This is the Geely Okavango – a 7-seater mild hybrid crossover SUV and the third SUV in the lineup, poised “to change the game” in the SUV market.

Geely Philippines distributor Sojitz G Auto Philippines (SGAP) virtually launched the Okavango  last November 19, after the Coolray and Azkarra, and wants to gives its owners a ‘wonderfully distinct’ experience.

“Coming from the successful launch of the Coolray and Azkarra, we are confident that the new Geely Okavango will be a game changer in the industry as it combines the best qualities of a multi-purpose vehicle and an SUV, into one exciting 7-seater mid-size crossover,” SGAP President Mikihisa Takayama said in a statement.

While being named after an African delta of the same name, the Okavango boasts a sleek design combined with a leather-clad interior (on the higher spec Urban variant) which is as comfortable as it is spacious inside. It measures 4835mm long, 1900mm wide, and 1785mm tall.

Interior comforts include an 8 speaker system (4 speakers on the base variant), power adjustable seats (manual adjustment for the base), and a 3 zone climate control. A 10.25 inch infotainment system is included, but it doesn’t include Android Auto or Apple CarPlay however.

With the rear seats up, the Okavango can hold up to 247 liters worth of luggage space to work on.Folding back the third row seats gives you access to a 1200L trunk space. Folding back the second row seats, you can have a 2,057 liters worth of luggage space.

Safety features include ABS, 6 SRS airbags (with dual airbag system at the front plus side and curtain airbags), a 360-degree panoramic camera with a guidance system and dynamic auxiliary lines, overspeed warning, electronic stability control, hill start assist, central locking with speed-sensing auto lock, and hill descent control.

Powering it is the trademark 1.5 liter turbocharged 3-cylinder engine, combined with a 48 volt electric motor (similar to the Azkarra) which makes for 190PS at 5500 rpm and 390Nm of torque at 1500-4900 rpm, which sends it to the front wheels via a 7-speed wet dual clutch automatic transmission. The engine is a result of a partnership between Geely and Volvo (Geely now owns Volvo).

Two variants are offered for the Okavango – the base Comfort variant will set you PHP1,208,000, and the leather clad Urban variant at PHP1,328,000. Considering the quality and comfort it offers, it is a good value oriented choice to other mainstream offerings in the market. Available colors include Storm Grey, Porcelain White, Luna Silver, and Marble Black.

Too close for comfort?

When pressed if the target market  of the Okavango may clash with the Azkarra’s, Geely stated that the purpose of the Azkarra and the Okavango are very different. While the Azkarra is for a more distinct adventure lifestyle, the Okavango is more of a family transporter. Geely design director Guy Burgoyne calls the Okavango a”cross MPV” which honestly, confused us here in Streettalkph. With its 7-seater capacity and european style passenger folding seats, its a mid-sized SUV for us.

Text: Alain Geronimo

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