2019

News

December 2019




November 2019












October 2019











September 2019













August 2019

Test Driven

2019

October 2019

  • New Premium Choices in Mazda CX-5 Petrol Turbo and CX-8 Six-Seater Luxury

    MAZDA has firmly entrenched itself in the Malaysian market as a premium brand from Japan and this was recently boosted with more SUV (sport utility vehicle) model options to pander the growing pool of strong supporters. This includes the CX-8 that now comes locally assembled and the CX-6 Turbo that takes over as head honcho in its model portfolio.

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  • September 2019

  • Honda HR-V Hybrid: Smaller Engine, More Kick

    GOING Hybrid is almost like going turbocharged; you could make do with a smaller displacement engine while enjoying combined electro-mechanical power that is higher than the engine output produced by a bigger displacement unit. And it could provide better fuel economy too in daily motoring use.

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  • Porsche Taycan All-Electric Sports Car Sets Hot Pace

    THE increase in demand for fully electric-powered cars is clearly a trend that couldn’t be ignored and Porsche has heeded the call with its first sporty EV (electric vehicle), the four-door Taycan. And in prestige ranking, it has clearly outranked Tesla in performance, stature and price.

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  • August 2019

  • Latest Saga Takes Affordable Car Ownership to New Levels

    THE NEW Proton Saga has taken value-for-money car ownership to new heights, especially for an entry level model. In a way, this reflects the very first time that the Saga was introduced here as the national car in 1985.

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  • July 2019

  • Nissan Turns Over New Leaf With Superb E-Pedal

    ELECTRIC cars are definitely going to be the vehicles of choice in the not too distant future and in Malaysia, it’s a good time to find out more about electric motoring with the new second-generation Nissan Leaf that was launched by Edaran Tan Chong Motor Sdn Bhd (ETCM). This is more so with the Leaf’s new E-pedal that takes driving a car to a new level of simplicity and pleasure, without losing the fun factor.

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  • Taking on Sepang with BMW M2 Competition

    THE BMW M2 represents a raw and brutal sense of outright performance being the first step to BMW’s world of M cars. This impression, gleaned from our drive of the M2 Coupé during the M Drive in Seoul two years ago, continues to hold after another exciting drive experience with the latest model, the M2 Competition, at the Sepang International Circuit.

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  • May 2019

  • Dynamic Drive with Iriz and Persona

    IT MIGHT have been three years since we last drove a Proton but the impression that stayed with us since then was the good ride comfort of the Persona. We got to re-affirm this aspect of the Persona during a drive from Proton’s Centre of Excellence in Subang Jaya to Tanjung Jara via Kuantan in the updated Persona and Iriz.

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  • Updated X-Trail Scores on Dynamic Refinement

    THERE was once when we didn’t quite look forward to driving SUVs (sport utility vehicles) as being taller vehicles, they tend to roll more into a corner when pushed hard, exaggerating the understeer as the front tyres squealed in protests. That has all changed in recent years with electrical management of suspension and brake function in complement with improved suspension engineering.

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  • April 2019

  • Great Yaris All-Rounder for the Young & Young at Heart

    TOYOTA is warming up very nicely to the new theme ‘All About The Drive’. Its successive range of vehicles in the current era is getting more dynamically sound and would hold its own through winding road sections, quite unlike the scenario more than a decade ago.

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  • February 2019

  • Slip-sliding with Triton in Sabah

    HAVING been quite impressed with what the new Mitsubishi Triton had to offer during our brief off-road experience under controlled conditions on the outskirts of Bangkok in November 2018, we were looking to see if the impression could be enhanced with actual off-road drives in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah two months later.

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  • January 2019

  • Bentley’s latest Continental GT Gets More Macho, Yet Remains Suave

    THE BEST gets even better and you have to believe that when it comes to the Bentley Continental GT. Late last year, the third generation of the Continental GT was introduced to the Asia-Pacific region, namely Australia, New Zealand, Taiwan, Singapore and the rest of Southeast Asia.

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  • Latest Toyota Vios Gets More Comfortable & Dynamic

    TOYOTA is increasingly shedding its conservative look and developing cars that look more outgoing and aggressive, while improving its dynamic feel and performance. And yet retain its family oriented qualities in a comfortable ride for everyone on board. The latest Vios is an excellent example of this progressive evolvement from the staid and boring image to a vibrant and lively one.

