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JMC launches Vigus ute through five dealerships

Selling point: Market newcomer JMC has established its first Victorian dealership at this Great Wall and Chery dealership in West Footscray.

China’s JMC up and running with Vigus ute in east-coast dealer network

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JMC logo5 Jun 2015

By RON HAMMERTON

CHINESE commercial vehicle specialist JMC (Jiangling Motors Corporation) has kicked off Australian sales of its Vigus ute through a network of five dealerships up the east coast.

Apart from a flagship Sydney dealership that is now being renovated in Parramatta Rd, Auburn, by factory-owned distributor JMIE Australia, retail outlets have been appointed in Melbourne, Brisbane, Townsville and Cairns.

Others are said to be in the pipeline.

The Melbourne dealership, JMC Footscray, is being established in Geelong Rd, West Footscray, on the site of a Great Wall and Chery dealership in the city’s inner west.

The Brisbane shop at Daisy Hill is believed to be part of the Motorline Group that also holds the BMW and Mini franchises for the southern area of the Queensland capital, just off the Gold Coast Highway.

Known as the Pika in China, the Vigus has been launched in Australia in seven dual-cab ute varieties, offering a choice of petrol and diesel engines and two- and four-wheel drive. Prices range from $23,990 to $31,990 driveaway.

The range is expected to be expanded with a single-cab Vigus variant next year, giving the brand greater ammunition against rivals such as Great Wall, Foton and Mahindra.

A seven-seat SUV, the S350, and a truck called Conquer are also in the pipeline, as well as an unnamed compact SUV due in about 2018.

As previously reported in GoAuto, the petrol engine offered in Vigus is the ubiquitous Mitsubishi-sourced 2.4-litre four cylinder that features in several other light trucks from Chinese vehicles makers, including Great Wall.

Producing 100kw of power at 5250rpm and 201Nm of torque from 2500rpm, the engine is available only with a five-speed manual gearbox.

The diesel is a Ford-derived 2.4 litre, producing 90kW of power at 3800rpm and 290Nm of torque from 1600rpm. Again, a five-speed manual gearbox is the only transmission.

The Vigus comes in two equipment levels, LX and SLX. The most affordable diesel variant is the 4x2 LX at $26,990 driveaway. Moving up to 4x4 adds $3000.

By comparison, Indian manufacturer Mahindra’s dual-cab diesel 4x2 Pik-Up ute is $23,990 driveaway, Great Wall’s similar V200 offering is $24,990 driveaway and Foton’s Tunland dual-cab diesel is $26,990 driveaway.

Standard equipment for the JMC LX includes power windows, rear parking sensors, CD player, MP3 connectivity and central locking.

Stepping up to the SLX adds imitation leather seats, DVD player, multi-function steering wheel and anti-glare mirror.

The 4x4 variants also include wheel-arch flares and side steps.

Safety wise, front driver and passenger airbags are standard, but there is no mention in the published specifications of head-protecting side airbags.

Warranty is three years, 100,000km, and roadside assist is included.

In China, JMC is one of the smaller manufacturers, ranked 43rd in 2014. Its main claim to fame is its joint-venture with Ford, making the Transit van for the Chinese domestic market and – soon – the Australian-developed Everest SUV.

None of the Ford vehicles will be exported to Australia.

JMC Vigus pricing*
4x2
LX petrol$23,990
SLX petrol$26,990
LX diesel$26,990
SLX diesel$28,990
4x4
LX petrol$26,990
LX diesel$29,990
SLX diesel$31,990
*Driveaway pricing.

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