Chery Omoda 5 H an attractive choice

WITH Chery having officially made its return to our shores recently with the launch of two sports utility vehicles (SUVs), the China-based carmaker is back to ensure an impression is made.

One in particular is its range-topping Omoda 5 H for the hotly contested compact SUV segment which has been priced on-the-road without insurance at RM118,800 while an entry-level C variant comes in at RM108,800.

Although the Omoda 5 takes aim at the likes of the Honda HR-V, Hyundai Kona, Mazda CX-3, Peugeot 2008 and Proton X50 this SUV is covered by the company’s industry-leading seven-year warranty, including five years of free service.

Customers can also opt for a transferrable 10-year or one million-km engine warranty for an additional RM2,000.


Blending style and practicality into the Omoda 5 H, it’s eye-catching right off the bat with sleek lines coupled with an exterior profile that shouts sporty sophistication and modernity through sculpted lines and contours for added dynamism that enhances its visual appeal.

The grille looks inherently bold, following its body’s contours while incorporating chrome accents and those diamond-like inserts to create a distinctive face for the vehicle.

Rather than ruin the front end’s design, the LED daytime running lights with integrated dynamic turn signals flank the top chromed band just beneath the edge of the hood.

The LED headlights have been combined with the front fog lights on the lower section of the bumper.

At the rear, it provides a notion of stability when at speed with its roof spoiler and high-mounted LED rear light clusters for Improved visual effects.


Being the H variant means the Omoda 5’s Phantom Grey body colour is accompanied by red stripes located within its 18-inch wheels, below its external mirrors, along its side skirts and under its rear roof spoiler for differentiation and that sporty premium outlook.

Approach the Omoda 5 and its external mirrors will unfold while activating the illuminated welcome lights bearing the “Omoda” wording as well as the Ceremonial Lighting system that showcases a dance of lights to welcome its owner.

Walking away will automatically secure the doors and fold the wing mirrors.


Reaching out to grab the door handles will unlock the keyless-entry system that helps the Omoda 5 maintain that premium experience as a welcome tune, that’s inherently Chinese, plays upon start-up.

Here, those with a keen eye will note the cabin’s design cues which accurately take after a certain luxury brand that uses a three-pointed star and hails from Stuttgart, Germany.

The familiarity comes from its 10.25-inch touchscreen and 10.25-inch digital cluster (including graphics) as well as the push-start button, among others.

All of those integrate nicely into an originally-designed interior that provides some semblance of individuality.


There’s plenty of comfort and ergonomics, for starters, the seats are wrapped in faux leather and are well bolstered to accord much comfort, especially around the waist and thighs.

The integrated headrests of the front seats are nicely cushioned with a soft spot for resting the proverbial “noggin” while seat ventilation keeps the posterior from overheating after spending a long duration out in the open heat.

Together with some subtle accent stitching and trim elements, it helps further elevate the cabin’s overall premium ambience.

At the rear, head, shoulder and leg-room is available for someone that’s 1.75m tall of assumed athleticism, but anyone taller may require some slouching.

The dashboard doesn’t seem too busy with touch-sensitive buttons for the dual-zone climate controls making it seem extremely uncluttered to the point that it’s almost spartan, yet still highly intuitive for use.


There’s a hollow section under the wireless charging deck for added stowage purposes and it just so happens to be where the 12-volt accessory outlet and USB ports (Type-A and Type-C) live.

The blacked-out lower cabin section simply provides a business-like ambience that acts like a blank canvas – allowing for the off-white upper section to “disappear” from the senses.

The combination gets accented by a combination of differently finished plastic surfaces from matt brushed aluminium-like arm pad and satin-copper stroke on the door cards to the piano black back-lit plastic on the dashboard.


The multi-colour ambient lighting system can follow the beat of your music - although it seems to mostly “breathe” to the tune rather than the beat.
The inclusion of a wave-like graphic beneath the piano-black plastic trim on the dashboard is illuminated by the ambient lighting system and is a welcome delight which adds a touch of playful character to the cabin’s overall ambience.

The graphics for both screens are crisp to the eyes in both daytime and low light and while it provides a spinning vehicle animation when engaging reverse, it does seem to disorient and can be done away with.

The drive

Out on the roads, the cabin remains relatively quiet, save for some interruption to the peace and quiet from the Advanced Driver Assist System’s (ADAS) lane departure warning system.


Its 1.5-litre turbocharged engine packed a punch in the performance department.

