The first in a series of articles looking at the multitude of cars that made their debut at the Shanghai Auto Show, first we look at the Good, starting with…
Mercedes GLC Coupe Concept
Although it would seem more appropriate to start the list with a Chinese car, it is really hard to ignore arguably the star of the show. While its bigger brother GLE Coupe is a bloated-looking X6 copy, the GLC Coupe is all muscle and elegant lines. It makes you wonder how could BMW get the X4 so wrong…
Changan Raeton CC
A close second best-looking car from the show in my view, the Raeton CC not only looks great, but it also manages to be original where others are derivative. Makes you wonder just how well this car would sell if Porsche slapped a Panamera II badge on it!
All those other good-looking sedans from Chinese brands
Sure, none of these sedans may look too original – the Emgrand looks a lot like the Chrysler 200, the Trumpchi GA8 like a Toyota Avalon and the Z700 like an Audi A6. They are all, however, objectively good-looking with clean surfaces, good proportions and smooth detailing – more than can be said of many Japanese (Subaru Legacy, Toyota Camry) or Korean (Hyundai Sonata, Hyundai Genesis) cars, not to mention almost any Chinese offering from 5 years ago. We may still laugh now, but rest assured, we won’t be laughing for long given the Chinese manufacturers’ deep pockets, ambition and ability to learn (copy).
Dismissed by many commentators as a Smart copy, the E200 is arguably more interesting and more cohesive-looking than the latest offering from Mercedes baby brand. And it promises even more with electric propulsion, something the Chinese car manufacturers are quickly becoming very good at.
Qoros 2 SUV PHEV
Probably the most confidently designed Chinese car at the show, the Qoros 2 is a striking-looking Juke competitor with a character all of its own, taking inspiration from Chinese art. Where cars like the Mazda CX-3 are handsome but conservative, this car is striking and different, and all the better for it!
VW C Coupe GTE
Get over the silly name (it is not a coupe any more than it’s an SUV) and the fact that at first glance you could mistake it for the Sport Coupe GTE concept from Geneva, and what you get is a confidently go0d-looking car that’s aimed squarely at the likes of A6, 5-series and E-class. Plus you have to admire VW for having the persistence to build large sedans after the Phaeton fiasco.