Changan's UNI-T Speedster concept wants to change the future with a convertible SUV!
If you've never heard of Changan Automobile, we don't blame you!
However, you should know that Changan Automobile is one of the top automotive brands in China and fight Geely toe to toe for the top spot, with the Chongqing based company topping the sales chart more than once this year.
Although Changan's C-Segment Sedan, the Eado, is their best-selling vehicle, their sleek and sporty Lexus-esque looking SUV, the UNI-T is hot behind its trail. It has even been dubbed as the best-looking SUV in China by many media outlets such as Carscoop - primary target demographic, sporty and fashion-centric youth.
Although the UNI-T has not surpassed monthly sales figures of 10k units, Changan has already started to implant the idea to buyers that they want to sell a convertible version of the UNI-T, called the UNI-T Speedster.
Despite the lack of demand for convertibles in China, Changan believes they can disrupt China's antipathy for drop-tops through an SUV roadster, ala Land Rover's Evoque convertible.
The UNI-T Speedster, with its wide body, extensive front splitter and side skirts as well as big grill, looks like it came out of one of Japan's custom body kit makers.
The design of the front face maintains the design style of the UNI, with its "Z" shaped light and lower grille combo polarising the front end. While the front end is definitely striking, it's probably the rear, that catch the eye, especially when you can clearly see the speedster-type hump. Of course, we can't see where it would hide the soft top, so perhaps this concept is a bit far from the showroom floor.
Of course, what is possible is the inclusion of a petrol 1.5-litre turbocharged engine with 180 hp and 300 Nm of torque, as found on the UNI-T. The interior of the UNI-T should also fit directly into the Speedster as it's already flamboyant. Just look at that hovering touchpad on the centre console.
A four-seater speedster is probably the last thing Chinese buyers want, but with their youth's ever-changing behaviour where style is essential, perhaps Changan is on to something here. If that fails, they could always try their luck in Europe, where cabriolets thrive.