Replacing the Chinese brand’s successful H2 and set for local launch later this month, the Haval Jolion has arrived in Australia and although pricing and specification is not yet confirmed, there are new images and a few clues in the antipodean offering to point the way to what cars en route to South African showrooms.
First off, the Jolion’s predecessor, the H2, was a vehicle we liked rather a lot, with its “plush cabin featuring myriad convenience items and absorbent ride quality,” so we have high hopes for its replacement. Moreover, because the Jolion is the second vehicle from the firm designed by former Land Rover and Ford designer Phil Simmons who is now heading up the Chinese outfit.
Overseas, the first models (pictured) will form part of a launch-edition run, limited to just a few hundred units in a choice of either mid-spec or flagship grades, with regular non-launch-edition cars – along with an entry-level grade – expected to arrive further down the road.
Full specifications won’t be made known until the launch itself, of course, but we understand top-spec variants will feature a digital instrument cluster, head’s up display, 18-inch wheels, sunroof, wireless smartphone charging, along with comprehensive active and passive safety features, amongst others.
Press images from Haval also show a decent-sized infotainment touchscreen with Bluetooth and screen mirroring functionality, push-button start and a rotary gear shifter. At the launch, which is currently slated for April 20, it will be interesting to see is if South African-spec cars feature the same autonomous emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist, lane-departure warning, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert and traffic-sign recognition as they do in the Australian model.
Unchanged from the H2 is the Jolion’s 1.5-litre four-cylinder turbopetrol producing 110 kW and 202 N.m, although the Chinese brand has said its engine has been “re-engineered”, with a new dual-clutch gearbox able to deliver superior fuel economy compared with the previous car’s six-speed torque-converter auto. A six-speed manual will still be offered, with both transmissions augmented by a drive mode selector with four driving modes.
Sizing wise, like the H2 it replaces, the Jolion is a large vehicle, almost bordering on a mid-size SUV: measuring 4 472 mm long, 1 841 mm wide, and riding on a 2 700 mm wheelbase.
Although pricing is yet to be announced – based off its H2 predecessor, we’re expecting very competitive pricing, with only a nominal increase over the outgoing H2, which is priced from R294 900 for the City, to R354 900 for the top-spec Luxury.
We will be at the launch of the Haval Jolion in the three weeks’ time, so stay tuned for more info.