Chery, the Chinese car maker targeting a European debut in 2019/20, is promising to launch with a range comprising solely electrified models.
Setting out its high-tech future, company CEO Anning Chen told Autocar: “Every model will be electrified, either micro-hybrid, hybrid or plug-in hybrid. And, for sure, we will also have BEV [battery electric vehicles].”
Chery showed its hybrid powertrains at last month's Frankfurt motor show, with a 113bhp electric motor attached directly to the flywheel end of the transversely mounted, 147bhp 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine.
For its European launch, Chery will sell the Exeed TX, a 4.7m-long five-seat SUV sitting on a 2.7m-long wheelbase. Its contemporary bodywork was designed in Shanghai by Canadian James Hope, a former Ford designer who worked on the GT90 concept and 2005 Mustang. He joined Chery in 2012.
Hope’s design is centred around a large ‘waterfall’ grille. “I wanted to make a big statement for the front end,” he said. The intricate design is hot-stamped to give it a mirror finish.
A choice of two Getrag gearboxes will be offered, a sixspeed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch. Suspension is by front struts and rear multi-link.
The body was developed by German metalworking specialist Benteler and the four-wheel drive system by Dana and BorgWarner.
Weight is around 1700kg for the plug-in version, which has a lithium ion battery of around 12kWh and is said to be good for a 43-mile electric-only range. Its claimed acceleration of 6.0sec from rest to 62mph is brisk. Top speed is 124mph and NEDC fuel economy 156mpg.