New GWM enters the fray

08 February 2021 | Tourism

Augetto Graig

Rivalling its own Steed bakkies, Great Wall Motors (GWM) now tempts local bakkie enthusiasts with a modern vehicle suited for family and work. Touring Namibia is awesome and doing so in a brand-new double-cab GWM P-Series SX two-wheel-drive is all the more fun. Tourismus Namibia was lucky to secure a quick test-drive in- and around the capital right after Pupkewitz brought the incredible new range of bakkies to Namibia early this year.

The commercial variant LDV is the entry level addition to the new series of bakkies, with the P-Series LT Luxury Passenger Tourer 4x4 automatic leading this range of vehicles. The currently limited stock in Namibia has led to a situation, where even display models are being bought off the showroom floor on account of the vehicles popularity. Customers jealously demanded being served first, thereby restricting the availability of demonstration models. We were fortunate to secure time with the 2x4-workhorse and it did not disappoint.

Taking advantage of the opportunity we soon sought out the back-tracks and lonely byways just beyond the city skyline, where the redoubtable bakkie could come into its own. The urge to escape the city traffic is inescapable as you manoeuver the sizable bulk of the P-Series through normal week-day traffic.

On the highway the driver quickly comes to appreciate the surprising willingness of the 2-litre engine. As can be expected from the weight-to-size ratio, the response delay is noticeable, but this bakkie quickly makes up for it, through shear eagerness to get up to speed. Cruising the open road is most enjoyable, thanks to plenty of power to spare when overtaking. The sixth gear produces the most pleasing fuel consumption numbers, updated on the console display in real time.

During hours traversing the length and breadth of the “Land of the Brave” passengers are likely to enjoy the ample leg-room in the front and rear, with thoughtful technological gadgets and applications complementing the cabin for a pleasure-ride. For instance, the sockets to enable USB connectivity and for recharging your phone can be accessed easily where they are found right under the radio on the central console in the front of the cabin.

The driver benefits most from the application of modern technology that comes as standard with GWM’s new set of bakkies. The 3.5-inch colour instrument cluster provides all the traditional information as well as neat extras, like tire-specific pressure monitor and individual seat-belt settings. The steering wheel mounted controls duplicate functions of the buttons on the radio- and phone speakers, which automatically mute whenever you engage the reverse gear. Traction control and hill descent are turned off and on at the push of a button. The vehicles is spacious, convenient and pragmatic.

The big steering wheel is suited to the overall size of this imposing machine, which turns heads where ever it stops. Whether meeting girls in hot pants or chitchatting with petrol attendants about mileage thanks to the up-to-date real-time consumption information available on the display, or simply engaging with admirers from the construction industry - it all comes naturally with this bakkie. The P-Series has the looks that a bakkie should have.

The deep bed of the load bay enables travellers to take everything they can think of along. In terms of security, the SX comes standard with an engine immobiliser and remote central locking. Safety has also been a concern to the manufacturers of this automobile, with a fire-extinguisher clipped just under the front passenger seat and dual front airbags having been fitted as a standard feature. Rear parking sensors, vehicle stability control, hill-start assist and a warning system for unfastened seatbelts - for the driver and all passengers -, are just a few examples. Rear fog lights, daytime running lights and high position brake lights are also notable and welcome features.

The brand-new GWM P-series 2x4 SX is available in Namibia at a price below N$ 375 000 from Pupkewitz GWM in Windhoek. The top of the range luxurious 4x4 LT is sold with a price tag of almost N$ 550 000.