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GWM Cannon Alpha: Hybrid, diesel ute locked in for Australia

The GWM Cannon Alpha, due here in mid-2024, will be the first full hybrid ute in Australia, as well as the brand’s most powerful ute here.

GWM today confirmed initial specifications for the Cannon Alpha, which will sit above the existing GWM Ute Cannon in its Australian lineup.

Headlining the Cannon Alpha is a segment-first hybrid system, which mates a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine with an electric motor for total outputs of 255kW of power and 648Nm of torque – identical to the Tank 500 SUV.

It will arrive before plug-in hybrid rivals such as BYD’s as-yet unnamed ute and the upcoming Ford Ranger PHEV, though it won’t be able to drive on electric-only power for extended periods due to the design of its drivetrain.

A 2.4-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine will also be available, developing 135kW of power and 480Nm of torque – significant improvements on the 120kW/400Nm outputs of the Ute Cannon’s 2.0-litre mill.

Previously uncovered government approval documents have shown the turbo-diesel is fitted with a 48-volt mild-hybrid system, similar to the new Toyota HiLux V-Active, however GWM hasn’t confirmed this as a feature in its latest release.

Both engines are mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission with a full-time four-wheel drive system, featuring locking front and rear differentials.

Measuring 5445mm long, 1991mm wide and 1924mm tall on a 3350mm wheelbase, the Cannon Alpha is 35mm longer, 57mm wider, 38mm taller and has 120mm more between the axles than the Ute Cannon.

The increased dimensions also mean a higher braked towing capacity, increasing to 3500kg from its smaller sibling’s 3000kg rating.

The rear tailgate can be either opened vertically in a 60/40 split or in traditional drop-down fashion.

GWM hasn’t detailed the full features list for the Cannon Alpha yet, though it has confirmed certain variants will come with a 14.6-inch infotainment touchscreen, 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, 10-speaker Infinity premium audio, wireless phone charging, and heated, ventilated and massaging front seats upholstered in Nappa leather.

Drivers will be able to engage what’s claimed to be an intelligent All-Terrain system which includes three separate driving modes.

GWM Australia says it will confirm pricing and features closer to the Cannon Alpha’s local launch, though expect it to eclipse the $52,990 before on-roads list price of the Ute Cannon’s flagship XSR grade.

MORE: Everything GWM
MORE: GWM Cannon Alpha approved for Australia with hybrid, diesel power
MORE: GWM’s new, larger ute spied towing ahead of imminent launch

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