Jeremy Clarkson Checks Out Expensive Hongqi L5 Limo in China

Jeremy Clarkson Checks Out Hongqi L5 in China: Chinese Rolls-Royce? 2 photos
Photo: YouTube screenshot/The Grand Tour
Jeremy Clarkson Checks Out Expensive Hongqi L5 Limo in China
If you think about it, China has been making exquisitely crafted items since forever. So it should come as no surprise that, while they didn't invent the automobile, making ones comes easily to them.
We can still remember reports from many years ago about the country only having about a million automobiles in total, mostly reserved for important people. There were no pictures, but the vehicles we imagined were imposing and big, kind of like the Hongqi L5.

Hongqi is the Chinese word for Red Flag, so it's a symbol of national pride. China from 20 years ago would never have allowed Westerners to film something like that, but now, we have a video of Jeremy Clarkson checking it out for The Grand Tour.

The presenter says an L5 would set you back about GBP 850,000, or as much as a hypercar. Of course, you'd never be allowed to buy one in the first place.

From a distance, the Hongqi looks like a mix between an old Maybach and the Russian limos that copied Chrysler. Of course, there must be some heritage element we're missing here.

As expected from the most expensive car this country has ever produced, the attention to detail is obvious. The chrome looks like it's been shipped over to Rolls-Royce for polishing and the paint must have taken a few hundred hours to perfect.

We've seen a few photos, but this video brings us closer to the details. For example, we spotted a Bose sound system and a floating dashboard screen. Precious woods and metals are everywhere.

Three versions of the L5 are made, one for members of the government, one for parades and the civilian model. All measure 5.2 meters long and are powered by a 6-liter V12 producing around 400 HP and 550 Nm of torque. The gearbox is a six-speed auto.

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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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