Chery’s premium Omoda C5 is on its way to South Africa and the company has confirmed to TopAuto that the “futuristic fastback crossover” will be powered by a 1.5-litre motor at launch and that a while later, it is also receiving a new-energy powertrain of some sort.
The manufacturer did not disclose whether this unit will be a hybrid, plug-in hybrid, or fully electric – but if we were to take a guess, we’d put our money on the first one.
The C5 was initially showcased in the country at the 2022 Festival of Motoring and at the time, its launch was penned in for “late 2022”, however, we are now in 2023 and the vehicle has yet to reach local dealers. Chery did not say why the C5 didn’t go on sale last year and also didn’t reveal when it’s now scheduled to make its debut, only stating that it will “soon be offered to customers in South Africa.”
Additionally, the company said that no indicative pricing can currently be shared on its up-and-coming product, but it did confirm pricing “will be competitive.”
What to expect
We now know that the Omoda C5 is going to feature a 1.5-litre powerplant, but not whether it will be turbocharged or naturally aspirated.
In the local market, Chery sells two SUVs each with an engine of this size, the non-turbocharged models generating 83kW and 138Nm and the turbocharged ones doing 108kW and 210Nm. In Russia, the C5 is being introduced with the latter of the two drivetrains, according to World Best Car, so we expect to see a similar setup in South Africa.
This configuration pairs with a CVT gearbox and is good for a 0-100km/h run of approximately 10 seconds and a combined fuel consumption of around 7.0l/100km.
As for the upcoming new-energy derivative, we anticipate this to take the form of the recently-unveiled “Chery DHT system” that combines the 1.5-litre petrol unit with two electric motors and a three-speed transmission.
These underpinnings boast a maximum torque output of 510Nm, a 0-100km/h time of 7 seconds, a fuel economy of 1.0l/100km, and nine “high-performance operating modes” including but not limited to full-electric, single and dual-motor, range extension, and power recovery settings.
Playing into the futuristic design of the Omoda, the cabin is treated to high-end equipment headlined by one-piece Sports seats in eco-leather and a dual-screen 10.25-inch infotainment setup on the dash with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Furthermore, Chery’s fastback crossover comes with automatic high-beam LED headlights, dual-zone climate control with an air purification system, keyless entry and start, wireless smartphone charging, adaptive cruise control, forward collision warnings, autonomous emergency braking, and lane keep and departure warnings.
Recently, the vehicle also scored five stars for safety in the Euro NCAP crash tests.
“The Omoda C5 is all about the unconventional and fashionable,” said Tony Liu, executive deputy general manager of Chery South Africa.
“Its arrival will create a futuristic space called O-universe, which is set to appeal to individualistic urban trendsetters who dare to be different.”