This is the brand new Buick Velite for China. The Velite is a variant of the Chevrolet Volt, with a different front and rear. The Velite is manufactured in China by the Shanghai-GM joint venture. It will debut on the Guangzhou Auto Show in December and launch on the Chinese car market in early 2017.
Velite name on the left, Shanghai-GM badge on the right.
The plug-in hybrid drive train seems to be exactly the same as in the Volt. The 1.5 liter petrol engine is rated at 99hp and fuel consumption is rated as 0.9 liter per 100 kilometer.
Size: 4579/1811/1494, wheelbase is 2694, and curb weight is 1610 kg.
Volt: 4580/1810/1430, wheelbase is 2690, and curb weight is 1607 kg.
The Chevrolet Volt was sold in China as an import between 2011 and 2014, but it was far too expensive so sales were slow; really slow, like a dozen per year slow. The Velite will be much cheaper than the Volt was but the exact price is yet unknown.
The Velite name was first used on a 2004 roadster concept, and in 2014 there were rumors that Buick was going to use the name for the U.S. version of the Opel Cascada. But that didn’t happen, and the Velite went to China instead.
Interestingly, the first time we heard the Volt was going to be a Buick in China was way back in 2010. At the time it was assumed that General Motors was going to rebadge the Opel Ampera as a Buick. The Ampera is the European variant of the Chevrolet Volt.