Japanese car manufacturers are flying the flag at the 12th Beijing International Automotive Exhibition, which opened to the press on Monday, with a number of new launches -- many specifically targeted at the booming Chinese market.
Nissan Motor Co. unveiled its all-new global sedan, which will make its premiere in China as the next-generation Sylphy, as well as three zero-emission concept cars.
Equipped with a new 1.8-liter engine, the sedan has impressive fuel efficiency and improved aerodynamics and will initially be built at the Dongfeng Nissan Huada Plant in Guangzhou. Following its release in China in mid-2012, it will be launched in major markets around the world before the end of the year and in 120 countries by 2014.
The Japanese giant has also teamed up with Dongfeng Motor Co. in recent years and is using the Beijing exhibition to launch the D50, the first production model of the venture's new Venucia brand.
Powered by a 1.6-liter gasoline engine, the vehicle is available in four classes and a sales target of 1 million units over the next five years has been set, while the company is also planning its very first domestically built EV concept car, which is known at present as the "e-concept" and should be on China's roads by 2015.
Toyota Motor Corp. also has a major presence in Beijing this year, showing off no fewer than 38 production and concept vehicles, including three world premieres.
One of those is the Yundong Shuangqing, a China-only concept hybrid equipped with a hybrid power-train developed by the company's research and development facility in the Chinese city of Changshu.
The compact sedan and hatchback known as the Toyota Dear Qin is a global strategic concept vehicle. The compact rear-wheel-drive sports car named 86 had been unveiled previously by Toyota but is being heavily promoted in Beijing to a new generation of wealthy consumers looking for a sporty vehicle.
"We would like to put smiles on the faces of our Chinese customers with hybrid technology," Akio Toyoda, president of Toyota, said at a press conference at the exhibition. "I want the people of China to be able to experience the beauty of hybrid technology through a hybrid car born in China."