The Copycat Car Industry in China Has Already Cloned the $200K Lamborghini Urus
Close enough for $20,000?
If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then it appears there's a whole lot of love for Lambos in China. Meet the latest printout from the country's car-sized Xerox machine: the Huansu Auto C60 Hyosow, a midsize crossover that bears a striking resemblance to the brilliant new Lamborghini Urus at approximately one-tenth the price.
There are several strategic tweaks in the design to keep things out of obvious lawsuit territory, including a slightly different lower front fascia, a more upright roofline, and fewer creases in the body. Its wheelbase is also about seven inches shorter than the Lamborghini. Still, the renderings show a near-wholesale recreation of the angular Italian design of the original.
If you're excited about a budget supercar SUV, though, you should know that the C60 Hyosow's similarities to the real Urus start and end at your eyeballs. Instead of an intoxicating 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 putting out 650 horsepower under the hood, the Chinese version packs a pair of 1.5-liter and 2.0-liter four-cylinder engines pegged at 150 hp and 200 hp respectively.
Drivetrain details aren't available yet, but bet on front-wheel-drive instead of the Urus' advanced all-wheel-drive system with multi-terrain settings. Oh, and Car News China reports that it will come in five- and seven-passenger configurations, so say goodbye to that luxurious four-seat interior as well. All that cost-cutting does add up, though: pricing will reportedly range between the equivalent of around $15,000 to $23,000.
From the sleek-bodied grand touring cars of the mid-1960s to the identical jellybean crossovers of today, automotive design has always been a bit derivative across the board, but the Chinese copycat industry takes it to another level. Making it all the more fascinating is the fact that this isn't some sketchy independent outfit trying to make a buck—Huansu Auto is actually part of BAIC Group, a major state-owned manufacturer that also partners with Mercedes-Benz and Hyundai to build their cars in China for the domestic market.
BAIC Group itself isn't shy about taking inspiration from European manufacturers. At the Beijing Auto Show earlier this year, the company showed off a six-wheeled jeep with a pickup bed that looks an awful lot like the Mercedes-Benz G63 AMG 6x6.
So what's to be done? Probably not much, since China's protective and byzantine copyright laws make it difficult for foreign entities to put a stop to these shenanigans. In an analogous example, Porsche threatened to sue Chinese manufacturer Zotye in 2016 after it built an even closer copy of the Porsche Macan, but the knockoff SUV is still on sale today. We reached out to Lamborghini to see if they feel sufficiently flattered, and we'll update if we hear back.