BAIC unveils redesigned BJ30 compact SUV in China



BAIC, the Chinese automaker, is revamping its lineup of SUVs in China, with the upcoming BJ30 next in line.

This new generation of the compact, boxy SUV has been previewed on the website of China’s Ministry of Industry and Technology, signaling a significant exterior redesign that sets it apart from the Jeep-inspired appearance of its predecessor.

The outgoing BAIC BJ30, introduced in 2020, sported a design that seemed like a fusion of Jeep and Range Rover styling elements. In reality, it was a substantial facelift of the BAIC BJ20, which had been in circulation since 2015. After almost a decade, it was time for a fresh start in design, aimed at better competing with more contemporary rivals.

The 2024 BAIC BJ30 adopts the automaker’s recent styling language, reminiscent of the slightly larger BJ40 but with a softer touch. Boxy LED headlights and a concealed grille are now integrated into the same panel, giving the front a look resembling a pair of glasses. Unpainted bumpers with skid plates, coupled with glossy black fenders and side skirts, contribute to an off-road aesthetic. The greenhouse design retains elements from the previous generation but is notably longer. A black trim piece on the body-colored C-pillar creates a floating roof effect, and the vertically-stacked LED taillights complete the new look.

Interior images are yet to be released, but spy shots from China suggest that the five-seater cabin of the BAIC BJ30 will feature a sizable freestanding infotainment display, a digital instrument cluster, and a generously sized center console with ample storage space.

The new BAIC BJ30 has grown in size, transitioning into the compact SUV segment. It measures 4,730 mm (186.2 inches) in length, 1,910 mm (75.2 inches) in width, and 1,757 mm (69.2 inches) in height, with a 2,820 mm (111 inches) wheelbase. This represents a substantial increase in length, with a gain of 225 mm (8.9 inches) over its predecessor, and brings it within 60 mm (2.4 inches) of the new BAIC BJ40. Under the hood, documents indicate the presence of a non-electrified, turbocharged 1.5-liter petrol engine generating 185 hp (138 kW / 188 PS), marking a significant increase in power compared to the previous model.

BAIC has not officially announced the launch date for the new BJ30, but it is expected to become available in China in 2024. While the current generation is priced between ¥105,800-125,800 yuan ($14,464-17,199), the new model may command a slightly higher price due to its larger size, more powerful engine, and potentially enhanced features.