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Future models - Haval - H2

Haval to let the customers decide

Matter of choice: Haval H2 buyers will be able to “build” their car online from 10,000 combinations, with the order then executed at the Haval factory in China for shipping to Australia.

New Haval H2 will have 10,000 combinations for buyers wanting to colour their world

Haval logo24 Apr 2015

By RON HAMMERTON

AUSTRALIAN auto industry debutante Haval will offer customers a choice of up to 10,000 combinations of specification, colour and trim – without extra cost – on its new H2 compact SUV when the brand opens for local business in June.

Customer personalisation will be a key plank of the sales pitch for the 1.5-litre turbo-charged H2, at least after the initial four-month launch phase during which Haval Australia plans to keep it simple for dealers and customers alike with a more limited range.

Euro-style two-tone cars – such as red with a black roof – will be available, matched with complementary two-tone interiors. The customer will be able to “build” their car on a Haval internet microsite, order it via their dealer and sit back and await delivery direct from the Haval factory, with periodic updates on progress via the web.

The system is similar to bespoke ordering offered by other car-makers, especially European brands, on funky small hatchbacks. Kia also tried it on its Soul small wagon.

But Haval Australia's new chief marketing officer Tim Smith – a former Kia staffer – told GoAuto that the Chinese car-maker planned a more complete ordering and do-it-yourself design process than others.

“For example, you could choose a complete solid colour or two-tone colour combination for the external look of the vehicle, a different grille, different colour brake callipers, different alloy wheels, as well as three or four different colour choices for interior trim.

“As well, you can change the dash inlay in gloss or matt finish in a variety of colours.”

Mr Smith said Haval used the massive throughput and buying power of the group to ensure the H2 was not compromised by all the additional options on offer for customers.

“The ability to 'bespoke' a car has been done before, but this is the first time the customer has been able to customise the car so extensively to their own taste.”

Although Haval's range will comprise four models within six or seven months of launch, only the smallest of these, the H2, will be offered with the bespoke ordering system.

All Haval models will come in two specification levels, with an all-turbo engine line-up that initially will start with four-cylinder petrol and than expand in the bigger models to include V6 petrol and 2.0-litre turbo diesel alternatives.

Mr Smith said he expected the H2 to be Haval's most popular seller, followed by the H8.

“That is expected to change when the H6 (Coupe) goes on sale at the end of this year,” he said.

Alhough the just-revealed H6 Coupe carries the same H6 moniker as the current H6 wagon (China's top-selling SUV), the new variant is built on a new, more sophisticated platform.

And unlike the old H6, it will be built in right-hand drive and to five-star safety standards, making it suitable for Australia.

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