The 15 best cars at the 2013 Shanghai Motor Show


Mercedes GLA
Mercedes-Benz-The Mercedes GLA is one of the main draws at the 2013 Shanghai Motor Show - and this is incredibly close to what we'll see in Mercedes' dealerships in 2014. The GLA is the next addition to the A-class family, Merc's smallest model range.The GLA, which is tipped to cost from around £25,000 (approx. $38,000), is a rival to the burgeoning ranks of compact SUVs - an alternative to the successful Range Rover Evoque, in other words. On this first viewing, the baby Merc mud-plugger looks like a svelte and stylish baby 4x4, bristling with the latest tech and gizmos

Lamborghini Aventador LP 720-4 50th Anniversario
Lamborghini-The 15 best cars at the Shanghai Motor Show 2013: Lamborghini Aventador LP 720-4 50th Anniversario On the one hand it must be devilishly easy to grab headlines and photographers' lenses when you're promoting Lamborghini. How can you ignore a bright yellow missile like the Aventador at a motor show? But on the other hand, this is a model which is more than two years old - and we're still gawping at it as if it's a new arrival from Mars.In 50th Anniversario trim, the Aventador is certainly an eye-grabbing prospect. With a regular 720hp V12 amidships, all four wheels are driven and it comes with a slew of special touches to mark Lamborghini's 50th year. This is our candidate for most shocking car of the show.
The 15 best cars at the Shanghai Motor Show 2013: Icona Vulcano
Newspress-Proof, were it needed, that Chinese carmakers are becoming bolder by the year. At the Shanghai Motor Show 2013, homegrown manufacturer Icona presented the new Vulcano - a 950hp petrol-electric hybrid supercar manufactured in Shanghai.Don't expect Ferrari and McLaren to be quaking in their boots just yet, however. The Icona Vulcano is, for now, a one-off and the Shanghai carmaker is reportedly seeking a buyer willing to stump up around £2 million (approx. $3,044,000) for the privilege of owning one of the country's first superior supercars.
 LaFerrari
 Proof, were it needed, that Chinese carmakers are becoming bolder by the year. At the Shanghai Motor Show 2013, homegrown manufacturer Icona presented the new Vulcano - a 950hp petrol-electric hybrid supercar manufactured in Shanghai.Don't expect Ferrari and McLaren to be quaking in their boots just yet, however. The Icona Vulcano is, for now, a one-off and the Shanghai carmaker is reportedly seeking a buyer willing to stump up around £2 million (approx. $3,044,000) for the privilege of owning one of the country's first superior supercars.
 MG CS concept
Rescued-from-its-deathbed British brand MG had one of the genuine surprises at the 2013 Shanghai Motor Show: this CS compact SUV concept car. It's proof that MG, now owned by local company Shanghai Automotive, is bouncing back under Chinese rule.The CS is the company's first SUV. When based at Longbridge in the UK, MG Rover could only dream of developing a 4x4 - but now that prospect is becoming much more likely. It was styled by the company's Britisih design chief, Anthony Williams-Kenny, and was shown alongside the production-ready MG 3, a hatchback destined for sale in Europe. Although a minnow for now, MG remains a brand to watch.
 Maserati Ghibli
Another big coup for Shanghai was the world premiere of the Maserati Ghibli. Designed to slot under the existing Quattroporte in Maserati's sports saloon range, the Ghibli is a (very fast) rival for the likes of the BMW 5 Series and Mercedes E-Class.The name revives a classic Maser badge last seen in the 1990s. The Ghibli is built around a shortened architecture borrowed from the Quattroporte, so will be available with a mix of rear- or four-wheel drive and a slew of mostly V6 engines, including - whisper it - the first diesel engine ever offered in a Maserati.
 Ford Escort
One of the surprises at the Shanghai Motor Show 2013 was the naming of a Ford concept car after an historic badge made popular from decades of sales in the UK. The Ford Escort is a name that will stir memories in any British motoring enthusiast - yet here it was attached to a compact saloon concept, designed to spearhead Ford sales in the booming Chinese car market.
BMW X4
BMW- A major world debut for BMW: the X4 is the latest in its swollen ranks of SUVs, another 4x4 to take advantage of the public's insatiable appetite for big crossovers.This is a baby brother to the BMW X6 - a mix of SUV and coupe, its sloping roof sacrificing rear headroom at the altar of good looks. Expect to see the BMW X4 in showroom trim (looking very like this concept car) in 2014.
Buick Riviera
Buick is GM's upmarket wing and is popular in China - hence the location for the brand's debut of its latest Riviera concept car. This is a name steeped in history; the last Buick Riviera was available in showrooms in 1999. But this show car is designed to show the future styling direction for the American luxury brand.It's a long car, headed by the latest iteration of the company's waterfall grille design. But it's not just about the styling: take note also of the plug-in hybrid technology, which recharges the batteries wirelessly, and a battery of tech firsts, including 4G connectivity and 10 high-res cameras providing the driver with a panoramic view of traffic around the car.
Changfeng City Concept
Don't believe for a minute that Chinese carmakers are suddenly going to swamp the European car market and threaten the established western brands. This is an automotive industry in the ascendency, but Chinese carmakers are still reliant on their joint ventures with the ancient regime and the products they produce are some way off what we expect in western Europe. However, the pace of change is dramatic. A browse around the Changfeng stand reveals this City Concept car - a vision of how we could one day be commuting around major metropolitan areas, such as Shanghai, Beijing or Birmingham. You have been warned..

