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This article was published on April 15, 2021


Great Wall Motors’ new EV is definitely, certainly, obviously NOT a VW Beetle

Or is it?

Great Wall Motors’ new EV is definitely, certainly, obviously NOT a VW Beetle
Matthew Beedham
Story by

Matthew Beedham

Editor, SHIFT by TNW

Matthew is the editor of SHIFT. He likes electric cars, and other things with wheels, wings, or hulls. Matthew is the editor of SHIFT. He likes electric cars, and other things with wheels, wings, or hulls.

Every so often, a new car comes along that makes me think I’ve seen it somewhere before.

If you look at the images below and think today is one of those days, you’d be mistaken. The car below is a totally new car — and looks nothing like a VW Beetle from a bygone era. Chinese outfit, Great Wall Motors and its electric focused sub-brand Ora really hit it out of the park when it comes to originality.

EV, car, great wall motors
Credit: Car News China
This is the side profile of the not-a-Beetle EV by Great Wall Motors. If you think this looks like a Beetle you’re wrong, and I suggest you get your eyes checked.

The not-a-Beetle four-door EV is expected to be shown off at the Shanghai Auto Show later this month.

ev, great wall, beetle
The rear end of the not-a-Beetle EV. That chrome detailing, I’ve never seen anything like that before. Those round lights? Nah, totally new.
EV, car, beetle, great wall
Credit: Car News China
The interior of the not-a-Beetle is classic, and retro-inspired. But of course, it has nothing to do with the original Beetle.

Ora doesn’t have a name for its new EV yet, and it’s even started a naming competition for it, but here are some suggestions:

  1. Not a Beetle
  2. Definitely not a Beetle
  3. Really not a Beetle
  4. The electric car that’s not a Beetle
  5. The car formerly known as Beetle (but never was a Beetle)

Ok, ok, so this thing looks exactly like a classic VW Beetle. That’s not a bad thing, the Beetle is a car loved by many, and is the original self-driving car (thanks Herbie). What’s not to love? (You know, if we forget the original Beetle was the brain child of Hitler.)

 I can’t say this ballsy rip-off is at all surprising though, China-based carmakers do have a teeny weeny history of making cars that look suspiciously like cars from European and US brands. But I don’t see that as a bad thing — on the surface at least.

The images seemed to surface on Car News China’s Facebook page, but hats off to Car and Bike for spotting them.

Hopefully when it’s showed off for real, we’ll have something better to look at than these renders.


Do EVs excite your electrons? Do ebikes get your wheels spinning? Do self-driving cars get you all charged up? 

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