It’s amazing, of course, how everything is changing rapidly, and the hero of this review aroused genuine interest, both among people in parking lots and at gas stations. I repeat, they approached and asked as many as seven times! And they nodded approvingly, they say, the Chinese are great. In general, even among friends and acquaintances, those who are cool about the Chinese auto industry were interested in the car. Is the stand-alone Changan UNI-K really that cool? Let’s figure it out.
By the way, in the UNI series, the Changan brand has more cars, but “K”, so far, is the only proud representative in Russia. Looking forward to the rest?
- Engine: ICE, 4 cylinders, in-line, 2 liters, turbo, 92nd gasoline.
- Power: 226 HP s., 380 Nm.
- Gearbox: Aisin eight-speed automatic.
- Drive: full.
- Average consumption during the test drive: 10.5 liters per 100 km.
- Drove: 654 km.
Bold and interesting
Honestly, even if this design doesn’t work for you, it definitely won’t leave you indifferent. UNI-K is visually massive (especially in this gray color without any overflow) and with many details in the exterior. A massive front grille flows seamlessly into the body panels, huge doors cover the sill (and you stay clean), retractable handles add purity to the geometry… and the rear is reminiscent of Star Wars spaceships in some elements. Like?
I especially liked how the electronic rear-view mirror camera fits into the small roof wing. From myself, I note that this car looks bold and holistic. For which he is definitely a plus. By the way, many thought that it was electric and it was connected just with the “muzzle”.
And now, according to tradition, I will go over everyday issues. And I’ll start with the trunk, which you can get into with a wave of your foot and, which is great, the mechanism works properly.
The luggage compartment is perhaps the biggest disappointment in this car. Yes, there are 351 liters, but because of the strongly protruding bumper in winter or after rain, you can get dirty. Inside is not a very bright bulb and there are no hooks. There will be difficulties with the organization of convenient transportation of things. But the chairs fold into an almost flat floor. Under it, by the way, is a tool and a dokatka.
The second row meets a lot of free space! Even with tall riders in the front, there will be more than enough space in the knees. And yet, despite the four-wheel drive, there is a flat floor. The armrest in the center is excellent, but without container clamps. Two air diffusers, two classic USBs… but where is the heating in such a heaped up car?! But here he is not. And there are no hooks for clothes, well, suddenly they are relevant to you.
Bottom line: there is a lot of space on the second row, but in such a pompous car you feel a little deprived.
I’m moving forward.
The front passenger is endowed with electric adjustment, but without height adjustment, and, as is often the case now, it is the passenger who has the volume control unit. He does not have to reach out to the driver. The glove box is not very roomy.
But in the driver’s seat, the car is perceived quite differently! Already four displays, a stylish electronic gearshift lever, an unusual steering wheel and … a touch climate.
And my first impression is “Wow!”. Here, as well as outside, boldly in visual terms. And even the steering wheel, if at first it seems ambiguous, then it turns out to be convenient and does not cause problems.
So, I gathered my thoughts, let’s go: there is a lot of space, so the cups are free, a stylish “washer” switches modes (ECO, NORMAL SPORT), a small joystick for selecting the type of drive and a closed (apparently for style) niche with wireless charging. Add here a very voluminous box in the armrest, the lower tier and a small box to the left of the steering wheel. And all bases are rubberized!
In general, I didn’t want to find fault with the materials in the interior at all. Nice plastic, eco-leather and gloss is not very much.
Let’s talk about “usability”, that is, how it is clicked and the like. The first and main stone flies towards the climate. But even the younger CS35 Plus had convenient bulges on the touch control “disks”, which made it possible to adjust the temperature without looking away. But alas. The UNI-K has a sleek, shiny panel that’s a little awkward to use on the go. There are two USB Type-A on the lower tier of the central tunnel, a passenger with fast charging, a driver with the ability to connect to a car … but there is no Android Auto and CarPlay, otherwise the crutch application that is offered as an alternative is used, it seems to me, reviewers only. And just to check.
In all other respects, there are no big complaints. Yes, after poking through the menu and driving a car, I would say that there is not enough interface customization. Yes, the left screen shows the type of drive and tire pressure, ok.
But in the tidy ALWAYS hanging menu lines. What for? And if you turn on the adaptive cruise, then you only have to look at the graphics from the radar. And in general, there are a lot of displays, and the level of their content is very poor and uninteresting. Including visually.
