Comprehensive specification list delivers excellent value proposition
Flexible interior layout for optimised practicality
Excellent safety features
Choice of two specification levels
Latest addition to the iconic Chevrolet family
First ever Chevrolet MPV to target European product preferences
Chevrolet’s exciting new Orlando made a bold and refreshing statement when it entered the important MPV sector in South Africa just three months ago. In its first three months in the market it has exceeded initial sales targets to a point that it is already challenging for leadership in its segment.
Styled and engineered to target the European market preferences that are prevalent in South Africa the Orlando breaks with convention. An MPV at heart but a Crossover vehicle in style, the Orlando has brought an element of excitement to a historically conservative market segment with its stand-out-from-the-crowd looks.
The Chevrolet brand heritage is unmistakable with the front view of the Orlando defined by the distinctive Chevrolet split radiator grille and bow-tie badge. This is artfully blended into the crossover inspired silhouette with its bold side-on view accented by prominent wheel arches and low roofline. The ‘wheel-out stance of the vehicle, with the wheels placed at the corner extremities of the body, introduces a degree of swagger to the MPV segment challenging competitors to “match me if you can.”
The Orlando embodies the values and practicality associated with a contemporary family car with the inherent utility associated with an MPV. It combines 7-seater practicality with a generous load carrying capacity. Exceptional interior flexibility allows the vehicle to be configured in a wide range of passenger versus load variations without fuss.
The interior design of the Orlando draws on numerous established Chevrolet design cues. Amongst these are the sporty Corvette inspired dual cockpit layout and blue ambient back-lighting for the centre console. Distinctive and functional, the interior layout provides for excellent ergonomics with all major controls well placed within intuitive reach of the driver.
A functional element of the interior design is the ‘theatre-style’ seating arrangement for the three rows of seats. This feature maximises interior space utilisation to provide comfortable, spacious accommodation for seven passengers with all able to enjoy good all round visibility on the move.
The ‘theatre-style’ seating draws its description from the configuration of the three rows of seats in a raised tier format. Despite the sleek roofline of the Orlando there is sufficient interior headroom to allow the second and third rows of seats to be raised to allow the occupants of these seats to enjoy enhanced forward and sideways views. This is achieved without any compromise to headroom, in fact the headroom in the third row of seats in the Orlando exceeds that of a number of its competitors.
The second and third rows of seats can be folded down independently to allow for a multitude of interior layouts with a completely flat floor load area. The second row of seats has a fold-and-tumble facility for the two outer seats for ease of access for access to the third row of seats.
With the rear of the vehicle configured for maximum load carrying capacity the Orlando offers one of the most voluminous capacities in the monocab MPV class. With both the second and third rows of seats folded down the capacity of the Orlando is a cavernous 1 499 litres. Loaded to the level of the window line the capacity is a substantial 856 litres.
When it comes to family vehicles there is always a demand for storage space for any number of odds and ends that are a part of any family journey be it a local commute or a long distance holiday journey. The Orlando satisfies this demand with numerous compartments of varying shapes and sizes placed throughout the interior.
Included are the mandatory cup and coin holders for the front seat occupants as well as document and bottle holders incorporated into the front and rear door side panels. A number of individual compartments are placed in the cargo area as well.
Perhaps the most ingenious of the storage areas is the one placed behind the facia of the audio system, easily accessible to both driver and front seat passenger. This functional and quite large, storage area is revealed by flipping up the face of the audio system. This compartment, large enough for items such as an MP3 player, sunglasses, or a wallet, incorporates an auxiliary jack for MP3 or iPod connectivity.
Occupant safety is a prime consideration in any vehicle built for today’s motoring environment. When it comes to vehicles designed for family transport the expectations are at the highest level. To this end the Orlando has a comprehensive safety specification and employs the latest technologies available to provide for excellent occupant protection.
The Orlando body is formed around a passenger safety cell with high-strength steel used in all areas where a high level of body integrity is required. Effective occupant protection is provided by what is best described as a passenger safety cage that provides effective protection in the event of front, side-on, and rear collisions.
Aside from the use of high-strength materials used for the passenger safety cell, strategically placed crumple zones and strengthened chassis members are designed to absorb an initial crash impact and effectively dissipate collision generated energy through the body structure. Six airbags provide comprehensive supplementary restraint protection.
Responders to emergency situations involving motor vehicles often face the challenge of gaining access to the occupants if the doors are locked, a common occurrence in a security minded society. The Orlando provides a solution to the problem by employing crash sensor technology that releases the door locks automatically when a heavy impact is detected.
The Orlando is based on the hugely successful Cruze platform and shares a number of the attributes of that platform including excellent ride and handling characteristics and a rewarding driving experience. The front suspension is by means of a McPherson strut layout with the rear using the same advanced compound crank (torsion beam) formula as the Cruze.
The suspension has been optimised to provide the best solution between ride comfort and agility – typically opposing forces when it comes to suspension tuning. The Orlando suspension team has made use of hydraulic bushings – typically found only on more expensive high-end vehicles – to assist in isolating noise and vibration from the front suspension. The compound crank system used at the rear provides an effective compromise between suspension control and weight and space efficiencies.
The Orlando is powered by a fuel efficient 1.8 litre, 16-valve petrol engine with multi-point fuel injection. This engine produces maximum power of 104 kW @ 6200 r/min and peak torque of 176 Nm @ 3800 r/min. Drive is via a 5-speed manual transmission to the front wheels. Fuel economy as measured by GM engineers is 7,3 l/100 km for combined cycle operation with emissions of 172g/km.
Two specification levels are available, LS and LT, both formulated around the latest global Chevrolet trim levels. LS and LT specification levels are based on a comprehensive list of standard features and exceptional value. Standard items on the LS trim level include alloy wheels; power steering; height and depth adjustable steering wheel; air conditioner; power side mirrors; rear park assist; cruise control; a full suite of electronic driver aids including ABS, Electronic Stability Programme, Traction Control, and Brake Assist.
From the basic design to the implementation of a full range of electronic driver aids the Orlando has been engineered to deliver on the promise of the safest passage possible. This, combined with its innovative packaging and exceptional interior flexibility, make it a highly desirable MPV.