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2009 Shanghai Auto Show: Great Wall Hover.

Great Wall Motor, which is China's largest utility-vehicle manufacturer, wants to expand its popular Hover crossover model into a branded portfolio of products for the Chinese domestic market. It will make that ambition plain at the 2009 Shanghai Auto Show.

The original Hover (also known locally as Hufa) was introduced four years ago at the 2005 Shanghai show.

At this year's show, Great Wall intends to unveil an updated version, rebadged as the Hover H3 and priced from less than $13,000 for the base 120-horsepower 2.0-liter model with a five-speed manual gearbox.

Images have surfaced on Chinese Web sites of a second Hover model, the H7, with more unusual styling intended to promote the vehicle's premium aspirations.

Reports say the Hover H7 concept will be powered by a 3.0-liter V6 engine with a six-speed automatic and full-time four-wheel drive. Standard features include ABS and stability control.

A third Hover model, the M3, is a boxy, tall-roof compact powered by a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine, with provisions for an electric motor. An even smaller CUV, the M1, is similar in size and shape to the company's Gwkulla. The M1 is said to be powered by a 1.3-liter four-cylinder engine and features four-wheel drive.
China's Great Wall Motor has big plans for expansion outside its home country, and rumor has it that the marque plans to launch an entire vehicle line based on its popular Hover CUV. While it's true that many Chinese automakers tend to crib designs from other manufacturers, Great Wall takes it a step further and borrows the entire chassis from an older Toyota 4Runner model. The exterior styling for the current Hover is based on the unloved Isuzu Axiom from 2002, and the engine is supplied by Mitsubishi.

According to Inside Line, a new version of the CUV is set to be shown this week at the Shanghai Motor Show, and it will likely carry the Hover H3 designation. Expect to see a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine mated to a five-speed manual transmission, all for a base price of around $13K in China.

The smallest 'ute to carry the Hover nameplate will reportedly be called the M1, which could be powered by either a 1.3-liter four-cylinder or an electric drivetrain. Next up the ladder would be the M3, motivated by a 1.6-liter four-banger. At the upper-end, Great Wall is expected to show off a premium model called the Hover H7, equipped with a 3.0-liter V6 engine backed by a six-speed automatic transmission and full-time four-wheel drive.
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