Only six weeks month after General Motors unveiled its new Baojun brand for the Chinese market, Japanese auto giant Nissan has unveiled a new brand which will hit showrooms in 2012.

Nissan announced Venucia (Chinese name: Qi Chen) September 8 in conjunction with its Chinese partner Dongfeng, saying that it will sell models developed and designed in China for the Chinese market.

The name is derived from the Roman "Venus" and will be represented by a five-star motif to represent the core values of the brand, which Nissan said would be to "respect customers, create value, do the best, achieve world-class quality, and seek the dream."

The automaker did not confirm an expected price range for the vehicle although some reports speculate a range of $7,500 to $15,000 (€5,900 - €11,800), which would put it in competition with the top end of General Motors' Baojun range.

Nissan's venture is the latest in a series of new brands launched by Chinese-foreign partnerships - Honda unveiled its Linian brand, a venture with Guangzhou Automotive Group, in 2008.

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