Haval H6 GT Coupe Ultra review: Fun with crayon

David Linklater
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Photo / David Linklater


Base price
Fuel Consumption (l/100km)
Maximum power kW
Maximum torque Nm
  • Looks brilliant
  • Better handling than H6 SUV
  • Race mode’s a laugh 
  • Not the fastest H6 you can buy
  • Lethargic transmission
  • Fussy infotainment 

High-riding, low-slung SUV-coupes are very much a premium-brand thing: think BMW X4/6, Mercedes GLC/GLE, Porsche Cayenne. 

So the arrival of the mainstream-price H6 GT coupe from Chinese brand Haval should prompt serious faces and stern analysis. It’s even available in a very Porsche-like Crayon Grey exterior finish, as seen on our test car. 

But the big GT takeaway from the DRIVEN team is that the new Haval is a bit of a laugh, in the best possible way. It’s covered in cheeky design details (faux-carbon everywhere, two rear spoilers), it boasts bright green brake calipers and you sit on curvy bucket seats. It even has a Race drive mode that slams through the gears and liberates a raspy I-want-to-be-an-AMG exhaust note. 

We’re fans of the regular H6: swish looks, good quality and a decent driving experience; an interesting alternative to established medium-SUV names like Toyota RAV4, Mazda CX-5 and Kia Sportage. The H6 is a pleasingly mature package from a Chinese brand that’s still fairly new to Kiwis (it’s part of Great Wall Motors). 

The GT coupe is 74mm longer and 54mm wider than the H6 SUV. But weirdly, it’s a smidge taller as well, not to mention sharing the SUV’s strangely large gap between tyre and wheelarch. It’s a bit of a tippy-toes coupe. 

It shares the standard H6’s mechanical essentials: a 150kW/320Nm 2.0-litre turbo-four engine and seven-speed dual clutch transmission, in Lux FWD or the Ultra AWD specification featured here. 

So no, it’s not any faster than the regular SUV, although it can be louder of course. You might raise your eyebrows at the $6500 premium over the H6 Ultra SUV with the same engine, but the GT coupe is the same $48,490 as the H6 SUV HEV (hybrid), which puts it a bit more into context in terms of opportunity cost.  

So you can look cool or go fast; yes, the hybrid is quite a lot faster, with 179kW/530Nm. Bear in mind there’s also a Clean Car fine to be paid for the GT, whereas you get a rebate with the HEV. 

You can actually have the GT with the hybrid powertrain in other markets, which would be a tempting (if mid-$50k) proposition. But we’re not there yet in New Zealand, although it’s under discussion according to GWM NZ thanks to the huge popularity of the GT body style in Australia. 

As it stands, the GT is still a fun-to-drive machine, arguably happier on the open road than in town. The dual-clutch seven speed gearbox has its quirks at low speed, including a slippy demeanour on hills and during parking manoeuvres. 

It’s tempting to take the drive modes up a notch, but they don’t make the gearbox any more decisive and even in Race mode it needs a bit of prompting to change down under brakes. 

But in general, the dynamic package is improved over the H6 SUV, thanks mainly to the better-quality Michelin tyres fitted to the coupe. It’s still very keen on understeer, but the GT is surprisingly grippy and doesn’t suffer from lift-off chassis scares. It’s safe as houses.  

Notwithstanding the GT’s pseudo-sporty details and nicely supportive GT-embroidered front seats, the cabin architecture is the same as the standard H6. We’ve covered that in detail previously so we won’t repeat it all here, but you’re getting the same impressive build quality and same slightly fussy infotainment setup. 

The GT’s sharply descending roofline is a bit of an optical illusion, if the generous rear headroom is anything to go by. It’s perfectly spacious for adults back there, although you’ll have to bring a bit less stuff: the boot is down 200 litres on the SUV version, but still a respectable 392 litres. 

With a bit more power and polish to the transmission, the GT coupe could be a standout in the medium-SUV crowd. Even as is, you can forgive a few rough edges around the powertrain because the GT concept is so much fun and the rest of the package is so well put together. 


ENGINE: 2.0-litre turbo-petrol four 
POWER: 150kW/320Nm 
GEARBOX: 7-speed automated dual clutch, AWD 
CONSUMPTION: 8.4l/100km 
PRICE: $48,490 


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