GAC aims to take over the subcompact crossover segment with the GS3 Emzoom

GAC Philippines has been making significant strides since the start of the year. They greeted January with the all-new GS8 SUV, and brought in the Empow sport sedan. Those were followed up with the launch of the Emkoo at last April’s MIAS.

Now they’re bringing that momentum to the small crossover space with the arrival of the all-new GS3 Emzoom that starts at P998,000. Its size and price puts the likes of the Geely Coolray, Honda HR-V, and MG ZS T in its crosshairs.

Geometry could’ve been the motto for its exterior. There are a lot of lines that connect to one another forming various shapes all over the car. The front grille was a bit more simple with its straight lines but two different angles for the upper and lower portion resulted in a subtle triangular shape. The same happens on the other sides that make the GS3 a car that you’ll definitely want to see up close.

Photos by Vincent Villa

For exterior amenities, it has LED headlights, DRL, and taillights as standard. There’s also flush door handles that push out when the car is unlocked, and huge 18-inch or 19-inch wheels, depending on the variant. It’s also available with automatic headlights, panoramic sunroof, and powered tailgate.

The cabin complements the exterior well with its modern appointments and upmarket materials. It will greet you with its D-shaped steering wheel, digital gauge cluster and huge 10.25-inch infotainment system that has wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The gear shifter is very small unlike what we’re used to with other crossovers, while the other contact points are mostly clad in padded leather. A 6-way powered seat is available for the driver, joined by automatic climate control, wireless charger, ambient lighting, and rear air vent. For the model I shot, it has a blue and black interior theme but there’s also green and beige, and camel brown interior available for other trim models.

Standard safety equipment is also formidable in the GS3 Emzoom. There’s Hill Hold Control, Electronic Parking Brake with Auto Brake Hold, Electronic Stability Program, Cruise Control, and Tire Pressure Monitoring even for the base variant. Go up in trim level and you’ll have Hill Descent Control, a total of six airbags, 360-camera system, and GAC’s Advanced Driver Assist suite that includes Adaptive Cruise Control, Automatic Emergency Braking, High Beam Assist, Lane Keep Assist, and more.

What powers this crossover is a 1.5-liter turbocharged engine but unlike others in its class that has only three cylinders, this one has four, resulting in a more balanced feel and response. It puts out 174 hp and 270 Nm of torque, paired to a 7-speed wet dual clutch automatic transmission.

The GAC GS3 Emzoom will be available in three trim levels. The base GS is priced at P998,000, the mid-level GB at P1,098,000, and the top of the line GL that has a bit of body kit and the full set of safety features will retail for P1,198,000.

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