add distinction to the anniversary edition alongside purposeful 20-inch wheels with gloss black diamond turned finish, a gloss black front grille and unique badging to the rear and side vents. Four striking exterior paint colors will be available including Fuji White, Santorini Black, Loire Blue and Rosello Red.

Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadroifoglio

Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio, the brand’s high-performance premium SUV,made its Asia debut at Auto China 2018, marking the arrival of the full Quadrifoglio family at China.

Stelvio Quadrifoglio is accompanied by a dynamic lineup of other vehicles that provide diverse choices for Chinese customers yearning for passion – premium SUV Stelvio, premium sporty sedan Giulia and the high-performance Giulia Quadrifoglio.


Maserati introduced its 2018 range with three significantly restyled models at the Auto China 2018 show in Beijing and proudly showcases its GranLusso and GranSport trim strategy. The two distinctive trims represent the proposition of every Maserati which resonates with the philosophy of GranTurismo, the ultimate combination of sportiness and luxury.

The Levante GranSport showcased at the lounge fully embodies the racing heritage of every Maserati. It is immediately recognizable for its front grille, skid plates and roof rails in Piano Black, for the red brake callipers and the 20” Nereo wheels. 12-way power sport leather seats, power-adjustable Sport steering wheel, elongated gearshift paddles, carbon trims and Soft Close Doors are blended to create an exciting, sport-oriented interior.

The Quattroporte GranLusso redefines the concept of luxury. The elegantly restyled exterior has adopted a more imposing, Alfieri-shaped front grille, 20” Mercurio rims and black-painted brake callipers. Exclusive Ermenegildo Zegna Silk interiors with open-pore Radica wood trim and wood-finished leather steering wheel are combined with additional comfort equipment such as power foot pedals, power rear and rear side sunblinds, four-zone automatic climate control and heated rear passenger seats.

The Ghibli is another Maserati highlight in Beijing. The premium sports sedan that perfectly combines class topping performance and elegance. On show there is a 345hp Ghibli GranLusso and a 424hp Ghibli S Q4 GranSport, both equipped with the mighty 3.0 liter Twin Turbo V6 engine.


The MG X-motion concept car premiered at the Beijing Auto Show. The X-motion follows the MG brand design philosophy of Emotional Dynamism that was showcased in the brand’s first full electric sports car concept, the MG E-motion.

The ‘X’ in the product name X-motion represents the endless possibilities of how people can relate to the design. Whether that is through its stunningly eye-catching appearance, inspiring performance thanks to its sporting genes, or through an appreciation of its multi-dimensional intelligent technology.


Merdedes-Benz is showing the new A-Class Sedan, a new C-Class model and Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury, a concept vehicle inspired by Chinese influences. The Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury, a concept vehicle inspired by Chinese influences. The Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury shows how the typical strengths of an exclusive high-end saloon and an SUV can be combined. The concept vehicle embodies the Mercedes-Maybach design language, which reflects the traditional brand values while continuing the successful Mercedes-Maybach story.

The new C-Class long-wheelbase sedan boasts numerous new comfort features as well as Intelligent Drive. The C-Class long-wheelbase is produced by Beijing Benz Automotive Co., Ltd (BBAC) in Beijing exclusively for the Chinese market


NIO is dispaying NIO unveiled a six-seat version of the NIO ES8, showcased the NIO EP9, the fastest electric car in the world, and unveiled a new variation of its vision car, EVE. EVE’s new variation is inspired by Beijing and features new colors, updated materials and redesigned rims.

The six-seater ES8 uses a 2+2+2 seat layout with easier access to the third row. The six-seater ES8 features the same high-performance and intelligent features as the seven-seater ES8. The six-seater ES8 will be available for order this year with deliveries set to begin in the first half of 2019. NIO also showcased seven exterior colors for the NIO ES8.


The Polestar 1 debuted at Auto China 2018 in Beijing, marking the return of Polestar to China. Following its media launch in Shanghai in October 2017, and recent European launch at the Geneva Motor Show, this is the first time the Chinese public has the chance to see the Polestar 1, the first car from the new electric performance brand, Polestar.

Pricing for the Polestar 1 has now been confirmed as 1.45 million RMB in China, 155,000 euros in Europe and $155 000 in the United States, giving customers a clear understanding of where the Polestar 1 sits in the marketplace. Details of Polestar’s all-inclusive subscription pricing will be confirmed at a later date.

Aston Martin

Aston Martin is today celebrating 70 years of its world-famous DB bloodline, as the luxury British marque unveiled its latest DB family of sportscars for the first time at the 2018 Beijing Motor Show – the V12 and V8-powered DB11 coupe and DB11 Volante.

The famous letters stand for David Brown, referring to the legendary British industrialist David Brown who bought the company in 1947. Over time, the DB brand has become as iconic as the Aston Martin wings themselves and continue to this day with the DB11 model; unveiled today in a striking Volcano Red color scheme, which would have been the favoured choice of Aston Martin’s previous owner.


The all-new INFINITI QX50 premium SUV made its first appearance in Asia today at Auto China. Built in a new manufacturing facility in Dalian, the QX50 features world-first technologies, stand-out design and unrivaled interior space.  The new QX50 pairs INFINITI’s signature Powerful Elegance design with the company’s innovative VC-Turbo engine, the world’s first production-ready variable compression ratio engine.

Also making its China debut is the sleek Q Inspiration concept car, previewing a new generation of INFINITI vehicles. The Q Inspiration proposes how advanced powertrains, next-level autonomous drive technologies, and a unique human-centric interior could enrich the experience of drivers in the mid-size sedan segment.

Representing the next step in INFINITI design, the exterior of the Q Inspiration concept features clear and concise lines with dynamic and confident proportions. It is the first manifestation of INFINITI’s new form language for an era of advanced powertrains. The concept eschews classical sedan forms with its coupe-like appearance and elongated silhouette, presenting INFINITI’s design vision for vehicles in this segment.