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Future models - Haval - H7

Beijing show: Haval reveals high-end H7

7 wonders: The Haval H7 will be pitched as a Mazda CX-9 rival but priced to compete with the mid-size CX-5 and its rivals.

Haval's H7 expected to be the company's 'luxury benchmark' and it is coming to Aus

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Haval logo26 Apr 2016

By TIM NICHOLSON

CHINA'S largest SUV-maker, Haval, has used its native Beijing motor show to whip the covers off its latest offering, the H7, ahead of an expected Australian arrival in about a year's time.

Described by the Great Wall Motors-owned brand as “a new luxury benchmark”, the mid-sized H7 will be built on a new platform, and will slot into the Haval line-up between the imminent H6 Coupe and the larger H8 seven-seater.

The H6 Coupe will sit in the ultra-competitive mid-size SUV segment against big hitters including the Mazda CX-5, Nissan X-Trail and Hyundai Tucson and is expected to touch down in Australia later this year, ahead of the H7 that is likely to lob in the second half of 2017.

Haval says the H7 was designed and developed by a top-ranked international team, integrating five features – “safety, environmental protection, science and technology, entertainment and comfort”.

The H7 is 4700mm long, 1925mm wide and 1718mm tall, with a 2850mm wheelbase, which is not far off the dimensions of the Ford Territory.

Under the bonnet is a 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine – likely the same 160kW/324Nm unit from the H8 and H9 – matched with a six-speed dual-clutch transmission that can propel the H7 from zero to 100km/h in 9.3 seconds.

Haval says the H7 has an “ultra silent” cabin, while the H7's body is made up of 12 per cent thermal forming steel – more than that of luxury brands, according to the SUV-maker.

Safety features include a lane-departure warning, lane keeping aid, side assist warning, cross-traffic alert, a forward collision warning, 360-degree view camera, blind spot monitoring, autonomous emergency braking and adaptive cruise control.

Haval also used the Beijing show to reveal two concept cars – the HB-02 and HR-02.

Little information was revealed about the pair, but the HR-02 is described as a compact SUV that represents the design direction of Haval models, while the HB-02 is a mid-size SUV with a petrol-electric hybrid powertrain, as well as also previewing the future design for the brand.

It is unclear at this stage whether the concepts will make it to production of if they will remain design studies.

Haval finally arrived in Australia after a protracted launch period in October last year, introducing the H2 crossover, H8 large SUV and more rugged H9 large SUV as its first offerings.

The Chinese company does not subscribe to the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries VFACTS sales data so it is unclear how many Havals have found homes in Australia since the launch.

Executives from the company confirmed at the Beijing show that Haval was again the best-selling SUV brand in China last year, marking the 13th year running its has taken the crown, while the H6 notched up its third consecutive year as the best-selling SUV in China.

In the first quarter of 2016, Haval has increased its overall sales by 9.6 per cent with 192,400 units shifted, with the H6 recording 46,075 sales in March, its best result ever.

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