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Old 29th January 2006, 20:59   #1
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Default Fancy a half price Rolls Royce or half price Honda CRV?

No I do not have any to sell but check out the following story (there are a few comparison pictures on the site).

http://driving.timesonline.co.uk/art...012852,00.html


Invasion of the Chinese clones

Brazen copies of western models, even down to the badge, are a growing worry for our car makers, say Jay Nagley and Emma Smith of The Sunday Times


Not content with cornering the market in sports goods, electrical and DIY products, the Chinese are building one of the world’s biggest car industries based on models that bear more than a passing resemblance to western brands. In fact many of them are indistinguishable, right down to the badge on the bonnet.


Chinese technicians have become so skilled at reverse engineering that their western counterparts have to look closely to tell the difference. This could be good news for consumers, bringing the prospect of half-price vehicles. But it’s bad news for the car companies that have invested time and money establishing brands only to see them duplicated.

General Motors was one of the first to suffer an attack of the clones when China’s Chery Automobile apparently ran blueprints for the Daewoo (now renamed Chevrolet for the European market) Matiz through a photocopier to come up with its QQ. “A Matiz door can fit on a QQ and a QQ bonnet fits on the Matiz,” a GM spokesman said.

The Hongqi (Red Flag) HQD, a cheap rip-off of the Rolls-Royce Phantom, was unveiled at the Chinese motor show in August. Although only a concept car, a production model is predicted to cost about £130,000, compared with £216,950 for the Phantom. Other copycats include the Shuanghuan Laibao SRV, which appears to be a recycled version of the Honda CR-V but with a £6,700 pricetag — less than half the cost of the Japanese original. Its badge looks borrowed from Audi, minus two of the German brand’s rings.

Great Wall Automobile has been accused of copying the Nissan Frontier pick-up with its Sing SUVs, and a company called Geely, based in Hangzhou in eastern China, appears to have chopped the front and rear off a Mercedes C-class and welded them into a compact car called the Merrie. BYD’s aping of BMW looks is even more blatant. Its black, white and blue badge is “inspired” by the German company’s and its F6 closely resembles the BMW 7-series.

What began as a minor irritation is to become a major commercial headache as China prepares to sell its cars to the West. Towards the end of last year the JiangLing Landwind SUV became the first Chinese car to be marketed in Europe. It is uncannily similar to the Vauxhall Frontera, which ceased production at the end of 2003. JiangLing denies the charge. “It’s all a misunderstanding; we have our own design teams,” said a senior marketing executive at the company last summer.

JiangLing has agreed to make adjustments to improve the vehicle’s safety after the ADAC, the German equivalent of the Automobile Association, subjected the Landwind to crash tests with results that it described as “catastrophic”.
Safety flaws notwithstanding, European manufacturers fear it is only a matter of time before customers can take advantage of the Landwind’s enviable £10,000-£12,000 pricetag.

Great Wall Automobile is set to launch its Hover SUV and Deer pick-up in Europe this year. Like JiangLing, it will initially use a loophole in the law to bypass rigorous crash tests: there are exemptions designed to help low-volume producers and manufacturers of commercial vehicles.

While western car makers may be horrified by China’s blatant commandeering of their ideas, they are also understandably wary of making enemies in the world’s fastest growing car market. Every major car company is desperate to get a slice of the Chinese sales boom. To do this the Chinese government usually requires them to form an alliance with a Chinese company and, although the communist regime may be embracing capitalism, all large investments have to be cleared by the authorities.

Even if a foreign company decides to sue a Chinese firm, getting a Chinese judge to rule in its favour is not easy. Honda is embroiled in a case against Shuanghuan Auto over the Laibao SRV but has already had to fend off a counter- suit from the Chinese firm. Toyota failed to win a case against Geely in 2003 for copying its logo. There were indications of a change of attitude when last month Honda won a ruling that bars Chongqing Lifan Industrial from selling motorcycles under the Hongda name.

The controversy over the QQ has been settled between Chery and General Motors with “a gentleman’s agreement” and Chery has cancelled plans to launch its Matiz in the US. “There is no chance of that car being sold out of China and encroaching on our business,” said Denis Chick, a GM spokesman in the UK.
Mercedes is philosophical about its Chinese rivals. “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery,” said Rob Halloway, a spokesman. “The difference between a copy and a genuine Mercedes-Benz should be clear to see — it’s not the same as a fake Rolex. Cars are still fairly sophisticated technology.”

But established car makers cannot afford to be complacent. Backed by cheap state capital and with low-cost labour, Chinese firms can cut European prices by half and many plan to double or even quadruple output within just a few years. Chery has ambitious (although some say not entirely realistic) plans to export up to 250,000 vehicles to the US by 2008 (its total current output is about 80,000 vehicles a year). “In the future it will be private Chinese companies that rule the industry, ” Li Shufu, Geely’s chairman, said in a recent interview.

