The SAIC–GM–Wuling (SGMW) joint venture has been setting the trends in China when it comes to cool, affordable, mini EVs. After the smash hit Hongguang Mini EV and its many flavors, including the colorful Macaron Edition and the Cabriolet version, SGMW is about to unleash the Baojun Yep Mini SUV. But before the Baojun Yep enters the stage, the SGMW joint venture has introduced the Wuling Bingo, a 5-door compact hatchback that is larger than the Hongguang.
Here are the specs of the Wuling Bingo: The Bingo’s dimensions are 3950/1708/1580 mm with a wheelbase of 2560 mm. It will have two options, one with a 30 kW (41 hp) motor and another with a 50 kW (68 hp) motor. These options will come in a 17.3 kWh and a 31.9 kWh version with a range of 203 km or 333 km, respectively. It also starts at a very appetizing $8,682 in China. That’s $8,682 for a decent 5-door car with a 17.3 kWh battery and a 30 kW (41 hp) motor. Not bad.
A lot of people outside of China, and perhaps in China too, thought that the Hongguang Mini EV was tiny, but it is not as small as you would think. The Wuling Bingo is here to address the needs of those consumers who would prefer a slightly larger 5-door compact hatchback that is in a segment similar to popular ICE hatchbacks such as the Ford Fiesta. The Bingo even comes with a fairly large boot (trunk) that comes up to 790L with the rear seats folded down. It also has two screens, a 7″ instrument panel, and a 10.25″ infotainment screen. It has voice recognition, four speakers, and some good quality imitation leather for the higher trim versions.
So, the SAIC–GM–Wuling (SGMW) joint venture gave people in China an option that they wanted, a larger compact EV hatchback. How did the market respond? Well, the response has been pretty good. Wuling announced yesterday that it sold 16,383 units of the Bingo last month, in its first full month of sales. So, it looks like SGMW has another smash hit on the cards.
Could there be more good news about this Wuling Bingo in the near future for people outside China?
It looks like it. If we take a look at Wuling’s brand philosophy and follow Wuling’s brand story, vehicles with the Red Wuling badge are for the local Chinese market and vehicles with the Silver Wuling badge are for the global market. The Wuling Bingo already comes with the Silver Wuling badge, so we could see it in some markets outside of China sooner rather than later. Furthermore, the Wuling Air is already being assembled in Indonesia and is now on sale in India, where it has been rebadged as the MG Comet. Hopefully we will see an “MG Bingo” in India as well. If the Bingo gets a right-hand-drive option very soon, I hope it will also go to more markets around the world as quickly as possible. After a long time of waiting, we are finally entering the age of affordable EVs! Exciting times ahead.
All images courtesy of Wuling
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