Best, worst and weird of Beijing 2012
Once upon a time, you'd become the target of stinging ridicule for comparing a Chinese motor show to that of Detroit, Frankfurt, Geneva or Tokyo. It'd be a bit like comparing a Formula One world champion to the Stig. There is no comparison.
However, times, they are a changin'.
It says a lot that Lamborghini chose the Beijing show to launch one of its most important new models, the Urus SUV. Same, too, for Mercedes, which unveiled its Style Concept Coupe, which would have cost a lot of money to create. Audi unveiled its RS Q3 concept and Porsche, its ballistic new Cayenne GTS.
With the doors to this year's Beijing show flinging open yesterday (Monday), we sent intrepid TopGear reporter (and the boss) Stephen Corby to cover it. Equipped with iPhone and a curious eye, Stephen braved the squawking hordes of journalists and photographers to bring you these pics.
We must thank him for them, because he is risking his lungs to bring them to you. The above photo was taken from outside the Beijing Auto Show building. "First a pic of the sky," says Stephen. "It's noon. That's not fog. Or smoke. It's toxic soup."
And on that slightly worrying bombshell, let us begin...