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Car Review

GWM ORA 03 review

£31,940 - £34,940
Published: 29 May 2024


What is it like on the inside?

There’s an impressive amount of space in the 03, and the airy feeling is helped by the amount of glass and the flat, clutter-free floor. Ora made a conscious decision to prioritise rear seat legroom over luggage space too, which means three adults fit comfortably across the rear bench.

However, that does mean the boot is teeny at just 228 litres (or 858 if you collapse the back seats). For context, the smaller Mini has 200 litres of luggage space while the ID.3 trounces it with a 385-litre chasm.

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The materials are fairly nice in the 03 with the seats covered in fake leather, and if the black interior doesn’t do it for you there’s a handful of brightly-coloured two-tone options available instead. No doubt someone from Mini’s legal department will be contacting Ora about those rip-off climate control toggles, though. The fit and finish in here is leagues better than what you get from a BYD Dolphin.

Pure+ and Pro+ 03s are pretty much identical, which means all cars get tech like wireless phone charging, facial recognition (which once set up through the app will recognise you as the driver and set your favoured seating position) and the twin 10.25-inch screens for the dial display and infotainment.

The centrally-mounted screen is a responsive touch unit but the menus and general operation are clunky and complicated. Ora has tried to improve this by making a handful of key functions available with a single swipe-down of the screen, but there’s no sense of cohesion to the graphics and some of the icons are too small to use easily on the go.

There’s also currently no Apple CarPlay or Android Auto connectivity, although we’ve tested a Beta version with both which Ora says it’ll roll out to all customers soon in an over-the-air update. Mind you, it’s been saying that for a while now…

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One thing the Pro+ car has over the base model is front seats that are heated, ventilated and have a massage function. There’s no way of telling how the climate control is affecting your range because the indicator in the dial display won’t adapt to recognise that the air conditioning is on. Your estimated range number and the small green bar that accompanies it will just start to fall quicker than it usually would.  

We’ve more switchgear irritations too: the indicators are impossibly-difficult to cancel without flicking them back on in the opposite direction, and the drive selector on the centre console doesn’t spring back to centre which makes it rather difficult to quickly flick through from reverse to drive (or vice versa). There’s a sense that the 03’s development was rushed to get the finished product out of the door and on sale as soon as possible.

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