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GAC PH updates the GS8 midsize SUV

Will the high-tech features make it worth the premium price tag?

The GS8's boxy profile admittedly looks handsome. PHOTO FROM GAC

Some say that the little things make a big difference when added up. This is probably what GAC Motor Philippines had in mind when it refreshed its flagship SUV, the GS8. Most observers will probably say that the vehicle didn’t really change too much. So, what did the automaker exactly do to refresh the GS8?

Not much has changed with the exterior, and some buyers probably like that. PHOTOS FROM GAC

Well, up front, the new front-bumper design has larger intake vents and is peppered with chrome bits. A silver skid plate can be found down low. These small tweaks make the boxy GS8 look even more imposing.

Inside, a mix of piano-black and wood trim adorns the dashboard and door panels. The ventilated seats are now upholstered in more premium Alcantara material. Second-row seats get lumbar support for better comfort. A darker theme gives the interior a sleeker, more elegant look and feel.

The GS8 justifies its premium price with plenty of high-tech toys. PHOTOS FROM GAC

Occupants will be entertained by the 10-inch infotainment screen with Apple CarPlay and six Harman Kardon speakers. The heated tiller has the usual audio- and cruise-control buttons. Passengers will like the tri-zone climate control. Smartphones can be charged with the usual USB ports or the wireless charging pad. Other features include 10 cupholders, LED mood lighting, and a panoramic sunroof.

The new GS8 also has plenty of safety and convenience tech. There are parking sensors, a 360° camera, an electronic parking brake, a tire pressure monitoring system, a powered tailgate, and fingerprint-activated door locks.

The 2.0-liter turbocharged engine is smooth and powerful. PHOTO FROM GAC

Powering this rather big SUV is a very potent 199hp, Euro 5-compliant 2.0-liter turbocharged engine. A healthy 320Nm is transferred to either the front or all four wheels, and is available at a wider rev range. Safety features include 10 airbags, antilock brakes, traction control, hill-start assist, and hill-descent control.

These are the variants and prices of the new GS8:

  • 4×2 Sports – P2,088,000
  • 4×4 GL – P2,288,000

Red Santiago

A jack of all trades, Red is passionate about cars, motorcycles and audio. He sometimes drives for a ride-hailing app company—just because he really loves driving.