2024 Xpeng G6 review – read our verdict on this new Chinese electric SUV

The Xpeng G6 is an electric SUV from a new brand that will be arriving in the UK later this year. We get behind the wheel to find out what it's like...

Xpeng G6 front driving

On sale October (est) | Price from £37,000 (est)

Are new cars becoming more like smart devices than modes of transport? Well, if the Xpeng G6 is anything to go by, it arguably could be heading in that direction. This new electric SUV will be arriving in the UK later this year, and it features an abundance of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and driver assistance tech, much like its key rival – the Tesla Model Y.

Now, just to make sure we’re not sounding like a broken record here, let us tell you a little bit about Xpeng, because it’s a Chinese brand that has its sights set on the UK car market. It follows other brands, such as BYD, GWM, Nio and Omoda, that have similar ambitions.

Xpeng, which is named after its entrepreneur founder, He Xiaopeng, is a brand that believes “technology is the foundation of mobility”. In fact, it very much markets itself as a technology company, which is partly why it labels the G6 as a ‘smart EV’ (electric vehicle), in a bid to liken it to your smartphone or smart TV.

Xpeng G6 rear driving

Currently, Xpeng builds three cars: the G6, the P7 executive car and the G9 large electric SUV. At the moment, only the G6 is planned for the UK, chiefly because this car is built on brand new underpinnings that are designed to make the car stiffer and safer than the P7 and G9. 

To help make the buying process as simple as possible, the G6 is available in three forms: RWD Standard Range, RWD Long Range and AWD Performance.

What’s the Xpeng G6 like to drive?

The rear-wheel drive versions are powered by a single (rear-mounted) electric motor that produces 255bhp for the Standard Range and 282bhp for the Long Range. With a 0-62mph time rated at 6.9 seconds and 6.7 seconds respectively, performance figures are similar to a RWD Model Y (which takes 6.9 seconds).

George Hill driving Xpeng G6

The Standard Range version is powered by a 66kWh (usable) battery that delivers an official range of 270 miles, while the Long Range version has a larger 87.5kWh (usable) battery that delivers around 354 miles. Those are some strong numbers, especially when compared with the Kia EV6 in RWD form (328 miles). Meanwhile, the Performance version also gets the bigger battery used in the Long Range, which means it can still officially travel 342 miles on a full charge. That’s more than the 319 miles the Model Y Performance can manage. 

As you might expect, the Performance version steps things up a notch when it comes to acceleration. It comes with an additional electric motor for the front wheels (making it four-wheel drive) to produce a combined output of 469bhp, cutting the dash from 0-62mph to just 4.1 seconds. That’s quicker than a Volvo EX40 Twin Motor (at 4.8sec) and not far behind a Model Y Performance (3.7sec).  

So far, we’ve driven the AWD Performance version of the G6. Despite its punchy performance figures, a smooth linear power delivery means you can effortlessly drive swiftly along without it shoving you back into your seat as hard as a Model Y Performance.

Xpeng G6 front driving rural

Where the G6 really sets itself apart from a lot of its rivals is with charging speeds. The Standard Range version has a maximum charging speed of 210kW, while the Long Range and Performance versions have a maximum rate of 280kW. No matter which version you choose, though, the G6 can top up from 10-80% in around 20 minutes, provided you can find a suitably powerful public charger. If so, this is a similar rate to the EV6, Genesis GV60 and Hyundai Ioniq 5– three of the fastest-charging electric cars you can currently buy. This is because these cars all have 800v charging capability, whereas most electric cars – including the Model Y – have 400v charging.

While the G6 clearly has a taut set-up (European market cars have stiffer suspension than Chinese models), the suspension does a good job of soaking up lumps and bumps in the road to provide a good level of ride comfort most of the time. It’s just a bit of a shame that harsher imperfections, such as expansion joints, can cause a slight thump to be heard in the interior. 

Xpeng G6 rear driving rural

In the corners, the G6 does a reasonable job of disguising its hefty 2.1 ton weight. The Performance version doesn’t offer any suspension upgrades over the RWD versions, but body control remains well controlled compared with some rivals, such as the Peugeot e-3008, which is quite cumbersome on sharper turns.

Unlike the Tesla Model Y, which has heavy steering compared with a lot of electric SUVs, the G6 has a very light steering set-up. However, it’s fairly direct, which makes it easy to place when the going gets twisty.

Meanwhile, refinement is impressive, with minimal wind and road noise when cruising on the motorway. Only a mild level of vibration felt through the steering wheel when driving over rougher road surfaces disturbs the calmness.

Xpeng G6 side panning

Four levels of regenerative braking are available and the strength of the braking effect can be adjust in a menu on the touchscreen. In its strongest setting, this can slow the G6 down to a crawling speed. The consistent brake pedal response also makes it easy to stop smoothly, unlike in a Renault Scenic, which can be grabby at low speeds.

