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FIRST-DRIVE PREVIEW: 2023 Jetour Dashing — Locked and loaded with style and kit

March 30, 2023
The Geely Coolray is the poster child for a Chinese car that not only achieved mainstream acceptance, but also a strong fanbase.

Whereas old Chinese models were oddities often relegated to the scrapheap, Geely’s little crossover went in, guns blazing, taking on the likes of the Honda HR-V.

But as I mentioned in my full review of the Geely Coolray, it isn’t alone anymore. And yet another Chinese brand is poised to steal its thunder.

Enter the Dashing, perhaps the most stylish model in the Jetour Auto Philippines lineup.

AutoFun Philippines tried it out in Pasay City during the Jetour media preview event at Okada Manila. Here are our initial thoughts on this crossover.

Hodge-podge of styles

The Dashing certainly looks, well, dashing.

The light blue-gray paint job certainly accentuated many of the crossover’s interesting styling features, such as the huge front grill flanked by the LED main beams.

Indeed, many in our comments section noted how the little Jetour seemed like a smaller version of the Lamborghini Urus, especially with the LED indicators and running lights sitting on the hoodline.

The side profile is also quite distinct with its upward-swept window line that leads to a dazzling chrome accent. Adding to the sleekness of the Jetour Dashing are the hidden electronic door handles that pop out when the car is unlocked.

Out back, Lexus owners may have a case of deja vu with the large LED taillights and the faux rear diffuser.

Overall, while the Coolray looks peppy and sporty, the Dashing looks more upscale and elegant.

Techy cabin

Step inside the Dashing’s white-and-black interior and the amazement continues.

The gauge cluster resides on a small screen that fits perfectly with the rest of the dashboard. It clearly shows the information on speed, RPM, fuel and coolant temperature.

But what will really grab your eye is the 12.8-inch, portrait-style touchscreen in the middle of the dash. It controls everything from the infotainment system and climate control to the adjustment of the side mirrors.

Standard equipment includes a 6-speaker Sony sound system, an armrest box with refrigeration, a panoramic moonroof and active driver assists.

Again, the Dashing offers a more premium feel than many of its rivals in the subcompact crossover class.

Planted drive

Behind the wheel, the Jetour Dashing provides you with supportive front sport seats and a fairly easy driving experience.

The brakes were strong with excellent feel, the suspension was noticeably firm and the steering was light, although lacking in feel. However, we weren’t able to check if the tire pressures were correct, so a long-term test would provide more insight into how it rides on various roads.

What was interesting was the Dashing was limited to 55 km/h, so we weren’t to fully explore its turbocharged gasoline powertrain. Jetour Auto Philippines has revealed that it will sport a 1.5-liter turbocharged mill. That would qualify it for the 5% import duty cut-off for imported Chinese vehicles.

Speaking of price, what is quite clear and astonishing is the ₱1,329,000 for the sole variant of the flagship Dashing.

Jetour is targeting buyers of the top-spec Coolray SE Sport, which costs ₱1,269,000, and the mid-grade Honda HR-V V Turbo that comes in at ₱1,649,000.

Does the Jetour Dashing have enough to pull ahead of the pack? Watch this space for our full review soon.

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