A black, Chinese-market Audi A6L is practically the poster-child for Communist Party officials who demand extra legroom rear legroom in a stretched version of standard sedan. The Chinese government reportedly spends 80 million renminbi ($12.7 million U.S.) per year on wheels for its bureaucrats, but according to a report in China Car Times the new list of approved cars available to officials is limited to Chinese models. That not only excludes the Audi – which is built in the country – but also BMW, Mercedes and the coming Infiniti M37 limo.

The list contains 412 models from makers like Great Wall, Brilliance, Roewe, Chery, Geely and SAIC, and the mix includes gas, diesel and electric powertrains for sedans, minivans, pickup trucks and SUVs. Displacements are constrained to 1.8 liters for sedans, 2.4 liters for SUVs.

Expected to be a boon to Chinese makers, the Chinese government also believes the new rules will be a boon to development: it wants the companies selected to reinvest three percent of their newfound gains into research and development. Neither Volvo nor Saab were mentioned in the report, and we wonder if BAIC's previous-generation Saab production and Geely's domestically produced Volvo models may have slipped in.


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  • 45 Comments
      throwback
      • 2 Years Ago
      The good comrades will simply get their wealthy friends to "loan" them a car.
      RocketRed
      • 2 Years Ago
      China is likely well with its rights per its WTO accession agreement to do exactly this. If the U.S. goverment decides that official fleet cars have to be from U.S. brands, what law rule does that violate? There is a WTO goverment procurement agreement to permit, conditionally, exactly these kinds of policies. i know that the Chinese bureaucrats will be fit to be tied. There is nothing a Chinese special assistant to the deputy assistant undersecretary loves more than her VW/Audi/Buick official car. I expect that the more senior people will find a loophole. Look very soon for perfunctorily re-badged versions of Chinese-made foreign cars. The Great Wall Prassat will be in a government garage soon.
      Polly Prissy Pants
      • 2 Years Ago
      The U.S. government should show the same amount of backbone and ban the use of ANYTHING foreign made by government officials and employees. Never understood why all these other countries could ban imports of U.S. goods while we take it in the shorts and ship all of our jobs overseas, then wonder why no one has a decent blue collar job any more and ends up on unemployment and food stamps paid for by taxpayers. We're either incredibly stupid or far more concerned with corporate profits than the well-being of the average American.
        Jake
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Polly Prissy Pants
        The "average American" would not benefit from protectionism. We'd just pay higher prices. Our jobs are leaving because our stupid politicians have demonize corporations, tax and regulate the hell out of them, and then act surprised when they move their manufacturing overseas and say that we need protectionism.
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Jake
          [blocked]
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Jake
          [blocked]
          Julius
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Jake
          @ Jake and GoAwayOkay: FWIW, it's a little bit of both. No less a luminary than Steve Jobs was directly asked by Obama why with record profits more jobs couldn't be made in America. And point-blank, Jobs said those jobs (no pun intended) are not coming back. Workers are lined up out the door there and if there's a quick change in a product, the company (Foxconn) can roust out 3000 workers from their dorms and work overnight to incorporate the change into the products. Mind you, this is all for a fraction of what US workers with their OSHA rules, 40-hour workweek limits and minimum wage requirements earn. Then again, that wage is much higher than what these people can earn in the countryside, so they clamor (and wait in huge lines outside the door) for those jobs.
        Danielle
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Polly Prissy Pants
        The 2nd part of your last sentence.
        Bruce Lee
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Polly Prissy Pants
        The US already uses almost exclusively big 3 vehicles for government fleets. The president has always ridden in either a Lincoln or Cadillac, our police vehicles are all big 3 cars or SUVs, etc. The only places that don't follow that rule are probably local town governments.
      JW
      • 2 Years Ago
      I actually don't see the big issue with this, it's not like US government officials ride around in anything but the Big 3. Nothing other than GM(Yukons and Caddy's) to be honest. I've seen a few Secret Service Police chargers, but that's about it. (work in dc)
      Renaurd
      • 2 Years Ago
      They have to use all that leaded paint. They tried to sell it to Volvo, but Volvo said no, so now they will force government workers to, "buy leaded, buy Chinese". They will however place a warning label on the side: "Not to be ingested, could be hazardous to your health, if swallowed seek medical help immediately. If weakness or shakiness is experienced while driving, pull over, bend over, and kiss your ass goodbye."
        Fat Kid
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Renaurd
        BS. If it wasn't for Chinese jets being the finest in the world, the US would have been all over Syria by now.
          sirjaysmith
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Fat Kid
          So how much do you charge for your sit down comedy? While I laughed a bit from that joke, it was only OK compared to some other comedians I've heard, so don't think you can over charge me.
          carfan
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Fat Kid
          if you would be any funnier, you would poop yourself
          ryan
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Fat Kid
          were to do you get ur bs from? I think the majority of Americans don’t want to get involved with Syria. By the way your almost there as AB troll number 1.
          Renaurd
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Fat Kid
          Are you from Hung Kong?
      delsolo1
      • 2 Years Ago
      China is just insisting that the cars be built by using slave labor rather than union workers.
        IBx27
        • 2 Years Ago
        @delsolo1
        Which is the difference between working 25 hours a day, and -1 hours a day. Respectively.
          k_m94
          • 2 Years Ago
          @IBx27
          And being paid for -1 hours a day versus 25 hours, also respectively.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        k_m94
        • 2 Years Ago
        No Chinese official wants to feel the shame of riding in his country's own terribly made or blatantly plagiarized cars, but that is what they are trying to force down their citizen's necks, so at least they are forced to lead by example.
        BFE
        • 2 Years Ago
        And you say that because you've driven the cars in the approved list? Rednecks gonna redneck...
      Jeremy Pennini
      • 2 Years Ago
      Continuing the crack down on foreign automakers. On step closer to John Macelroy's prediction that they will ban all foreign automakers.
      AntBee
      • 2 Years Ago
      I just want to laugh my head off at all the luxury car makers who were making China-only versions of their cars.
      Danny Eckel
      • 2 Years Ago
      China will be its own downfall, the swelling middle class, growing number of millionaires yada yada yada its all a bunch of horse sh*t. They treat the majority of their citizens like dogs and hopefully they have mind enough to rise up.
        LuLu
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Danny Eckel
        oh look its Danny Eckel, the China expert! haha you're a joke man
        Hossi Blumengaarten
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Danny Eckel
        you understand that IF the Chinese people rise up they will be massacred the WEST will stay quiet because without the cheap work our world will end, no more ipods or cheap clothes the world is a rotten place
      k_m94
      • 2 Years Ago
      Hopefully, this will eventually force luxury makers to cater to the US and rest of the world as opposed to "Well, this is hot in China, let's satiate them", once they stop or greatly reduce sales in China. And in return, the rest of the world can simply reject all plans to sell Chinese cars outside of China. Don't want an unpronounceable death trap and illegal pirate copy anyways.
        hmmwv
        • 2 Years Ago
        @k_m94
        This is a good development as it's a way to fight corruption, and making official accountable. If the officials are forced to ride the same vehicle as a regular middle class people they will have more incentive to enforce safety regulation on Chinese domestic cars. Even if all government officials stop buying foreign brand it's still only account for a very small percentage of the total market. I mean RMB 80 million annual sales is nothing compare to revenue generated in the private sector. Having said that, IIRC major automakers still sell more luxury cars in the US than anywhere else in the world, the only problem is that sales growth has been flat, and I don't see that change until the economy gets better.
      IBx27
      • 2 Years Ago
      Remember, the communist leaders are equal too; they're just a little more equal than everyone else.
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