The profits from the sales of this first generation of Chinese copycats could well be used to finance a new range of designs, posing an even greater menace to their European counterparts. The signs are already there. Brilliance, one of China’s largest car companies, is upgrading its Zhonghua luxury saloon — a potential rival to its European partner BMW — to include air-conditioning and a state-of-the-art sound system, with plans to sell to Europe by 2008 for as little as £13,000.

Last edited by bigman : 29th January 2006 at 21:02.
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Old 30th January 2006, 15:31   #2
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The tolerance levels of these "plagiarised" manufacturers amazes me, but then they probably have their reasons as already mentioned (chinese market, industry relations etc.).

But what is even more surprising is the inethical attitude of the chinese manufacturers and their dominating government. How many heads does it require to come up with a decent ORIGINAL design? Cant the authorities do anything about it? What are they doing to their own image by putting other cars through the office xerox machine?

GTO

P.S. Has not Hyundai done the same with the Accord rear end?
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Old 30th January 2006, 15:45   #3
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We see the same on the streets here. Popular but discontinued models like the older Toyota Hiace van, the Nissan Sunny and even the Nissan Maxima are being sold here by the Chinese. The vehicles are EXACT copies, not even disguised. Of course the Chery bandwagon continues to roll with the Matiz happily copied. It is available here for Dhs300 per month despite this statement:

“There is no chance of that car being sold out of China and encroaching on our business,” said Denis Chick, a GM spokesman in the UK.

Thank god we dont do such stuff - much rather have a struggling but still largely original local industry than a photocopy machine.

Last edited by Steeroid : 30th January 2006 at 15:49.
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Old 30th January 2006, 16:57   #4
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This is quite frustrating bit of news. I had read somewhere that out of every 5 yamaha motor bike sold in china 3 are fake and the chinese govt. knows about this. I mean how can the other countries allow this blatant violation of patents and other design registrations.....
Had it been india they would have jumped on us in a second.......and they seem to be failing all sorts of safety norms etc.
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Old 30th January 2006, 17:07   #5
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I dis- agree with you GTO i think its just a coincidence that the rears of both the cars are similar to an extent. I dont think its the same as what the chinese are trying to do and they are trying to do the same things in other product groups as well. This i say from actual personal experience !!

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Old 30th January 2006, 17:24   #6
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For a common man, sometimes more than a common man [ there was a thread about going with an Elantra ], especially in the developing countries, buying a car is still a big thing. It's only economics that drives one to draw the line while choosing one.

But, it now seems that the big markets like Europe and USA are also feeling the pinch.
They seem to have no option but to join hands and move on (Like the GM/Daewoo).

It is definitely sad to see this happen in broad daylight. If Lenovo can take on IBM, Automobiles are no exception.

I have read an article which says, there is a dedicated reverse engineering team with every industry in China/Korea : The best part is that they are able to get the Xerox Copy out before the Original.

Even today, the Software/ IT/ Electronics industry fear China because of their Patent laws and IP protection.

As long as there is a buyer, this will stay. It is definitely easy to fine one.
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Old 30th January 2006, 18:48   #7
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That was a surprising news! I wasn't aware that Chinese companies make such "replica" cars!
What about the condition of their cars? Do the "look-a-like" cars perform in the same manner as of originals?
If no, the original manufactuers don't need to fear anything (as long as the consumers know that they are buying the fake one).
But if they do, then original car makers should revise their price

We don't need to be so complacent about India. We can't mimic those cars because we don't have such manufacturing capability like China. We can, however, produce car parts like original.

Isn't Bollywood not already copying soundtracks & themes of Hollywood movies?

Just my 2 cents though.
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Old 31st January 2006, 11:08   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neel
For a common man, sometimes more than a common man [ there was a thread about going with an Elantra ], especially in the developing countries, buying a car is still a big thing. It's only economics that drives one to draw the line while choosing one.

But, it now seems that the big markets like Europe and USA are also feeling the pinch.
They seem to have no option but to join hands and move on (Like the GM/Daewoo).

It is definitely sad to see this happen in broad daylight. If Lenovo can take on IBM, Automobiles are no exception.

I have read an article which says, there is a dedicated reverse engineering team with every industry in China/Korea : The best part is that they are able to get the Xerox Copy out before the Original.

Even today, the Software/ IT/ Electronics industry fear China because of their Patent laws and IP protection.

As long as there is a buyer, this will stay. It is definitely easy to fine one.
There are always going to be buyers for cheaper things/ knock offs i give you that. But so are for original stuff. There goes a lot of time,money and manpower into developing new and improved technologies. If company's loose their right to earn from something they have toiled over for years, they will stop doing that, hence a lot of us would be the end loosers in that.

