The rise of China has been reshaping how the country sees its own role in the world. China has become increasingly willing to move from being a norm and system taker to a norm and system shaper (if not yet maker). One example is Xi Jinping's promotion of ‘a new type of Great Power relations’ designed to create a strategic space in which to operate. By using a mixed quantitative/qualitative analysis, we analyse 141 Chinese articles titled with ‘new type of Great Power relations’. We find that although Chinese analysts and policy makers rejected the idea of a G2 in 2009, the mainstream discourse has rapidly shifted to what we call a ‘G2 with Chinese characteristics’ which indicates a fundamental shift in Chinese evaluation of the power status of itself and others. While some Chinese scholars consider China to have already achieved the status as the world's No. 2 or even a superpower, the mainstream discourse views China as both a Great Power and a rising power at the same time. This, we argue, moderates the expectations of what China can and should do to resolve global problems despite its great power status.