Great Wall Motor has revealed its most rugged ute yet.

    The Firebomb Edition is a special edition, based on the Off-Road Edition of the Chinese-market GWM Cannon (also known here as the GWM Ute).

    Modified by Chengdu-based 4×4 firm Topfire, the Firebomb Edition has an aggressive new front end design, along with unique bumpers, flared wheel arches, raised suspension, and chunky off-road tyres.

    Images published by Car News China also reveal Topfire-branded roof racks.

    We’ve contacted GWM Australia to confirm if there are any local plans for this model, or for the Off-Road Edition upon which it’s based.

    It has thus far been displayed only in matte grey with bright orange accents and a burgundy leather interior. Chinese media reports a price tag of 259,800 RMB (A$55,688).

    Topfire has collaborated with GWM previously, producing a more rugged version of the Tank 300 called the Iron Cavalry 02.

    While the standard Off-Road Edition comes with a turbocharged 2.0-litre petrol four-cylinder engine with 140kW of power and 360Nm of torque, or the familiar 2.0-litre turbo-diesel 120kW/400Nm four, the Firebomb gets an upgraded petrol mill.

    The 2.0-litre turbo-petrol four pumps out 167kW and 380Nm, mated with an eight-speed automatic transmission and part-time four-wheel drive.

    GWM hasn’t released any information yet about the Firebomb’s approach, departure and breakover angles, nor how much wading depth has been improved by.

    Building on the Off-Road Edition means the Firebomb should have an extensive suite of off-road equipment, including electronically controlled locking front and rear differentials, creep mode, and a tank turn function.

    The Off-Road Edition has appeared in recent Australian Government vehicle certification documents, though it’s unclear if it will be introduced locally – other GWM Ute variants have appeared in these previously, including single-cab variants, but have yet to make the trip.

    The more rugged Ute variant is offered in China with a choice of Cooper or BF Goodrich 265/65 R18 all-terrain tyres, and available features include a front winch and nitrogen shock absorbers.

    It also rides on multi-link rear suspension, as opposed to the leaf springs of more commercial-focused Chinese-market models as well as the local line-up, and wears a snorkel.

    The company has been putting an emphasis on off-road capability, with the Firebomb following the similarly militaristically named Artillery, a single-cab four-wheel drive version of the Ute.

    The ute/pickup market in China is booming as more and more cities allow the vehicles on their roads and private buyer interest soars.

    BYD is working on a ute of its own and Chery has indicated it has one in its plans, with its Jetour brand teasing one based on its new Traveller SUV.

    As a ute specialist, the GWM brand has been expanding its line-up considerably. The Shanhai Cannon is a larger, more luxurious vehicle spun off the Ute/Cannon platform, while the King Kong Cannon is even more substantial but with more of a workhorse positioning.

    MORE: Everything GWM Ute

    William Stopford

    William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel, briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

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