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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The joint venture of BWM and Brilliance has trademarked the Chinese name "Zhinuo" for its upcoming, China-only models, reveals a document from the State Administration for Industry and Commerce. The first model in the Zhinuo lineup is believed to be a hybrid version of the BMW X1 compact SUV.

According to the exposed document, the trademark application for the two Chinese characters "Zhi Nuo" in the automotive category was filed on February 9, 2012 . No English name or logo was included in the application.

In early 2012, BMW China confirmed that it planned to launch a new brand targeting specifically the native market, and the first model to bear it would be a hybrid. Originally, the brand launch was slated for late that year.

The media previously reported that the first Zhinuou car was to be modeled upon BMW 3 series. But a source at the company indicated this week that it would be based on the X1, which is built in China at BMW-Brilliance’s No.2 plant in Shenyang.

In exchange for the government’s support for their expansion projects, most of the foreign-sino auto ventures have announced in recent years plans to develop China-only brands and alternative-fuel vehicles. Dongfeng-Nissan, for instance, launched "Venucia" and prepares to produce the Leaf electric under this new marque.

Zhinuo will be the fourth brand operated by the German luxury car maker in China, joining, and positioned below, Rolls-Royce, BMW, and Mini. A separate sales network is likely to be built for it. "Late last year, BMW China surveyed some of its dealers on selling models under the new brand. Most of them expressed unwillingness to put those cars in their showrooms, believing they would be incompatible with the BMW’s image," says an official at the company.

http://chinaautoweb.com/2013/03/bmw-brilliance-to-launch-x1-based-zhinuo-hybrid-car/
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
As its tenth anniversary approached, the joint venture of BMW and Brilliance (BBA) unveiled the Zinoro brand and renewed its commitment to the Chinese market. The first Zinoro model, said to be a pure-electric vehicle, will be produced at BBA’s plant in the Tiexi district of Shenyang and make its debut at the 2013 Guangzhou Auto Show; market launch is expected in the first half of 2014.

Zinoro is the English name for the combination of two Chinese characters "Zhi Nuo," which was interpreted by BBA as "keeping commitment/promise to China." It is symbolized by two hands joining in the effort for innovation and sustainable development.

At the press conference held in Beijing on Friday afternoon, the company did not specify on basis of which current model the first Zinoro car (likely to be called "E90") had been developed, with the media reporting it to be either a 3 series sedan or X1 SUV.

Launch of the new brand is just part of BBA’s localization plan. Before the year end, construction of a new BMW engine plant will begin in Tiexi, Shenyang, and a R&D center will be established at a undisclosed location. BMW also promised to send specialists to help its Chinese partner grow its own brands, Zhonghua and Jinbei.

In his speech Karsten Engel, President and CEO of BMW in Greater China, focused on the company’s commitment to sustainable mobility, disclosing that BMW i products would hit Chinese showrooms with 12 months.



http://chinaautoweb.com/2013/04/bmw-brilliance-launched-new-auto-brand-zinoro/
http://www.autohome.com.cn/news/201304/507231.html
 

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It is BBA7000EV from Notice #253. Hope this helps

The manufacturer's pre-production designation was M12, as given in the production stats for July.
 
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