What’s the Xpeng G6 like inside?

The driving position in the G6 is similar to what you’ll find in the Model Y. You sit high up with a great view forwards, but the car’s low-slung bonnet makes it quite difficult to judge where the front of the car is. That said, the windscreen is nice and large, and the front pillars aren’t too thick.

Rear visibility isn’t quite as good, with a small rear window and thick pillars, but thankfully the G6 comes with plenty of driver aids as standard, including blind spot monitoring and a 360-degree view parking camera. Speaking of which, the G6 has 12 cameras in total, as well as five radars and 12 ultra-sonic radars, all of which form part of the Xpilot driver assistance system.

Xpeng G6 interior dashboard

The design of the interior is very minimalist, with nearly all of the car’s functions being operated via a large 14.9in central touchscreen, which houses Xpeng’s Xmart operating system. It’s a shame there are no physical buttons for functions like your climate controls or mirror adjustments, but thankfully the infotainment system is very easy to use.

It operates much like a smartphone, with pin sharp graphics and a simple layout. All of the most frequently used features, such as your media, navigation and climate controls, are found via a bank of icons on the driver’s side of the screen, so they’re easy to reach while you’re driving.

The steering wheel buttons and scroll wheels also double as volume and climate controls, with the left hand side operating the fan speed and temperature, and the right hand side the radio station and volume.

The car also has an AI-powered virtual assistant, called Xiao P, which is a small robot that’s always visible at the top of the screen. It operates much like Amazon Alexa, so you can ask it to complete certain functions, such as to fold in your mirrors. We tried the system, and it didn’t always understand the commands. 

Xpeng G6 interior infotainment

In front of the driver, there’s a 10.2in digital instrument panel. It’s bright and easy to use, but it isn’t very configurable. It’s split into three sections, with the left side showing your trip information, your speed and driving assistance settings in the centre, and the right side displaying your navigation or media.

Material quality is mostly good, with plenty of soft-touch materials and faux-leather padding on the doors, dashboard and centre console. There are some scratchier materials lower down on the dashboard, though, and the doors don't feel very solid when you close them.

Interior storage is plentiful, with two large cup holders, a large central storage cubby and big door bins. Unusually, there’s no glovebox, which is similar to what you’ll find in the Nio EL6. A big centre console storage area does help make up for this, though.

Xpeng G6 interior back seats

One area where the G6 really impresses is with space for passengers, because there’s acres of head and leg room in both the front and back seats. In fact, it’s especially good in the rear; a six-footer will have loads of space behind a similarly tall driver. What’s more, the seat backs can recline, which means you can really get comfortable on longer journeys.

At 571 litres, the boot is bigger than the EV6 (490 litres) and e-3008 (548 litres), so it should have more than enough room for a couple of large suitcases for a family trip away. Unfortunately, there’s no storage area under the bonnet for your charging cables like there is in a Model Y, and there’s also a small loading lip, which can be annoying when lifting heavy items in and out of the boot.

Unlike the e-3008 and Model Y, which have more versatile 40/20/40 split folding seats, the G6’s seats split in a 60/40 configuration. This is similar to the EV6 and GV60, though.

Xpeng G6 boot

Our verdict on the XPeng G6

One area where a lot of Chinese cars trump their Western counterparts is with pricing, and this is no exception here. The G6 is expected to start from around £37,000 for the RWD Standard Range, which is significantly cheaper than the £44,990 Tesla Model Y RWD. Even the AWD Performance version is expected to cost from around £45,000, which is even cheaper than the entry-level Peugeot e-3008. 

Along with that, all G6s – no matter the version you choose – come with the same amount of kit as standard. This means all cars come with 20-inch alloy wheels, faux-leather upholstery, heated and ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, ambient interior lighting, a wireless phone-charging pad and a panoramic glass sunroof. You also get a promise of a seven-year/100,000-mile warranty, which is a match for Kia’s class-leading offering. 

Xpeng G6 charging

The Xpeng G6 has some very positive attributes. It’s good to drive, spacious and very well equipped, plus it has a competitive range and quick charging speeds. We’ll just have to wait and see if the UK pricing is as keen as Xpeng is promising, because if it is, this electric SUV could be one to watch. 

What Car? says 4 stars out of 5

XPeng G6 AWD Performance price and specs

Price £45,000 (est) Engine Two electric motors Power 469bhp Torque 487lb ft Gearbox 1-spd automatic, 4WD Battery size 87.5kWh (usable) 0-62mph 4.1sec Top speed 124mph Range 342 miles CO2/tax 0g/km, 2%

Rivals:
Kia EV6
Tesla Model Y

Read more: All the Chinese cars coming to the UK


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