Chinese carmaker Great Wall Motors has introduced single cab version of its Steed ute, which provides a far cheaper option over its Japanese rivals, in particular the Toyota Hilux Workmate cab chassis.
The Great Wall Steed single cab chassis comes with a turbocharged diesel engine and six-speed manual as standard and is available in 4x2 and 4x4 configurations that cost just $18,990 or $20,990 driveaway respectively, for ABN holders.
Buying a Steed will save you more than $12,000 over a comparable 2WD and 4WD Hilux Workmate manual diesel single cab chassis, which cost $30,882 and $43,507 respectively including on-road costs.
So, putting badge cachet aside, what does the Steed’s bargain basement price get you, and how does it compare with the tried, tested and revered HiLux?
Both vehicles are similarly sized with 2400mm long aluminium trays. The Steed’s is a little wider at 1777mm compared with the HiLux’s 1762mm.
The Toyota can carry more though, with a 1210kg payload that’s 12kg higher than the Great Wall. It tows more, too, with braked towing capacity for the HiLux and Steed being 2500kg and 1700kg respectively. Both can tow an unbraked trailer weighing up to 750kg.
Performance and handling
The turbo diesel engines have similar outputs, with the Steed’s 2.0-litre four-cylinder producing 110kW/310Nm compared with the 110kW/343Nm produced by the HiLux’s bigger 2.4-litre four-pot.
Each engine is mated by default to a six-speed manual gearbox and have simular combined fuel use figures, with the Toyota drinking 8.8L/100km and the Great Wall an estimated 8.5L/100km.
Both ride on double wishbone independent front suspension and leaf-sprung rear axle, with the Steed rolling on 16-inch alloys, and the Hilux 4x2 and 4x4 variants on 16- and 17-inch steel wheels respectively. The 4X4 adds all-terrain tyres and heavy duty suspension package.
Each ute comes with basic creature comforts, with the Steed adding cruise control, a full-size spare wheel, leather steering wheel with audio controls, AM and FM radio, Bluetooth, CD player and electrochromatic (self-dimming) mirror.
The HiLux Workmate’s features include plastic steering wheel with audio controls, dusk sensing headlights, 6.1-inch touchscreen, AM and FM radio, Bluetooth and CD player, and a full-size spare.
Where the two differ mostly is safety. All HiLux models have five-star ANCAP rating from July 2015, while the Steed is lumped with the 4x2 petrol dual cab that only scored a two-star ANCAP rating in September 2016.
Both vehicles are covered by a three-year, 100,000km warranty.