The 2022 Chengdu Auto Show in China will start on Friday, August 26. But we, as always, cannot wait that long. Happily, many of the new cars were spotted arriving at the exhibition hall. Time thus for the Mega Preview. We kick off with the new Buick Envista, a kind of cool SUV for the Chinese car market made in China by SAIC-GM.
The Buick Envista stands on a new platform and is aimed at a younger audience. To attract those youngsters Buick will sell the Envista in various cool colors, including pink. A lot of Chinese automakers are offering pink as an official color, but this is the first time Buick does so. The Envista is powered by a 180 hp 1.5 liter turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine, good for a 205 km/h top speed. Size:4638/1816/1565, with a 2700 wheelbase. The Buick Envista is closely related to the…
… Chevrolet Seeker, another new compact GM SUV for China. The Envista and Seeker are based on the same platform and use the same 1.5 turbocharged engine. Size is thus nearly the same too: 4537/1823/1564, 2700. The Seeker looks a bit more conventional then the Envista, with black wheel arches for a rugged look and notably large mirrors. Both the Envista and Seeker will launch in Q4.
MPVs are still very popular in China and almost every car maker is selling and/or developing new ones. The Buick GL8 is one of the longest-running MPV series, it debuted way back in 1997. Over the years, it has been updated lots of times, and Buick currently sells two generations of the GL8 alongside each other. The ‘new’ Buick GL8 is basically a facelift of the third-generation GL8, which debuted in 2017. It has the same size and uses the same engine: a 2.0 turbo + 48V with 236 hp and 350 Nm, mated to a 9-speed automatic. You may think that the GL8 Century has a large and impressive grille, until you see this:
This is the Trumpchi M8, with a grille so impressive one almost doesn’t note the rest of the car. The M8 has the largest grille of all MPVs, so far. There are two versions of the Trumpchi M8; petrol and hybrid. The petrol version gets a new 2.0 turbo with 251 hp and 380 Nm. The hybrid gets a 190 hp 2.0 turbo + an electric motor. Gearboxes: CVT or 8-speed automatic.
The Denza D9 is yet another new MPV for China, and probably the one that has generated the most buzz in China. Denza used to be a brand owned by the BYD-Daimler joint venture, but it is fully owned by BYD now. The D9 is the first MPV of the Denza brand. It comes in two kinds: EV and PHEV, each with a different front design.
The D9 is huge and seats seven: 5250/1960/1920, 3110. The PHEV combines a 1.5 turbo with an electric motor. Max output is 292 hp and 681 Nm. The EV comes in single and dual motor versions, with 313 hp and 360 Nm and 374 hp and 470 Nm respectively.
Geometry is an affordable EV brand under the Geely Group, using older petrol-powered Geely’s as base. The new Geometry M6 is based on the Geometry E, which in turn was based on the Geely Emgrand GS, a car that originally debuted in 2016. Platforms go a long way in China! The Geometry M6 is powered by a single electric motor at the front with an output of 204 hp.
Volkswagen Teramont X facelift
The Volkswagen Teramont X is the SUV-coupe version of the Teramont SUV, known elsewhere as the Volkswagen Atlas. The Teramont is made in China at SAIC-VW. The facelift includes a new front, a new rear, new trim, new wheels, and an updated interior. The engines will remain the same: 2.0 turbo with 186 or 220 hp, and a 2.5 turbo VR6 with 299 hp.
Smart #1 Brabus
The Smart #1 Brabus is the performance version of the Smart #1, using a twin-motor setup with an output of 400 hp, good for a 0-100 of 3.9 seconds. It has been dressed up with sporty bits, like the front lip and the side skirts. The matte black pain and red mirror housings are standard on the Brabus version. It’ll hit the Chinese car market at month’s end.
More Chengdu previews soon!