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By Charl Bosch

Motoring Journalist

Facelift GWM P-Series revealed with stronger beating P500 heart

For now, the various revisions, including the engine, are exclusive China, though this could well change before the end of the year should approval be given.

Formerly shown, but selectively detailed, at the Shanghai Auto Show last year, Great Wall Motors (GWM) has released full specifications of the facelift P-Series bakkie in China, the biggest being a new turbodiesel engine and transmission.

New inside and out

Limited to the People’s Republic for now, where it carries the Poer name, the P-Series’ exterior now falls in line with that of the bigger Shanhai Cannon that will soon arrive in South Africa badged as the P500.

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Central to the exterior is a new grille and headlights, a restyled front bumper and at the rear, the option of a hard-lid tonneau cover, slightly altered taillights and a new bumper as well.

More substantial are the changes inside comprising a freestanding seven-inch digital instrument cluster, a centre console and gear lever modelled on the P500, Tank 300 and Tank 500 SUVs, a new steering wheel, horizontal air vents and a 12.3-inch infotainment system in place of the old nine-inch display.

That new engine

Capable of Level 2 autonomous driving where permitted, and mounted on new alloy wheels up to 18 inches, the main drawing card is the drivetrain that slots in above the existing 2.0-litre and eight-speed automatic combination.

More powerful GWM P-Series revealed in China
Changes to the rear have been minor. Image: GWM China

Shared with the P500 and soon, with the Tank 300, the in-house developed 2.4-litre oil burner develops 135kW/480Nm delivered to the rear or all four wheels through a nine-speed automatic ‘box.

Up 15kW/80Nm on the South African-market P-Series, the unit, also positioned above the China-only 2.0-litre turbo-petrol rated at 140kW/400Nm, has upped the towing capacity to 3 000 kg as in its home market, both 2.0-litres can only tow 2 500 kg.

More powerful GWM P-Series revealed in China
Interior has undergone significant changes. Image: GWM China

Fitted with a drive mode selector offering three settings; Eco, Standard and Sport, the Poer 2.4T, as it will seemingly be called in China, retains the locking differential and low-range transfer case as the part-time all-paw gripping system is standard fare.

Approving being awaited

Offered in two trim levels in China priced from 148 800 yuan (R370 916) to 168 800 yuan (R420 771), with the entire range starting from 126 800 yuan (R316 077) for the base petrol, the revised P-Series, for now, remains an unknown entity for South Africa as a result of focus being on the imminent debut of the P500.

However, should approval be given, expect it to arrive possibly before year-end and potentially with both the 2.0-litre and 2.4-litre units.

Additional information from carexpert.com.au and gwn.com.cn.

NOW READ: WATCH: What to expect from GWM’s incoming Tank 500 SUV

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