Mike Stevens | Jan 9, 2012

Chinese carmaker Foton is back on the starting blocks in Australia, with new distributor FAA Automotive Australia announcing plans to launch the Tunland pickup in the second quarter of this year.

The announcement follows news in 2009 that the Tunland will be offered globally in commercial and recreational specifications, powered by a range of Euro V-compliant petrol and diesel engines.

Australia will be among the first markets to see Foton's new utility, with launches in South Africa and the Americas to follow.

Unlike the slow-selling V240 offered by Chinese rival Great Wall Motors, the Gold Coast-based FAA says the Foton Tunland will offer a more compelling package to compete against the mostly-Japanese segment leaders - including the HiLux, Navara and Triton.

"It (the Tunland) is very highly spec’d and positioned to compete favourably in the Australian pick-up market," FAA Chairman Peter Llewellyn said.

Power for the Australian-delivered Tunland will be provided by a 2.8 litre turbodiesel engine, sourced from Cummins and offering 120kW and 380Nm of torque. Fuel consumption figures have not been revealed.

Paired with a Getrag five-speed manual transmission, the Tunland will hit 100km/h in 13 seconds. Llewellyn says a six-speed automatic option will be added in the near future.

The Tunland will be offered in 4x2 and 4x4 configurations, with a petrol engine also planned for the range later on.

The new pickup measures 5310mm long, 1880mm wide and 1810 tall, offering a ground clearance of 220mm. Compared to the equivalent HiLux, the Tunland is 180mm longer and 120mm wider, with an extra 10mm beneath it.

FAA plans to launch the Tunland in the second quarter of 2012, and is now seeking interest from new car dealers around Australia.


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