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The automotive industry is a global business that is constantly evolving and growing, and we here at AutoGuide know it can be hard to keep up sometimes. So here is a summary of the top stories you may have missed this week:
Audi will be giving us three world premieres on Monday at the Auto China car show in Beijing, unveiling the RS Q3 concept(shown above), another car based on the Audi Q3 and a technology platform for an Audi A6 L.
The Chinese market has embraced the long wheelbase in recent years, and automakers have been accommodating by building new long wheelbase models to be made available only for the Chinese market. The A6 L technology platform is meant to capitalize on this growing interest in long wheelbase vehicles, and the surge in luxury car sales in China.
The Audi RS Q3 concept is a 360 hp turbocharged version of Audi’s Q3 small SUV. It is also outfitted with a new meaner look to match its upgraded power. While the RS Q3 is still only a concept, it looks production ready and would have very little competition in the small sports performance SUV segment.
The other Q3 based vehicle is a mystery, but based on its Chinese debut, it may be some sort of Chinese only special edition. We will have to wait and see.
For updates on the Auto China show in Beijing, click back to AutoGuide.
Discuss this story at Audi-Forums.com.
BMW is cashing in on the chauffeur craze in China by offering a stretched version of the 3-Series exclusively to Chinese customers.
The longer wheelbase sedan will be sold as a 335Li, and will offer more legroom to Chinese consumers who want to be driven around but can’t afford a legitimate chauffeur car like Bentley or Rolls-Royce.
It might sound ridiculous that the mild-mannered 3-Series would merit a hired driver, but Audi has actually been advancing Chinese sales by offering the A6L and A4L sedans with “L” signifying the longer version.
The 335Li fits between the two Audi cars in terms of rear-seat legroom according to China Car Times. Chinese customers will be able to buy the car later this year, though it won’t be offered anywhere else in the world. That would have meant a lot of extra work on BMW’s part until recently. The German automaker will manufacture their Chinese 3-Series cars in partnership with Brilliance, a company they have worked with on several projects in the past.
[Source: China Car Times]
A contracting economy and a governmental push to limit the number of new cars in certain metropolitan areas has led luxury car makers like BMW, Audi and Mercedes-Benz to offer discounts of up to 20 percent on their cars in China.
While the three car makers are hoping to post record sales numbers, many “aspirational” buyers, who gravitate towards vehicles like the BMW 3-Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class, are holding off on big ticket purchases amid fears of an economic slowdown. Those models can command discounts of as much as 20 percent.
Municipalities like Beijing have limited the number of license plates being issued, as a means of curbing congestion and pollution, while Chinese banks are tightening up on lending. Both factors are having an unfavorable effect on new car sales, and the OEMs are hoping that discounts kill keep things moving.
[Source: Automotive News]