There’s a reason why the camouflage on this tester spied on European soil by one of Carscoops’ readers reminds of BMW prototypes. As it turns out, it’s not a Mercedes-Benz GLB, as we originally thought, but a Brilliance V7 crossover.
For those of you not familiar with the brand name, Brilliance is one of the BMW Group’s Chinese partners.
In fact, just recently, the German carmaker took advantage of China’s change of heart in regards to foreign companies owning a majority stake in joint ventures amid the trade disputes between China and the USA. The Chinese government gave BMW permission to acquire more than 50 percent in its joint venture with Brilliance, with the Germans said to up their ownership to at least 75 percent.
Back to the car you see here, these images were sent in by Per Orslien and show the seven-seat crossover being transported on the back of trailer traveling towards the Swedish boarder.
We’re not sure why the Brilliance V7 is being tested in Europe, as it made its Chinese auto show debut in production trim this past April (see photos below), but aside from BMW having its own engineers make some final touches and/or observations, there’s always the possibility of the Germans looking to offer the car in other markets outside of China.
Images via Xuehua & PCAuto
The crossover has plastic body cladding, an upward sweeping beltline and a character line that runs through the door handles. We can also see a tailgate-mounted spoiler, roof rails and a dual exhaust system.
Our reader wasn’t able to snap a picture of the front of the crossover, but he noted the model had some front end damage. That could explain why the model is being towed by a vehicle from Berlin-based Naujock Autotransporte.
Measuring 4,702mm long, 1,932 mm wide and 1,753mm tall, with a wheelbase of 2,770mm, the mid-size crossover has a similar footprint to the Kia Sorento. Power for the Chinese market model will come from the CE16-codenamed 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder gasoline engine that’s good for 204 horsepower, paired to a standard 6-speed manual or an optional 7-speeed dual-clutch transmission. A plug-in hybrid model is expected to be added to the range within the next year or so.
The Brilliance V7 will be offered in both two-row (with 5-seats) and three-row (with 7-seats) editions when it officially goes on sale in China this June.
Note: In our original article, we were tricked by the prototype’s camouflaged appearance into thinking it could be the Mercedes GLB. Apparently we were wrong. Thanks to our friends from CarPix for helping us identify it.
Additional reporting from John Halas