Kia Sorento and Peugeot Landtrek Previews

By Lee Pang Seng

FANS of the Kia and Peugeot brands would be pleased to know that more model variants are making their respective entry here this year. For the former, Kia distributor Dinamikjaya Motors Sdn Bhd, listed under Bermaz Auto Berhad, is introducing the latest Kia Sorento while Peugeot distributor Bermaz Auto Alliance Sdn Bhd has the Peugeot Landtrek to perk up the local pick-up market.

At the same time, Mazda distributor Bermaz Motor Sdn Bhd has affirmed that its foray into the EV (electric vehicle) market is very much on with the MX-30, which was given a media preview late last year. Before we delve a bit more into what the MX-30 is all about, we would give a brief rundown on the Sorento and Landtrek.

Kia Sorento

This is the fourth-generation version of a large-size SUV (sport utility vehicle) that is said to reflect the concept of ‘refined boldness’. Fresh design elements that embody the robust, tough-looking aesthetic of the earlier generation models include a new interpretation of Kia’s distinctive ‘tiger nose’ grille with wrapped around integrated headlamps. As a complementary emphasis, the headlamps feature a new ‘tiger eyeline’ LED (light emitting diode) daytime running light to project a tiger’s intense look.

The new Sorento runs on a longer wheelbase of 2815mm and has shorter overhangs front and rear to project a longer look. It is said to represent a ‘step-change’ in cabin quality and design. For starters, the material quality is enhanced with ‘sophisticated next-gen’ design with blending metallic trims, leather upholstery and embossed wood-effect surfaces.

The driver enjoys a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster that is paired with a 10.25-inch infotainment display to the centre of the dashboard. A wireless smartphone charger sits at the base of the centre console and a Bose surround sound system should make the in-car audio experience musically pleasant. The infotainment system is compatible woth both Apple Carplay and Android Auto.

Dinamikjaya Motors is offering two seating options in three model variants; a seven-seater model (2-3-2) that is powered by a 2.5-litre ‘Smartstream’ 2WD petrol engine and a six-seater variant (2-2-2) with two model options – 2.5-litre ‘Smartsteam’ AWD (all-wheel drive) petrol and 2.2-litre ‘Smartstream’ AWD diesel.

The 2.5-litre petrol engine delivers 130kW (177hp) at 6000rpm and 232Nm torque at 4000rpm while the transmission is a six-speed automatic. As for the 2.2-litre turbodiesel, it churns out more punch as expected with 146.5kW (199.3hp) at 3800rpm and a whopping 440Nm from 1750 to 2750rpm. It has a more impressive transmission too in the eight-speed DCT (double clutch transmission).

The latest Kia Sorento is currently being assembled at the Inokom assembly facility in Kulim, Kedah and would be available soon enough. Dinamikjaya Motors says the Sorento is available for booking based on a starting price of RM220,000 to RM250,000 for the respective models.

Peugeot Landtrek

Those who are into pick-ups might be interested to check out a completely new brand and model that is said to be available very soon. This is the Peugeot Landtrek and its introduction here as an imported model by Bermaz Auto Alliance would be a first in the Asia-Pacific region.

Bermaz Auto Alliance says the Landtrek offers Malaysian customers a new pick-up choice that’s ‘renowned for its ruggedness and adaptability to suit professional and family needs’. Basically that means it could handle tough terrain while being right at home with outdoor leisure activities.

This new Peugeot pick-up is said to feature ‘state-of-the-art onboard technologies, advanced adaptability and SUV-like driving pleasure’. The Peugeot lineage is immediately discerned in the signature brand features such as the vertical grille with Peugeot lion emblem and characteristic lighting.

Inside, a 10-inch HD screen sits on top of the centre dashboard and a set of toggle switches is located below for the respective functions. The rear seating for up to three passengers is said to be given special attention for comfortable accommodation. It has a folding backrest for added comfort.

The 1.9-litre turbodiesel engine has a variable turbine geometry turbo system and output is rated at 110kW (150hp) at 4000rpm and 350Nm torque from 1800 to 2800rpm. The transmission is a six-speed automatic. Bermaz Auto Alliance says the Peugeot Landtrek has an estimated starting price of RM123,000 and bookings are now opened.

Mazda MX-30

Unlike the model shown in the media preview last year, the version presented this time is the one that would be targeted at the Malaysian market. The Mazda MX-30 is Mazda’s first all-electric vehicle and is equipped with e-Skyactiv, the carmaker’s new electric drive technology.

The front-wheel drive powertrain features a 107kW (145PS) AC synchronous electric motor that is paired to a 35.5kWh lithium-ion battery. The MX-30 SUV’s driving range is given as 199km and the battery could be charged to 80 per cent in about 40 minutes using the DC direct charging facility. Bermaz Motor is targeting those who do largely urban motoring for whom the driving range would easily suffice.

The MX-30 has design features that reflect Mazda’s award-winning KODO design philosophy to set the tone in this powertrain technology development. Among them are the centre pillarless freestyle doors and a framed glasshouse effect for an airy, spacious feeling in the interior cabin.

Driving dynamics is well provided for in the ergonomically designed interior with a driver-centric ambience, a floating centre console, Mazda’s first seven-inch touchscreen air-conditioning panel and the use of a range of new environmentally friendly materials. The last area includes the cork and door trim fabric incorporating fabrics from recycled plastic bottles.
More importantly, the MX-30 EV is said to embody all the driving dynamics that is available in the non-EV range along with a full suite of active and passive safety equipment. Its price is said to be reasonably competitive against rival EV brands.