I sheepishly replied that I drove the Datsun Go without any fuss, so the JMC would be a breeze - I tried to convince myself of this more than them.
Honestly, I had no idea what to expect, but my expectations definitely weren't high at all, so I asked Google for a picture.
And then it arrived and I was pleasantly surprised.
In fact, a fellow motorist stopped me in traffic and asked: "Lady, what kind of new Lexus is that?" - despite all the Landwind branding. A pat on JMC's shoulder or a warning to Lexus to make their cars even more stunning?
I had fellow church goe-ers hopping in to the car after the service as they were intrigued by the rear leg-room of the car. And then of course they wanted to know what the vehicle is, and how much it goes for. It's neat and tidy, nor did the car feel like it was going to fall apart when driving 100km/h. In fact you I reached a top speed of 140km/h on an open, quiet road.
You expect cheap Chinese cars not to have the capacity to drive over 100km/h on the highway and that it would probably swerve gently, or harshly, across the road with the terrorising wind that can pick up in Summer in the Cape. But the Landwind is steady on the road, and it's good for the 140kW/250Nm coming from the 2.0-litre, four-cylinder, water-cooled, turbocharged unit. So the suspension might not be the greatest under the sun, and the little bumps and niggles from the road can be forgiven.
Convenience features include power windows all round, park distance control sensors, anti-glare rearview mirror, auto and cnetral locking, reading lights, a roof rack. Although there are fabric seats, and not leather, they're comfortable none-the-less, and they're 4-way adjustable. The side mirrors are electric, there's even space for your sunglasses. It has a massive boot with a load volume of 855 litres.
The Landwind has definitely changed my perception of Chinese vehicles and for anyone looking for a SUV for the family that won't break the bank, I'd say why not give this car a chance? I wouldn't exactly take it off-roading the rocky cliffs or rugged terrain, but it does have approach and departure angles that could tackle basic tasks.