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The GAC GA4 is a decent compact sedan for below a million bucks

For practical car buyers who can look past its Chinese badge

Even the top-of-the-line variant costs less than P1,000,000. PHOTO FROM GAC

One thing good that came about as a result of the Chinese automotive invasion is the sudden deluge of affordable cars. From small city runabouts to midsize crossover SUVs, Filipino consumers on a budget no longer have a shortage of choices when it comes to purchasing a brand-new ride. That includes those in the market for a compact sedan. Because now they have at their disposal decent, low-priced offerings like the model you see here, the GAC GA4.

The GA4 has two gasoline engine options: a 1.3-liter turbo mill with 136hp and a 1.5-liter normally aspirated motor worth 113hp. The former is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission, while the latter is mated to either a six-speed automatic or a five-speed manual gearbox.

Looks okay enough to be shown to your critical friends. PHOTOS FROM GAC

Because this car is designed, manufactured and specced in China, it’s easy to assume that it lacks the typical bells and whistles that automakers usually dangle before their customers in this class, but you’d be wrong.

According to the GAC Philippines, the GA4 has the following standard equipment: LED daytime running lights, LED rear combination lights, eight-inch LED display monitor, Bluetooth connectivity, front and rear USB ports, leather-fabric seats, six airbags, surround-view parking assist, parking sensors, electronic stability program, antilock brakes, electronic brake-force distribution, traction control, hydraulic brake assist, hill-start assist and Isofix child seat anchors.

Gadget freaks will love the USB ports inside the cabin. PHOTOS FROM GAC

The GA4, which is available in Ivory White, Elegant Black, Starlight Silver, Coffee Brown and Rosefinch Red, is priced as follows:

  • GA4 1.3L Turbo 6AT – P988,000
  • GA4 1.5L 6AT – P858,000
  • GA4 1.5L 5MT – P788,000

Yes, we know: Chinese-made vehicles should always be treated with a lot of caution. Which is why we encourage you to inspect this car for yourself if you’re looking for a reasonably priced compact sedan. Who knows? You might find the perfect match for your budget.

Vernon B. Sarne

Vernon is the founder and editor-in-chief of VISOR. He has been an automotive journalist since July 1995. He became one by serendipity, walking into the office of a small publishing company and applying for a position he had no idea was for a local car magazine. God has watched over him throughout his humble journey. He writes the ‘Spoiler’ column.