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Top Gear review - Did anyone order a chinese? The Great Wall Steed...

By Denbury Diesels Ltd  |  Posted: February 27, 2013

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If success were measured by fabulous naming, the

Great Wall Steed would be a hit. But we require more…

As you gaze upon the glorious visage of the Great

Wall Steed, the first Chinese-brand car to go on sale in the UK (yes, we've had

Chinese produce in Britain before - the current generation of 'MGs', most

notably - but the mighty Steed is the first to appear under its original

Chinese badging), you may see where this one is going. We've spent a decade

guffawing and thigh-slapping at the laughable horror of China's home-grown

cars: the Mini-aping knock-offs, the rickety saloons that folded like papier Mache

in crash tests. Our collective inability to believe that a country once

incapable of building decent cars could somehow, y'know, learn is about to bite

us again. The dawn of the acceptable Chinese export is soon.

Not that the Steed is astonishing. It isn't. But

it's not bad: an acceptably average pick-up truck with an acceptably

below-average price tag and, more significantly, proof that the Chinese

Revolution is far closer than you might think. The Great Wall badge might not

have quite the cachet of, say, Porsche or SsangYong, but it's hardly a global

minnow. China's tenth-largest automaker employs 42,000 people around the world

and builds 700,000 cars every year. The Steed has been China's best-selling

pickup since 1998, shifting 120,000 examples each year.

And if you're picking a corner of the UK car

industry on which to mount an assault, the utilitarian pickup sector is a good

place to start. Pickup buyers want value, reliability and the ability to

squelch across a post-Glastonbury mudpocalypse without sinking up to the window

line, and aren't worried about immaculate panel gaps, Savile Row

leather-stitching or a satnav system that knows where the nearest Pret A Manger

is.

For more information or to book a test drive of the

Great Wall Steed please call Denbury Diesels on 01803 220548

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