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The Mercury Cars Guide : October 24th 2009
8--- Classifieds 62 300 400 • carsguide.com.au Saturday, October 24, 2009 Nothing's lost in translation ROBUST: The Great Wall Motors' V240 4x4, and its interior, inset. China follows Korea and Japan from obscurity to potential global vehicle domination. Neil Dowling gives us a little lesson in translation, which should tell you everything you may have already guessed about China. IN the most common language in China, Man- darin, the word for ''copy'' and ''learn'' are the same. Interestingly, it's also the case in Japanese. The point is that while we think the Chinese habitually copy --- hardly an incorrect assumption --- they under- stand that they are learning. No surprise then that the first wave of Chinese vehicles into Australia ----a two-model light commercial vehicle range from Great Wall Motors --- is an exercise in deja vu. The models have overtones of the Nissan Navara and Holden Rodeo, particularly in the cabin profile and dash- board treatment, though the Chinese go their own way with its V240's ''Guppy'' fascia styling. In fact, I could go so far as to say if you have a five- year-old Rodeo dual-cab with a damaged rear door, GWM may be able to sell you one. But while there is imitation on looks, the Chinese defi- nitely go it alone on price. The GWM SA220 (actually called Sailor in China) is an older- styled, Navara-inspired dual- cab 2WD that gets a bargain- basement $19,990 entry price. Tested here is the more modern Rodeo-ish V240 in its 4WD version that sells at $26,990. That's keen pricing that opens itself to accusations about quality. And here's the thing --- nothing went wrong. Well, aside from an inoperative fuel gauge. The dual-cab is generous in its cabin room, seating five adults with heaps of leg and headroom. The rear seat's back folds flat to replace peo- ple with cargo. Features on the inside in- clude air-conditioning, elec- tric windows and mirrors, CD player with six speakers and intermittent wipers. Outside its alloy wheels --- including the full-size spare --- chrome door handles, mudflaps and fog lights. Not bad for $26,990. The body structure is con- ventional body-on-frame with double wishbones and a tor- sion bar up front and a live axle with leaf springs behind. Even the drivetrain is sim- ple --- understressed 2.4-litre four-cylinder petrol engine driving through a five-speed manual transmission and electric-actuated two-speed transfer case with part-time 4WD. All this augers well for a vehicle that is ostensibly de- signed, in the Soviet ethos, to work with a minimum of repair and the strength to take the abuse of poor road condi- tions. Spending a week with the GWM V240 changed my per- ception almost daily. At first I found the engine asthmatic, the steering over-geared and the gearchange a bit ponder- ous, though I was impressed with the body rigidity and lack of any creaks and groans. Rutted bitumen produced some suspension shudders but that would be expected from an unladen workhorse with a leaf-sprung rear end. Longer freeway runs masked the engine's unwill- ingness to rev and showed a quiet, relaxed cruiser that rode very comfortably on smooth surfaces. The 2.4-litre engine, with its valve cover imprinted with ''Mitsubishi'' to record its ori- gins (regardless, the engine is made in China) produces a lacklustre 100kW/200Nm which is on par with a 1.8-litre. However, short-shift the gearbox and the torque is adequate at pushing the ute along with the traffic. In the dirt, most of the tardiness of the engine disap- pears. The transmisson's transfer case has electric operation so switching to 4WD High is completed merely by pressing a dashboard- mounted button without a need to stop the vehicle. small torque Great Wall Motors V240 4WD dual-cab ute Price: $26,990 Engine: 2.4-litre, 4-cylinder petrol Power: 100kW @ 5250rpm Torque: 200Nm @ 2500-3000rpm Economy (claimed): 10.7 litres/100km Economy (tested): 12.4 litres/100km Fuel tank: 70 litres Transmission: 5-speed manual; 2-speed electric transfer case Drive: Part-time 4WD Suspension: Front - double wishbones, torsion bar; Rear - live axle, leaf springs Brakes: Ventilated disc, drums. ABS with EBD Wheels: 16-inch alloy Tyres: Kuhmo 235/70R16. Full-size alloy spare Steering: Hydraulic power assist rack and pinion Turning circle: 12m Length: 5040mm Width: 1800mm Height: 1730mm Wheelbase: 3050mm Ground clearance: 194mm (laden) Tow (max): 2250kg Towball downweight: 225kg Payload: 1000kg Weight: 1780kg Safety: 2 airbags, ABS brakes Tilford Trade Clearance Centre TONY: 0417 569 323 ROD: 0419 122 991 56b Gormanston Road Moonah Finance Available TAP 6273 8533 www.tilford.com.au CHEAP CHEAP CAR CLEARANCE Prices valid until 30/10/2009 89 Toyota Corolla Hatch 171,000kms, T-bar auto, 1.6ltr engine, p/s $3,750 99 Kia Credos Sedan T-bar auto, drives well, p/s, a/c $3,750 97 Holden Barina Hatch T-bar auto, economical 4 cyl, ideal first car $4,000 00 AU Falcon Sedan T-bar auto, neat & tidy, p/s, a/c $4,700 98 Daihatsu Charade Hatch Economical 1.3ltr, 5 speed, a/c $5,000 94 Peugeot 306 XR Hatch 5 speed, white paint, 175,000kms, p/s, a/c $5,000 97 Ford Festiva Hatch 5 door, manual, only 166,000kms, immaculate $5,000 97 Toyota Starlet Hatch 150,000kms, 5 speed, neat & tidy, p/s, a/c $5,000 96 Holden Astra GSi Hatch 5 speed, 185,000kms, alloys, p/s, a/c $5,900 97 Ford Mondeo Sedan T-bar auto, excellent test, p/s, a/c $6,000 96 Hyundai Lantra Sportswagon T-bar auto, 1.8ltr fuel injected, p/s, a/c $6,000 96 Toyota Corolla Conquest Sedan 1.8ltr engine, 164,000kms, 5 speed, p/s, a/c $6,000 04 Kia Rio Sedan 90,000kms, 5 speed, drives well, p/s, a/c $6,750 98 Nissan Pulsar LX Sedan Alloy wheels, 142,000kms, 5 speed, p/s, a/c $7,000 01 Hyundai Grandeur Sedan Only 40,000kms, T-bar auto, silver paint $8,750 98 Honda Civic CXi Hatch T-bar auto, 144,000kms, immaculate throughout $9,000 99 Mazda 323 Astina Hatch 118,000kms, T-bar auto, red paint, p/s, a/c $9,000 05 Hyundai Getz Hatch 87,000kms, 5 speed, alloys, spoiler kit $10,000 01 Mercedes-Benz A160 Classic Hatch T-bar auto, 132,000kms, fuel miser, p/s, a/c $10,000 02 Nissan Pulsar Q 5 speed, alloy wheels, p/s, a/c $10,000 01 Honda Accord VTi-L Sedan Leather trim, 126,000kms, cruise control, p/s, a/c $10,750 97 Honda Prelude VTi-R ATTS Coupe 108,000kms, 5 speed, heaps of extras $12,000 06 Ford BF Falcon Sedan 141,000kms, auto, white paint, p/s, a/c $13,000 05 Holden VZ Commodore Sedan White paint, T-bar auto, tidy, p/s, a/c $13,000 03 Ford BA Futura Wagon Cruise control, T-bar auto, alloys, p/s, a/c $15,000 Hobart's true & original Trade Clearance Centre Wholesale & Trade welcome
October 17th 2009
October 31st 2009