Australia’s New Cheapest EV Undercuts Both BYD and MG

Australia’s New Cheapest EV Undercuts Both BYD and MG
Contributor: Asha Barbaschow and Zachariah Kelly

Following a $4,000 discount across the model range in early 2024, and a price drop shortly after launching in Australia in 2023, the electric GWM Ora is now officially the cheapest EV in Australia.

The GWM Ora comes via Great Wall Motors, and although it launched as the Ora Good Cat or the Ora Funky Cat in other markets, Australia knows it simply as the ‘Ora’.

As reported by Drive, while the car was originally priced above $40,000 when it first arrived in Australia, it now starts at just $35,900. As noted by The Canberra Times in January via AAP, prices were cut across the entire GWM Ora lineup, with the car now well below $38,000 in some Australian states, as part of a limited-time promotion. It seems those price cuts have not only stuck around but they’ve been lowered even further.

Previously, the drive-away price for the GWM Ora differed state-to-state, costing as little as $36,638 in the Northern Territory and as much as $39,003 in Western Australia. Now, the car costs $35,900 Australia-wide.

The extended range model, the next tier in the Ora family, now starts at $40,990 Australia-wide. Both trims are competitively priced against the previous holders of the ‘cheapest EV’ crown – the BYD Dolphin and the MG4, which we called our top EV of 2023.

At the top end, the Ora Ultra now costs $43,990 (down from its cheapest state-based price of $49,606 in the ACT), and the Ora GT now costs $46,990 (down from $52,606, the cheapest price in Australia from the ACT).

The price drop comes as South Australia and NSW axed their EV rebates at the start of the year, with prospective EV buyers in these states no longer entitled to state discounts of up to $3,000 when purchasing an EV. It also comes shortly after MG announced unified national pricing across its MG4 range, making its cars extremely competitive against the likes of Tesla, Polestar, and Hyundai.

With four models now available, the GWM Ora Standard Range, Extended Range, GT, and Ultra, here’s what you can expect from the new EV.

GWM Ora Australian specs

Image: GWM

The Ora is available with two battery options; a 48kWh battery offering WLTP range of 310km (only available in the Standard Range model) and a 63kWh battery offering WLTP range of 420km (available in the other three models).

GWM said the Ora can charge from 10 per cent capacity to 80 per cent in just 41 minutes on the 48kWh option.

The EV measures 4.2 metres, with a height of 1.6 metres and a width of 1.8 metres. Wheelbase is 2650mm.

It’s got a 5-star Euro NCAP safety rating, and GWM said it’s working with ANCAP towards updating this for Australia and New Zealand, noting it expects to be able to confirm this shortly.

In Australia, the GWM Ora line-up consists of four models: Ora Standard Range, Ora Long Range, Ora GT, and Ora Ultra. Battery size and range is the only notable difference between the Ora Standard Range and the Ora Long Range.

In both of those models, you can expect 18-inch alloy wheels, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, leatherette seats, electric and heated seats for driver and passenger, 360-degree around-view camera, autonomous Emergency Braking with pedestrian, cyclist and crossing detection, as well as all of the other expected features, such as lane keep assist and collision warnings. There’s also a camera-based driver drowsiness detection feature and a handful more.

Then, the GWM Ora Ultra adds a hands-free electric tailgate, a panoramic sunroof, a heated steering wheel, an electric driver’s seat, ventilated front seats with heating and massage controls, and auto-folding electric mirrors (it’s also fitted with Extended Range battery for 420km). The GWM Ora GT adds 18-inch GT alloy wheels and automatic parking.

The Ora will be available in a choice of five exterior two-tone colours: Hamilton White, Sun Black, Glacier Blue, Mars Red and Aurora Green. The latter four paint colours will cost you an additional $595.

GWM Ora pricing and availability

The GWM Ora starts at $35,900 in Australia for the entry-level model. The Extended Range model goes up to $40,990, then the ‘Ultra’ model goes up to $43,990. The top-end trim goes up to $46,990. These prices are exceptionally competitive against Australia’s other cheaper EVs, particularly those from MG and BYD, which have cars starting at $38,890.

“GWM has been able to utilise continued favourable exchange rates and supply to sharpen Ora pricing and remains committed to offering an excellent combination of technology, comfort, safety and value across the entire range,” the company said in a statement, per Drive.

Another ‘cheap’ option for prospective EV owners

Image: GWM

The GWM Ora doesn’t just compete with Australia’s cheapest EVs, it is the cheapest. It’s an exceptionally exciting move to see from GWM, and it’ll be interesting to see how the pricing wars continue over the coming months, especially with more and more models tipped to arrive.

This article has been updated since it was originally published

Image: GWM

Want more Aussie car news? Here’s every EV we’ve reviewed in the last two years, all the EVs we can expect down under soon, and our guide to finding EV chargers across the country. Check out our dedicated Cars tab for more.

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