Jaco Van Der Merwe

Compiled by Jaco Van Der Merwe

Head of Motoring

LISTEN: Chery ready to roll out Jaecoo J7 in South Africa

Off-road focused SUV is powered by the same 1.6-litre turbo engine that serves the Chery Tiggo 7 Pro Max.

Hot on the heels of Omoda, Chery South Africa is on the brink of rolling out its Jaecoo brand.

The off-road focused Jaecoo J7 SUV is expected to arrive in early 2024. The J8 is set to follow later in the year.

Listen to Pitstop podcast

In our Pitstop podcast, we look at the Jaecoo J7 and other Chery models heading to Mzansi. Final specifications and pricing have not been announced for the J7 yet, but we do know some details.

The Citizen Motoring saw it for the first time during the Shanghai Auto Show in April and then again last month in Wuhu. During the latter trip, we also got to sample it on an off-road course, albeit not from the driver’s seat.

The Jaecoo J7 is built on the same T1X platform on which the Chery Tiggo models and the Omoda C5 ride.

ALSO READ: Soon in bloom: Chery’s new blossoms for 2024 teased

Under the Jaecoo J7’s bonnet

The J7 is powered by the same 1.6-litre turbo petrol engine that serves the Tiggo 7 Pro Max and Tiggo 8 Pro models. But instead of the 145kW of power and 290Nm of torque, its outputs are 137kW and 275Nm.

The twist is sent to all four wheels via seven-speed dual clutch transmission. It offers seven driving modes
Paired to a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox, the J7 has a permanent all-wheel-drive system in addition to seven driving modes; Eco, Normal, Sport, Snow, Mud, Sand and Off-Road.

ALSO READ: Opposition beware? Jaecoo J7 preparing for a fight

It is not clear whether the Jaecoo J7 will offer a front-wheel drive model alongside the all-wheel drive version.

Set to be offered as a more premium product alongside the Omoda C5, we were impressed with the J7’s finishing. The cabin is spacious and features a clean and minimalist design.

It also handled itself well on the off-road track, even though our time was very limited.

ALSO READ: Chery showcases Jaecoo J7 SUV ahead of Mzansi launch


We reckon the J7 will be positioned between the Chery Tiggo 7 Pro Max and all-wheel-drive Tiggo 8 Pro Max. Pricing is rumoured to be between R650 000 and R700 000.

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