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SAIC Roewe
Type Subsidiary
Founded 2006
Industry Automotive
Products Automobile
Parent SAIC
Website Roewe China

Roewe (in Chinese: 荣威; in Pinyin: Rongwei, English pronunciation: 'rəʊ-və, which is similar to the British pronunciation for "Rover") is an automobile marque created by the Chinese firm Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation (SAIC), to use on cars it builds based on the MG Rover technology it has bought.[1]

The marque appeared firstly on the company's version of the Rover 75, called Roewe 750. Roewe was publicly launched at the November Motor Show in Beijing in 2006, where the revised 75 was on display. The car is slightly longer than the equivalent MG Rover model, but shares components such as parts of the interior and the engines.[2] Over 30 new models are expected to be launched under the marque between 2006 and 2011, whilst 120,000 Roewe cars are expected to be produced by SAIC in 2007.

The use of the Roewe name is due to SAIC's inability to buy the rights to the Rover name from BMW due to Ford Motor Company exercising their option on the name.

Contents

Name origin

The name Roewe, is thought to have come from the traditional Chinese words honour, king and lion "rong", and power and prestige "wei".

Models

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Roewe 750

The Roewe 750, launched in October 2006, is a highly revised version of the Rover 75, with the wheelbase stretched by 103 millimetres (4.1 in).[3] The drivetrain is a 2.5L V6 petrol engine, based on the Rover KV6 engine and the gearbox is a brand new 5-speed automatic. The company claims that 85% of the car is improved. Later, a 1.8T (turbo) petrol engine based on the Rover K-series engine, delivering around 150 bhp (112 kW; 152 PS) wias introduced. The standard 1.8T version Roewe 750 was priced at 210,000 Yuan (USD$29,000 or £14,500) in January 2008.[4]

Roewe 550

On 21 April 2007 SAIC introduced the W2 concept car to the public at the Shanghai Auto Show. The car is the work of a joint Anglo-Chinese collaboration with ex-Rover experts at consultancy firm Ricardo 2010 and SAIC's own car development team.[5]

The production version of the car, renamed Roewe 550, was formally launched at the 2008 show. The car features LED lights on the rear, and various audio, climate and sat nav controls through a touchscreen, and a panoramic glass roof.

MG 550. X Santiago Motorshow, October 2008.

Underneath, the 550 is based on a shortened Rover 75 platform, featuring a development of BMW's Z-axle system. It is expected to come on 19-inch alloy wheels with suspension tuned by ex-Rover and MG engineers.

Based on the Rover K series engine, power options include a 1.6 litre and 1.8 litre turbocharged petrol and 2.0 litre diesel engines. The 1.8 litre delivers around 150 bhp (112 kW; 152 PS), while the 2.0 litre diesel – complying with Euro IV emissions regulations – provides similar levels of power. A hybrid drivetrain is expected to be offered also, with manual or automatic transmissions for the complete model range.

Euro NCAP ready, the car is expected to arrive in SsangYong European showrooms in 2009, with prices starting at £14,500. According to Autocar Magazine (UK), it will not be branded as Roewe; instead it will be branded as a SsangYong, a marque majority owned by SAIC.

Chilean Availability

In 2008, the Roewe 550 and 750 were launched in Chile, rebadged as the MG 550 and MG 750 respectively.[6]

Notes

External links


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