The Dongfeng Motor might not a name you’re familiar with, but in 2020 you’re sure to have heard about where this Chinese carmaker is headquartered: Wuhan. But enough about that....
The state-owned corporation has only recently crossed the 50 year milestone and has managed to become a formidable player in their home market’s booming automotive industry, taking the opportunity expanding outward to nearby countries. Seems they’ve taken an interest in Malaysia, too.
DFSK is an acronym for Donfeng Sokon, the latter half of which is the moniker by which the company’s cars are known to Indonesians. And for the first time here, they’re introducing their first passenger car available on our shores: the Glory 580.
This 7-seater SUV (because it’s always an SUV) arrives fully assembled from Java but will only cost RM88,000 without insurance. Like a lot of cars coming with origins in the People’s Republic, including Proton to a degree, value is the DFSK’s trump card.
You can definitely get 7-seats on wheels for less, but the Glory 580 is presenting itself as quite the fully stocked SUV. It might not be the last word in beautiful or bold design, but on the other hand it definitely is styled to be unassuming and/or nondescript.
It looks fine, to be sure, but for a little under RM90k, you also get a 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine that produces a respectable 150PS and 220Nm, mated to a CVT that drives the front wheels.
While the Indonesians do get a little more by way of engine options and different trim levels, the sole variant sold here is akin to the more upper tier Luxury spec there. To live up to that, the Glory 580 is given two-tone 17-inch wheels, combination headlights with LED daytime running lights and LED tail lights.
Meanwhile, the interior is complemented by dual-tone leather seats that are six-way adjustable for the driver, keyless entry and push start, dual zone climate control, as well as a 10-inch touchscreen infotainment system with GPS navigation, though it appears that the Malaysian-spec version will miss out on the sunroof.
In terms of safety, the Glory 580 does indeed omit the more advanced active safety features but does cover the basics with Anti-Lock Brakes (ABS), Electronic Stability Program (ESP), ISOFIX mounting points, a reversing camera, and four airbags as standard. All pretty decent for the price.
Just like the Indonesian market, Malaysian units will be offered in four exterior colours: Elegant White, Glorious Metallic Red, Champagne Silver (?), and Phantom Black, though the interior colour palette isn’t altered by the exterior paint choice.
It’s hard to say how well the public here will receive the new SUV, but being a country that always loves a good deal, we’re sure the Glory 580, and its distributors Dongfeng Commercial Vehicle Malaysia, will definitely find a good few new customers.
The SUV space is particularly bursting at the seams with competition, and though this DFSK is undercutting its rivals on price, there is still something to be said for the unique charms of the Honda CR-V, Nissan X-Trail, Mazda CX-5, and even the Proton X70.
An attractive price tag isn’t a cheat code and Malaysians have also been equally shrewd with their purchasing choices for newcomer brands, otherwise we’d see plenty more Havals and Borgwards on our roads. Nonetheless, we look forward to putting the Glory 580 through its paces as soon as we get the chance.
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