Chinese cars coming to UK this year

* Landwind X-Pedition on way * Seven-seat Fashion MPV will follow * More Chinese brands to come to Europe...

Chinese cars coming to UK this year

Chinese car manufacturer Landwind says it is on course to start selling cars in the UK at the end of this year.

The company's X-pedition compact 4x4 is scheduled to go on sale this autumn, followed by the seven-seat Fashion MPV.

The X-Pedition is already available in parts of Europe. There, it comes with a 123bhp 2.4-litre petrol engine in four- or two-wheel drive, or a 113bhp 2.0-litre petrol engine in two-wheel drive only.

Landwind officials have said that the company will reveal its dealer network plans this summer.

The company expects the latest X-pedition to get a three-star Euro NCAP rating. The car previously attracted controversy in 2005 when a Euro NCAP crash test showed the driver would not survive a 40mph head-on impact. It was awarded no stars for adult protection.

'We'll be selling the first Chinese cars in the UK,' said Landwind's European Sales Director, Robert Pronk. 'As far as we know, we're the only Chinese brand with an EU type-approved car. Others are a year or more away.'

Other Chinese car companies looking to break into the European market include MG (reborn as Roewe), Geely, Chery and Great Wall. All of these manufacturers have outlined tentative plans to launch in Europe within three years.

The IM Group, which is the UK distributor for Subaru and Daihatsu, has been linked with import deals for several of the Chinese manufacturers.