} ;

GAC Aion S revealed at Guangzhou Motor Show

20 November 2018 | by Michael Gooderham

GAC New Energy have revealed a new electric sedan at their local motor show. The Aion S is seemingly meant as a competitor to the Tesla Model 3, as the company says that it “is striving to transcend Tesla with series of core technology and sustainable innovation.

The Aion S features a similarly low drag coefficient of just 0.245Cd, while also boasting a solar panel in its roof – much like the ill-fated Fisker Karma, although here it’s in the sunroof panel. The new sedan features Level 2 semi-autonomy and will also be used to develop Level 4 technology for the near future at a new facility later this year. Adaptive cruise control, surround-view cameras and automated parking with short-range, low-speed remote control also hint at their intentions to compete with Tesla.

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The front is largely conventional, with a skinny upper grille sitting above a chrome bar holding the badge, below all of which is a larger grille with an expanding honeycomb pattern. The outer front corners are flared to house little fake grilles and additional driving lights.

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Behind the swept-back LED headlights, the conventionally shaped and proportioned roof can be blacked-out as an option on white and red-painted Aion Ss, with a black trim cutting through the D-pillar to give a clear dividing line for this purpose. The DLO is lined along its upper edge with chrome no matter what.

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Bodyside surfacing is restrained, too, with two almost-parallel character lines sculpting the upper area and softer surface changes below keeping things calm and slippery. Full-width LED tail lights do what they can to characterise the tail.

The car sits slightly high on its 17- or 18-inch wheels, with a wheelbase of 2732mm.

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Curiously, there appear to be no official interior photos, even though the car has one. This photo from Autoreview in Russia shows a Hyundai-like two-spoke steering wheel, two touchscreens within a common shroud, a full-width chrome strip running through air vents along the horizontal centreline of the dash, and a chunky leather centre console with gloss-black plastic around the transmission controls. It will reportedly also feature smart voice control.

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While full powertrain details are not officially available, the claimed maximum driving range is “over 600km [>370mi].” China Daily reports that its motor generates 150kW (201hp) and 350NM (258lb/ft).

The GAC Aion S is expected to enter production next spring.

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