The car has a personality. Its face reveals imagery of a Panda smiling at you with its cute headlights representing the cuddly creature’s eyes while the grille characterizes the adorable mouth. It’s an eye-catching little run-a-round with some practical features. While it may be petite, it does offer a relatively spacious interior with a boot, capable of handling your monthly groceries and a little extra.
Loving the car on the cute factor alone is easy. However you’ll never buy it solely for this reason. Admittedly it’s difficulty to fault the Geely on its cosmetic offerings, it’s only once you’re behind the wheel that it fails to excite. Available with a 1.3-litre power-train, producing 63kW of power and some 110Nm of torque, it may be slightly plumper than the usual 1.0-litre motors we see in modern day smaller cars. Despite its bigger engine, the LC seems asthmatic and you really have to work the poor thing to get any sort of performance. This is largely thanks to a lack of power lowdown, which results in tedious downshifts to bring the vehicle to life. Driving the car this hard gives you the impression that it can only take so much punishment before resigning, and our test model already sounded grumpy - particularly when climbing hills.
The ride comfort is acceptable, although it does feel uneasy on our pothole-stricken roads due to its small wheel base. Additionally, it doesn’t deliver sufficient steering feedback when pointing it into the corners, but the Geely does house six airbags and it boasts a five-star Chinese NCAP rating for safety.
Overall, the Chinese manufacturer has come a long way in offering safe and reliable cars with a personality. And with such an attractive price tag, motorists would have to think twice before turning their backs on this cute panda