Qoros wants to take on Volkswagen

Article by Christian Andrei, on March 21, 2012

Qoros Auto Co.’s design chief Gert Hildebrand said that when the brand begins selling in Europe, it will be competing with established brands such as Volkswagen and Qoto. In January 2011, Hildebrand moved to Qoros but years before that, he led the design for BMW's Mini brand for 22 years. Qoros Auto, formerly called Chery Quantum, is China's newest automaker.

When interviewed during a recent trip to Automotive News Europe in a visit to Munich, Hildebrand said that its new mid-sized sedan will compete against established European brands. Hildebrand has a team making designs for cars. These will be built in China using designs that are very exciting.

Hildebrand oversaw the expansion of the iconic Mini brand into new variants such as the Countryman, Clubman and Coupe models. Hildebrand will assist Qoros to come out with an upscale brand of vehicles for China and Europe.

It offers a stylish appeal and it also gets five-star crash test ratings from safety organization EuroNCAP. Qoros's first model, a sedan, seeks to do well in a segment that includes the Volkswagen Jetta and Toyota Avensis. He said that the same comfort and safety levels will be offered but it will be cheaper by a huge amount.

Already, Hildebrand heads designs in Munich and in Graz, Austria, where Magna International Inc. subsidiary Magna Steyr is developing several Qoros cars that will include a hatchback and a SUV within its first two years of production.

An electric vehicle will arrive soon after. What Hildebrand wants to do is give the Qoros brand a unique design face, with a big Q logo placed in the middle of a black grille.

The Q refers to quality. Qoros, a joint venture between Chery Automobile and investment firm Israel Corp., which is a leading investor in Better Place (an EV infrastructure developer based in the U.S.).

Topics: qoros, volkswagen

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