Far From the Mainstream: Landwind

Landwind is a company with a sketchy history. This car is being sold as a Landwind SC2. But Wikipedia denies its existence. There are three** Landwinds on sale at Mobile.de at the moment. 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

“Landwind is an automobile marque owned by the Chinese automaker Jiangling Motor Holding, a joint venture between Changan Auto and Jiangling Motors Corporation” is what Wikipedia says, in case you are interested.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The SC2 is possibly an early version of what is now sold as a Landwind X6. At present Landwind sell in Europe only the CV9 (according to their site), a five-door MPV. It is “ready to compete in any car segment”. In the rest of the world i.e. China, they have X5, X6, X7, X8 and X9.  Confusingly, the CV9 and a saloon called the CV7 are both discontinued (in 2011, both).

Is it front wheel drive? 2006 Landwind CV7: source

So, what we have here is a China market brand with a faint presence in Europe and a portfolio of cars that are somewhat poorly documented.

The SC2 has a two litre engine, turning out 84 kW. It is for sale for €3,300, which is a somwhat arbirtrary number given the fact only two others are for sale. With two cars on sale such fine tuning makes no sense. When there are 148 similar cars on sale the price might be fine tuned as suppliers jostle for a small advantage.

The other car is an SC2 with a 2.4 litre Mitsubishi motor. And – mystery – car three is not listed at Wikipedia, it’s a Landwind Pulsar 1,2. No wonder:   The dealer, Walkenhorst, have evidently misplaced a Nissan Pulsar under the wrong category.

We have discussed here how in the 1950s and 1960s the Japanese made good use of the Italian carrozeria to design their cars. Isn’t it a source of puzzlement that the Chinese manufacturers and carrozeria could not repeat the experience and produce fascinating Italo-Chinese cars instead of the rather unhappy-looking vehicles that have emerged from China in the last 15 years: wierd or derivative or both and almost always of no technical interest.

** or so I thought.


Author: richard herriott

I like anchovies. I dislike post-war town planning.

6 thoughts on “Far From the Mainstream: Landwind”

  1. There have been a few Chinese cars styled by the Italian carrozzerie, but clearly not enough to allow Bertone to survive, or Italdesign or Pininfarina to remain independent.

    Bertone: Chery A1, BAIC X55

    Italdesign: Brilliance BS8, Brilliance BS2

    Pininfarina: Brilliance BS4, Brilliance BG3

    There are probably lots more out there. Most of these are from the era before the big league companies turned to joint ventures with established western and Japanese carmakers. The smaller regional manufacturers resorted to blatant plagiarism, and still do.

    The carrozzerie look to be a spent force now, the new game is getting a big-name European stylist on board, as demonstrated by Geely, Qoros (Chery), and Borgward (BAIC).

    1. I found a photo of one or two of those. They are far from distinguished. It´s like David Bowie turning out a Mariah Carey sort of song. These vehicles are not that well documented, are they: I Googled one of them and some of images featured utterly miscellaneous stuff. It´s bland, or unhomogenous but I supose it was was that market wanted? Does that mean the average Chinese person finds Clios, Pandas and the like rather repellent to look at?

  2. I can only agree about the anodyne nature of the designs; they’d score about one and a quarter on Raymond Loewy’s MAYA scale. However, Italdesign i.de.a, and Pininfarina turned out some pretty bland stuff for Japanese and Korean carmakers long before: Hyundai, Isuzu, Daewoo, Subaru, and Toyota spring to mind. It was at least balanced by various concepts and, er, the Subaru SVX.

    It is probably down to the acceptability matter. A dream car for the road wasn’t what was required. The reason for calling in the Italians was to make something which didn’t look embarrassingly awkward against foreign designs, and was potentially exportable – Brilliance and Chery were selling (poorly) in European markets in the late years of the last decade.

    As for the Chinese attitude to the Panda, how about this short-lived offering from Great Wall?

    An extraordinary mash-up of the Tipo 169 Panda and the first-generation Nissan Note. They even did a 4×4:

  3. More of those Brilliances, including Pininfarina’s BC3:

    Could the BS6 (Giugiaro) be a Lancia reject?

    1. The BS6 has vaguely Fulvia coupe lights (the concept car).
      The yellow coupe looks like it was a nearly complete design that got a last minute canning. I can’t suggest a marque (which is why it was rejected). The bumper panel gaps are cheap).
      The “safe and bland” formula didn’t really work, did it?

Leave a Reply to richard herriott Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: