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Thread: LDV G10 v Toyota HiAce 2015 Comparison

  1. #1
    Franco 'Sportsbet' Cozzo Franco Cozzo's Avatar
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    LDV G10 v Toyota HiAce 2015 Comparison

    LDV G10 v Toyota HiAce 2015 Comparison

    Can the bargain Chinese upstart really take the fight to Toyota's top seller?

    LDV G10 v Toyota HiAce Crew
    Comparison Test

    Toyota's HiAce has dominated Australia's medium van segment for years, but now its traditional rivals have been joined by a new Chinese challenger. The LDV G10 has price and the prowess of one of China's largest auto makers on its side – and impressive specs and features to boot. Here we examine the newcomer alongside a recently introduced five-seater Crew version of Toyota's HiAce.

    Toyota's HiAce has ruled Australia's medium van market for over 20 years and it currently commands 43.5 per cent of the 2.5-3.5t LCV market (VFACTS data). Together with Hyundai's iLoad, with the Korean's 27.2 per cent share, nearly three-quarters of the market is owned by the established Asian brands – but now a Chinese newcomer has entered the fray.

    Formerly a British concern, LDV was purchased in 2010 by China's SAIC Motor – a state-owned automotive colossus. In addition to LDV (known as Maxus in most markets), the Shanghai-headquartered group owns domestic brands Roewe and Nanjing Automobile, along with historic British brand MG. It also has joint ventures in place with Volkswagen, General Motors and Iveco, and the company claims it produced a staggering five million vehicles last year.

    LDV's current V80 van can trace its roots back to its British forbears. Now, however, the V80 has been joined by the G10 – LDV's first clean-sheet effort under its Chinese parent. Smaller and with a sub-2m roof height, the G10 is only available here in the one 3198mm wheelbase and 5.2 cubic metre capacity, while the V80 continues in a choice of three wheelbases and has volumes starting from 6.4 cubic metres.

    Here in Australia, LDV was handled by White Motor Corporation until Ateco Automotive took over in 2014. Ateco is no stranger to launching emerging Asian brands – it gained a foothold here for Kia before that company took distribution in-house. Now it sells LDV here through a network of 44 dealers (and counting), with representation in every state and territory.

    The G10 van is in fact based on a people-mover platform, and here it's sold alongside G10 people-movers in both seven- and nine-seater formats.

    David And Goliath recently grabbed a new G10 van and an example of Toyota's top-selling HiAce, although this review isn't a direct head-to-head comparison. Toyota's new five-seater HiAce Crew, introduced earlier this year, sports a 3.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine mated to a four-speed auto, while the two-seater G10 is powered by a 2.0-litre turbo-petrol engine with six-speed auto.

    The HiAce Crew was part of a mild range update that also saw the arrival of a revised, more powerful yet more economical 2.7-litre petrol engine. Sadly a long-wheelbase version of Toyota's petrol/auto van – which is shorter than the G10 but also has a sub-2m height – wasn't available, but the HiAce Crew still serves as a useful comparison in terms of its construction, finish and features.

    We subjected both to's van test loop, comprising busy industrial estate, motorway and winding country roads – first empty, then with a 650kg test weight.

    Price is traditionally the sharpest knife in the Chinese armoury and for ABN holders the G10 van is priced at just $29,990 drive away. Compare that to just under $40,000 drive away (including GST, ex Melbourne) for the direct equivalent HiAce (not the HiAce Crew reviewed here), and that's a substantial difference.

    With the dropping of the V6 engine in the updated Mercedes-Benz Vito (click here for our launch report), the G10's four-cylinder turbo-petrol engine can lay claim to being Australia's most powerful van (on paper, at least). LDV says the engine produces 165kW and 330Nm, its output fed to the rear wheels via a ZF-sourced six-speed automatic transmission.

    Ateco Automotive says both a diesel engine and a manual transmission are currently being looked at, but for now the turbo-petrol auto is it.

    Power Packed
    On the road, the G10's output instantly grabs attention. Responsive and largely lag-free, the tacho needle streaks around the dial, the van accelerating hard from 2000rpm to 5500rpm.

    The ZF auto isn't the fastest-shifting unit we've seen but it does the job and it's decisive in its selections. An electronic sequential mode is available, but after an initial fiddle we let it do its own thing in 'drive' mode.

    The G10 is a rocket when unladen, that's for sure, and owners will be thankful for the stability control (especially in the wet). But the performance continues with a load on board, and up some decent inclines the G10 barely seemed to notice our test payload.

    The G10 is a rev-hungry machine that favours top-end performance. That mightn't sound ideal for commercial work, but the truth is it reaches that top end so rapidly you're never left struggling.

    While we can't draw fair comparison with Toyota's turbo-diesel, the HiAce Crew churns out dependable grunt from just off idle. It's more relaxed than the G10 but as capable as ever, and while the four-speed auto offers a more limited choice of ratios its shifts are a little faster.

    LDV claims a Combined ADR fuel figure of 11.7L/100km for the G10 van, while the van's trip meter at the end of our test showed 11.4L/100km. That was overly optimistic – the bowser revealed a figure of 13.2L/100km, giving a safe range of over 500 kilometres. Toyota claims a comparative Combined ADR figure of 10.5L/100km for its equivalent 2.7-litre petrol auto.

    People-Mover Origin
    The people-mover origins manifest in the G10's handling. The van adopts a front MacPherson strut/rear five-link coil-spring arrangement and the ride is nicely compliant, lacking little of the harshness often found in LCVs. We feared the plush nature might translate to a roly-poly ride with a load, but that wasn't the case – the G10 remained composed through the bends.

    The front double-wishbone and rear beam arrangement on the HiAce also does a competent job, loaded or empty. The HiAce feels marginally more planted at motorway speeds, the Toyota also offering a degree more feedback through its steering, but both machines acquit themselves well.

    Both vehicles have a four-disc brake setup and both deliver entirely acceptable braking performance, although the HiAce has the upper hand in terms of outright stopping power, while engine noise is appreciable in each under acceleration but sufficiently subdued on a steady throttle.

    They're both manoeuvrable, too. The HiAce Crew on test has a wheelbase that's 628mm shorter than the G10, but even the Chinese van manages a respectable turning circle of 11.8 metres. Despite the HiAce's snub nose, the distance from the front axle to the edge of the front bumper is 170mm shorter in the G10. The G10 also has the shorter steering box – 3.5 turns compared to 4.25 for the HiAce, which spells less wheel twirling around town.

    Comfort and Convenience
    For cabin comfort and features the G10 is a clear winner, its people-mover origins delivering a higher standard of appointments than you'd expect in an LCV. Cabin entry and exit is easy in the G10 – far easier than for the HiAce, which requires a degree of contortionism.

    The G10's dash is broad and expansive and the fit and finish of the panels is decent. The centre of the dash is dominated by a large 7.1-inch touch screen, which is hooked up to a comprehensive Bluetooth multimedia system and reversing camera as standard. The camera is a quality affair with a wide peripheral view – it's far better than the HiAce's equivalent – while pairing a phone is fuss free.

    Other standard G10 features include a comprehensive trip computer, air-conditioning, rear parking sensors and electronic tyre pressure monitoring.
    For storage the G10 gets twin-deck door side pockets (with bottle holders), sunglasses storage, twin slide-out cup holders and a large multi-compartment tray on the floor between the two front seats. It's a handy thing, yet still affords easy access should you want to slip through to the load bay.

    The G10's driver's seat offers six-way adjustment and a folding armrest while the steering wheel is adjustable for tilt (but not reach). The wheel also features integrated buttons for cruise control, hands-free telephony and sound.

    Vision is excellent in both vans. The HiAce has narrower A-pillars but both have decent side mirrors.

    Overall, the G10's ergonomics are good, with all the various controls are placed logically enough, but the one big omission – not shared with the HiAce – is the lack of a dead pedal.

    The G10's lighter coloured seat fabrics and plastics will mark easily, while the carpeting doesn't seem especially durable – floor mats are a must.

    The HiAce cab, on the other hand, has a purely utilitarian feel, but its hard, dark plastics have been assembled with care and will wear well; ditto the sturdy vinyl flooring.

    You sit up high in the HiAce – too high for this robust (188cm) scribe – while you sit 'in' the G10, which has more of a passenger-car feel. For storage, the HiAce has a centre console bin – it's convenient but prevents access to the rear.

    Fit For Purpose
    The G10's load bay floor is on the higher side at 680mm off the deck (630mm in the HiAce), but it's a spacious area (2365mm long by 1235mm wide by 1270mm high) with twin sliding side doors and a top-hinge tailgate. There are no options for side door glazing or rear barn doors. The G10's load bay floor has a sturdy vinyl cover and there's internal mid-height plastic protection.

    The G10 comes with eight tie-down anchor points, but the rearward ones are too far inboard – a reflection of the seat mounting points in the people-mover. Two are placed on the inside edges of the wheel arches, effectively shaving clearance by 80mm or so. There are four small side lights in the G10's bay, but no overhead lighting.

    LDV claims a payload limit of 1093kg and an internal volume of 5.2 cubic metres for the G10, along with a braked towing capacity of 1500kg. The claims for the long-wheelbase HiAce van (not the HiAce Crew here) are 1070kg, 6.0 cubic metres and 1400kg.

    We were pleasantly surprised by the G10's overall construction quality. Sure, there's the odd rough finish here and there and some of the panel gaps are appreciable, but on the whole it appears to have been assembled with care and consistency. This is also evident in the neat and tidy engine bay.

    The G10's white one-piece bumpers will, however, suffer from the inevitable knocks and scrapes, while there's no top protection for the rear bumper to ward off scrapes from ramps and day-to-day use.

    Historically LCVs have lagged behind their passenger counterparts for safety, but the G10 scores stability control, antilock brakes, rollover mitigation, electronic brake force distribution and emergency brake assist, plus a front airbag for both driver and passenger.

    The HiAce Crew gets most of those but misses out on EBD and rollover mitigation, while some HiAce models still don't get stability control.
    Both vans come with a three-year/100,000 kilometre warranty and a fairly arduous six-month/10,000 kilometre servicing interval. In this segment several vans' service intervals are pegged at 12 months and 15,000 kilometres.

    Promising Introduction
    For what it is, it's hard not to be impressed by LDV's G10. Comfy, well-equipped and capable, it does everything it's meant to do reasonably well and all for a bargain price. Of course, long-term reliability and durability are yet to be proven, and it will undoubtedly suffer in terms of resale compared to the

    HiAce, which also comes with the backing of Australia's top-selling automotive brand.
    Gaining a foothold in a mature market is a tough ask for any newcomer and Toyota, Hyundai et al won't be trembling in fear, but LDV appears to have a solid proposition in its G10.

    2015 LDV G10 pricing and specifications:
    Price: $29,990 (ABN holders, drive away)
    Engine: 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-petrol
    Output: 165kW/330Nm
    Transmission: Six-speed automatic
    Fuel: 11.7L/100km (ADR Combined)
    CO2: 272g/km (ADR Combined)
    Safety Rating: N/A

    What we liked:
    >> Value for money
    >> Potent performance
    >> Comfort and ergonomics

    Not so much:
    >> On the thirsty side
    >> No dead pedal
    >> Odd tie-down anchor point placement

    2015 Toyota HiAce Crew pricing and specifications:
    Price: $40,490 (plus ORC)
    Engine: 3.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel
    Output: 100kW/300Nm
    Transmission: Four-speed automatic
    Fuel: 9.2L/100km (ADR Combined)
    CO2: 243g/km (ADR Combined)
    Safety Rating: N/A

    What we liked:
    >> Pure utility focus
    >> Compact and manoeuvrable
    >> Proven reliability and resale

    Not so much:
    >> Awkward cab entry/egress
    >> Cab is showing its age
    >> Driver ergonomics

    You can't polish a turd but you can certainly roll it in glitter (Toyota badge), the Hiace is the worst van on the market, the only thing it has going for it is reliability, its shit to drive, old crappy diesel engine, its uncomfortable and its a **** to work on.

    Looks interesting this new Chinese van, it looks the goods and I'd be tempted to go the turbo petrol engine over the upcoming diesel, 165KW/330NM, its got the numbers behind it thats for sure.

  2. #2
    Mr Aftermarket :) FTe217's Avatar
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    Jan 2012
    Driving my cars as much as I can
    A turd no matter what as said, reliable, relatively cheap to run, parts are plentiful affordable - $10k diff give or take compared to the G10, not enough for me till its tried and proven, bet you you'll spend that $10k before you know it keeping it ON the road.
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  3. #3
    Franco 'Sportsbet' Cozzo Franco Cozzo's Avatar
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    Sep 2013
    Country Victoria
    You could say the same thing about the last few Ford Transit vans, they were a POS leading up to the VM model and time will tell about the current model.

    Plenty of Great Wall utes getting about, I think the Chinese cars get a bit of a rough time, they can't be that bad.

    If I was after a new van, on paper this one does it for me right off the bat.

    Time will tell

  4. #4
    Validated User Bluestuff1's Avatar
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    Jul 2014
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    I think the Chinese are the Japanese of the future...

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  6. #5
    Mr Aftermarket :) FTe217's Avatar
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    Driving my cars as much as I can
    In time yes Blue - they will develop quicker than the Koreans - afterall the Chinese gov is getting plenty of IP agreements through many OE's and suppliers.
    No Damo, the 1st series Great wall were POS ! gearboxs etc were utter crap. Yer nothing like buying a sub $25k dual cab being POS.
    Series 2 has had the improvements but as the saying goes you get what you pay for.
    Transits I had heard have not been reliable in the past, not sure how the later ones are but I don't think many other Euro opponents are any better.
    If I was into a work van a TOY brand would be looked at but I would probably go a iload.
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  7. #6
    Aka Captain Slow TS50's Avatar
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    I have been running Transit vans since 99
    I really have not had any reliability problems
    Ease of use as a service vehicle and driving position have it all over the Toyota

    I just cant see why people overlook so many failings with the Toyota, just because it is a Toyota
    2002 T3 Manual Naroma Blue TS-50 (049)Sunroof, Premium Sound, Black/Blue Leather, Brembos

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  9. #7
    Franco 'Sportsbet' Cozzo Franco Cozzo's Avatar
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    Hiace is hands down one of the worst vans on the market.

    Its a **** to drive and **** to work on.

  10. #8
    Franco 'Sportsbet' Cozzo Franco Cozzo's Avatar
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    Sep 2013
    Country Victoria
    LDV G10 Review

    The LDV G10 van is brand new, but the formula behind the mid-sized van is familiar.

    It’s cheap, and it’s Chinese, and it’s not the first time we’ve seen that method used – particularly in the commercial vehicle segment. The word that usually followed the two that started this sentence, and continued the alliteration, was another ‘c’ word: crap.

    But unlike many of the Chinese-built models that have come before it, the all-new LDV G10 – which is built by industrial giant SAIC and priced at just $29,990 driveaway for ABN holders – doesn’t feel instantly rubbish, and nor does it look like a hatchet job copycat car.

    In fact, our first impressions of the styling of the van are very positive. It’s tidy, sharp, clean, and not awkward looking at all, unlike many Chinese models that have come before it.

