Scoop: Did BMW Clone its X1 Into the China Market Zinoro EV SUV?

When it comes to China and automotive doppelgangers, it’s Chinese manufacturers cloning Western carmakers’ models, but what you’re seeing here is a European company turning one of its own cars into a Chinese-badged product, in this case, BMW using the X1 as a base for its upcoming Zinoro brand.

At least that’s what it looks like because BMW may further alter the design of the car before it reaches production.

The spy shots show a current generation X1 wearing a different face that ditches the Bavarian brand’s double-kidney grille, while also gaining different lights and bumper. The profile remains the same but at the back it appears that the prototype bears some changes to the tailgate and bumper designs.

Zinoro is a new China market-only brand created by the BMW Group in cooperation with its main local partner, Brilliance Automotive, with the initial goal of building electric cars – the first of which is believed to be a crossover based on the prototype you see pictured here.

While we had heard rumors about BMW’s plans on a new Chinese joint venture before, the German carmaker only made it official at the Auto Shanghai 2013 in late April.

“A decade ago, we established our production presence in China,” said BMW Group China CEO Karsten Engel. “Since then, we have invested 1.5 billion Euros in our production facilities with our joint venture partner, Brilliance Automotive and our close cooperation with BBA continues. Just last week, together we announced ‘ZINORO’, a new car brand designed for the Chinese market. Underpinning BMW’s activities in China is not only our strategy development through the BBA joint venture, but also our exclusive partnership with Brilliance Automotive.”

BMW is not the only foreign carmaker to enter China’s electric car market with a new brand, as Nissan is doing the same with the Venucia nameplate and Mercedes with Denza.

Photo Credits: CarPix for CarScoopS

PHOTO GALLERY

BMW-Group-Zinoro-1BMW-Group-Zinoro-2BMW-Group-Zinoro-3BMW-Group-Zinoro-4BMW-Group-Zinoro-5BMW-Group-Zinoro-6BMW-Group-Zinoro-7BMW-Group-Zinoro-8

Man Tries To Steal BMW, Owner Jumps In, Makes Him Crash And Flee On Foot

The owner had left her dog inside the car and was determined to not let anything happen to her.

Driven: 2019 Kia Rio Does What It Says On The Tin

Engine refinement and light steering aside, the Rio is an extremely competent, and affordable, supermini.

Ford Mustang Bullitt Goes For A (Legal) High-Speed Run On The Autobahn

The reincarnation of the iconic ‘Stang was so successful, Ford announced it will extend its production run.

Porsche Taycan Demonstrates Its Speed At NYC Formula E Course

The Taycan made its third and final stop in the company’s Triple Demo Run at the Big Apple.

Mario Andretti’s Lamborghini Countach Is A $500k Piece Of Automotive Royalty

Lamborghini only ever built 321 examples of the Countach 5000 S, and this one had a very special owner.

Toyota Kicks Off New Ad Campaign As 2020 GR Supra Arrives At Dealers Later This Month

After a 21 year absence, the Toyota Supra will return to dealerships soon.

Ranger Danger: Ford Reportedly Working On A Bronco Pickup To Battle Jeep Gladiator

The hardcore pickup is expected to be based on the next-generation Ranger and could go into production in 2024.

HSV SportsCat Series 2 Sequel Brings Enhanced Styling, Equipment

The Holden Colorado-based off-road truck receives cosmetic changes that make it look more aggressive.

VW Plans To Launch Autonomous Vehicles In The Middle Of The Next Decade

VW believes fully autonomous vehicles will primarily appeal to the fleet operators and the rich.

Audi Celebrates 25 Years Of RS Models, Confirms Two More For 2019

Audi will introduce two new RS models later this year and one is likely the RS Q8.