Changan Alsvin- Test Drive & Review

Master Changan Motors recently introduced the Alsvin subcompact sedan in Pakistan & the vehicle immediately went on to create a buzz in our market. The company received overwhelming response from the public with units fully booked till June 2021.

Although most of us have already seen the car in person, standing at the showroom floors so we know a lot about it already, but how is it to drive and have the overall experience of this car? Well Changan Pakistan arranged an exclusive test drive event inviting leading auto bloggers and vloggers to have a thorough experience of the new Alsvin sedan.

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There were 9 top spec Alsvin Lumiere variants, all dressed in Stellar White color handed over to each of the reviewers, including CarSpiritPK of course. These were the local CKD assembled variants as opposed to the CBU units that were displayed during the launch event & dealerships.

Related: Changan Alsvin First Impressions: Amazing!

I had this car for over 6 and a half hours, driven for over 160km including our drive within Karachi on public roads with congested start/ stop traffic, maneuvering within tight spaces, high speed drive on highway and an uninterrupted cruise in Bahria Town followed by another long journey all the way to where we started. So without taking much of your time, let’s get straight to the experience we had with the Alsvin.

The Quality

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It is a general perception that the CBU imported versions are better built than the local assembled versions. However we all were impressed with the CKD Pakistan assembled Alsvin units as there was literally no difference in quality when compared to the CBU versions that graced the launch event & showroom floors. The paint quality; fit & finish and the overall workmanship of these local assembled Alsvin units was really impressive and we hope the standards will be maintained in future as well.

The Exterior

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The exterior of the car is really striking with a very fresh road presence. Standing at the showroom floor in glistering condition always leaves a very positive impression but if you are driving the car that’s white in color on public roads among all the cars around you, the Alsvin still stands out from the crowd because it’s obviously unique, plus the design itself is very modern & refreshing. That’s the edge Changan Alsvin has over most of the other cars in Pakistan which are often introduced once done from the rest of the world, so despite new the charm isn’t really there since the design has usually become old fashioned.

Related: Changan Alsvin Like Nowhere Else- Only on CarSpiritPK

As a memento to the things we already know, all Changan Alsvin variants are no different from each other which means, even opting for the base variant isn’t a compromise of any sort on looks & equipment. Highlights include 15-inch alloy wheels wearing 185/55 tires, matching door handles & side mirrors with integrated turn signals, shark fin antenna, projector headlamps with 5-level adjustments and LED DRLs.

The Interior

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In terms of design the interior is as impressive as the exterior. The combination of faux beige & black accompanied by silver embellishments adds to the refreshing ambience of the cabin. The design is fresh & contemporary with controls well within the reach of the driver.

Seating posture is quite comfortable thanks to the adjustable steering, plus the flat-bottomed steering wheel not only renders a sportier appearance, but is also quite convenient while driving as it never touches your legs even during a full spin.

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Another important thing is the excellent visibility for the driver due to presence of least blind spots. It’s actually quite easy to drive the car primarily due to the fact that you can see a lot from within while the pillars aren’t thick enough to hinder the view.

Related: Changan Unveils All New Eado Plus

Inside you also get the 7-inch floating touscreen with HMI (Human Machine Interface) using which you can use for reversing assist, play music, connect to radio & Bluetooth as well as access to various customizations related to the car & its systems.

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The meter cluster has an analogue dial and a digital tachometer (rpm), alongside digital multi-information display giving all sort of necessary information to the vehicle temperature, fuel, trip, fuel consumption and door open indications etc.

 The Space

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Obviously since this is a subcompact sedan you won’t get too much space inside the car. Despite this, the room for driver & front passenger is very impressive. I am 6ft 3 inches tall and still had considerable shoulder room & leg space with my knees far from brushing the dashboard.

Related: Changan Begins Exporting Hunter Pickup

Since the Lumiere comes equipped with sunroof, the roof is obviously low compared to regular variants, still the headroom was sort of okay with a couple of fingers gap between my head and the roof lining.

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Rear seating position is comfortable for adults with regular height but in my case, someone sitting on my back with me on the driving seat that’s positioned to my adjustments will get his knees pressing against the front seats. However in regular conventions, it can accommodate 3 passengers with ease with reasonable headroom.

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Opening the trunk is done with the key fob, you need to double-press the trunk release button to have the 500 liters of ample cargo space revealed to you. For the sake of comparison it is more than you get in Toyota Yaris (476 liters) but a little less than that of Honda City (506 liters). It’s easier to load the items as in any other modern car thanks to a low loading sill. Plus the cargo bay is well insulated, something that’s sort of uncommon even for an expensive Pakistan assembled car that cost over PKR 4 million.

