Yema clones the Audi A4 to make its own wagon, possibly Austin Maestro based
Published September 6, 2011
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This is a long story, so we are going to make it as short as possible. Back when MG-Rover was a solvent company it was looking to offload as much of its IPR without selling its core models IPR that was still on the market at the time, going through their portfolio it was found that they had the Austin Mastro platform which hit the market in the early 80s. MG-R figured it could get a good deal for that platform in the Far East or Eastern Europe, and they were right when Etsong, a Qingdao based tobacco company snapped it up in 1998. Etsong had seen other regional car manufacturers develop in nearby cities, Etsong clearly thought it was onto a winner when it produced the Maestro in Qingdao. The trouble was, they produced the Maestro in the year 2000 and there were much better cars on the market by then. Etsong quickly but quietly stopped making cars and sold the whole kit over to FAW who were more than happy to use the factory to continue building Maestros, until it sold the tooling and IPR to Sichuan Yema a couple of years ago. Sichuan Yema rolled out its own Maestro based cars, although they looked far too close to the last generation Forrester for comfort.
Now Yema is planning to use the same Maestro platform to produce an Audi A4 Avant Wagon clone according to these pictures, the Chinese media were keen to point out that the tiny firewall between the dashboard and the engine compartment is likely to help it fail a crash test in spectacular fashion, engine power is currently unknown but it does not look to be a Mitsubishi engine, in fact it looks closer to being a Geely engine but this is unlikely.
Just as things were looking up for the Chinese car industry as a whole with regards to independent designs being used, someone has to come along and start the whole cloned cars thing off once again.