For years, Shenzhen, China’s manufacturing hub, has been cranking out a fire hose of counterfeit merchandise—everything from faux designer handbags, expensive watches, cheap DVDs, cell phones, even, sham art masterpieces.
Now, the fake-goods industry appears to have climbed several more notches in the value chain. At the recently held 2009 Shanghai auto expo, the Chinese auto industry rolled out a knockoff of the British luxury car Rolls-Royce Phantom.
The cloned model, known as Geely GE, has almost identical specs, but with a price tag of £30,000, it’s significantly cheaper than the original, which costs £250,000.
The Telegraph reports:
The 5.4 meter prototype, painted black and given pride of place on a raised plinth in the middle of Geely’s stand is undeniably based on the shape of the Rolls in the shape of its cabin, windows, and down-sloping rear deck.
Reacting to the development, Rolls-Royce spokesman told the Daily Mail, “Rolls-Royce Motor Cars is very protective of its brand image and takes seriously any attempt to imitate its products.”
Further, he added that the company is “keeping its options open and is in consultation with its legal advisers.”