The engine’s 156hp and 230Nm of torque are always accessible for the front wheels via a continuously variable transmission with nine virtual gears.
Although the tyres are relatively new, they do hail from budget-oriented origins and while they are meant for cruising about, they do tend to wince when pulling off the line on full-throttle prods.

There isn’t always that “rubber-band” effect during full-throttle pulls with engine roar well managed – an obvious tactic to elevate that premium experience, and urban escapades are always smooth when about traffic, however, the throttle may seem a tad over-reactive to inputs which can often quickly provide too much engine rev.

The steering feel is sharp and can provide a sporty heft via the infotainment system and coupling that with a compliant suspension that soaks a good amount of uneven road surfaces certainly promotes its comfort-tuned disposition.

Although the brakes can provide a good bite to bring back sanity when at speed, it lacks an initial bite which is found further into the pedal’s travel.


That being said, the Omoda 5 is still capable of carving up corners even if there’s some pitch and roll to deal with – allowing for fun and aggression when wanted or needed.

The stiff chassis will reveal itself and is able to deal with the sudden need for some performance bursts without any noticeable flex. This helps to provide for a subservient rear end that allows its driver to have a “point and shoot” experience.

At startup, this SUV starts in Eco mode which dulls its sensitivity to throttle inputs and opts to allow itself to pull away from standstill gradually.

Sports mode will obviously introduce a more abrupt experience and will willingly provide full access to the engine’s abilities. Restart the SUV and it’ll revert back to Eco mode.


Out and about in heavy stop-go traffic and the adaptive cruise control with stop-go functionality was a definite welcome - allowing the right foot some respite from throttle management duties.

While the Omoda 5 feels well put together and is able to arguably pick up speed – albeit it will take about 10 seconds to reach 100kph, but won’t go beyond 191kph.

Among the niggling matters are the unnecessary spinning graphics when engaging in reverse, the use of a wide-angle centre rearview mirror and the front LED cabin lights which cannot be individually activated.


Furthermore, its lane departure warning (LDW) alerts need to be reigned in and either allow drivers to turn it off completely or provide an illuminated alert in addition to just audio, steering vibration or both.

Of course, the LDW is all for the sake of safety, but a balance between that and sanity is clearly needed too – especially for capable drivers who prefer a quiet experience.


The responsive handling and smooth ride of the Omoda 5 make it both a city-goer and cruiser in one for both daily commutes and long road trips while suggesting that this SUV has been put together rather well.

A nice balance has been struck between its chic modern form, stylish functionality and everyday practicality from its 360-litre boot (1,075-litre), retractable sunroof, adaptive cruise control and a host of ADAS features.

This makes it an attractive choice for those seeking a compact SUV that has a distinctly attractive look and personality – all backed by its willing turbocharged engine.

Chery Omoda 5 H
Engine: 1,498cc, turbocharged
Maximum power: 156hp at 5,500rpm
Maximum torque: 230Nm from 1,750 to 4,000rpm
Transmission: Continuously variable transmission (CVT) with nine virtual gears
Suspension: Front MacPherson struts; rear torsion beam
Features: Six airbags, anti-lock braking system, electronic brakeforce distribution, brake assist system with brake over-ride system, electronic stability programme, hill-start assist, tyre-pressure monitoring system, hill-descent control, lane departure warning, blind spot detection, emergency lane-keep assist, rear cross-traffic alert, adaptive cruise control, front collision warning with vehicle detection, autonomous emergency braking system, automatic headlights, lane departure prevention and traffic jam assist, LEDs for main headlights, daytime running lights with integrated sequential turn signals, heated and powered external mirrors with integrated sequential turn signals and rear light clusters, faux leather upholstery with front seat ventilation, six-way powered driver’s seat, four-way powered front passenger seat, powered sunroof, illuminated welcome lights, 360-degree camera system, powered tailgate with handsfree functionality, dual-zone climate controls, keyless-entry with push-start button, remote-start engine functionality, 15W wireless charger, automatic dimming rearview mirror, dynamic parking lines, front armrest cooler box, 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster, 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system, eight-speaker Sony Premium Audio system with Bluetooth connectivity, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and 18-inch wheels with 225/55 series tyres.
Acceleration (0-100kph): 9.9 seconds
Top speed: 191kph
Price: RM118,800 (on-the-road without insurance)

Autos Chery
CarSifu's Rating: 8.3