An electric car without a license plate? No, another ultra-affordable competitor to the Dacia Spring

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The Chinese firm Chery presents the new version of its eQ1 (Ant), a very low-cost urban electric car that could reach Europe. Thus, it will compete with the Dacia Spring, with an entry ticket below 10,000 euros.

Not a day goes by that you don’t hear about a Chinese brand. And for good reason, these are more and more present on the market and, above all, they are growing very strongly in power. So much so that its evolution worries specialists but also manufacturers, such as Tesla, which made an incredible price drop a few weeks ago. Of course, we think of MG, which is expanding the range of its compact MG4, but it is not the only brand that wants to develop here.

A new version

This is also the case with Nio, BYD, and even Xpeng, to name just a few. But now another one will also try to outshine them, as well as the traditional manufacturers. This is Chery, which in 2017 unveiled its Omoda 5, a large seven-seater SUV designed for Europe. Since then, there was no more news while his arrival would be scheduled for this year according to the site. top electric SUV.

But the firm continues on its way and has just lifted the veil on a new creation, which adopts a completely different position. To tell the truth, it is not a new model in the strict sense but aa small update to an existing car, the eQ1. It is then a small urban car, marketed in China since 2016 and that for the moment has not left the country at all.

showing a length of only 3.20 meters At 1.67 meters wide and 1.55 meters tall, this adorable little car competes head-on with two newcomers: the Baic Jiabao and the Geometry Panda Mini. Some might also find it a bit like the Toyota IQ, in the rear. According to the website is homeIt is clad in an all-aluminium body, which should allow it to exhibit a contained weight.

The car has two doors and can accommodate up to four people on board. The driving position of this new version does not change one iota and remains identical to that of the version renewed in 2021. We then find ourselves with a 10.1 inch touch screen upright as in Volvo or Renault. The brand does not specify whether it is compatible with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.

Up to 408 kilometers of autonomy

The driver and his passenger can take advantage of the power leather seats, as well as the recharge for smartphone by induction, while the equipment is rather basic. But what interests us above all is what is hidden under the hood of the city car, which should compete with the Dacia Spring if it ends up coming home. Thus, it comes in three battery sizes, viz. 28.8, 29.2 and 40.6 kWhoffering an autonomy that oscillates between 251 and 408 kilometers of autonomy according to the official site.

Data to be taken with tweezers since it is based on the Chinese CLTC homologation cycle, much less strict than our WLTP. Then it will be necessary rather to trust 213 to 346 kilometers with us. For comparison, the Dacia Spring has a 27.4 kWh battery, allowing it to travel up to 230 kilometers on a single charge. Its power varies between 33 kW and 48 kW (44 and 65 horsepower) in its new Extreme version, compared to 30 and 50 kW (about 40 and 68 horsepower) for the eQ1.

This is then compatible with fast charging, the power of which has not been communicated, allowing it to go from 30 to 80% in 40 minutes. For the record, the Spring can draw up to 30 kW on direct current for recharging and performs the drill in about 30 minutes. This novelty is distinguished above all by its price, from 69,999 yuan, approximately 9,618 euros. The Dacia low cost city car starts at 20,800 euros.

Thus, the Chery eQ1 would be entitled to the ecological bonus if it were marketed here, unless the government decided to reserve it only for models manufactured in Europe. But be careful, remember that the price of Chinese electric cars is much higher once they are exported to Europe.

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