GO BIG OR GO HOME

Haval has brought a strong contender into the boxing ring. Introducing the Haval H9! Let’s kick it off with the price tag, as this sets this vehicle apart in the 7 seater SUV segment. Priced at R599 900 for an adventure SUV? Yes and you get much more for your buck with the H9.

The front of this massive SUV is a big chrome grille with the red HAVAL logo, LED daytime running headlights which focuses around a bend to impress safety. The curves are clean on this SUV, shark fin on the roof, metal side stets as this SUV is higher than you think and it is sitting on 18”

Inside its pure luxury with three rows of leather seats. All seats are fully electric which makes adjusting them breeze but the driver and passenger seats has lumber support, ventilation, heat control and massage system. The Mercedes E class is the only vehicle I can think of which has the same seat system and a base model for an E Class will set you back at R830k  whereas the BMW 7 series only the rear seats have the massage systems built in, and that is priced at R1.6 million.

The only thing Haval should have added is an air freshener system which both Mercedes and BMW has adding to its luxury experience.

Behind the wheel – you have a choice of six driving modes:

ECO/Auto mode: easy driving for urban roads

4L mode: for off road driving. This mode is for extreme off-road, more power and better grip

Sports more: longer gear changes to increase power but you have a choice to use the paddle shifts to change gears

Snow Mode: this mode is to maximize grip but the engine uses less power

Mud Mode: similar to snow mode but the power input is higher to get you out

Sand Mode: I found this mode is the same as mud mode setting. Power to the wheels felt the same

 

Changing to different modes changes the dash lighting which I thought was brilliant. It enhances the drive visually.

We also have a choice of 4 ambit lighting colours which are purple, red, orange and blue.

The Chinese has really capitalized on space. With the fonts seats fully reclined you can fit three adults at the rear comfortably. However the third row I think is best suited for children. With all three seating rows your boot space is not bad for grocery shopping. If you are travelling you would be able to fit two medium sized suit cases. Having the third row seats down you can actually fit a bed in there. You have tons of luggage space.

The H9 is a 2.0 liter turbo charged 4 cylinder petrol engine pushing out 180kW and 350 Nm. This is equipped with an eight speed automatic transmission.

VERDICT: The HAVAL H9 is really a beast on the road or off road. It’s huge and makes its presents known on the road. Inside its beautiful and classy and it is really difficult to fault this car. I mentioned the air freshener and if the engine sounded meatier like the Jeep SRT this would be the perfect SUV! Saying all that it is small things to let go of when you have a price tag of R600k. the H9 is only available in petrol and there are no news of GWM to produce a diesel model.

Price:  R599 900

Engine: 2.0-litre 4-cylinder turbo petrol

Gearbox: 8-speed dual-clutch transmission

Fuel economy: 13.0 L/100 km

Power/Torque: 180 kW/350 Nm

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