Jay Leno tries to drive a 1970s Chinese luxury sedan

But a breakdown leaves the comedian stranded.

There aren't many cars so obscure that even Jay Leno hasn't heard of them, and that's the story with the 1978 Hongqi CA770 that's in Jay Leno's Garage this week. Unfortunately, Leno only gets a brief cruise in this Chinese behemoth before a dead battery leaves him and the owner stuck on the side of the road.

According to owner Capa Ma, his Hongqi served as a hotel limousine before he purchased it. These massive sedans were China's attempt at an ultra-luxury vehicle in the vein of a Mercedes-Benz 600 or Rolls-Royce. The design takes bits from both of those vehicles, and the front end reminds us of a Russian Volga.

The powertrain in this beast is somewhat of a mystery. The owner knows that Hongqi set up a shell company to buy the engines and transmissions, but he isn't sure specifically what the CA770 uses. Leno speculates that it's a Y-Block Ford V8 and the Blue Oval's automatic transmission. However, some digging online shows a story from The Truth About Cars that claims these cars use Chrysler V8.

At nearly 20 feet long and weighing about three tons, the Hongqi certainly has presence on the street. The flags waving from each fender make Jay and Ma look like dignitaries during their brief drive. We'd like to see Leno welcome the Hongqi back after the owner performs a tune-up to get a better look at the massive sedan on the road.

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