    Sliding into the driver’s seat, there’s a similar level of polish in terms of design.

    There’s an element of familiarity in terms of the controls in the van, too. The stalks for the wipers and indicators, for example, appear borrowed straight out of the General Motors’ parts bin, while the dash layout and twin-toned plastics look very similar to the Kia Carnival – a mix of the previous one and the impressive new-generation model.

    The dashboard is clean and uncluttered, topped by a 7.0-inch touchscreen media system, and the feel of the buttons and the material finishes are all competitive for the class. The screen is touch-capacitive, and the display is clear and crisp.

    The steering wheel lacks reach adjustment and the audio and cruise control toggles aren’t backlit, but the seating position is good enough, and there’s enough adjustability, that drivers of different shapes and sizes can find a comfortable position fairly easily. The instrument cluster is easy to read thanks to a digital speedometer, and there’s even tyre pressure monitoring.

    For passengers there’s a single bucket seat, with no availability of a bench seat for two passengers.

    Cabin storage is good, with big door pockets and a large centre storage tray between the seats, and there’s a nicely hidden cupholder caddy down low, too. There aren’t, however, dash-top storage bins as you’ll find in many competitor products, but there are two sunglasses stowage points (one where the driver’s grab handle would otherwise sit, and a central one above the rear-view mirror).

    Outward vision is good – you sit up high and the mirrors offer good side vision, though the lack of rear side door glass on the kerbside is a bit annoying, and you can’t option that either.

    While Chinese vehicles haven’t put safety as a high priority in the past, the LDV G10 comes with dual front airbags and electronic stability control as standard.

    There are no side airbags available, which is disappointing – at least you can option that safety gear into better-known models like the Mercedes-Benz Vito and Renault Trafic (though if you ask us, those airbags should be standard in both of those vehicles!). The Ford Transit Custom remains the benchmark for airbag coverage, with dual front, front side and curtain airbag protection standard.

    However, LDV must be commended for fitting a reverse-view camera and rear parking sensors as standard to the vehicle. The aforementioned rivals can’t match that (Renault: rear sensors standard; Merc: no parking aides standard; Ford: no parking aides standard).

    In terms of size, the LDV G10 is aimed at offering an alternative to the likes of the aforementioned models, as well as the top-selling Toyota HiAce, Hyundai iLoad and the soon-to-be-updated Volkswagen Transporter.

    It is close in size to variants of all of those models, too, measuring 5168 millimetres long, 1980mm wide and 1928mm tall, while riding on a 3198mm wheelbase.

    At the business end, the LDV G10 has a competitive load area – the size of the cargo bay spans 5.2 cubic metres, and in terms of physical dimensions it measures 2365mm long by 1235mm wide and 1270mm high – competitive figures. While it doesn’t have a bulkhead as standard (nor does a Vito), you can option one.

    According to the brand, the cargo area can swallow two standard pallets (the standard Aussie pallet size is 1165mm by 1165mm), but the standard liftback tailgate makes loading pallets in with a fork quite difficult – actually, impossible.

    That is perhaps the biggest issue with this vehicle – if you’re the sort of business buyer that needs to load pallets in and out on a regular basis. And to make matters worse, there is no barn-door option for rear access.

    That said, the side doors – yes, twin side doors are standard: big tick, that! – allow good access to the space, and there are six floor-mounted tie-down points to secure a load, as well as four further tie-down hooks mounted on the wheel arches. In terms of capacity, the payload for the LDV G10 is 1093 kilograms, which is also class-competitive.

    In short, it’s not so much suited to being a daily-driven courier van. It would, however, make a commendable compatriot to tradespeople such as plumbers, painters, electricians or landscapers.

    Under the bonnet is a powertrain that’s unique to this segment – a turbocharged petrol engine.