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  • November 2018

  • New Triton Gets Gung-Ho While Being More Civilised

    LOOKS are everything, even for a pick-up truck. This particular vehicle has come a long way from being a mere workhorse, commonly applied in menial industries such as agriculture, construction and field services. Today, it doubles as a workhorse and personal transport for individual entrepreneurs involved in these industries.

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  • October 2018

  • Renault Koleos and its Charming Ways

    THE Renault Koleos appears to be winning the hearts of critics that evaluate vehicles for automotive awards. It was recently selected as the winner in the Large SUV/Crossover 5-seater category by an English news media for the second year in succession.

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  • September 2018

  • Daihatsu Gran Max Automatic Strikes New Ground

    CONSIDERATIONS for vehicle purchase in the commercial vehicle sector differ significantly from private vehicle ownership. A business has to make money and that figures prominently when it comes to buying a vehicle to serve the trade.

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  • July 2018

  • Audi Sport Morphs Further For More Distinct Identity

    AUDI might be seen as the more premium range in the Volkswagen Group but that doesn’t stop this carmaker from establishing itself as a manufacturer of exciting cars to drive. Its participation in motor sports, such as the World Endurance events (although it has now switched its focus to Formula Electric) and world rallies in early ...

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  • June 2018

  • Bridgestone Turanza T005A Designed for Asean Region

    TYRE development also focuses on regional needs, especially where demand is big enough, and Bridgestone is mindful of that. This was clearly demonstrated in the latest version of its flagship tyre Turanza, the T005A.

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  • May 2018

  • Latest Nissan Serena Goes Quieter and More Comfortably

    THE new Nissan Serena S-Hybrid is a perfect example of what better engineering could do to make quiet, comfortable family motoring to be fully enjoyed. This is our impression after driving it to Penang and back to KL over two days. Our benchmark was the drive in the previous Serena five years ago to the south of KL. The Serena we drove to Penang was the 2.0L Highway Star.

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  • April 2018

  • Latest Honda CR-V no pushover with smaller engine

    IT MIGHT have taken the Continental carmakers to set the pace but the Japanese brands are beginning to take up the challenge, some of them anyway. This is the use of small displacement engines but with efficiently managed turbocharging systems to give them big displacement engine power.

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  • Yokohama dB brings silent motoring to quieter levels

    SILENT motoring has become a key factor in new car purchases, especially in the middle to premium class market. With carmakers producing vehicles that run quieter with more efficient engines and better body buffers to reduce transmission of noise into the passenger cabin, tyre makers are pressed into doing their part as well.

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  • January 2018

  • Subaru XV: More Goodies for a Pleasant Drive

    Better looks aside, the new Subaru XV Crossover is clearly a better representation of the times with its higher level of equipment to make the ownership experience more convenient and enjoyable. With our last acquaintance in the previous XV reasonably fresh in our mind, we could relate to the novelty of enjoying the newer features that now come standard at an affordable price.

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  • Michelin Raises Benchmark with Pilot Sport 4 S

    BENCHMARKS are meant to be set and then broken, and Michelin believes it has done just that when it introduced the Pilot Sport 4 S last year. This is the performance version of the Pilot Sport 4 that was introduced earlier to progressively replace the Pilot Sport as an OE (original equipment) tyre for premium cars and vehicles.

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  • December 2017

  • Goodyear Expands EfficientGrip Range with Premium Tyre

    CHANGE is a constant and it applies to everything, not least of all the automotive and its ancillary industries. Tyres are a must and vehicle development is often done with the tyres the car manufacturers would like to use. The vehicle’s suspension system is normally geared towards the range of tyres it is running on.

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  • November 2017

  • Double Turbo Options for Hyundai Tucson

    THE turbo fever is certainly catching on fast, especially at Hyundai-Sime Darby Motors Sdn Bhd (HSDM) as it followed up to the Elantra Sport Turbo with two new Tucson turbocharged models. That is giving the lifestyle automotive market a double kick instead of one to spice up one’s motoring pleasure.

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  • October 2017

  • Honda BR-V adds zest to entry level Crossover

    HONDA Malaysia’s strategy to make car ownership exciting and affordable is certainly making waves and inroads. Well on its way to achieving 100,000 car sales for the first time this year, we could relate to its ambitious goal after finally getting a drive impression in the BR-V.

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  • September 2017

  • Elantra’s Power Options Expand Appeal

    THE latest Hyundai Elantra is made available with two power options – turobocharged and normally aspirated - to expand its appeal. Being the mid-range models, its reach with the younger set clearly allows Hyundai to provide a more exciting alternative in the Elantra Sport Turbo.

