Borgward, the defunct German brand revived two years ago with Chinese money, has re-entered Germany with the BX7 TS, a luxurious $52,000 SUV that has sold well in China. It is the first vehicle the brand has sold in Germany since 1961.
The BX7, built in Beijing, is about the size of an Audi Q5. Power comes from a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that drives all four wheels through a dual-clutch transmission. It seats seven.
During the company's launch event at its Stuttgart headquarters, about 500 potential customers kicked the BX7's tires, and 200 went on test drives, Borgward says. The company plans to sell its vehicles in most of Europe and has appointed a distributor headquartered in Luxembourg.
Borgward, the second old-school brand resurrected by Chinese automakers to make a return to Europe, will avoid the traditional dealership model and rely on Internet sales. The company has appointed ATU, a German group of repair shops, to handle parts and service.
Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp. brought the MG brand back to England in 2011.