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firefox, great pics. I lived in Qingdao for over 5 years - my chery still has a qingdao license plate.

great city.

anybody wants more insight into qingdao, check out www.myredstar.com and if you meet Mr Redstar ask him how the old beijing jeep is running - it used to be mine.
 

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i spent 5 years building and running a plant about 3 miles from the etsong car plant. it was a half decent idea originally, the idea was to start in 1998 and at that time they could have launched the maestro car, which looks kind of similar to a citroen Zx, but with a much lower price.

but it was too difficult a project to implement. they had the secondhand tooling but no bill of material, and they were a tobacco company with no experience of car making. and there were very few car makers in china then so you couldn't hire in experience either.

another problem, etsong never had a license to make cars, only to make agricultural vehicles. so they had to concentrate on the van version. they are a powerful force in qingdao and probably thought they could get round this, but there is a big difference between local influence and getting beijing to aprove a car project.

you sometimes see these cars about - i've seen the odd one in shanghai and saw one in nanjing today. i drove one once, it was ok, running with a toyota 1.4 engine from faw.
 

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Windy said:
You would have liked the MG turbo version better - that was officialy quicker than some Ferraris when it was launched in 1988!
Actually back in about 1990 my Dad had an MG Montego Turbo. I was about 18 then and the drag race king of Guildford. There were some issues with the car, like it blew through an SU carb when everything else including the non turbo MG Montegos had been on efi for a few years, and there was a lot of wheelspin and torque steer, but nobody else I knew could lay their hands on a 150 bhp car back then.

The Etsong factory did offer me a car cheap, and obviously the thought of inserting a 2.0 turbo motor did go through my mind.................
 
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