With this latest photo showing the upcoming BYD T6, we’re left wondering are Chinese clones unethical and do they harm our perception of China’s automotive industry?

With this latest photo showing the upcoming BYD T6, we're left wondering - are Chinese clones unethical and do they harm the perception of China's automotive industry?

Although the authenticity of this photoshopped scan could not be confirmed, the Cayenne knock-off is allegedly a real model expected to be released by BYD as the T6 in September 2010.

Judging from the image, the exterior differences between the T6 and Porsche Cayenne are virtually undistinguishable as the only change appears to be a minor reshaping of the front grille work and the addition of a BYD badge. Despite the Porsche styling, the T6 is reported to be equipped with an underpowered 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine which will always remind owners that they're not in the real thing.

While the T6 is just the latest in a long line of copies, it represents everything that is wrong with China's automotive industry. In the past Mercedes, BMW, and Toyota have fought companies that released clones of their vehicles but without much success.

With some European brands falling under Chinese control, the country's more modern automakers have either stopped or cut down on their liberal "borrowing" of European and American designs. Despite this minor glimmer of hope, the fact remains that even one copy tarnishes the image of all China's automakers and reinforces the idea that Chinese cars are subpar.

 

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