After marveling at some nice metal revealed at the Shanghai Auto Show, now is the time to look at some of the blatant Chinese copies and other cars you wish no one wasted good metal on.
Honda Concept D
In a big upset, the Japanese company stole the Ugliest in Show title right from the Chinese automakers’ noses with the Concept D. I don’t think there are words that can do justice to just how awfully styled this car is, with some of the worst choices of color, intersecting lines, mismatched proportions seen in the past couple of years. The gold-brown alloys are the final insult…
The clone that makes the other clones seem subtle and well-executed, the Suzhou Eagle is quarter Ferrari, three quarters Porsche Cayman, and 100% awful in execution, detailing and potential to be taken seriously.
Buick Verano and Nissan Lannia
Proof that language that works well on bigger cars is hard to translate to smaller ones. The Verano, which further evolves that swoopy Buick design language started on the great-looking Enclave and LaCrosse, just looks too much like a slug on those tiny wheels.
The same problem afflicts the Lannia, on which the expressive design elements from the new Maxima look out of proportion, like the whole car is trying way too hard to be cool.
The “GTA-style clones
Any car fan who’s played one of the GTA games knows that the game designers like to take actual cars and then restyle them just enough so that they don’t have to pay royalties to the carmakers (who would not want to see their cars destroyed, anyway). This is the feeling I get when I look at some of the clones from China – they are not necessarily bad-looking, and not necessarily blatant copies, but they just make you think of cars from established car brands.
Startech Range Rover Pickup
Grabs the the award for how badly you can butcher a great car.
VW Gran(ny) Santana
An example of the kind of white-good cars that many respectable automakers are selling in China – a VW-badged, long-wheelbase version of the already pretty sad Skoda Rapid.