Leo, a new line of bakkie unveiled on the market

Bruce Fraser

Bruce Fraser

With the Inyathi taxi becoming ever more popular on our roads, China Auto Manufacturers (CAM) have decided to introduce a new line of bakkies - the Leo.

Unveiled at a dealer and media launch last Wednesday in Midrand, the Leo comes in three derivatives - a single cab diesel, a single cab petrol and a double cab diesel.

Priced from R119900 to R159900, the Leo is obviously aimed at the small entrepreneur looking at solving his transport blues at an affordable price.

First impressions were fairly positive with the vehicle sporting strong body lines and a no-nonsense look. The vehicle is strongly influenced by Isuzu and Toyota in the engine department with a number of key components duplicated for the Leo.

Though I never got to test-drive it, a quick inspection inside was possible.

The interior is fairly standard and clutter-free and leather seats are available on request.

The glove box in the vehicle on display proved problematic. It simply would not close properly without a shove here and a push there, which seems strange.

The space in the back appears generous at just over two metres.

Something that drew comment from those gathered at the launch was the fact that the vehicle has a top speed of only 120 km/h.