The right tidy screen is the most variable and depends on the selected mode. ECO is an economy scale, NORMAL is a flat speed scale (a strange decision, but oh well), and in SPORT – overloads! There is always an oil temperature, a power reserve and an indication of the level of gasoline. But that is not all! Remember I mentioned the camera on the back? So, there are two of them, and one of them is an electronic rear-view mirror (activated on the steering wheel), which displays a picture on this particular display.
Not tired? I am almost everything. I won’t describe the menu, there are a lot of settings, from sound to assistants. But there is something unbanal – a built-in auto-registrar. It can save the stream from all four cameras (and, there is a 360 ° view right there, but you won’t surprise them anymore). Everything is written to the microSD card and, by pressing a separate button, additionally saves the last 15 seconds.
Bottom line: from the driver’s position, everything except climate control is great and comfortable. Yes, I would like to set up the main tidy screen differently, but this is more of a nitpick. And in contrast to the perception of the car from the driver’s seat, it becomes a shame for the second row and the trunk. But UNI-K also has speakers in the driver’s headrest, the sounds of turn signals and emergency lights are transmitted there (the sound is quiet), and you can also listen to music only from them. Frozen, but unusual!
Can be cheerful, can be stately
226 horses and 380 N•m know their business, thanks to a two-liter turbo engine. In sport mode, you can drive cheerfully and provocatively, or you can relax and go to ECO, the difference is felt, although in any mode there is some delay between pressing the gas pedal and the car’s reaction, you need to get used to it. And the mode used will be activated at the next car factory. The seats have good lateral support (as well as position memory for the driver and lumbar support for riders in front), decent visibility in all directions, except for a tiny window in the back (this is the misfortune of all “crossover coupes”). First of all, I had to get used to the shape of the steering wheel, especially at the time of interception in strong turns.
On the track, you can generally relax and surrender to the adaptive cruise. It can stop completely and actively taxi in the lane. You, most importantly, do not forget about the road. By the way, it was on the highway that I saw the lowest consumption rate – 8.8 liters per 100 kilometers. I also note a well-tuned bunch of engine with an eight-speed automatic transmission. Works imperceptibly and adequately.
The Changan UNI-K rides comfortably, enough information is transmitted to the driver. Well, you can’t expect miracles from the steering wheel today, and yes, the car is not for special driver’s pleasures. Noise isolation is decent and the main discomfort is only at speeds of 90 km / h and above. And then, from the wheel arches.
But there are a couple of complaints about the suspension. The first is its excessive tightness. You will jump too cheerfully over the pits and speed bumps, you will hear the sound of the rebound of the shock absorbers. The second point is a clearance of 180 millimeters and a very low front skirt.
As a result, it was more pleasant for me to ride in a relaxed mode. Enjoy acoustic comfort in the city rhythm, listening to music from good-sounding speakers. At the same time, I did not meet any bugs or glitches that are mentioned in earlier reviews. Is that the translation into Russian in the menu is not always logical and the fonts are not chosen the most fitting into the style.
Is everything really that great?
A meticulous person will always find nuances in any car, but I will say that even with a mileage of 22 thousand kilometers, there are no unpleasant sounds in Changan UNI-K, and even glossy panels still look good. Yes, while driving with a passenger, I wanted one more place in the center for a second smartphone, and the passengers on the second row did not have enough heating, and I, the driver, did not have enough steering wheel heating. But this did not distract from the general positive impressions in dealing with the car. While the thing I missed the most was being able to pair my smartphone, well, I don’t like to mount it on the windshield or air deflector.
It is also worth noting the off-road talents, given the snow and mud conditions on the roads during the test. Yes, the clearance and plastic body kit do not allow you to be a hero, but at the same time, the all-wheel drive pulls out perfectly and also climbs the slopes pretty well.
I emphasize the fact that in order for UNI-K to have no questions, there was very little left! Maybe they’ll fix it in restyling?
- unbanal appearance;
- good ergonomics in the cabin;
- the presence of an auto-registrar with recording from all cameras;
- space in the cabin.
- in winter, there is not enough heating for the steering wheel and rear sofa, for a car of this class this is already critical;
- no support for CarPlay and Android Auto.
May not like:
- there are many displays, and the information content is not very high;
- steering wheel shape;
- leatherette quality in the cabin.
Bonus gallery if the photos above weren’t enough for you!
Source: Trash Box
Charles Grill is a tech-savvy writer with over 3 years of experience in the field. He writes on a variety of technology-related topics and has a strong focus on the latest advancements in the industry. He is connected with several online news websites and is currently contributing to a technology-focused platform.