December 19, 2022 By Kevin Limjoco Photos by Isabel N. Delos Reyes

2023 Hongqi E-HS9 Deluxe

The Electrified Premium Land Yacht

I have called quite a few large vehicles “land yachts” over the years but the all-new full-size 7-seater Hongqi E-HS9 Deluxe AWD SUV sets a new standout level. Seemingly inspired by the design cues from Rolls-Royce and Bentley, the fully-electrified behemoth looks even better in person, and more importantly performs astoundingly better than expected.

The Hongqi brand has been around since 1958, building the state vehicles for the Chinese leaders and their domestic market ever since. It has been regarded as the pride of China’s national automobile industry, and an iconic symbol of the China automobile business. Now driven by national innovation development strategies, Hongqi also currently produces a variety of potent gasoline-fueled luxurious sedans, crossovers, and SUV’s set for international export sales but the brand intends to enter our Philippine market specifically with their crown jewel, this fully electrified E-HS9 model in three AWD variants.

The entry Executive model uses an 84-kWh battery with equally powered front and rear motors (215 hp / 221 lb-ft, 429 hp / 442 lb-ft of torque in total) with a realistic range of approximately 380 kilometers, has the least standard equipment of the three variants but still has strong equipment levels in comparison to its direct premium ICE equivalents in our market, and was debuted to the public in last year’s 10th Philippine Electric Vehicle Summit held by the Electric Vehicle Association of the Philippines. The elegant EU-spec Hongqi E-HS9 Deluxe model tested here in two-tone Glacier White and Silver Grey exterior with Alcantara®/quilted PVC in charcoal Grey/White interior shares most of the dynamic and luxury equipment (99-kWh battery, 551 hp / 553 lb-ft, 441-kilomter range) with the top-spec Flagship model but it does not have the adaptive suspension, more airbags, does not use Nappa leather instead of PVC, and does not have the captain seat middle row (seats 6 instead of 7).

All three variants share the same proportions, essential components, panoramic moonroof, expansive electronic technologies like the six smart screens, soft-close doors, hidden door locks, powered third-row, interior lights, Level 3+ autonomous driving system, and high-level build quality. The length is 5209 mm, width is 2010 mm, and height is 1731 mm on a 3110 mm wheelbase. Approach angle is 22.5 degrees while departure is 22.4 degrees. The boot with the third row fixed has a 438-liter capacity which swells to as much as 1814 liters with both the second and third rows folded flat. Three full-size golf bags can fit lengthwise with the third row folded without compromising the second-row comfort levels of backrest incline and legroom.  The very comfortable seating has variable settings to optimize maximum comfort for all occupants. The third row has its own device charging ports, climate control and genuinely can accommodate two adults with reasonable legroom.

It weighs a whopping 2580 kg with a drag coefficient of .34 cd., but drives like a much smaller saloon. The Hongqi E-HS9 features the Quectel AG15 module integrated with the Qualcomm® 9150 Cellular Vehicle-to-Everything (C-V2X) chipset solution. It is the industry’s first production vehicle that has achieved 100% validation of driving assistance warning in multiple LTE-V2X communication scenarios and has now become the world’s first commercialized vehicle to feature LTE-V2X technology as well.

The Hongqi E-HS9 Deluxe has multiple charging options from a 150/108 kW CCS-plug/Combo 2 that can charge a completely depleted battery in 30 minutes, non-contact charging which can fully charge the vehicle in 8.4 hours, to the standard Type 2 (Mennekes – IEC 62196) 1-phase 32A (7.4 kW) 230V / 1x32A 7.4 kW household wall socket charger that will charge in 12h:15m. Keep in mind that these charging figures are when the 99-kWh battery is completely depleted. In most real-world scenarios you would be topping up the vehicle at the end of the day like you would a cellphone. In fact, the Hongqi E-HS9 can also function as a power source by disconnecting the rear right charging cable, flip up the small cover on the charge handle, and you will find an external plug to power a night’s tent facilities on an out-of-town trip with the family. The Hongqi E-ES9 is a genuine AWD SUV despite its massive 21” x 9J alloys wrapped with 265/45R21 108W XL Michelin Pilot Sport 4 tires that look like it should remain only on road. Even without the flagship’s adaptive suspension, the Deluxe model, also like the Executive model, use fully independent and robust aluminum suspension, double wishbones in front and multi-links at the rear. The powerful brakes are all vented with the front being managed by 4-pot calipers while the rear are handled by single sliders.

The E-HS9 has multiple drive modes that manage every setting and supported with different acoustics and interior ambient lighting; Sport, ECO, Comfort, Allroad, Offroad, and Custom. So, you can truly tailor your driving experience to suite your requirements.

The exterior lightshow is one of the very best in the business too, and all crisply unique. From the redline on the hood, to the “Wings of Hongqi” greeting lights. The signature front and rear lights are also brilliant. The standard 12-speaker audio system doesn’t have to work hard to create aural pleasure in such a quiet cabin either.

There are a lot features and new technologies to get accustomed to which are entertaining and very linear. Yet the greatest experience is how it drives with locomotive thrust and shocking agility. We enjoyed every moment with the Hongqi E-HS9 Deluxe. The retail pricing has not been set yet but it will be very competitive and it should earnestly lure buyers away from the default premium brands. It will be significantly cheaper to run and maintain for sure as well without producing emissions.

Specifications

Engine

Engine Dual Permanent Magnet Synchronous AC motors, front motor 218 hp / 221 lb-ft @ 0-15000 rpm, rear motor 333 hp / 332 lb-ft @ 0-14500 rpm, 99-kWh liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery pack, 400 Voltage
Max Power (bhp @ rpm) 551 bhp (411 kW Total Combined System Power)
Max Torque (lb/ft @ rpm) 553 lb-ft (750 Nm Total Combined System Torque)
Transmission 1-Speed Direct Drive

Performance

Top Speed 200 km/h (125 mph) Governed
0-100 km/h | 0-62 mph 4.9 sec.

Fuel consumption and CO2 emissions

Fuel Milage (km/l) 2 L/100km equivalent overall, 441-kilometer heavy duty range (465-510 kilometers / 289-320 miles range possible)

Ratings

Price as Tested (PHP) PhP 6,000,000.00 to 8,000,000.00 (approximate range)
What's Great Massive presence, a genuine standout, spacious, the new supreme luxury alternative, brilliant light treatments, sophisticated, excellent range and dynamic performance.
What's Not So Not officially sold in the Philippines yet, CarPlay and AndroidAuto connectivity not applied yet, better with adaptive suspension and even better audio system.
C! Editors Rating 10/10
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