China’s GAC Emkoo Slated To Debut In Malaysia Next Year

A sharp-looking Chinese SUV will land in Malaysian showrooms by late 2024. The authorised distributor of Chinese-made GAC vehicles in Malaysia, WTC Automotif (WTCA), has announced that the GAC Emkoo will make its debut in Malaysia soon. The car’s arrival here follows the release of the GAC GS3 Emzoom.

Based on the GPMA (GAC Global Platform Modular Architecture) platform, the strangely named Emkoo is a C-segment SUV that competes with vehicles such as the Mazda CX-5, Proton X70, and Honda CR-V.

Sharp edges and clean lines define the GAC Emkoo‘s exterior, which is further accentuated by flush door handles, a rear roof spoiler, as well as a front end defined by a streamlined headlight setup and V-shaped frameless grille.

While powertrain options are still under wraps for Malaysia, we can get a pretty idea of what’s coming here by looking at the Chinese spec models which employ either a 2.0-liter hybrid system co-developed with Toyota, a 1.5-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine that generates 177 ps/270 Nm, and a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine that produces 252 ps/499 Nm.

The base GE and higher GL variations of the Emkoo are the two available variants in the Philippines and are the models we can expect here. With costs of PHP 1.298 million (about RM107,000) and PHP 1.498 million (about RM 123,000), respectively, the 1.5T models are more reasonably priced than the standard Honda CR-V, which starts at PHP 2.15 million, or around RM175,000.

A few months ago, in August 2023, a GAC Emkoo made it through a 10,000-mile (16,000-kilometer) journey from China to Malaysia. With the full backing of GAC, this road trip traversed four countries: China, Laos, Thailand, and Malaysia. It was captured on Douyin by Chinese influencer Yundui Media.

To prove the SUV’s capability and reliability for Southeast Asia, GAC pushed the Emkoo through a 16,000 km grueling trip from China to Malaysia using the hybrid version that’s presently available in China and Latin America.

For the record, the Emkoo will be GAC’s second model launched in Malaysia after the RHD spec GS3. This was GAC’s first-ever local assembly (CKD) project worldwide, which it started at the WTCA Segambut factory. Combining the two essentially verifies the GAC Emkoo’s arrival and suggests that it will also probably be CKD.

OUR THOUGHTS

Chinese design and packaging have certainly come a long way over the past couple of years–because this Emkoo is one of the best-looking SUVs we’ve seen in a long time. In fact, dare we say it–we think this GAC SUV is prettier than the Honda CR-V. While details are still scarce on engine specs, pricing, and introduction of the Emkoo into Malaysia, one source has said that the SUV will arrive sometime in the second half of 2024, given that production for the GAC GS3 Emzoom is scheduled to begin in April 2024 with sales to begin in mid-2024.

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