BAIC accelerates into Malaysia with X55, BJ40 Plus

by VEISHNAWI NEHRU

BEIJING Automotive Group Co Ltd (BAIC) has made its debut in the Malaysian market by unveiling the X55 SUV and BJ40 Plus yesterday.

Chairman and vice GM Chen Wei said South-East Asia, particularly Malaysia, represents a thriving automotive market with growing demand for quality, new energy and intelligent vehicles, areas where BAIC excels.

“In line with its commitment to the Malaysian market, BAIC aims to open 10 dealer outlets across the country in 2024, with the first to be operated by Edaran Otomobil Elektrik (M) Sdn Bhd (EOE).

“BAIC will showcase the X55 and BJ40 Plus at BAIC Showroom, Wisma Consplant 2, Subang Jaya, Selangor, from May 17-19, providing the Malaysian public with an exclusive first look at the vehicles,” he said at the launch at Wisma Consplant 2.

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof who is also the energy transition and water transformation minister officiated the launch.

According to the press statement, the X55 will be offered in two variants: Standard and Premium featuring prices hinted at between RM12X,XXX and RM14X,XXX.

This sleek and stylish compact SUV measures 4620mm in length, 1886mm in width and 1680mm in height.

“It is powered by a self-developed 1.5TD, four-cylinder petrol engine with variable geometry turbo (VGT) technology, paired with a seven-speed dual clutch transmission (DCT).

“This setup delivers an impressive 188 PS and 305 Nm of torque, making it a class leader,” it said.

Moreover, X55 is constructed with 62.3% high-strength steel and 8.7% hot-formed steel, which provides superior protection.

“With features such as 21872 Nm of torsional stiffness, advanced crumple zones, and Euro-standard integrated stamped doors reinforced with dual internal steel beams, the X55 has earned double five-star safety ratings from C-NCAP and C-IASI,” it added.

On the other hand, the BJ40 Plus is a rugged off-road vehicle with iconic styling, including a signature five-hole grille. It will be priced between RM18X,XXX and RM19X,XXX.

“Built for extreme terrains, it boasts a 60% climbing grade, a 37° approach angle, a 31° departure angle and a 23° ramp angle.

“Under the hood, the BJ40 Plus features a turbocharged 2.0L gasoline engine paired with a German-developed ZF 8- 8-speed automatic gearbox, delivering an exhilarating 224 PS and 380 Nm of torque.”

Additionally, the BJ40 Plus is also engineered specifically for off-road adventures as it includes a BorgWarner part-time 4WD system and a classic body-on-frame structure.

“Luxury features include a frontal double wishbone suspension with coil spring, a rear live axle with five-link suspension, a superior brake system tuned by Mitsubishi and Bosch 9.1 ESP.

“The roll cage-frame design ensures unmatched manoeuvrability, comfort and stability,” it said.

Meanwhile, it was reported that EP Manufacturing Bhd has partnered BAIC to assemble and manufacture BAIC vehicles in Malaysia through its subsidiary, PEPS-JV (Melaka) Sdn Bhd.

Under a 10-year agreement, PEPS-JV aims to produce at least 5,000 vehicles per year by Sept 1, increasing to 10,000 annually by March 1 the following year.

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