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GM’s Chinese carmaker SIAC-GM-Wuling is now focussing on off-roading fare. It is known for its tiny EVs, and has the best-selling one there, the Wuling Mini-EV. But as some Chinese manufacturers are known to do, it is cribbing more established automaker’s designs. This is a teaser the company has put out, and it looks like it is a cross between a Suzuki Jimny and a Defender. 

The Baojun KiWi SUV has taken cues from the Jimny and Defender

Baojun KiWi
Baojun KiWi EV SUV teaser | GM

Some of the images are a bit fuzzy because they are done in low light and we brightened them up to see what’s going on. Since we see KiWi in the grille, that’s what we’ll call it. Baojun already makes a KiWi EV sedan, which looks a lot like a Wuling Mini EV. So this might be a Jimny-like body bonked onto a KiWi EV platform. 

While the KiWi sedan has a single electric motor, the tiny SUV shown here would have two according to Car News China. With 54 hp each, this KiWi would have 110 hp. Depending on its weight, this could be a fun off-road roller skate, though not in the same league as a Jimny.

Will the KiWi SUV make it here?

Baojun KiWi
Baojun KiWi EV SUV teaser | GM

We would suspect that one motor would be at the front, and the other in the rear, making this all-wheel drive. That would help make it at least capable of going off-road, though we would like to see more power. Of course, that being if it were to make it to our shores, which is not likely.

We expect that one of these days Chinese vehicles will slowly start making their way here. But right now, its home market keeps them all pretty busy. It also gives them a chance to fine-tune development, manufacturing, and distribution nationally before venturing out to other countries. 

Why won’t Suzuki bring back the Jimny to the U.S.?

Baojun KiWi
Baojun KiWi EV SUV teaser | GM

But it is inevitable, which leads us to wonder why Suzuki isn’t considering making a comeback to the U.S? It already has an established dealer network for its motorcycles. And it seems to be working out well. So whatever tricks it has developed to sell bikes here could help Suzuki to take another shot at the U.S. market. 

Even companies like DeLorean and Hummer are making a comeback in this age of electrification. And brands like the ford Bronco and Maverick, as well as Jeep’s Gladiator are back. So there is a grand precedent of reestablishing old companies and brands. 

As for the KiWi SUV, we expect that Baojun will have a more open viewing of its little SUV at next month’s Guangzhou Auto Show. If this is set for production, it will also divulge production and delivery plans there. Until then, we have these teasers and videos to pique your curiosity.

Baojun KiWi sedan
Baojun KiWi EV | GM