Great value SUV
At $23,990, Great Wall’s first passenger vehicle has plenty to offer, reports PETER BARNWELL.
WHEN we clapped eyes on the Great Wall X240, it didn’t register because the cheeky Chinese sport utility vehicle looks just like any Toyota or Mitsubishi you might see out on the street. In fact, the Great Wall X240 compact SUV looks BETTER than many of its competitors.
Just goes to show you. The Chinese have been in the thick of the auto industry for years and haven’t been slow in picking up tricks of the trade and plenty of the good bits and pieces.
The X240 is third cab off the Great Wall rank in this country and ushers in the first China-built passenger vehicle after the two Great Wall utes.
And as expected, it’s sharply priced at $23,990 drive away – not bad for a vehicle this size with selectable 4WD and high and low range.
But that’s only the half of it. Also included are leather upholstery, air conditioning, a decent sounding audio system, 17in alloys with Goodyear rubber, remote central locking and an electrically adjustable driver’s seat.
We were a bit shocked to hear reversing sensors chiming away this far down the food chain.
The leather is a bit on the rough side but siting on skins is better than sitting on plastic any day.
X240 is built on a tried and true ladder chassis with the body bolted on – just like they used to do and it offers reasonable off road capabilities with adequate ground clearance and the gearing to get you out of tight situations. A shift-on-the-fly 4WD selector system adds to X240’s appeal.
Power comes from a 2.4-litre, petrol four cylinder driving through a five-speed manual gearbox – the only choice so far.
At 1830kg, X240 is a bit on the porky side which dents performance especially when fully loaded. Fuel consumption is 10.4 litres/100km.
The gear change could do with shorter throws between ratios but these matters are just fine tuning rather than anything serious.
It has dual airbags and ABS with stability control to follow soon.
The drive experience is pretty good given X240’s intended purpose – as a family hack that can be taken a fair way off road without trouble. Some fine tuning of the suspension, engine and gear change would make a world of difference but as it stands, the X240 offers plenty of vehicle for not a lot of money.
And its backed by a three year/100,000km warranty. That should make this Chinese takeaway more palatable.
4WD appeal: The X240 offers shift-on-the-fly 4WD.