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JAC Motors Unveils T8 2.0L CTi to Expand T-Series Range

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JAC Motors introduces the latest addition to its T-Series double-cab lineup, the T8 2.0L CTi 4×2 Lux, priced at R399,900. This launch comes amid intensifying competition in the double-cab bakkie market, providing consumers with a more comprehensive selection.

CEO Insights: Understanding Shifting Preferences

CEO Karl-Heinz Göbel highlights the evolving preferences of bakkie buyers, noting a trend towards lifestyle-oriented double-cabs. With new brands entering the market, the significance of established local brands with extensive dealer networks and competitive pricing is emphasised.

Company Growth: Expanding Product Range and Dealership Network

Since its inception in 2017 with the X200 2.8L TDI, JAC Motors South Africa has witnessed remarkable growth, expanding its product range to include the T-Series double-cabs and N-Truck line and expanding its dealership network to over 70 outlets across Southern Africa.

Product Evolution: Meeting Market Demands

A significant milestone was reached in 2019 with the introduction of the T8 1.9L TDI, signalling a departure from the conventional double-cab workhorse range. Responding to evolving market demands in 2021, the T8 underwent enhancements, including a robust 2.0-litre turbo-diesel engine and upgraded features, enhancing its performance capabilities.

Product Refresh: Introducing T8 2.0L CTi Super Lux

In 2023, alongside introducing the luxurious T9, the refreshed T8 lineup, led by the T8 2.0L CTi Super Lux variant, aimed to strengthen its value proposition in the local market.

CEO Strategy: Focus on Value

CEO Karl-Heinz Göbel underscores the strategic significance of offering a derivative priced below R400,000, ensuring exceptional value for potential buyers. The T8 2.0L CTi 4×2 Lux variant achieves this objective and boasts a range of safety features to enhance driver peace of mind.

Safety and Convenience Features: Prioritising Protection and Comfort

Safety features included in the T8 Lux comprise airbags, traction control, vehicle dynamics control, electronic stability control, hill-start hold control, disc brakes, anti-lock braking system, electronic brake-force distribution, brake override system, hydraulic brake assist, and a tyre pressure monitoring system. Additionally, convenience features such as a reverse camera, rear park distance sensors, remote keyless entry, and central locking with auto door locks further enhance the safety package.

Interior Comfort: Blending Practicality with Luxury

Internally, the T8 Lux blends practicality with comfort, offering enticing appointments such as leather seats, a multi-function steering wheel, an adjustable steering column, cruise control, air-conditioning, and electric windows. A user-friendly 9-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Bluetooth and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto smartphone connectivity ensures connectivity on the go. Moreover, discreetly-placed USB and 12V power sockets within a closable compartment in the centre console ensure uninterrupted connectivity throughout journeys.

Performance and Efficiency: Powering Ahead

Powered by a responsive 2.0-litre common-rail turbo-diesel engine equipped with an intercooler and Electrical Variable Geometry Turbocharger (EVGT), the T8 delivers 104 kW @ 3,600 rpm and 320 Nm torque. Coupled with a 6-speed manual transmission, the powerplant optimally utilises available torque across its powerband, ensuring a seamless driving experience. Its fuel efficiency, averaging 7.8 L/100 km (combined cycle) for the 4×2 derivative, with a 76-litre tank providing an approximate range of 1,000 kilometres, is noteworthy.

Exterior Design: Combining Style and Functionality

Externally, the T8 boasts a contemporary and rugged appeal, characterised by a stylish chrome-plated honeycomb grille, Xenon headlamps with LED Daytime Running Lights, and integrated Fog Lamps. Bold black wheel arches, running boards, and a style bar further enhance its commanding presence. For the 4×4 variant, additional features include a custom black off-road style bar, rear step bumper, and side steps, enhancing its adventurous allure. The T8’s modern design is further complemented by attractive two-tone 18-inch alloy wheels with 265/60 R18 tyres and a distinctive ‘Double C’ LED tail-light design.

Chassis Configuration: Ensuring Stability and Durability

Regarding chassis configuration, the T8 features a double-wishbone independent front suspension with coil springs, delivering enhanced handling and passenger comfort. Supported by a robust ladder frame suspension, including rear integral bridge support, the T8 boasts dimensions measuring 5,325 mm in length, 1,880 mm in width, and 1,830 mm in height, with a wheelbase of 3,090 mm. Its turning radius of 6.2 meters facilitates easy manoeuvrability in urban and off-road driving conditions. Furthermore, its payload capacity of 900 kg, coupled with a double-skinned load box coated with a corrosion-resistant truck bed liner, ensures lasting durability and practicality.

Off-Road Capabilities: Conquering Any Terrain

For off-road enthusiasts, the T8 4×4 variant features an ESOF electronically-controlled time-sharing four-wheel-drive system from BorgWarner, offering solid reliability and versatility. With the ability to effortlessly switch between two-wheel drive (2H) and four-wheel drive (4H) at speeds up to 80 km/h, along with a low-speed four-wheel-drive selection (4L) mode for enhanced off-road capability, the T8 is equipped to conquer challenging terrains. Conveniently located buttons on the dashboard enable a seamless selection of different driving modes, complemented by a rear diff-lock to easily overcome obstacles. With impressive approach, break-over, and departure angles, coupled with 210 mm ground clearance, the T8 confidently navigates rough terrains and uneven landscapes.

Pricing and Warranty: Offering Peace of Mind

The T8 lineup’s retail prices include 24-hour Roadside Assistance, a standard 5-year/100,000 km manufacturer’s warranty, and a 5-year/100,000 km service plan, with service intervals scheduled every 10,000 km. Pricing for the T8 lineup (VAT incl.) is as follows:

  • T8 2.0L CTI 4×2 Lux: R399,900
  • T8 2.0L CTI 4×4 Lux: R449,900
  • T8 2.0L CTI 4×2 Super Lux: R464,900
  • T8 2.0L CTI 4×4 Super Lux: R514,900

The T8 is available in six colours, with a range of JAC Motors-approved accessories allowing owners to personalise their vehicles according to their preferences.

What are your thoughts on the new JAC T-Series Range? Do you think many South Africans would pursue this choice of bakkie here in South Africa? And more importantly, do you think it will hold its resale value more so than its competitors? Join our discussion on Facebook to find out!