OMODA looks

Chery-ripe for

success

Chery OMODA 5
Chery OMODA 5, overhead
Chery OMODA 5, rear profile

CHERY Automobile may not be a familiar name to UK car enthusiasts but the chances are we will be hearing a lot more about the brand over the coming months.

The Chinese car company has been operating since 1990 and has run a joint venture on home soil with Jaguar Land Rover for a dozen years - now it's planning to launch its first model in Britain.

It comes in the shape of the new petrol-powered OMODA 5 compact crossover due to hit UK streets next February from a competitive price point of £25,000 to £27,000.

With a futuristic design plus the promise of the latest in hi-tech equipment, the car is seen as a rival to hugely popular models like the Toyota C-HR, Nissan Qashqai and Honda HR-V, as well as another Chinese newcomer the BYD Atto 3.

And though no contracts have yet been signed Chery says it has already established links with several UK dealer groups ahead of the pre-order process beginning before the end of this year.

Visually the OMODA catches the eye courtesy of its wide horizontal diamond-pattern grille, T-shaped headlamps and striking red elements on the side skirts and wing mirrors, while the sharply angled rear end has the car's name written across the tailgate.

Inside there's a pair of 10.2-inch screens, the central one including a 360-degree reversing camera while everything is voice controlled, there's a mobile phone charging pad, heated and ventilated eco-leather seats and access to Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.

Trim grades have yet to be finalised but buyers will get a choice of 18 or 19-inch wheels, including black alloy with red inserts, plus a contrasting black roof.

At present the only engine option will be a 1.6-litre petrol unit developing 195bhp - good for a 0-62mph acceleration time of around 7.8 seconds - paired to a seven-speed dual clutch automatic transmission but the plan is to introduce a fully electric model in early 2024 as well.

Chery UK sales director Ray Wang is confident the OMODA will prove a successful entrant into the UK market and said the car's design, equipment, performance and price will give it a clear advantage over its competitors.

The company has established a global research and development team of 5,500 people with centres in China, Germany, the USA and Brazil, and has already enjoyed international success, notably with its Tiggo and Arrizo models, exporting 450,000 units in 2022.

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