1974 Hongqi CA770
Hongqi is a Chinese luxury car marque owned by the automaker FAW Car Company, itself a subsidiary of FAW Group. Hongqi cars were the first domestically produced Chinese passenger vehicles.
First manufactured in 1958, the original Hongqi models were only for high-ranking party elite and remained in production until 1981. The current Hongqi range comprises the H7 (an executive car based on the Toyota Crown platform), L5, L7 and L9.
In Chinese hongqi means "red flag", a communist symbol.
The original Hongqi cars were a luxury item used for the transport of foreign dignitaries and the party elite.
Introduced on August 1, 1958, the first Hongqi was the CA72. By September, a convertible version intended to be used by dignitaries in National Day parades had appeared. The CA72's design was based on a 1955 Chrysler.From the beginning, the full-size Hongqi was equipped with a 147 kW (200 PS; 197 hp) V8 engine. The grille was based on a traditional design of a Chinese fan, and still remains in use on Hongqis today.
The modernized CA770 is the Hongqi model that defines the brand. First introduced in 1963, it remained in production until 1980 albeit in limited numbers. In 1965 a lengthened version with three rows of seats appeared, and by 1969 an armored version (CA772) was seen. A shortened version was also built in small numbers in the seventies. Around 1,600 V8-engined Hongqis were built in total. Although Chairman Mao had not taken a ride in a Hongqi until Nixon's 1972 visit, he did take a personal interest in the cars from the beginning.