Automobiles in Pakistan be it Japanese or Chinese, are far behind in terms of quality, safety and equipment, compared to the rest of the world. In most cases, models sold in Pakistan are done with their life in global markets.
The recent case was with the Zotye Z100, the once cheapest car in China which was introduced in Pakistan by HRL Motors for a staggering PKR 11.72 lac, not to mention the Z100 was discontinued in China two years ago.
Related: Is Zotye Z100 Destined To Be A Flop?
Similar examples were found in case of (now inactive) Karakoram motors who were the first to have signed a technical collaboration agreement with Chery to produce right-hand-drive vehicles in Pakistan. Despite this all what we got were obsolete substandard Chery, Gonow & Changan minivans that were no longer available for sale in China.
This actually tarnishes the image of Chinese cars (in Pakistan) which are otherwise rolling out sensational vehicles in their home as well as export (competition driven) markets. HRL Motors who are the people behind bringing in the Zotye Z100 have completely messed up with the launch of an overpriced hatchback and are yet to arrange a single dealership in the country, thus the Z100 can only be viewed on Facebook.
Zotye on the other hand just doesn’t produces the likes of Z100 anymore. Like many other Chinese automakers, they are rolling out quite impressive vehicles today, such as the Z700 saloon, Z560 sedan, the SR7 SUV or the T500 SUV.
However the brand name Zotye is largely associated with low-cost vehicles in China with mostly copied designs and no wonder the company wanted a better brand impression in the market, hence they went upscale by launching a new brand called ‘Traum’ in 2017.
The word Traum means ‘dream’ in German, however the brand has nothing to do with Germany. Traum is aimed towards younger buyers and will consist of cars with original designs and advanced power plants. Though reportedly Traum vehicles are penned by Daimler designer Benedek Toth.
Related: Review: 2017 Zotye Z100
The Traum vehicles are based on new modular TMA platform and are powered by three turbocharged engines, a 1.2 liter (150 hp), 1.5 liter (177 hp) and 2.0 liter (245 hp). The company also plans to introduce HEVs and PHEVs while intends to launch 9 models by 2019, eight of which are SUVs and just one sedan.
Interestingly, the Traum-branded cars are manufactured by Jiangnan Auto, a subsidiary of Zotye, most famous for building China’s (once) cheapest car; the Jinangan Alto (Mehran replica).
One of the first vehicles to roll off under the new brand is Traum S70. It’s a good looking car, mixing elements of an MPV and an SUV quite nicely. It measures 4746/1882/1700mm having a wheelbase of 2800mm. The Traum S70 is powered by 1.5 liter turbocharged engine mated to either a 5-speed manual or a 6-speed automatic transmission, sending power to the front wheels.
And it’s not just the outside, the S70 is impressive on the inside too. The dashboard comes with a unified 25 inch screen, which really consists of two separate sub-screens: one for the instrument panel and one for the infotainment. Moreover the panel graphics can be customized whichever way the user likes.
The S70 is a genuine 7 seater with 2/3/2 seating setup and has an long list of features including dual-zone climate control, air-purifying system, panoramic glass top, front seats with heating and ventilation, six airbags, circular video review, cruise control, lane control, leather interior, keyless access and push-button ignition etc.
Related: The Stunning 2018 FAW A50 Sedan
The Traum S70 is priced from 80,900 yuan (PKR 14.09 lac) to up to 115,900 yuan (PKR 20.19 lac) for the fully loaded version.
Now if we take a look back at the Zotye Z100, clearly there is a day and night difference between the two. And it becomes hard for anyone to digest that it’s the same company which develops both the Z100 and the S70. Well, the reason is simple, the Zotye Z100 was developed nearly 7 years ago based on the 7th generation Alto platform, and since then the company, like most Chinese automakers, has improved dramatically in automobile development.
And with these companies producing sensational vehicles today, one can only imagine why the likes of obsolete Z100 are launched in Pakistan at an unrealistically high price tag instead of the modern options that can still be introduced against a much reasonable amount of money.
A computer animation professional with over 23 years of industry experience having served in leading organizations, TV channels & production facilities in Pakistan. An avid car enthusiast and petrolhead with an affection to deliver quality content to help shape opinions. Formerly written for PakWheels as well as major publications including Dawn. Founder of CarSpiritPK.com