Bugatti Veyron
China is an important market for Bugatti, so VW's upmarket sporting division went to town in Shanghai with the world premiere of the Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport Vitesse World Record Car (WRC) edition. Just eight models will be built, to mark the new top speed record for an open-top car.The convertible Bugatti recently reached 254mph (approx. 409kmh) at Volkswagen's German proving ground at the hands of a Chinese test driver - a feat deemed worth marking with this special edition, which costs £2 million (approx. $3,044,000) . There is no more power or torque - the 8.0-litre W16's 1,184hp is deemed sufficient - but a plethora of trim and paint options distinguish this limited-edition car
 Hong Qi
Hong Qi, which loosely translates into English as 'Red Flag', made a splash at Shanghai with its new top-end luxury car range: the L5, L7 and L9. As you may have guessed from the image above, this is the brand preferred by the country's Communist party leadership. If you see one of these in your rear-view mirror, you pull over.These are massive cars: at more than 6m long, the Hong Qi makes quite an impression on the street. 
 Great Wall Olay
If mimicry is a sincere form of flattery, then European carmakers can rest easy. Although Chinese carmakers are gradually moving away from making straight rip-offs of Euro designs, there are still plenty of cars on show in Shanghai that have overtones of established western models.The Great Wall Olay is one: it's hard to look at this futuristic city car and not think of the Renault Twizy electric car, for instance. 
 Aston Martin stand
There is nothing major to ogle at the Aston Martin stand in Shanghai - nonetheless, we challenge you to walk past this Aston Vanquish cutaway without stopping to pore over the exposed technical innards.Carbonfibre is sliced away carefully to reveal the low-slung V12, the aluminium and composite platform and the suspension: it's like a university dissection project showing the workings of a space-age animal. One for petrolheads to savour.
Beijing Auto B40
Chinese carmakers are discovering the joys of niche lifestyle vehicles. Now that they've got the sensible saloons sewn up, we are beginning to see them experiment with more adventurous models such as Beijing Auto's B40.It's a 4x4 designed for trekking and adventurous exploits, in the vein of a Jeep Cherokee or a Land Rover Defender. Dressed up on stand with the accoutrements of a hardcore adventure, it's hard not to wonder where Chinese carmakers will be in 20 years' time. Might we all be lusting after a Chinese car in future?
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