The budget-friendly German SUVs

By: Carl Cabusas May 07,2018 - 09:43 PM

THE BX7 SUV of Borgward. Carl Cabusas

Borgward BX5 and BX7

Not many know that German car brand Borgward is already in Cebu. Most probably, not many even know the brand at all.

This is because Borgward stopped sometime in the 1950s after it went bankrupt.

Borgward has been making good and reliable cars in Germany since 1919 until the 50s. That means, they actually have a good motoring heritage and history to brag about.

Fast forward to 2015 and Borgward is back and resurrected, thanks to Chinese funding (Foton China). Borgward is still very much German by design and engineering but now made and assembled in China.

They are marketed in Southeast Asia, China and Europe as affordable German luxury vehicles.

Two of their resurrected modern vehicles are SUVs known as the BX5 and BX7. Why SUV? Their biggest market, China, is one hungry SUV market. It only makes sense to focus their resources in this segment.

BX5

The BX5 is a shorter version of the midsize crossover BX7 and is therefore classified as a compact crossover.

It’s slightly bigger than a Peugeot 3008 but slightly smaller than a Hyundai Tucson.

The BX5 has the right German design spot on, initial build quality check is very good, interior material, fit and finish are also very good at par with the rest of the German mark, standard equipment list is also very impressive.

Sit behind the wheel and you would be hard pressed to think you are behind in a much expensive German SUV with its clean and minimal dashboard layout that features a floating info-tainment system that can be navigated by touch or rotary controller (think BMW X3, Audi Q5).

THE BX5 / Carl Cabusas

What makes it very luxurious is that at this price level (est. To cost less than P1.3M), the BX5 is clad in real leather, offers power driver seats, panoramic sunroof, auto headlights, auto wiper, day time LED, Electric hand brake with auto hold feature. Best of all the BX5 comes standard with auto intelligent AWD developed in-house by Borgward.

Power comes from a 4-cylinder, 1.8-liter GDi turbo gas engine that developes 140hp and 280 nm of torque mated to a 6-speed AT co-developed by Mitsubishi.

BX7

As earlier mentioned, the BX7 is bigger than the BX5 but still a five-seater.

What amazes me about the BX7 is how much attention to details went into the car’s design, build quality, luxury features and modern tech that are standard in the Borgward midsize SUVs. And it comes at a very good entry price point of P1.5M.

It has almost the same features the BX5 has. It’s powered by a bigger 2.0-liter GDi gasoline turbo engine that churns out 250hp and 300nm of torque.

Power is sent to a 7-speed Torque converter Automatic Transmission routed to an intelligent AWD system.

Based on these two units alone, Borgward is on the right track when it comes to SUV design, engineering and price. Luxury German SUVs on a budget has never looked this impressive.

The two Borgward SUVs are currently displayed at the Gateway dealerships at SM Seaside City Cebu and SM City Cebu.

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TAGS: budget-friendly, German, SUVs

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