The SAIC-GM-Wuling (SGMW) joint venture, in which General Motors holds a 44-percent stake, has officially launched the Baojun Yep mini electric SUV in China with a ultra-competitive base price of $11,300 (79,800 yuan).
Leaked in early 2023 and unveiled in public at the Shanghai Auto Show in April, the Baojun Yep – its Chinese name is YueYe – has gone on sale in China on May 25 targeting younger buyers with lower than expected pricing.
The boxy three-door, four-seater mini SUV is an ultra-compact vehicle that measures just 133.1 inches (3,381 millimeters) in length, 66.3 in (1,685 mm) in width, and 67.7 in (1,721 mm) in height. The Baojun Yep has a wheelbase of 83 in (2,110 mm), and tips the scales at just 2,217 pounds (1,006 kilograms).
The rear seats, where space is very tight as you can imagine, can be folded to create a generous cargo space of 25.2 cubic feet (715 liters). Access to the trunk is made via a big rear door that open on a vertical hinge to the sides, with Baojun refering to this setup as a "refrigerator-like" rear door.
Gallery: 2023 Baojun Yep
That's not all the available storage, though. Under the front hood there's an 0.9-cu ft (35-liter) frunk that can also work as a refrigerator or heat keeper, allowing passengers to keep their beverages at the correct temperature when camping. For customers who need more space, Baojun also offers optional retro roof racks that can carry up to 66 lbs (30 kg).
Baojun refers to the Yep's exterior as a Square Box design, while the interior is called JoyBox. The dashboard is dominated by a 10.25-inch twin screen, with one half working as the digital instrument panel and the other as a main display for the infotainment.
The infotainment system is powered by an operating system named KiOS, which is mated with the ADAS system developed by DJI, called LingXi. The latter enables the Baojun Yep to support automated parking and Lane Centric Control (LCC). The mini SUV is also equipped with a 360-degree camera.
Another interesting feature is a dashboard attachment system that enables occupants to attach various things to the dash, such as an additional screen in front of the passenger, for example.
The Car-watch exterior display in action
The Baojun Yep offers more quirky features, chief of which is the large exterior rear screen, dubbed Car-watch. Attached to the rear door and emulating the look of a wristwatch, the display can be used to communicate texts of pictures to other drivers or pedestrians.
Much like many other features inside the Baojun Yep, the Car-watch can be operated via a smartphone app. The same app can also control the windows, air conditioning, primary vehicle diagnosis, and vehicle position.
The tiny electric SUV comes in a unique single-motor rear-wheel-drive powertrain configuration consisting of a 28.1-kilowatt-hour battery pack and an electric motor rated at 50 kilowatts (67 horsepower) and 103 pound-feet (140 Newton-meters) of torque. The top speed is limited to 62 mph (100 km/h).
According to the General Motors-backed company, the battery pack supplied by Guangxi Ningfu has a density of 130 Wh/kg and enables a driving range of up to 188 miles (303 km). As for charging, it goes from 30 to 80 percent SoC in 35 minutes.
Customers can choose between two trim levels, the Flagship Edition base model priced at $11,300 (79,800 yuan) and the top-spec Deluxe Edition going for $12,700 (89,800 yuan).