Number seven in its giant home market, up from eighth a year ago having moved past Haval, Changan Auto is larger and more important than many realise. This year, the firm has begun to make serious moves into EVs, while launching a line of Uni-sub brand SUVs, each based on MPA, a new architecture. There’s much more to come.
The Benni E-Star is a 3,770 mm long EV which was launched in China back in April. The little hatchback has a claimed NEDC range of up to 301 km, a 32.2 kWh battery pack and a single motor with outputs of 55 kW and 170 Nm. It’s scheduled to be given a facelift in 2023 and to be replaced in 2027.
Another newly launched model is the Eado E-Life. This is an electric version of Changan’s Eado DT, a C segment sedan which started life in 2014 as the Yuexiang and then had its name changed to Yuexiang V7. Then, at the time of a mid-life facelift in March 2018, the name was further altered, becoming Eado DT.
Given the age of the petrol powered original, the E-Life isn’t likely to be in production for too long. It has a 161 hp motor and a 52.7 kWh battery pack. The NEDC range is 425 km. Expect a successor in a year’s time.
The E-Rock is an electric version of Changan’s CS55 SUV. The 4,515 mm long EV became available in July. That was more than three years after the petrol-powered CS55 original. The looks are similar, but there is a closed grille plus blue trim outside and inside.
Buyers have a choice of two battery options (52.7 or 84.2 kWh) with stated ranges of up to 403 and 605 km. Both are powered by a 160 kW and 300 Nm motor.
Changan should launch the next generation CS55 and CS55 E-Rock in 2024.
Uni sub-brand SUVs
The first Uni-series model, a 4,515 mm long crossover, went on sale in China at the end of May. The Chinese name is ‘Yinli’ (gravity). The standard engine for the Uni-T, a dramatic looking low-roof five-door hatchback, is a 132 kW and 300 Nm 1.5-litre petrol turbo. In September, 10,601 vehicles were delivered in the domestic market and sales had exceeded 10,000 for three consecutive months (as at 3 November, data for October were not yet available).
The larger, soon to be revealed Uni-K, is a 4,865 mm long low-roof SUV which was heralded by the Changan Vision-V concept at the Beijing motor show in September. The production model will premiere at Auto Guangzhou in a few weeks’ time. The powertrain is a 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol turbo, drive going to both axles via an eight-speed automatic gearbox. Expect a seven-year life cycle, which means a facelift around mid-2024.
Groupe PSA JV pick-up
Changan Auto and Groupe PSA co-developed a pick-up as the first model for a shared Light Commercial Vehicles architecture. The JV was announced in September 2017 with the one-tonne model stated at that time to be on sale “by 2020”.
Announced to the media in October 2019, Changan’s Kaicheng F70 (Kaicene F70 in Chinese) is manufactured by the Chinese firm at its Ding Zhou plant (also known as Dingzhou). This built on what had been an existing co-operation between the two firms but the CAPSA joint venture for the manufacture of DS vehicles has since been dissolved.
The truck has KAICENE, an English language version of Kaicheng, emblazened across the grille in large font. There are two lengths: 5,330 mm with a 3,180 mm wheelbase, or 5,580 and 3,430.
In July, Changan released images of its export version of the Kaicheng F70 to the media. As well as a new grille, the main news was a new name. The Hunter would be exported to countries in South America and the Middle East, it was stated. The model’s life cycle should be a long one, potentially as many as ten years. For that reason, a facelift is likely to be as far off as 2024.
Reports for many other manufacturers’ future models are grouped in the OEM product strategy summaries section of just-auto.com.
Future platform intelligence
More detail on past, current and forthcoming models can be found in PLDB, the future vehicles database which is part of GlobalData’s Automotive Intelligence Center. That includes multiple other Changan vehicles not reported on above.
Along with its own brand divisions, Changan Auto has manufacturing and distribution partnerships with Ford and Mazda. Details of those JVs’ models can also be found in PLDB.
The next OEM in just-auto’s future model series will be Toyota Motor Corporation.