Changan Alsvin 1.5 DCT Platinum


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Don’t get caught up with the name, it will grow on you by the time you’re done reading this. The Alsvin, may seem a little foreign to pronounce, and we won’t get into what the name means, you’ll be more interested in what this sub-compact from Changan has to offer. It’s also their only locally available model with a name, their other offerings have letter and number combinations to in place of model names.

If you’re in the market for a car in this category, perhaps a first time car buyer? You’ll probably be looking at price, and what features you’ll get. There’s always a trade off, features for price, your main consideration is getting from point A to B, in the most cost effectively comfortable way. We got our hands on the top of the line Platinum variant. We were surprised at it’s features for it’s price.

Exterior

The Alsvin is your typical subcompact sedan, its measurements are not far off from the best selling subcompact sedan it’s up against. The front end’s design seems a little visually busy with a lot of lines, but starts off pretty well with Changan’s Butterfly Wing Radiator Grille design which is carried over from their other models. Its got halogen projector head lamps which adjust up and down, and only the Platinum variant has Daytime Running Lights on the bottom corners of the sculpted bumper.

The sides have a line emanating from the headlights but not quite making all the way to the rear, but does bring attention to the line that comes forward from the brake lights. There’s also a line that slopes up from the front wheel to the rear wheel and up the rear bumper.

The Alsvin has a nicely sculpted rear end with the bumper not protruding far from trunk lid’s sculpted spoiler which is a nice touch. It rolls on 15” alloy wheels wrapped meaty in 185/55’s. There also a power sunroof on the Platinum variant, a high end feature rarely found in this category and price range.

Powertrain

Under the hood is a naturally aspirated 1.5 liter gasoline engine that puts out 107Ps at 5,500rpms with 135Nm of torque between 3,500-4,500rpms and this is mated to a 5-speed wet-type dual clutch transmission.

Interior and Amenities

As you enter, you’ll find that the lay out of the dash is centered around the driver and not symmetrical, the center of has the entertainment system’s 7” touchscreen display and this 4-speaker system has AM/FM, Bluetooth and USB connectivity with controls on the racing style flat bottomed steering wheel. The driver seat is 6-way manually adjustable, you get an armrest and storage on the center console. Doors have power locks and side mirrors are power adjustable. It’s also equipped with Cruise Control. Safety features are dual front airbags, Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD), Electronic Stability Program (ESP), Hill Hold Control (HHC), reverse camera with auxiliary lines, right side blind spot view camera and monitor, reverse parking sensor, Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS), Child Safety Lock and Seatbelt reminder.

Right Side Blind Spot View Camera and Monitor activates when you signal for a right turn.
spacious rear seats

The Alsvin performs as well as can be expect for a vehicle in this category, but the Platinum priced at Php679,000 is definitely great value with all it’s features usually found in more expensive, higher end brands at the entry level price bracket of locally established brands. Chinese brands have a come a long way in the last decade, and to stay competitive in the world market have been able to up their standards and build quality.

For your peace of mind, Changan Motor Philippines offer 5-year, 150,000-kilometer warranty and free Preventive Maintenance Services (PMS) for the first year, or up to 20,000 kilometers. The Alsvin wasn’t a trade off of features for price after all.


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Neil Pagulayan
You can catch him daily on Mellow 94.7's morning show he also contributes on DRIVE, Manila Bulletin's motoring section...

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