At this year’s Thailand International Motor Expo that concluded earlier this month, Great Wall Motors (GWM) held its ‘Light Your Future’ event, which included a preview for the Grand Cat. Also known as the Lightning Cat, the electric vehicle (EV) was officially launched in its home market of China in early November and is priced between 189,800 and 269,800 yuan (RM120,418 and RM171,155) with incentives factored in.

GWM Thailand did not provide details like final specifications or prices for the Grand Cat, but Autolifethailand confirmed that sales of the EV will begin in 2023. The model will join the local feline line-up that is currently occupied by the Good Cat, which was launched in Thailand last November.

Visually, the Grand Cat appears to be a stretched and widened version of the Good Cat. Inspired design cues include roundish headlamps and lack of a front grille, although the Grand Cat is even more distinctive thanks to its frameless doors and prominent crease that runs from just ahead of the front wheels to the end of the rear doors.

There’s more to see from the side, including some snazzy 19-inch wheels and a curvaceous, coupe-like roofline that some has associated with the original Porsche Panamera. Progressing further, you’ll find a fastback-like rear end with oblong-shaped taillights flanking the tailgate that integrates an active rear wing.

Inside, the Grand Cat sports a more upmarket cabin than its smaller sibling, with highlights being a 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster that is divided into three circles, a more premium three-spoke steering wheel and a freestanding wide 12.3-inch touchscreen.

The dual-tier centre console also brings various vehicle controls closer to the driver, with the space underneath serving as storage and to house charging ports. Based on videos posted by GWM Thailand, the example placed on stage is right-hand drive example that comes with a panoramic sunroof, rear air vents and what appears to a reasonable amount of headroom despite the shape.

On that mention, the Grand Cat’s wheelbase spans 2,870 mm, which is 220 mm longer when compared to the Good Cat. Naturally, it’s larger in other dimensions too with a length of 4,871 mm (+636 mm), width of 1,862 mm (+37 mm), although the Grand Cat’s shape results in a height of 1,500 mm (-96 mm).

In China, the Grand Cat (Lightning Cat), which is also built on GWM’s Lemon platform, is offered in three electric powertrain configurations. The first is a standard range option that features a 63.9-kWh lithium iron phosphate (LFP) battery that provides up to 450 km of range following the WLTP standard (555 km CLTC) and powers a front-mounted electric motor rated at 204 PS (201 hp or 150 kW) and 340 Nm of torque.

There’s also a long-range version that uses the same electric motor but steps up to an 83.5-kWh LFP battery for even more range; quoted figures are 600 km WLTP and 705 km CLTC. Lastly, the performance variant adds another electric motor to the rear for all-wheel drive and a total system output of 408 PS (402 hp or 300 kW) and 680 Nm.

The third option is capable of the 0-100 km/h sprint in just 4.3 seconds and will hit a top speed of 170 km/h. However, this comes at the expense of range, which goes down to 495 km WLTP and 600 km CLTC. GWM didn’t provide detailed charging information, but it says the Grand Cat recharges from a 30-80% state of charge in over 30 minutes, likely via a DC input.

In terms of available equipment, the Grand Cat can be had with LED exterior lighting, leather upholstery, powered front seats with ventilation and massage functions, dual-zone climate control with a PM2.5 filter and fragrance delivery, four drive modes and a wide range of driver assists (adaptive cruise control, lane keep assist, traffic jam assist, cornering assist, autonomous emergency braking, blind spot monitoring, etc.)

For an extra cost, customers in China can also specify the Ora-Pilot 3.0 intelligent driving assistance system that includes 10 cameras, five radar sensors, 12 ultrasonic radar sensors and three internal cameras for up to Level 3 autonomous driving with driver monitoring.

With the Grand Cat confirmed for Thailand, could Malaysia also welcome it in the future seeing how we’ve already gotten the Good Cat? Would you be interested in this EV? If you’re curious, other feline-themed cars in the Ora range include the Black Cat, White Cat, Punk Cat and Big Cat (based on the Wey Macchiato).



GALLERY: GWM Ora Grand Cat previewed in Thailand

GALLERY: GWM Ora Lightning Cat