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  • July 2017

  • Continental Blends Sporty and Premium Performance in PremiumContact 6

    REACTION to tyre performance probably gets more critical as you go up the premium ladder in the automotive world. Those who drive premium cars would value the ride performance above all else from the tyre while expecting it to provide other related qualities in equally fine doses.

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  • June 2017

  • Latest Honda Accord Maintains Sporty Executive Appeal

    THE Honda Accord has firmly established itself here as one of the popular options for executive motoring among the Asian brands over the years. This is also reflected in the US market especially with the current generation (ninth) model, which has been the top selling car there in the last few years, with the Toyota Camry second best.

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  • Innova Continues Positive Performance in Fresh Perspective

    TOYOTA has given the latest Innova a fresh perspective with a sharper body profile that belies its deep roots. This subscribes to its current approach of giving its range of vehicles less of a conservative profile but a more forward, and in some cases even bold, front.

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  • May 2017

  • Discovering Sun Moon Lake with New Panamera

    MENTION the popular tourist spot, Sun Moon Lake, in Nantou County, Taiwan and the last thing you would think of is a fast drive around it in Porsche Panameras. That was our reaction when we received the invitation to experience a drive impression of the latest Panamera. Were we supposed to enjoy a scenic drive around the lake? That would be ironic for a performance car.

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  • Toyota Sienta Checks All Right Spots for Family Motoring

    TOYOTA has moved clearly from a conservative stance to a bolder one in body styling for its newer range of passenger vehicles. An example is the latest Camry that has taken on racy, angular lines in front that one would not have expected of this Toyota executive sedan, say ten years ago.

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  • March 2017

  • Audi Driving Experience with R8 plus

    AUDI conducts a regular driving experience at its Audi Sport centre near Ingolstadt, Germany for new car owners as well as interested parties such as the motoring media. We had our taste of this Audi Driving Experience at the highest level with the R8 V10 plus Coupé, which represents its ultimate sports car.

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  • Hyundai Ioniq: Hybrid Motoring for a Song

    HYUNDAI is taking the hybrid challenge to Toyota with the Ioniq by offering such a fuel efficient car at a lower price. Although the Ioniq Hybrid would have enjoyed tax incentives under the EEV (Energy Efficient Vehicle) category, commanding a price below RM115,000 makes it a very attractive proposition. Hyundai-Sime Darby Motors is so confident of the good price advantage that the Ioniq is made available as a locally assembled model.

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  • February 2017

  • Latest Kia Sorento Cuts it on Diesel Power

    THE Kia Sorento has always been petrol powered under Naza Kia’s stewardship until the latest model. This has to do with the progressive availability of higher refined diesel fuel that new diesel engines would perform best running on. To gauge the response to this change of power, Naza Kia brought in a low specification model as an alternative option to the higher-spec 2.4-litre petrol models.

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  • Honda Civic 1.5 Turbo: Enjoying the Affordable Dream

    THE latest Honda Civic, now in its 10th generation, highlights the move to turbo power for the normal model range. It might have taken the Japanese automotive industry a bit more time to come on stream with such a move but then again, it’s never too late to hop onto this power trend wagon.

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  • January 2017

  • Twisty Drive in Portugal with new Audi A5 & S5

    HOT on the heels of the new Audi A4 came the Audi A5 and punchier S5. The current trend is to develop the two-door coupé version independent of the supposedly base model to stand it out as an individual car instead of being an extended entity. Moreover, these sportier looking cars are also endowed with the more powerful engines in the range.

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  • December 2016

  • Perodua Bezza: Sedan Alternative of Choice

    IT WAS a matter of time before Perodua was going to introduce a sedan model to try for a bigger slice of the market. More Malaysian car owners somehow prefer the sedan more than the hatchback even though Perodua held its own since it started in 1996 with its range of hatchbacks to even outsell its closest rival Proton in recent years.

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  • Chevrolet Introduces ‘Friendlier’ Colorado

    THE pickup has grown from a mere workhorse to become a more ‘civilised’ vehicle that now easily doubles for work and family motoring. This dual function for the pickup has seen development focused on making the vehicle more comfortable in ride for all on board as well as being endowed with more features to make it more family savvy.

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  • November 2016

  • Renault Fluence An Affordable Mid-Range Sedan

    THE Renault Fluence has been in the Malaysian market since mid-2014 and in that time close to 300 cars were moved, most of the purchases favouring the higher-spec Dynamique variant. At about RM10,000 more at RM119,888 (on the road without insurance) it makes sense to go for a Dynamique Fluence that has leather seat upholstery, standard daytime running lights and LED (light emitting diode) rear combination lamps.

