BAW Yongshi: The Chinese Jeep XJ Mutant with a Mitsubishi Engine
As car enthusiasts, we are constantly fascinated by the unique and obscure vehicles that exist in different corners of the world. Today, we want to take you on a journey to China, where a peculiar off-roader called the BAW BJ2022 Yongshi resides. This vehicle, which takes inspiration from the iconic Jeep XJ, boasts an interesting twist – a Mitsubishi engine under its hood. So, let’s dive into the story of the BAW Yongshi, a mutant Jeep with a Chinese twist.
To truly understand the origins of the BAW Yongshi, we must travel back in time to 1984 when American Motors Corporation (AMC), the owner of Jeep at the time, made history by becoming the first western carmaker to establish production in China. Through a government-mandated joint venture called Beijing Jeep, AMC started producing a blend of Russian UAZ-based off-roaders and license-built XJ Cherokees specifically for the Chinese market. Little did they know that this venture would set the stage for the development of a unique off-roader down the line.
Fast forward to when Jeep was acquired by Chrysler, during its Diamond Star Motors era, and it became a cousin of Mitsubishi. This newly formed alliance paved the way for a collaboration that would shape the future of the BAW Yongshi. The 2.4-liter 4G64 engine borrowed from Mitsubishi found its way into the hearts of Chinese off-road enthusiasts, giving birth to the mutant offspring we now know as the BAW Yongshi.
The BAW Yongshi, first introduced in 2005, shares many similarities with its predecessor, the XJ Cherokee. However, it boasts a slightly larger body and an additional inch in wheelbase. Beijing Automotive Works (BAW), the manufacturer behind the Yongshi, made some alterations to the front suspension, offering a choice between MacPherson strut or leaf springs. As for the rear, it retains the leaf-sprung solid axle, which ensures exceptional off-road capabilities.
The Yongshi quickly caught the attention of the Chinese market, and in 2017, BAW introduced a civilian version called the Yongshi Warrior. This model expanded the Yongshi lineup, offering a variety of body styles ranging from single-cab pickups to four-door SUVs. The versatility offered by the Yongshi Warrior, combined with its range of engines, further elevated its appeal. While military variants reportedly utilize Isuzu and Nissan diesels, the civilian version is said to employ a series of Mitsubishi engines, one of them being the renowned 4G63T.
Despite its intriguing features and unique origins, the BAW Yongshi is not a high-volume seller in China. Good Car Bad Car reports that between 2017 and 2020, only a total of 7,889 units were sold in the country. Consequently, the 4G-equipped trucks make up only a fraction of that figure.
For those who are intrigued by the BAW Yongshi and are considering obtaining one, there’s great news. You don’t have to decipher Mandarin characters on Chinese used car websites; you can simply order a brand new Yongshi directly from BAW through platforms like Made-in-China. The Yongshi is available in single- and crew-cab configurations, with a six-speed manual transmission as the only option. Additionally, a standard two-speed four-wheel-drive transfer case ensures optimal off-road performance. Amazingly, the price starts at an incredibly affordable $9,000, making it an enticing proposition for budget-conscious off-road enthusiasts.
Of course, it’s highly unlikely that you’ll be able to register a BAW Yongshi with the Department of Motor Vehicles in your country, but that doesn’t diminish its appeal as a farm truck or even as a race truck for those willing to take a gamble. Imagine a modified Jeep XJ with a Mitsubishi engine tearing it up on the race track. It may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but someone out there is bound to create the wildest, quirkiest sand rail you’ve ever laid eyes upon.
In conclusion, the BAW Yongshi is an intriguing and somewhat unconventional off-roader that emerged from the collaboration between Beijing Automotive Works, Jeep, and Mitsubishi. With its roots tracing back to the XJ Cherokee and the infusion of Mitsubishi power, the Yongshi offers a taste of the unique automotive landscape in China. While not a massive sales success, it remains an affordable option for those seeking adventure on a budget. So, the next time you stumble upon a BAW Yongshi, remember the story behind its creation, and appreciate the craftsmanship and creativity that went into building this mutant Jeep with a Mitsubishi heart.
And there you have it, the fascinating tale of the BAW Yongshi – an extreme clickbait-free article that explores the history, features, and allure of this lesser-known vehicle.