    The 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol four-cylinder produces 165kW of power and 330Nm of torque, which are big outputs for a load-carrying van with a petrol engine. It comes only with a six-speed automatic gearbox, sourced from renowned specialists ZF.

    Rival petrol models such as the Hyundai iLoad (2.4-litre naturally-aspirated petrol, 129kW/228Nm, manual only) and Toyota HiAce (2.7-litre naturally-aspirated petrol, 118kW/243Nm, manual or auto) can’t match the LDV for outright power.

    That said, the turbocharged engine in the G10 is thirstier than those rivals. It claims 11.7 litres per 100 kilometres, while the auto HiAce uses a claimed 9.8L/100km and the manual-only iLoad uses 10.1L/100km. At least the claim is close to what you’ll achieve in the real world – we saw 11.5L/100km during our highway/city loop, but it is advised that 95RON premium fuel is best.

    For a bit of extra market context, the Trafic, Transit Custom and Transporter only have diesel engines, and the Ford and Renault only come in a manual.

    LDV claims that engine gives the rear-drive van (another point of difference over the Volkswagen and Ford) “effortless power and torque, smooth auto gear changes and positive steering response”.

    They’re 100 per cent right.

    The engine is a gutsy thing – smooth revving, quick to respond to throttle inputs and actually pretty quick in general. It never feels like it’s struggling to haul the van’s 1907kg heft.

    The six-speed automatic is a big part of the reason the LDV G10 is so good with its power delivery.

    The transmission is smooth, generally quick-thinking and will hold gears when you want it to, for the most part. We did notice a few times when we would have expected it to drop back a gear to better use the torque of the engine, which is on song from about 1400-2000rpm, but there’s the option of self-shifting if you need to overrule the auto.

    The G10 drives really nicely, too. The ride – as with the vast majority of these types of vans – is quite good, with the suspension ironing out small bumps decently and settling quickly post-speedhump, too.

    Part of the reason it drives so well is that it’s built off the same platform as the G10 people-mover models, and as such it has a five-link coil-spring rear suspension, where most vans in the class have leaf-spring rear ends.

    The steering isn’t as light at lower speeds as we’d like – the hydraulic system loads up inconsistently when you’re manoeuvring in to and out of parking spaces quickly, but once you’re at speed the response is good.

    It also gets disc brakes all around, so stopping isn’t an issue, and the response of the pedal is easy to acclimatise to.

    On the highway it is noisy – there’s no bulkhead dividing the cargo zone and the cockpit – but it’s not boomy, thanks to the lining on the floor and the thick padding in the roof-lining. And you’ll notice that it does get blown from side to side in windy conditions, something a Vito doesn’t do thanks to its more advanced electronic stability control system with Crosswind Assist.

    In terms of ownership, the G10 comes with a three-year/100,000km warranty, and is covered by a 24-hour roadside assistance program over that period. The first two services are required after 5000km and 10,000km respectively, and thereafter the van’s service intervals are every six months or 10,000km, which is more regular than most van owners might like.

    This is a thoroughly impressive offering from the van specialist arm of SAIC.

    Yes the LDV G10 is cheap, and yes it’s Chinese, but it’s such a long way from that third ‘c’ word that buyers in the market for a capable, comfortable work van really should take a look at it.

    On paper this thing looks wicked.

  11. #9
    James. defective's Avatar
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    Mar 2012
    Be interesting once a few of the mx guys get their hands on them, they could look pretty decent for van I reckon.

    Transit in front drive? I always thought it was rwd lol
    Quote Originally Posted by Falc'man View Post
    In the words of a wise man: if you don't read the papers you're uninformed, if you do read the papers you're misinformed.

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  13. #10
    Franco 'Sportsbet' Cozzo Franco Cozzo's Avatar
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    Country Victoria
    One of my customers has a pimped up iLoad and another an ex refrigeration tall roof MWLB Sprinter, the mx crew are the only dudes getting around pimping up vans.

    Transit Custom is FWD I believe.

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