China's Great Wall Motor has big plans for expansion outside its home country, and rumor has it that the marque plans to launch an entire vehicle line based on its popular Hover CUV. While it's true that many Chinese automakers tend to crib designs from other manufacturers, Great Wall takes it a step further and borrows the entire chassis from an older Toyota 4Runner model. The exterior styling for the current Hover is based on the unloved Isuzu Axiom from 2002, and the engine is supplied by Mitsubishi.
According to Inside Line, a new version of the CUV is set to be shown this week at the Shanghai Motor Show, and it will likely carry the Hover H3 designation. Expect to see a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine mated to a five-speed manual transmission, all for a base price of around $13K in China.
The smallest 'ute to carry the Hover nameplate will reportedly be called the M1, which could be powered by either a 1.3-liter four-cylinder or an electric drivetrain. Next up the ladder would be the M3, motivated by a 1.6-liter four-banger. At the upper-end, Great Wall is expected to show off a premium model called the Hover H7, equipped with a 3.0-liter V6 engine backed by a six-speed automatic transmission and full-time four-wheel drive.
[Source: Inside Line | Image: auto.sina.com]