GWM P Series (2020)​


The eagerly-anticipated GWM P Series bakkie has finally been launched in Southern Africa. In leisure double-cab guise, the 2.0-litre turbodiesel P Series "Passenger" line-up comes in 2 grades – LS and LT, the top-spec of which is absolutely packed with creature comforts and safety features, including adaptive cruise control and lane-centring.

Haval Motors SA – the parent company of Great Wall Motors (GWM) has introduced 16 derivatives of the new P Series bakkie, which includes single- and double cab variants, the former in Commercial and the latter in both Commercial and Passenger configurations. The Chinese-built double-cabs are available in 2WD and 4WD guises and with a choice of a 6-speed manual gearbox or a ZF-sourced 8-speed automatic transmission; the workhorse single-cab derivatives are also either 2WD or 4WD, but only available with a manual 'box.

The entire range is available in a choice of 6 exterior colours, but take note that the naming of the P Series Commercial double cab (DC) line-up is a trifle deceptive, because even in the lowest (SX) grade, the newcomer’s standard specification is much higher than those of most workhorse LCVs.

Indeed, SX versions feature DRLs, 17-inch alloys, side steps and colour-coded bumpers -mirror housings and -door handles. Their cabins come equipped with a multifunction 'wheel, cruise control, aircon, electric windows, Bluetooth-enabled audio system, 2 USB ports and a 12V charging socket. Safety kit includes dual front airbags, ABS with brake assist, electronic stability control, rear parking sensors and tyre pressure monitors.

All automatic derivatives in the P Series double-cab line-up come equipped with electric (as opposed to hydraulic) power steering, an electronic handbrake (with auto-hold function), steering wheel-mounted shift paddles, keyless entry and push-button start.

There’s bound to be a lot of interest in the head-turning Passenger version of the P Series double cab (exclusively available in automatic). The most luxurious bakkie in GWM’s line-up which can be distinguished by its LED head- and tail lamps and the bold chrome bars in its grille, which are matched by similarly-detailed side mirrors and door handles. A plastic load-bin liner is also fitted.

The interior finishes are said to be more akin to those of a high-end Haval SUV model than a bakkie, including a slush-moulded dashboard, leather trim – matched with cross-pattern stitching in the padded door panels, metallic accents and separate ventilation outlets for the rear occupants.DLX grade, which is the top specification in the “Commercial” line-up, includes a sunroof, leather-trimmed steering wheel and upholstery, a 6-way electrically adjustable driver’s seat, auto lights and –wipers, climate control, a 9-inch touchscreen infotainment system (with 6-speakers, plus compatible with Apple CarPlay as well as Android Auto), passenger-side kerb- and reverse-view cameras, electrically adjustable and -folding side mirrors and a self-dipping rear-view mirror, in addition to dual side and curtain airbags (6 airbags in total).

The Passenger double cab's LS grade is much the same as the DLX spec in the Commercial line-up. Although it doesn’t have a leather-trimmed steering wheel or electrical adjustment for the driver’s seat, this lower-spec trim line does include, inter alia, disc brakes all round, full-leather seats, selectable driving modes and adjustable steering sensitivity, an additional central airbag, plus reverse-view camera guidelines.

The top-of-the-range LT grade upgrades the Passenger line-up’s spec dramatically, however. The exterior upgrades over the LS comprise only a chrome sports bar and rear deck pedal, but the onboard technology (including active safety) of the LT challenges those of the market’s top bakkies.Text here ...

Apart from the provision of a 7-inch LCD virtual instrument cluster (as opposed to the LS' 3.5-inch driver info display), both front seats in the LT are electrically adjustable (the driver’s 6 ways and front passenger’s 4 ways), the 9-inch infotainment touchscreen additionally features intelligent voice control, a 360-degree camera view and rear-cross traffic alert, all of which is complemented by a wireless charging pad and a 220V power outlet.

The “Technological Intelligence and Safety” suite of features on LT derivatives (enabled by a forward-facing camera), meanwhile, includes adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning -keeping and -centring, forward-collision warning, auto emergency braking and traffic-sign recognition.

To reiterate, the P Series will only be available in 2.0-litre turbodiesel guise. The powerplant delivers 120 kW and 400 Nm of torque – Haval Motors SA has not released claimed consumption figures yet. The P Series rides on a double-wishbone front suspension and a leaf-sprung rigid rear axle.

The range's 4WD derivatives are said to offer 232 mm of ground clearance, as well as approach and departure angles of 27 degrees and 25 degrees respectively. The “Torque on Demand” intelligent all-wheel-drive system with 2H, 4H Auto and 4L modes and various off-road modes is made by Borg-Warner. All the P Series Double Cab Passenger derivatives feature Hill Assist and –Descent Control, as well as a rear diff-lock.