The Engine

Under the hood, the Changan Alsvin Lumiere gets Euro-5 compliant 1,480cc engine that’s capable to churn out 105hp of power and 145Nm of torque and is assisted by 5-speed dual clutch automatic transmission with tiptronic.

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Another edge the Alsvin has over other vehicles is its Euro-5 compatibility, since Pakistan is already moving towards adapting Euro-5 standards with PSO already started to provide the better quality fuel, the Alsvin having a Euro-5 engine under its hood has an edge with better consumption & emissions compared to any local assembled car with older tech engine under its hood.

Driving the Alsvin

The engine was extremely quiet and you could hardly hear it even when you rev it hard, at least not in the cabin primarily because it was so well insulated. The engine response was really very impressive and delivered the power without any hassle.

Related: Changan Alsvin- Variants Explained

One of the most amazing things during my driving experience was the engine rpm, even at speeds close to 80km/h the engine stayed below 1700rpm resulting in outstanding fuel economy and unmatched driving experience.

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At times you might feel a slight lag in acceleration particularly when you floor the pedal but that’s how a dual clutch transmission behaves. There are certain dos & don’ts of driving a car with DCT gearbox which we will cover in our upcoming article so stay tuned.

Related: Changan Blue Core Engine Sets Guinness World Record

Even after driving the Alsvin for a prolonged time on a lengthy journey, I didn’t felt tired and it was a very easy & pleasurable driving experience. Not only in traffic or highways, even tackling through the congested traffic was pretty easy. Reversing was aided with the presence of rear camera as well as rear parking sensors which kept promptly alarming for any obstacles behind the vehicle.

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The Lumiere variant boasts 5 extra features compared to the other two variants which includes sunroof, heated side mirrors, TPMS (tire pressure monitoring system), cruise control and auto engine/ start stop which gives an added benefit to the overall driving experience.

Safety Systems

In terms of safety Changan Alsvin comes equipped with dual airbags, ABS with EBD, 3-point ELR seatbelts, ISOFIX anchorage, rear parking sensors & rear view camera. Whereas as mentioned earlier, the Lumiere gets an added advantage of having TPMS & heated side mirrors enhancing its safety.

The Verdict

The Alsvin didn’t just impress us, but everyone else since wherever we stopped during our journey, it pulled crowds. While driving, we saw people taking snapshots from their cars and when we stopped many came out of their vehicles to ask a number of questions about the car. Some even insisted us to give them a test drive which was obviously not possible but it showed the level of interest people are showing in this car.

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The Alsvin in the given price is a tremendous value for money. The sort of safety & convenience features it is offering against a price that cuts the competitors is something really impressive for a car of this size. Plus the design is very eye-catching and it leaves a lasting impression on the onlookers.

Related: Chinese Cars Set New Sales Record in Australia

What’s important however is that Master Changan Motors should ensure quicker & smoother deliveries and must work hard to maintain the quality standards. If the Alsvin continues with its quality & features against a sustained price tag without any unnecessary revisions, then we believe the car has the potential to become a household name in its class. Plus the long-term ownership experience will matter a lot once the vehicle comes into the hands of users in large numbers, and if these users are satisfied as there is nothing worth more than word of mouth which will ensure true success of this car in our market.

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Alsvin is backed by 3 years/ 100,000km warranty, with around 17 nationwide Changan dealerships which will be expanded in the course of time according to the company. The car is available in 6 exterior colors– Galaxy Black, Stellar White, Lunar Silver, Space Grey, Nebula Blue and Cosmic Red.

Related: Chinese Brands and Chinese Owned Brands- Is the Bad Reputation Deserved?

Keep in mind prices of Alsvin are ex-dealer which means customers in Peshawar and Karachi both can buy at the same price, without paying any extra freight cost. The 2021 Changan Alsvin sedan in Pakistan is priced as:

1.37L MT:Rs 2,199,000
1.5L DCT AT:Rs 2,399,000
1.5L DCT LUMIERE AT:Rs 2,549,000

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From our experience, we can safely say that Changan Alsvin is indeed a wonderful addition to the new car buying options available for Pakistani consumers, and is expected to give a tough time to its immediate competitors Honda City & Toyota Yaris in our market. For details about other Alsvin variants, click here.

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