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  • Second-Gen Persona Scores on Ride Comfort

    THE Proton Persona has entered its second generation phase and not a minute too soon. Waning sales required an upgrade to refresh interest and the latest Persona won’t disappoint on that score. It has assumed a completely new look that is definitely mainstream in body design, which is good on one hand and not so good on another.

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  • October 2016

  • Lamborghini Huracán: The Buriram Experience

    IT’S not often that we get an invitation to drive a Lamborghini unless we happen to be a potential customer, which we are in no financial situation to be. We had that pleasure earlier in the year to drive the Huracán LP 580-2 rear-wheel drive at a race circuit in Kaohsiung in Taiwan.

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  • September 2016

  • BMW X1: Just as good in Front-wheel drive

    BMW might have gone front-wheel drive (FWD) since 2014 but some would still raise their eyebrows on being told of such a model from this German carmaker. Perhaps it is because BMW has established its image as a strong rear-driven car that few could perceive it doing the same with a front-driven one.

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  • Strong and clean diesel power with Mazda6 SKYACTIV-D

    THE progressive availability of Euro5 diesel is beginning to see the introduction of more advanced diesel cars and vehicles. Mazda is among the few who see this as an opportunity to introduce its advanced diesel range to cater to the growing confidence and acceptance of such cars.

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  • August 2016

  • Roughing out Brisbane outback with BFGoodrich

    THE growing demand for pick-ups and SUVs (sport utility vehicles) in Malaysia reflects the trend in many world markets and this is not lost on BFGoodrich, an American tyre maker. This means the demand for tyres suitable for such vehicles would grow in tandem and there is an opportunity waiting to be tapped.

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  • July 2016

  • Roomier SUV Option in Hyundai Tucson

    THE growing range of SUVs (sport utility vehicles) in the market gives the prospective buyer plenty to choose from. Brand loyalty plays a big role here although the younger customer is more inclined to vehicle looks and equipment that might befit his or her lifestyle. This is where the latest Hyundai Tucson is likely to score in the Malaysian market.

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  • April 2016

  • Lamborghini Huracán Stays Exciting with Rear-wheel drive

    LAMBORGHINI might have been pretty low key compared to its more flamboyant Italian rival in Ferrari but after coming under Audi in the Volkswagen Group more than 15 years ago, it has re-established itself as an exclusive player to contend with. Since Ferruccio Lamborghini founded the company in 1963, it had been on a roller-coaster ride and went through a few changes of ownership.

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  • Renault Captur: Breezy Lifestyle Option with 1.2 Turbo Power

    TAPPING on the Crossover or SUV (sport utility vehicle) trend sweeping the market appeared to have paid dividends for Renault franchise holder TC Euro Cars. The company is already into its second batch of imported Captur (pronounced as Capture) as this compact Crossover has found favour with a growing pool of prospective Renault customers.

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  • March 2016

  • Mercedes-Benz GLE 250d & CLA45 AMG: Contrasting Experiences

    TO CELEBRATE Mercedes-Benz 130 Years of Innovation at Cycle & Carriage Bintang Berhad’s Georgetown Autohaus, Mercedes-Benz Malaysia provided the media a variety of vehicles to drive between KL and Penang over two days. We had the opportunity to do the KL-Penang leg in the newly launched GLE 250d and the return leg in the CLA45 4Matic, and it was a world of contrast in experience.

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  • February 2016

  • Renault Clio GT Line: An Engaging Drive

    IT’S been a while since we drove a Renault and the Kangoo was the last model that came to mind. Our memory of this French make – from the early days of the Renault 10, 12, 16 and 17 (1970s) to the more recent Kangoo, Megane and Espace (2000s) – had always been on the comfortable ride that appears to be a hallmark of cars from that country.

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  • January 2016

  • Latest 3 Series Continues Strong Dynamic Pace

    THE BMW 3 Series goes through a fairly long model span, thus facelifts keep its appeal fresh and updated technically to hold firmly against rivals, especially from its German counterparts. In the Malaysian scenario, it may only see one serious rival in the three-point star but in major markets like Europe, China and the US, its rival base is wider.

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  • Nissan X-Trail 2.5L: Standing Well Against Peers

    The SUV (sport utility vehicle) or Crossover sector is now an increasingly hotly contested one (even exclusive brands are making them) and the one with the looks and features is likely to gain good market share. With the new X-Trail, Nissan has made tremendous grounds in these two areas to be fully worthy of consideration by many in the market for such vehicles.

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