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‘Dust-eater’ P- Series almost ‘ruined’ a wedding

This is a result of questions I had to field such as “what brash brand is this or where does this big Van comes from?” as we took it for vigorous test from Soweto to Cosmo City and the lush Kubu-Kwena lodge in Marbel Hall -that borders between Limpopo and Mpumalanga. But what do you, you let actions speak for itself…

Almost danced with trouble as umakoti failed dismally to take her eyes-off this ‘dust-eater’ at a private wedding held at the lodge. Begrudgingly the groom had to intervene and remind her what was at stake, et al…what could have happened is as good as your judgement.

Yes, its cascading grille stands out. The Chinese owned brand GWM must be congratulated for having invested huge resources in unveiling the P- Series models launched last year in South Africa.

The discerning leisure double and single- bakkies shows its readiness to compete with its arch rivals be it Ford, X Class or Toyota in this market.

From grille to its long base and shape, the P- Series stands out and here’s why?

Exterior: front suspension felt compliant on road and felt very familiar to its sister Haval H9, a good sign, so is the sun-roof.

The interior is well trimmed for what is essentially an entry level commercial grade vehicle.

Artificial electric leather seats, auto aircon, 9 inch (22.86 cm) touchscreen with Apple Car Play and Android Auto, a number of USB and 12v outlets, multifunction steering wheel, cruise control, door panels, park distance control, reverse camera and more, made our ride enjoyable, especially when passing through the notorious Moloto Rd in Mpumalanga.

There are more cubby and holders than you would think, making the interior very user friendly, so is the leg room.

As standard in many instances- safety features included six airbags, stability and traction control and hill hold assist.

When you hit the standard fitment start button the 2.0l turbo diesel engine comes to a calm and refined diesel idle, and produces 120kW and 400Nm.

Talk of diesel, yes, I must admit I struggled a bit to locate the button for the diesel cab for re-fuelling that made me think of calling Vaughen but being smart as I am, managed to locate it- aha! Take liberties with its power and it’ll empty its fuel tank contents rapidly. It averaged about 11.7l/100km on average.

We tested the six-speed manual transmission, must say was decently light in operation, especially shifting from one area to another. It did not feel the luggage of speakers and amplifiers, laptops and all music equipment’s associated with it, as it revved off unflinchingly.

The only snag: At slow pace driving is hampered by monumental turbo lag, which makes it problematic to make overtaking manoeuvres, but once the turbo has coiled it goes forward with gusto.

According to GWM it can tow up to 3,750kg. We should put that to the test…

As a 4×4 model with a mode selector it gets 232mm of ground clearance and though the chance to see if it would get stuck in the mud never presented itself, the torque of the engine, the ground clearance, and diff-lock promise good off-road driving prowess, as was evident during off-road at the lodge.

Yes, P- Series is a ‘dust-eater’ and we recommend it for use be it commercial or taking family out for a long drive.

As for those superlatives mentioned in my opening remark here is a special message:  China is no longer a play-ground, chana!

The P Series is styled like a Ranger, is as tough as a Hilux and drives like an Isuzu and costs a heck of a lot less, in all honesty the opposition better keep and eye out”, to borrow from a fellow journo.

It comes with a five-year/100,000km warranty and maintenance plan.

It retails for R434,900.

Verdict

Performance 1-10 (5)

Diesel 1-10 (5)

Image SLM (The brand new P- Series DC ‘dust-eater’ will surely shake the SA market- ask umakoti).  

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