short overhangs normally favour wheelbase and agility.
03 Jan. 2013,
Tony Kanaan: An old Arabic adage wisely says: "Had it
("it", representing all material things on earth)
lasted indefinitely for others, it
wouldn't have reached you next."
From this angle, isn't it significant to watch
today the birth of new car brands from emerging
markets, just a few years after the eclipse of some other brands such as
Plymouth (2001), Oldsmobile (2004), Pontiac (2009) and Mercury (2011), to name just a few?
with horizontal LED bars at the upper edge.
Today, while Indian car
maker Tata expanded its reach both geographically and in segment
diversification terms, with the purchase of
the British premium brands Jaguar and Land Rover from Ford in 2008, the much younger Chinese
automaker Chery Automobile is preparing on the other hand its next international step, with the world première of its
compact Qoros GQ3 sedan (4-door saloon) at the 83rd Geneva Motor Show (public
days from 7 to 17 March 2013).
One month later, the GQ3
will be exhibited at the Shanghai Motor Show.
By the way, Chery has also
agreed last March, with Jaguar Land Rover, on a joint project for the
production of models and engines. But that's another subject.
Auto Co. Ltd.
Founded in 2007, Qoros
Auto Co. Ltd. is presented as an independent automotive manufacturer built on an equal partnership between Chery
Automobile, China's largest independent car manufacturer, and Israel
Corporation, a global holding company.
The company was first called
Cherry-Quantum Automotive Corporation (Quantum is an American
subsidiary of Israel Corporation), before it took the new name since 2011.
Qoros says that its aim is
to develop vehicles with an independent identity and a high level of
quality, with the support of reputable global suppliers such as Magna
Steyr, TRW, Continental, Bosch, Microsoft and Iconmobile. The main target
markets are China and Europe, at least as a start.
Headquartered in Changshu, with large offices in
Shanghai, the completely new production
plant of the new brand is being built in Changshu, with an initial annual production capacity of
150,000 vehicles, expandable to 450,000 per annum.
model of the new brand, Qoros GQ3, will be introduced during the second half of
this year, first in China then in Europe later
during this year.
The other models should follow in intervals of approximately six
After its world premiere
in Geneva, the Qoros GQ3 will be exhibited at the Shanghai Motor Show in
Let's get back to Qoros then, and to the GQ3 name first,
since everything starts with a name, as goes Bob Dylan's song: "Man
names to all the
animals... in the beginning" (derived from Genesis 2
20). Well, there were no cars to name at Adam's time, only animals and
Qoros, which sounds easily
like "Chorus", says that its three-digit model naming
structure designates in the first letter, the body style.
Hence, all sedans will carry the first letter
"G". Guess then what an "X" might mean? AWD? Why not, if
you think so!
The second letter of all Qoros models will
be a reference to the brand name, hence the 'Q"
Finally, the segment of
the vehicle in question will be indicated in the third digit. So the number
"3" in GQ3 refers to the C-segment (compact cars, lower-medium
category), like the
"2" should refer to subcompact B-segment cars (superminis), or
the "4" for the D-segment, also called upper-medium or midsize cars.
In styling terms, the
compact Qoros GQ3
introduces the brand identity, conceived by the Executive Director of
Design, Gert Volker Hildebrand and his team in Munich and Shanghai.
Muscular arches can
accommodate up to 19-inch alloy wheels.
body looks rather
elegant, with a good wheelbase which takes advantage of the short
overhangs (a helping element for agility also) and a roof that flows smoothly into the rear. Only the width is given, at
1839 mm (72.4 inches), which should give the compact car, proportionally,
a good presence on the road, especially with the muscular arches which can
accommodate alloy wheels up to 19-inch in size.
The wide headlamps flow into the flanks of the car,
with horizontal LED bars at the upper edge of each headlight and in the rear light clusters.
signature design element for the Qoros brand will be visible in the triple-split eight-spoke
design of the standard alloy wheels.
On the side, the swage
line rises clearly from the headlamps via the door handles to the rear
lights, while a matt aluminium strip above each side sill adds to the
visual stretch of the side profile.
standard eight-inch touchscreen
Qoros promises a generous interior space, with a "floating"
dashboard to enhance the impression of space, and new standards for cars
produced in China to be comparable with the best-selling cars in
Europe. This means that we should be able to compare them with VW or
Renault products for example. Why not? It only needs to be checked later, especially after
several years of use in different weather conditions.
GQ3’s central console comes an eight-inch touchscreen
infotainment system. The package will be fitted as standard across the
The touchscreen enables users to manage entertainment, navigation,
internet connectivity and in-car networking functions with
finger "swipe" movements that will be familiar to smartphone users, and
probably for older, "young-at-heart" audiences, who usually detest
surfaces cluttered with confusing switches and buttons.
dashboard to enhance the impression of space.
Qoros points out that the touchscreen
infotainment system will support usage-based car
insurance services and features which allow drivers
to book dealer service appointments, in addition to an automatic emergency
services alert in the event of an accident (depending on markets of
The navigation system includes traffic information, points-of-interest
search, in addition to the usual social networking connectivity to share points-of-interest, favourite trips and photos
via social media through the interface.
On the safety side, Qoros
indicates that the GQ3 is
engineered to achieve maximum European and Chinese crash test ratings. It incorporates supporting
structures with large-scale
deformation zones. Other passive safety measures include front, side and curtain