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Fresh air: surprises with the new crossover Changan CS 55 Plus

Anyone who still looks at Chinese cars in disbelief seems stuck in the past. After all, the world is changing rapidly today, and the test Changan CS 55 Plus is a clear confirmation of this.

One of my friends, when reviewing this crossover, thoughtfully said: “If it weren’t for the nameplate, you wouldn’t be able to tell that it’s “Chinese.”

Actually, that’s true. Well, almost like this: in some things the country of origin is still visible. However, we usually don’t talk about the shortcomings but about the features. And as strange as it sounds, most of those features can even be called advantages! How would you like, for example, a built-in video recorder that can record the traffic situation in front, behind, or on all four sides of the crossover at once? Or the advice that appears on the central display after turning off the ignition and tells you which way to turn the steering wheel to keep the front wheels level? Or, indeed, the steering wheel itself, which in its shape and placement can be called a combination of the best ideas from Peugeot and Tesla?

Intrigued? Then we will find out what it is in detail – the new Changan CS 55 Plus.

They greet you, of course, through their clothes, and they are very clever at it. In general, the V-shaped logo of the Changan brand indicates the connection of two rivers – the Yangtze and Jialing. But if you want, you can see them not only on the logo, but also on the front bumper! Its corners seem to diverge from two strong plastic tides, where there is a place for strong air intakes. They may be decorative, but they look cool, like vertical red inserts. By the way, there is a lot of red plastic here. It is found in both the wings and the moldings, which give the crossover exterior strength and promise extraordinary dynamic capabilities. Is this commitment confirmed in practice? In the future, we can say: there are no contradictions between the power figure in the technical characteristics and the sensations behind the wheel. But first let’s look for more sport in the cabin.

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The most obvious manifestation of this is the bright red insert found here, especially on the trim of the doors and on the upper part of the seats. The latter, by the way, pleases me with good shoulder support and a long enough pillow. Who said the Chinese make chairs only for themselves, the little ones? The interior of the Changan CS 55 Plus makes it easy to verify the opposite.

But we’re not done with red yet – artistic stitching in the corresponding color suits both the seat and the steering wheel. And he is so bold here that he deserves a detailed story.

The shape of the steering wheel is something between a standard steering wheel and the steering wheel that Tesla tries to equip some models. And in size and location it resembles the i-Cockpit from Peugeot, meaning you look at the dashboard from above the steering wheel. Is it convenient? You can also ask the owners of new Peugeots. And our answer: yes, it is convenient.

Did you notice that we still haven’t touched on the subject of cabin odor? And for good reason, because the days when you could recognize Chinese cars with your eyes closed and just your nose are in the past. Although in the case of the test crossover we have to talk about the smell, because it smells … like a forest: the car has an air ionization system called Forest Air. This, of course, is good news for residents of megacities.

And not only one, due to the difficult metropolitan traffic, the test crossover was noted for moderate fuel consumption: 8.5-9.5 l / 100 km. When we Changan CS 55 Plus entered the operational space of city highways without traffic lights, the on-board computer usually showed 7.4 liters. For this we must thank the ratio of the small volume of the turbocharged engine (1.5 liters) and significant power of 181 hp.

That means, you understand: you will not be bored while driving the Changan CS 55 Plus in the operational space. At least, you can easily believe in the passport 8.2 seconds to hundreds. And the 7-speed robot with dual wet clutch changes gears very quickly. In general, the Changan CS 55 Plus accelerator should be carefully pressed – suddenly the reaction may exceed expectations.

The car also listens well to its unusual steering wheel and doesn’t require much getting used to its size and shape. Although we admit: turning such a steering wheel “with interception” is very unusual at first.

The suspension handles most road problems with confidence, and its performance usually doesn’t bother passengers. Unless you have to slow down a bit in front of speed bumps, because their crossover has a pretty harsh ride. But this statement mainly concerns the MacPherson front suspension. At the rear there is a fully independent multi-link suspension, although competitors offer mostly torsion beam suspension for that kind of money.

But what impressed us the most was the multimedia work. Perhaps this is one of the strongest points of this car. And it’s not even a matter of communication capabilities – everything in them is quite common, at least for owners of smartphones with Google OS: there is no Android Auto, but there is Apple CarPlay.

But the Changan CS 55 Plus is good at showing the environment and the obstacles hidden in it. The first difference from European competitors that immediately catches your eye is that the all-round visibility system of this crossover does not strain as the speed increases. Therefore, if desired, it can be used as a kind of replacement for the blind spot monitoring system – the latter, unfortunately, is not here.

In addition, the surround view system can be configured to automatically turn on when turning and display the area near the front wheel on the corresponding side – this is also very convenient. And measuring the distance to an obstacle in meters, offered by the Changan CS 55 Plus, will be a nice bonus.

Normally, when you change driving modes, the appearance of the digital instrument panel changes automatically. But Changan offers the driver to choose whether such a change occurs or not: there is an Auto item in the menu. If you do not select it, the change in mode will only be indicated by the appearance of the corresponding inscription on the panel, and its appearance will remain the same. That is, the most convenient for the driver – not for nothing that he chose it! By the way, there are three types to choose from, and the fourth is the same Auto.

The all-round viewing system also has many settings: you can choose the view – 2D or 3D, the presence or absence of your own car in the picture. Or you can make it translucent and even define a gradient of that transparency – you must agree, such flexibility deserves to be respected.

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An interesting conclusion emerged: in some of the on-board multimedia capabilities, the Changan CS 55 Plus is not only inferior to its European competitors, but even superior to them.

Now a few words about the prices and configuration of Changan CS 55 Plus.

This front-wheel drive crossover is offered in three equipment levels, which, again, in comparison with the “Europeans” may seem strange.

For example, even in the starting Comfort configuration for 989,000 UAH there will be an electric sunroof and a rear view camera with dynamic (!) markings, although there will be no light and rain sensors and some safety systems such as automatic braking. In fact, Comfort can be satisfied only with cruise control, which is not adaptive, and a central display with a diagonal of 10.25 inches. Its size is still larger than, for example, the new Mitsubishi Outlander, which has an 8-inch screen. But this, in fact, is all the fun of the introductory Changan CS 55 Plus.

However, the next Lux package for 1,029,000 UAH suddenly makes a strong leap up: the difference in Comfort is only 49,000 UAH, but almost everything you need appears. Digital 10-inch instrument panel, light and rain sensors, heated rear seats, remote engine start. Lux will have electrically heated windshield, adaptive cruise control, all-round camera, automatic braking system and built-in video recorder. And the diagonal of the central display increases to 12.3 inches, that is, it takes on the same appearance as in the top-end Tech equipment.

The top-end CS 55 Plus is offered for UAH 1,079,000 and adds to the Lux package intelligent cruise control with the ability to respond to road signs, an automatic braking system with pedestrian recognition, a lane keeping system and traffic jams assistant. And besides – a wide roof with electric drive and an electric tailgate.

Well, let’s summarize. The basic values ​​of Changan CS 55 Plus seem quite attractive. Powerful for its class, relatively economical engine, fast robot, fully independent suspension, progressive adjustment of the driver’s seat. However, it is only front-wheel drive, and the starting equipment will satisfy only unpretentious customers. Also, the database will not have some security systems that have become common for absolutely all trim levels of European classmates.

However, starting from the middle configuration, Changan CS 55 Plus can seriously compete with the “Europeans” and even surpass them in some multimedia capabilities. In any case, the Changan CS 55 Plus is worth checking out. Maybe he has something that will impress you.

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Source: korrespondent

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