OMODA: A crossover for youngsters and those young at heart

Chery Omoda review

By Renate Engelbrecht

Thursday, Jun 22

It was only in April this year that the Chery group impressed the crowds with its OMODA (as well as the JAECOO) as independent brands at the 20th Shanghai Auto Show. The brands have been designed to both have their own identity, models and target markets.

I recently drove the OMODA C5 – quite a sporty drive compared to my Chery Tiggo 7 Pro experience – and like the crowds in Shanghai, I was also stunned. The OMODA C5 was the first of the two vehicles to have been launched in South Africa. While it attracted over 3 million online interactions and over 3 billion hits on its various platforms and interactions, it’s ultimately the drive that makes the difference.

Since I am a mother of two toddlers and we are a family fond of travelling, space, comfort and safety can make or break a buy for me. In addition to this, it’s always great if the vehicle is an extension of your personality.

Young at heart

The O&J brand, under which the OMODA and the JAECOO are being managed – is targeting drivers keen on crossovers and SUVs. This is a target market I tend to fall under more often than not. They also target young people and those who are young at heart, which means their vehicles come with striking designs and a high level of tech.

To be honest, the OMODA was quite an adjustment for me when it comes to design and technology, mainly because I actually still drive a modest 2007 model from another brand. It was a welcome adjustment, though and it instantly had me feeling young and hip! Also, while it was an adjustment at first, it was rather quick and painless to figure out all the bells and whistles.

Chery Omoda C5

Added lux

The Luxury S model comes with vibrant red detailing in the front bumper, alloy wheels and roof mounted spoiler, which distinguishes it from the OMODA C5 Luxury model. It also has leather upholstery, powered seat adjustment for both the driver and the front passenger and a powered sunroof.

Other OMODA luxury features that impressed included the vehicle’s climate control, the cruise control and intelligent voice commands. It also comes with a SONY sound system, which is connected to eight speakers. The dashboard boasts two 10.25-inch screens and integrates with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Omoda C5 front

Feeling safe in the OMODA

The rear hatch door of the OMODA C5 Luxury is also powered, which not only eases accessibility, but also improves security. Furthermore, the vehicle has a 360-degree camera system.

The C5 is also fitted with blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, forward collision warnings, automatic emergency breaking, lane-departure warning, traffic congestion assist and lane-keep assist. (I preferred to switch off the lane-keep assist, as it made driving on the busy N1 highway exceptionally difficult, but each to his or her own).

Chery Omoda interior

The OMODA drive

The OMODA C5 comes with a 1.5 turbo GDI engine and its fuel consumption works out on about 6.91l/100km. My initial experience of the vehicle was that it had an impressively strong acceleration ability. This, together with suspension and sharp steering, makes it a vehicle that is rather comfortable to manoeuvre, whether it’s in the city or out on the open road.

The new OMODA C5 Luxury’s pricing starts at R477 900, with the C5 Luxury S retailing at R479 900. Click here for more information.

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