The GAC M6 Pro has next-level comfort

The battle in the MPV space keeps gaining momentum as more new contenders are introduced in the country. One of these new challengers is GAC who brought in the M6 Pro earlier this year. Sharp-eyed readers will tell you that one of its key advantages over the competition is its 1.5-liter turbocharged engine. That may be true, but being on the road with it showed me something else. 

GAC Philippines invited me over to drive the M6 Pro from the GAC showroom in Manila Bay to the R33 Drift Track in Pampanga. Unlike other drives where you can sit anywhere you want, and choose who will drive at which part of the trip, GAC had us assigned seating. First I will be the driver, then move to the captain seats at the second row for the second part, and be on the third row for the third part of the trip.

Photos by Vincent Villa

Immediately upon taking the throne, I noticed the driver’s seat was something else. It had the proper contours to keep you in place but what really piqued my interest was the cushioning. The base of the seat was right on the money as it felt more like a couch than a car seat. The pessimist in me countered this by thinking ‘this may be an initial comfort.’ Glad to say I was wrong. 

From Manila Bay to Skyway Stage 3 up to NLEX and towards R33, I did not have any discomfort. As a heavy dude, I’m used to having minor body fatigue when driving for more than an hour especially in my rear end, so to speak. Some seats are firm, like in my personal car. Some seats are soft, but too soft that after an hour or more of driving, the cushioning fails to cushion my rear. With the GAC M6 Pro, it was really like sitting on a couch inside a car. It felt like I could just sink into it if I wanted to. It’s that comfortable. 

Moving to the captain seats of the second row, I definitely found the best sleeping car so far in my motoring life. They are truly tailored for comfort during long drives. First, there is enough legroom even if you adjust it forwards to provide ample space for the second row. Then the base of the seats are bolstered well at the sides. So are the backrest but they have additional contour for the shoulders. Finally, the headrests have butterfly wings or bulging sidewalls to keep your head straight especially when you’re sleeping. Of course, there are armrests on both sides of the seat. There’s no dedicated climate control here but you get your own fan control, which is a good enough compromise for the price. Combine this with GAC’s secret formula for the cushioning and the second row really becomes a mobile cabin worthy of long drives. 

The magic sort of takes a downturn at the third row, though it’s understandable. Being the last row in the MPV, they have to be able to fold flat and so the backrest of the third row is flat as well. What’s good here is the seats have the same comfort as the first and second row. This isn’t your typical third-row jump seat like what you find in other MPVs and SUVs. It gives you a good knee height so most of your rear end is supported, as are your thighs. 

Pardon me for going on and on about the seats of the GAC M6 Pro. As someone who always sleeps in the car during long drives, I was really surprised by the level of comfort I experienced in this MPV. But I understand you’re interested in knowing its usual aspects.

It still has the 1.5-liter turbo engine that trumps many of its segment rivals. This is complemented by great suspension, and the availability of Advanced Driver Assist System (ADAS) that surprisingly included Adaptive Cruise Control which is very nifty on the highways. The Lane Keeping System should be commended too for not being intrusive nor overtly corrective when activated. 

It’s also no slouch in protecting its occupants in many situations as we found out in the R33 track. GAC held driving tests to flaunt its ABS and Stability Program. Hard braking while turning, braking on wet linoleum and driving away on full throttle proved light work for the M6 Pro. They even did a moose test where you will make a sudden lane change without braking at 60kph, simulating someone suddenly stopping on the road or entering the road. Again, the M6 Pro proved that it’s not a one trick pony as it aced these activities. 

There are only two variants of the GAC M6 Pro: the GS at PHP 1,230,000 and the GL at PHP 1,598,000. Choosing the latter means you’re getting leather seats and the full suite of ADAS, among other things. However, the base model isn’t a bare model. You’re getting the same engine, riding comfort, same captain seats on the second row (sans the leather upholstery), and the Stability Program that was crucial for the MPV to ace the tests that GAC threw at it. With the way it drives and the comfort it provides, it seemed like GAC really did their homework in providing a disruptor in a competitive high-profile segment.

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