Chinese LDV to enter the dual-cab ute market
THE double cab ute market is on such an upward trajectory that manufacturers of all types are eager to score a slice of the action.
In the premium segment we've recently had confirmation that Mercedes-Benz will launch its X-Class one-tonner late next year, while at the more budget end of things, Chinese commercial vehicle maker LDV - familiar to us with its value vans on sale in Australia - has just unveiled its effort, ready for launch here in the second half of next year.
The LDV T60 ute was launched at the Guangzhou Motor Show last week; a two-wheel drive or four-wheel drive one-tonner which will be made in single cab, double cab and extended double cab variants with two tray lengths.
No prices have been mentioned yet, but expect the LDV T60 4x4 double cab ute to compete with the likes of Great Wall's dual cab Steed ($29,990), Mahindra dual cab Pik-Up ($27,990) and Foton Tunland Dual Cab ($30,990), among others.
LDV's effort will be another player in this now quite busy end of the budget ute market, so what is it offering?
LDV says the new T60 has a galvanised high-tensile steel chassis, a ten-year rusting warranty, and expects a five star ANCAP rating in Australia thanks to six airbags, double pretensioning seatbelts, parking sensors, rear view camera, 360 degree cameras and a fatigue driving alarm.
The Chinese launched utes come with either petrol or diesel engines, have selectable high and low range 4WD in the all-paw versions, there's a choice of three gearboxes with both manual and auto transmissions, and two suspension heights.
It won't be known if this full range will be offered in Australia, or specifications, until closer to 2017's launch date.