Chery has thrown down the gauntlet by announcing SA’s "most affordable new car" after a number of upgrades. Geely’s GC2 might have something to say about that considering it has aircon, a feature only available on the QQ3 for an extra R5000…A week or so earlier Wheels24 reported that Chinese automaker Geely had launched what it claimed was "the cheapest one-litre, hi-specced car in the country" giving the rest of SA’s econoboxes a serious run for their money, at R89 900. The GC2, the automaker said, adding that it out-performed everything in its class - on the road and with its standard kit. It's a compact hatch based on the LC.IMPROVED QQ3Rival Chinese automaker Chery now claims that its QQ3 (R84 900) offers even more value with a number of upgrades and improvements, except it doesn't have standard aircon, which lifts the price by R5000 - which in fact puts them on par pricewise. How does Chery's latest cheapy compare to Geely's offering? More on that later on...Chery SA's MD Brett Soso said: “There are a number of changes to the latest QQ3s which arrived in SA recently. Many under the skin and improve the driving experience but those that are visible include new seat trim, steering wheel, gear shifter and centre console, while a radio/CD is now standard on the TE model (PRICE OF TE).“Hub caps are fitted to the 0.8 TE models, which previously had only painted steel rims while the 0.8 TX (R94 900) gets alloy rims and remote central locking. Aircon is optional on the TE, standard on the TX."Aircon adds R5000 to the price of the TE, while the TX is priced at R94 900.Both versions are powered by a 38kW/70Nm 800cc three-cylinder engine driving a five-speed manual gearbox. Fuel consumption is listed as 6.8 litres/100km with emissions of 156gm/km.For those wanting more power, a higher specification QQ3 TXE is available with a 50kW/90Nm 1100cc four-cylinder engine. Claimed fuel consumption is 5.7 litres/100km with emissions of 133 gm/km. MORE KIT, MORE VALUEThe 1.1 TXE is priced at R103 900 add adds aircon, CD/Radio with USB, power windows and side-mirrors, sunroof. Anti-lock brakes, electronic brake-pressure distribution and two front airbags are standard.All models sold with a three-year or 100 000km warranty.Soso said: "The QQ3 has played a major role in establishing Chery in South Africa and we are pleased that we can now offer an even better level of standard equipment while retaining the car’s position as the most affordable new car on the local market."MOST AFFORDABLE NEW CAR?Chery’s QQ3 TE certainly has many features normally associated with vehicles priced over R100 000 but how does it stack up against Geely’s GC2? Well, the latter has a 997cc three-cylinder petrol engine capable of 50kW/88Nm, so that’s an extra 12kW/18Nm over the GC2. Both Chery and Geely’s offerings are backed by a three-year or 100 000km warranty. Niceties included in the GC2's price are halogen lights, front and rear fog lights, power door mirrors, dual-coloured fabric seat covers, remote-controlled central locking, alarm, four three-point seat belts, driver’s belt warning, open-door buzzer, rear windscreen wiper with defrosting and demisting, 14” tyres wrapping steel rims, radio with USB and AUX sockets - and even a fire extinguisher. In terms of kit and price the GC2 (R89 900) trumps the base-specced Chery with standard aircon but hey, we're not spending your money.What do you think if the new Geely GC2 and Chery's QQ3? Which one would you purchase and why? Email us and we'll publish your thoughts on Wheels24.