The Neta V is just the first of a few models that the Chinese electric vehicle (EV) manufacturer has planned for Malaysia. At today’s launch of the crossover, it was revealed that the Neta U and Neta S will be coming our way over the next two years.
For a brief recap, Neta is a brand under Zhejiang-based Hozon New Energy Auto (Hozon Auto) that was founded in 2014. In Malaysia, Neta cars are distributed by Intro Synergy, a wholly-owned subsidiary of GoAuto Group which signed a deal with Hozon Auto that will see around RM300 million be invested to develop its sales and aftersales network as well as a manufacturing plant for local assembly.
Starting with the Neta U, the SUV first made its debut at Auto Shanghai 2019 and is available with ternary lithium batteries that have capacities of between 54.32 and 81.57 kWh for up to 500 km of range following the NEDC standard. The SUV supports DC fast charging, with 30 minutes being quoted to achieve an 80% state of charge, as well as AC charging.
Depending on the configuration, the Neta U (also available as the Neta U Pro) can be equipped with a front-mounted electric motor rated at either 163 PS (161 hp or 120 kW) and 210 Nm of torque or 204 PS (201 hp or 150 kW) and 310 Nm. With the former, the 0-100 km/h time is around seven seconds, while the latter is about 10 seconds.
Dimension-wise, the SUV measures 4,530 mm long, 1,860 mm wide, 1,628 mm tall and has a wheelbase of 2,770 mm. That makes it larger than a Toyota Corolla Cross that is 4,460 mm long, 1,825 mm wide, 1,620 mm tall and with a wheelbase of 2,640 mm.
As for the styling, the Neta U is rather expressive with its T-shaped daytime running lights that are linked by a light bar running across the vehicle’s face – the main headlamps are tucked just below the DRLs. The side profile features a sloping roofline that leads into wedge-style taillights that span the width of the rear.
Inside, there’s a dual-display setup on the minimalistic dashboard, with a third screen being located at the front of the centre console for climate controls. There’s also a fourth, albeit smaller screen on the dashboard that serves as the “face” of the infotainment’s AI digital assistant. Hozon Auto also touts Level 2+ semi-autonomous driving features for the Neta U.
It should be noted that in 2022, Hozon Auto introduced the Neta U-II, which is the successor to the Neta U that provides higher assisted driving features (now Level 2.5+) thanks to a more comprehensive sensor suite as well as an improved kit list.
Moving on to the Neta S, the carmaker’s sedan first appeared at Auto Shanghai 2021 and was originally previewed by the Neta Eureka 03 Concept. Measuring in at 4,980 mm long, 1,980 mm wide, 1,450 mm tall and packing a wheelbase spanning 2,980 mm, the Neta S is a big car and a rather striking one thanks to its gullwing front doors and sleek shape, the latter allowing a 0.216 drag coefficient.
Like the Neta U, there’s dual-tier lighting arrangement at the front, although the DRLs are much more discreet and slimmer above the primary headlamps. Elsewhere, there are full-width taillights that warp around the rear fenders as well as retractable door handles.
Inside, the brand’s flagship model has no shortage of screens, with a slim 13.3-inch digital instrument cluster ahead of the driver, while the front passenger also gets his or her own 12.3-inch touchscreen. Sandwiched in between is a towering touchscreen measuring 17.6 inches diagonally that is said to have a 2.5K resolution.
The tech fest continues with an available 21-speaker sound system that includes units integrated into the front headrests, an augmented reality head-up display as well as Neta Pilot, which is the brand’s marketing term for assisted driving features that are near autonomous for highway and city driving.
Battery capacities for the Neta S range from 43.51 to 91 kWh, with the range being between 310 km to 715 km. Under specific conditions, the Neta S is even touted to offer up to 1,160 km on a full charge – these figures are following the CLTC standard.
As for powertrains, the Neta S can be optioned with either a rear-mounted electric motor that is rated at 231 PS (228 hp or 170 kW) and 310 Nm, or an all-wheel drive setup that adds a second electric motor at the back with the same outputs.
Intro Synergy is targeting the Neta U to be introduced in Malaysia by the second quarter of 2024, while the Neta S is expected to arrive here sometime in the first quarter of 2025. These will join the Neta V that is currently being offered for RM99,800 on-the-road without insurance. Looking forward to these Neta EVs?