What i feel is that the Chinese govt. in the name of becoming a global economic power is pulling out all the stops. Wether it is by hook or crook they are trying to capture the markets. That is not good news for the rest of the world, especially for india. Once they have done this , we will realise one day that the bulk of manufacturing has gone to them and whats to stop them from charging the prices that they want. Its already happening in certain product sections.

At the moment we indians are making great strides in the auto mobile and infotech sector but its not going to be long when the Chinese catch up.....
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Old 31st January 2006, 12:06   #9
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What these Chinese manufacturers are looking at is a break through in developed economies - Very difficult due to consumer awareness levels.

Another challenge for them will be the competition from used cars. For the same money, would you rather buy a two year old Honda Accord or a brand new Chery Camcord?

Quote:
I dis- agree with you GTO i think its just a coincidence that the rears of both the cars are similar to an extent.
I dont think it was a mere coincidence.

GTO
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Old 31st January 2006, 12:51   #10
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Quote:
I dis- agree with you GTO i think its just a coincidence that the rears of both the cars are similar to an extent. I dont think its the same as what the chinese are trying to do and they are trying to do the same things in other product groups as well. This i say from actual personal experience !!
I have a lot of Intel info on what Hyundai do in their factories because we have business with them. I know all the unethical copying of cars going on in Hyundai which I've seen personally which is a major reason why i throw them down. They're no different from the chinese except that the koreans copy half of the vehicle whereas the Chinese make complete clones.
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Old 31st January 2006, 14:32   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beeman
At the moment we indians are making great strides in the auto mobile and infotech sector but its not going to be long when the Chinese catch up.....
SAP annonced yesterday that Indian manpower is now too expensive and so they will look to China for new consultants.

Been trying to recruit from India in the last one year and I find very unrealistic salary expectations from guys who've basically been on their jobs for 2 years or so. Are people getting spoilt?

Dont bother answering....it will take this thread off-topic. Start a new topic if you wish.

I guess this is the reason why Ratan Tata is trying to (or has already?) set up a manufacturing base in China - take the Indica there before they copy it?
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Old 31st January 2006, 14:46   #12
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[quote=Steeroid]

Been trying to recruit from India in the last one year and I find very unrealistic salary expectations from guys who've basically been on their jobs for 2 years or so. Are people getting spoilt?

QUOTE]


Yes, and they want "phoren travel " and 50% hike - they do not want the experience so much, the moolah saved if they stay in a flea pit hotel - get a life!!!
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Old 31st January 2006, 14:50   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajmat
Yes, and they want "phoren travel " and 50% hike - they do not want the experience so much, the moolah saved if they stay in a flea pit hotel - get a life!!!
Tell me about it - chaps want a 2 year salary growth projection, not a career growth projeciton.

I picked up a guy from Malaysia - same cost, less hassles.
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Old 31st January 2006, 16:18   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nitrous
I have a lot of Intel info on what Hyundai do in their factories because we have business with them. I know all the unethical copying of cars going on in Hyundai which I've seen personally which is a major reason why i throw them down. They're no different from the chinese except that the koreans copy half of the vehicle whereas the Chinese make complete clones.
I dont want to get into a flame contest with anyone of you about this topic , it could turn ugly, yes maybe in the early 80's they did the same, however more and more innovation is definately happening at hyundai.
Every market leader is copied to some extent in all major product groups, but blatantly copying like the chinese is something else.

Come to think of it even the Japanese car company's entered the automobile market where once they were considered as low quality cars compared to their european and american counterparts. But the difference between the chinese and them is that the japanese revolutionised the market by studying (the global market) ahead and making smaller and low fuel consuming cars............ ..which today are the trend (even in america), this year has seen a major decrease in suv sales in the US, attributed mainly to the rise in fuel prices globally.

I wonder what innovation and thought the chinese have except PRICE

Last edited by Beeman : 31st January 2006 at 16:25.
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Old 3rd May 2009, 00:22   #15
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Yet another Chinese Rolls Royce Phantom has hit the road. And if you still like the copied design, the name will definitely put you off. Imagine telling someone "I own a Geely GE". Sounds very geely
Attached Thumbnails
Fancy a half price Rolls Royce or half price Honda CRV?-01_geely_ge.jpg  

Fancy a half price Rolls Royce or half price Honda CRV?-02_geely_ge.jpg  

Fancy a half price Rolls Royce or half price Honda CRV?-03_geely_ge.jpg  

Fancy a half price Rolls Royce or half price Honda CRV?-04_geely_ge.jpg  

Fancy a half price Rolls Royce or half price Honda CRV?-05_geely_ge.jpg  

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