Haval. You really should get used to the name - if you aren't already, what with the H2 and then the H6 C SUV's garnering massive media attention following their respective launches, while the yet larger more, more luxurious upcoming H9 promises much for mid-2018.
You see, Haval is here to stay.
Now, of course, every vehicle importer says that.
Show us the OEM who says "we're just here on the South African market to test the waters" or "we're just here to unload some old models that are already discontinued abroad, and will pull out once done."
So more than that, Haval is putting its money where its corporate mouth is.
Now to digress a bit, the automotive press and customers have, as mentioned, been almost universally rapturous about Haval, which is GWM's luxury sub-brand, with GWM itself having been on our market for over a decade already.
And even the most critical elements have ceased to damn Haval with that faint praise "it's good for a Chinese vehicle" - for the simple reason that Haval isn't pretty awesome compared to what we're used to seeing from China.
Nope, it's up there with the world's best.
That's not our opinion. It's the opinion of top auto publications and websites. Cars.co.za - arguably the best of the latter in all of SA, and certainly one of the most critical - was moved, as just one tiny example, to say the following after spending time with the H6 C:
"As for the rest of the interior, it seems quite upmarket in a classy, restrained way. The silver trim on the doors is smooth to the touch and the leather trim inserts are quality, premium features. The dashboard surrounds are made up of soft-touch material-Compared with materials with injection moulding, their slush moulding feels softer and upper class and all the panels seem firmly held in place."
Still others have spoken of quality and refinement being up there with some of the top German brands, but what we're really getting to is the fact that besides offering an alluring price point in these turgid economic times, you and your Haval will have all the support you need.
From only the end of May this year, 18 Haval accredited dealerships have been established - and by the end of 2018, well, Haval expects to have 35. At least.
And that's the sort of dealership footprint to rival certain well-established brands - which is something Haval is well on its way to being in SA. In record time.
As Haval South Africa put it themselves - without a hint of puffed-up hyperbole - this clearly, "Shows the strength of the brand, it shows that there is a demand for our brand, and it gives prospective buyers reassurance that we are growing from strength to strength in both dealer footprint as well as expanding the product range and after- sales support."
And on a parting note, don't forget that Haval is beyond massive on its own home market of China, with over one-million (that is not a misprint!) sold there last year.
Watch this space...