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Frankfurt show: Chery teases compact SUV revival

Sweet Chery: The sketch is the latest teaser from Chery following the release of computer generated images earlier this month.

New compact SUV to help Chery pick at European rivals

29 Aug 2017

CHERY has teased its forthcoming production compact SUV for the second time in a fortnight, with the Chinese car-maker claiming the as-yet unnamed model represents the first major shot at establishing itself in Europe.

Just weeks out from its Frankfurt motor show debut, a new digital sketch showing the rear of the model has emerged which Chery said is part of its “life in motion” design philosophy that is “inspired by nature and incorporates ‘hydrodynamic surfacing’ characteristics, which convey the pure, aesthetic quality of running water”.

The latest rear sketch reveals a horizontal tailgate design theme that includes a chrome rear applique flowing into the 3D-style bezels of the tail-lights, which also runs slightly above the applique and Chery badge.

Up front, the number plate is positioned below the tailgate in a surround flanked by twin exhausts – although it is unclear what will make it to production.

The front of the Chery compact SUV has previously been shown to have the aforementioned horizontal bar grille continuing to form part of the daytime running lights bezel inside the LED headlights.

The side profile has also been featured, showing two separate side character creases, running from the front guards into the doors and another flicking up from the rear doors over the back haunches, following the upswept window line.

Chery has also shown a sketch of the cabin, which shows Mazda CX-3-style stitched, padded dashboard trim, a high-resolution touchscreen surrounded by a slimline driver’s vent beneath it, and a more upright passenger vent beside it.

There is also a two-spoke steering wheel, padded door armrests and lower console sides, climate controls with a trio of circular vents, and a stubby automatic transmission lever with a rotary controller-style dial below it – plus Audi Virtual Cockpit-style digital instrumentation.

Chery said the vehicle will be aimed the European market, and specifically “young, urban, forward-thinking customers who choose sophisticated, high quality products”.

However, it has only said it will roll out its Continental strategy “within the next few years”.

China’s top exporter – of the 700,000 vehicles Chery produced last year it sent 100,000 or just under 30 per cent overseas – has said that it has the production capacity across four domestic market facilities to build one million vehicles.

While it has invested $2 billion Yuan ($A381m) into a 300,000-square metre research and development (R&D) facility in its domestic market in the past year, another facility is “planned” to open in Europe, according to the brand.

Ex-GM Europe designer James Hope – who was previously based in Russelsheim, Germany before becoming Chery corporate director of design in 2012 – has led the styling of the new compact SUV, and has been handed the task of establishing the brand’s design studio in Europe, the location of which has not been revealed.

Chery has said the focus of its “all-new high-quality” chassis that underpins its compact SUV model, is on six main aspects – including product quality, alternative-energy powertrains, platform competence, distinguished design, state-of-the-art connectivity and an emotional connection with customers.

As reported, GoAuto understands that former Australian importer of Chery models, Ateco Automotive, has not yet been advised of right-hand drive production or potential roll-out plans to this market.

However, it is believed that the Neville Crichton-owned third-party importer has first rights of refusal to a relaunch of the once beleaguered brand locally.

The Chery compact SUV will be unveiled at the Frankfurt motor show on September 12.

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