Gear & News

2018 HAVAL H9: ROAD TESTED

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Going to hate on a vehicle simply because it’s made in China? Don’t. Why? Because the Haval H9 is a nice vehicle at a very sharp price. Where other Chinese-made vehicles don’t impress you with their presentation and build quality, the H9 is a different proposition.

While the motor is only a 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol, it’s composed, flexible and willing to work hard for you, with its 180kW and 350Nm. It runs through a smooth, German-built ZF eight-speed gearbox.

Turbocharged petrols aren’t especially known for their towing frugality, but if you want a family 4WD that doubles as a tourer, this thing has some serious cache.

Suspension-wise, the coil-spring independent front and five-link live rear are both tuned quite nicely. It’s definitely set up for comfort, soaking up bumps and crappy roads quite well.

It’s a capable off-roader too: the rear end gives you a lot of suspension travel, and a locking rear Eaton differential and good traction control work together to dispatch cross-axles very easily.

So no, don’t write it off just yet. There are question marks over reliability, just like any new player in the market, but only time can answer…