The last time I drove a Haval it wreaked of petrol fumes and would turn the hazards on even when I applied just moderate pressure on the brake pedal. However the leading SUV brand in China has announced the debut of the Haval F7 to the Russian market. This however is a major announcement as it marks the brand’s first SUV to be entirely manufactured and distributed overseas.

Haval’s new factory in Tula, Russia is now completed and will assemble the new compact F7 1.5T and 2.0T models at launch. The Haval F7 is said to combine innovative automotive technology and safety features.

Mr. Jerome Saigot, The Boss of Haval in Russia said: “The Haval F7 is a sophisticated, innovative, sleek, and smart SUV that will serve as the new frontrunner for urban transportation across the nation,” said. “In the F7, we have integrated the core technological innovations of today’s market including a 360-degree view monitor for enhanced safety, adaptive cruise control, and a 9-inch multimedia screen with apple carplay, android auto and full led headlights.”

The 1.5 or 2.0 GDIT engine has a seven-speed transmission and will hit 100km/h in a rather sluggish 8.8 seconds.

It’s large, best-in-class as a matter of fact and seats five. An all-wheel-drive system includes six driving modes – standard, sport, mud, sand, snow and economy .

The price of Haval F7’s start at RUB 1.449 million. Which is about $33,000 AUD.