Small Chinese automaker and BMW-alligned Brilliance Jinbei Automotive Co. has recently scrapped plans to showcase 4 new vehicles at the Detroit Auto show in January. The original North American Brilliance line-up was to showcase 4 models, the BS6 mid-size sedan, BS4 compact car, BC3 sports coupe, and FRV hatchback. Today, Brilliance modified their U.S. debut to only include 2 models, the BS6 and BS4. In much the same way the Hyundai Genesis resembles a Mercedes S-Class, in the right light, the Brilliance BS models could pass for BMW 3- or 5-series sedans.
Apparently, the plan was revised after Brilliance sent their model line-up to the U.S. in 2007 for government safety and emissions evaluation, and the cars failed to past muster. According to company VP He Guohua, the cars fared reasonably well during the crash testing, but emissions readouts indicated high levels of oxides of nitrogen. Determined to participate in the U.S. market by 2009, Brilliance hired both the engineering arm of Porsche AG as well as the U.S. engine technology company FEV Inc to bring their vehicles up to American safety/emissions standards. Guohua expects the design revisions to be completed by December, cutting it close but still allowing them to participate in the Detroit showing.
Brilliance ultimately plans to participate in the global market and hopes to begin selling cars in the U.S. by 2009 and worldwide shortly thereafter. Despite the setbacks, Joe Serra, co-chair for this year’s Detroit show, said that Brilliance is a much-anticipated and very welcome addition to the ranks of auto makers expected to be in attendance.
[Source: Automotive News]