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Hongqi Readies Push Into EVs

Hongqi is planning to introduce 21 new models over the next five years, 18 of which will be electric, in efforts to evolve with the times and work toward an electrified future, according to Bloomberg.

Hongqi is targeting a doubling in sales this year to 200,000 cars and wants annual deliveries to reach 1 million by 2030. State-owned China FAW Group developed the first Hongqi in 1958 and the sedans have since been used by political leaders from Chairman Mao to President Xi Jinping. FAW kicked off a rejuvenation effort for the brand after Xu Liuping took over as chairman in 2017.

“The global automobile industry is going through a great reshuffle and the fully open Chinese car market is becoming the most competitive one in the world,” Liuping told Bloomberg. “The Hongqi brand is becoming a benchmark for China’s high-end automobile industry and a role model for local brands.”

FAW hired Giles Taylor, who helped create vehicles such as the Rolls-Royce Phantom VIII and the Cullinan SUV, in 2018 to oversee Hongqi’s design team. Hongqi is targeting the premium segment of China’s car market, with its current models priced at around US$21,000 to $66,000.