Shanghai International Modified Auto Show

Published May 7, 2012

In 2018 China Car Times was acquired by Autowise. This article originally appeared on

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Im fairly bored of auto shows, I must have been to every major auto show in China in the past six years at least twice, probably more, so when I get another auto show invitation sent my way I treat them with a little bit of skepticism. The Shanghai International Modified Auto Show landed in my inbox in the middle of last week, it started on Friday morning and I had a clear Friday afternoon, a quick blast down the motorway and I was at the Theme Pavilion which previously housed the World Expo. Being at a World Expo site I expected a bigger show, but the SIMA (it rhymes with SEMA) event was actually just one hall. A waste of an afternoon (and fuel).

The Chinese car market is the worlds biggest, not that we need a reminder, its also a big market with lots of demand for certain models. X5, Q7?s etc etc have a long waiting list in China but in the USA there is no such need to wait as dealers often have a surplus of cars, market demands mean that these cars often end up in China via the gray market. Other slightly more unique vehicles, such as a Hummer H1 also end up in China, as do Dodge Chargers, Challengers, and GT40?s.

West Coast Customs brought their Darth Vader Passat to China. I cant imagine the leagues of Chinese middle management business men would want to buy this for their daily commute, but at least its different. Kind of.

Buick brought their Excelle XT 1.6T hatch along. The 1.6T had been modified slightly, the 184bhp unit had been upgraded to a GTI equal of 200bhp. Nice.

It wouldnt be an auto show without an old Hong Qi. The guys at Shanghai Auto Museum had wheeled out their Hong Qi and Caddy for the show:

Koreas Spirra brought their wares too:

Chrome and Gold Plated cars are still very much in fashion, if youre a Corvette or Aston Martin fan, turn away now:

Want some American Muscle? The gray market delivers anything you want, for a hefty fee of course.

And War Winning American Muscle:

With just one hall open, and no modified autos on display, it seems that the SIMA event has a long way to go before it becomes the auto show for modified autos or even an auto show, now it is more of a collection of cars that might be for sale the majority of the staff on the BMW stand were having a good sleep on the sofas.




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