Jaco Van Der Merwe

By Jaco Van Der Merwe

Head of Motoring

Times are tough – here are South Africa’s cheapest bakkies in double cab guise

If the million-rand club is out of your reach, there are still plenty too choose from.

Over time, bakkies have evolved into vehicles every bit as kitted and comfortable as passenger cars. Problem is, their price tags have also evolved.

Not that long ago the Mercedes-Benz X-Class became the first bakkie in South Africa to break the seven-digit ceiling.

The discontinued Merc was followed by the 190 kW Volkswagen Amarok V6 TDI and now the Ford Ranger Raptor is just R850 shy of becoming Mzansi’s third million-rand bakkie.

With the new Amarok and Ford Ranger on its way, the million-rand bracket will soon be the benchmark instead of the exception in the big stables’ top portfolios.

But not everyone has that kind of cash lying around or the kind of monthly income to afford instalments of over R20k.

Fortunately for buyers, there is quite a comprehensive list op alternatives in the ltop listings for cheapest bakkies in stables outside Mzansi’s traditional top three heavyweight, Toyota, Ford and Isuzu.

ALSO READ: Times are tough – these are the 10 cheapest new cars in South Africa

For years now, Indian carmaker Mahindra and Chinese manufacturers GWM and JAC have been steadily building their much more affordable bakkie repertoires in the shadows of the big boys. And its not surprising that these three carmakers dominate the list of South Africa’s most affordable double cab bakkies.

R259 999 – Mahindra Bolero 2.5 TD double cab

As its honest looks proudly declares, the Bolero is more of a workhorse than a product aimed at the leisure market. And one that has earned an enormous reputation over the years.

The two-wheel drive Bolero is powered by a 2.5-litre turbo diesel engine which sends 74 kW of power and 235 Nm of torque to the rear wheels via five-speed manual gearbox.

Mahindra claims fuel consumption of 9.5 L/100 km, which will give the Bolero a range of 579 km on its 55-litre tank. It has a payload of 885 kg.

The interior as basic as it gets, but air-conditioning and central locking is nothing to scoff at.
For a R44 000 premium, you can upgrade to the 4×4 version, which at R293 999 tops South Africa’s list for cheapest bakkies in double cab four-wheel drive guise. It has a similar payload to the 4×2 version..

Both these Boleros are sold standard with a three-year/100 000 km warranty, with a service plan offered as an optional extra.

R344 900 – JAC T6 2.0 double cab Lux

JAC Motors has been building commercial vehicles for almost six decades and have quietly been gaining market share with its attractive T-range bakkies. Not only are they easy on the eye, but so are their prices.

The most affordable bakkie in its local stable is the T6 petrol variant, which is powered by a 2.0-litre mill which is mated to five-speed manual transmission and sends 108kW/190Nm to the rear wheels.

JAC’s fuel consumption claim of 10 L/ 100 km will result in a range of 760 km on its 76-litre fuel tank. This T6 has a payload of 820 kg.

Features include 17-inch alloy wheels, artificial leather seats, aircon, multi-function steering wheel, cruise control and Bluetooth connectivity makes this bakkie a real option for both leisure and work.

ALSO READ: These are the cheapest bakkies for sale in South Africa

Safety is also sorted in the form of ABS, dual front airbags, park distance control and rear-view camera.

After sales back-up is sorted by a five-year/150 000 km warranty and five-year/60 000 km service plan.

R368 999 – Mahindra Pik Up 2.2 CRDe double cab S6

Much more presentable than its Bolero sibling on the leisure front, the Pik Up has been a star performer for Mahindra, boasting incredible sales of 896 models in August 2022.

The entry level Pik Up S6 draws its power from a 2.2-litre turbodiesel mill which sends 103kW/320Nm to the rear wheels via five-speed manual transmission.

Mahindra claims fuel consumption of 7.9 L/100 km, which will see the S6 get just over a 1 000 km on its 80-litre tank. It also has an impressive payload of 1 095 kg.

Expect the specification level to be fairly at this price point, but you nonetheless get front fog lights, aircon, central locking, cruise control, electrically adjustable side mirrors and two airbags.

The Pik Up comes standard with four-year/120 000 km warranty and five-year/90 000 km service plan. For more information on the Pik Up, visit the manufacturer’s website.

JAC T6 SA's cheapest bakkies double cabs
As far as South Africa’s cheapest bakkies go, the JAC is not the worst looking.

R374 900 – JAC T6 1.9 TDi double cab Comfort

The most affordable oil-burner in the JAC stable is powered by a 1.9-litre turbodiesel mill. It produces 100 kW of power and 320 Nm of torque which is sent to the rear wheels via a five-speed manual gearbox.

This T6 is said to achieve a range of 950km based on the claimed fuel economy of 8.0 L/100 km. Up from its petrol sibling, the oil-burning T6 has a payload of 900 kg.

Being the Comfort trim line and not Lux, it lacks a few creature comforts like artificial leather seats, rear view camera and cruise control.

It also comes standard with a five-year/150 000 km warranty and five-year/60 000 km service plan.

GWM Steed 5 SA's cheapest bakkies double cabs
The GWM Steed 5 is not only one of South Africa’s cheapest bakkies, but also one of the unsafest too as crash test results suggest.

R374 950 – GWM Steed 5 2.0 VGT double cab SX

Since the introduction of Great Wall Motors’ P-Series in 2020, the Steed 5 has assumed the role of workhorse more than it is a leisure option.

But it has been taking some flak after the zero-star rating it achieved in the #SaferCarsForAfrica test conducted by Global NCAP in partnership with the AA.

The Steed 5 is powered by a 2.0-litre turbodiesel engine which sends 110 kW of power and 320 Nm of torque to the rear wheels via a six-speed manual box.

GWM’s fuel consumption claim of 7.6 L/100 km will result in a range of 921 km on its 70-litre fuel tank. The official payload rating is unknown.

Specs include front fog lights, 16-inch alloy wheels, leather seats, park distance control, electronic side mirrors, central locking and climate control. Safety comes in the form if dual front airbags and ABS.

The Steeds is sold with a five-year/100 000 km warranty and three-year/40 000 km service plan.