While European automakers often compete to see who will introduce the wildest concept, in China instead they simply develop the madness and put it on brands. The same was the case with one sub-brand of Dongfeng, which is called Mengshi in Chinese, but translated into English it is M-Hero.
This state-controlled brand, normally dedicated to military vehicles, launched the 917 SUV model on the civilian market. Although a model, it is more of a mobile fortress that, in addition to a number of off-road gadgets, also has its own helipad for a drone. However, the company recently announced that it is working on certifications for the European market, where it plans to enter after March 2024. So, what can we expect?
For an SUV machine with dimensions of 4,987 × 2,080 × 1,935 mm and a wheelbase of 2,950 mm. Surprise? The car is only slightly larger than the Škoda Kodiaq. Two versions should arrive on the market, namely fully electric and electric with a range extender.
Pure-blooded electricity boasts four electric motors with an output of 800 kW (1,087.6 horsepower), acceleration from zero to one hundred in 4.2 seconds and a giant NMC traction battery with a capacity of 142.7 kWh, which is supplied by the CATL company, with which it bakes, for example, the Stellantis concern.
You’re probably wondering about the weight, which comes in at a crazy 3,293kg, which means it’ll have to come down for Europe so it’s not a two-seater variant with a paltry payload. Anyway, according to the Chinese CLTC measuring protocol, which is quite optimistic, the car can travel 505 km on a single charge.
However, we think that the car will realistically manage to drive around 35 kWh per hundred kilometers with defensive driving, similar to the electric Ford F-150. This would mean a combined range of approximately 400 kilometers.
See how a car hits an obstacle moving at the same speed after a head-on collision at a speed of 50 km/h. Isn’t this an absolute tank?
The second version is an electric car with a combustion range extender, which hosts three electric motors tuned to 600 kW (815.7 horsepower). They draw energy from a battery with a capacity of 65.8 kWh, which, in addition to recuperation, charges the 1.5 liter 197 horsepower turbocharged gasoline engine during driving. The fuel tank has a volume of 85 liters and the certified range according to CLTC is 1,032 km. Realistically, however, expect a little less.
The interior is no less luxurious, woven with leather and three main displays. The manufacturer in the first wave will target Germany, France, Norway and Sweden within Europe. If the M-Hero 917 really arrives in Europe, it won’t have many direct competitors. Especially if they keep a decent price.
On the domestic market, the variant with a range extender costs 637,700 yuan, i.e. about two million crowns, while the pure-blood electric will cost 697,700 yuan, which translates to 2.2 million crowns. For Europe, however, prices will probably be higher.