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  • Honda Small SUV RS at GIIAS 2022 – a more sober development of last year’s concept, production soon

    Click to enlarge

    Honda is displaying the Small SUV RS at the Gaikindo Indonesia International Auto Show (GIIAS) 2022, which opens today at BSD City outside of Jakarta. The prototype is wrapped in camouflage and parked inside a glass box.

    Last month, images of a mystery Honda SUV were leaked in Indonesia and it looked very much like a production car. Many expected the SUV to make its debut at GIIAS, but it looks like Honda isn’t ready for a full launch yet. However, the carmaker has said that this model “will be a new line from Honda” and that it will be “Honda’s first model in the small SUV segment” and “will be officially launched in the near future”.

    How near? Hopefully by the end of this year, Honda Prospect Motor’s sales and marketing director Yusak Billy told Kompas at the show.

    Leaked pics of Small SUV RS – click to enlarge

    The Japanese carmaker has also confirmed that this car is a development of the original SUV RS Concept from GIIAS 2021. Compared to the first draft, this Small SUV RS is a much watered down design.

    Based on the leaked pics, the 2021 SUV RS’ “fade out” grille has been replaced by a more conventional item, with the chrome studded RS treatment seen on the new HR-V RS. There’s a chrome bar on the top of the grille, but the headlamps are much larger than the slim/sharp eyes of the 2021 concept. That’s only to be expected – showcar lights and wheels are usually exaggerated.

    Fog lamps are needed for the actual car, so the lower side elements aren’t so minimalist. There’s a sliver skid plate-style trim but it has three notches instead of two. The nose of the car also appears to be more upright. Overall, the face is inoffensive, if a bit conventional.

    Original 2021 SUV RS Concept – click to enlarge

    The rear is a huge departure from the first concept, both in shape and details. The 2021 SUV RS showcar had a steep, sloping rear screen (unrealistic for such a small car, perhaps) and full-width LED signatures, just like on the new HR-V. The so-called production car is clearly not a baby HR-V then, with more regular angles and tail lamp clusters.

    Details that can be seen here are a decently sized spoiler, 3D-style tail lamps that aren’t flat, and silver trim on the diffuser area to match the front end. Also, inverted L-shaped LED signatures like on the Civic FE.

    With the new HR-V growing in size and price, there’s room for a small Honda SUV to battle the Daihatsu Rocky and Toyota Raize in Indonesia.

    Will this come to Malaysia to fight the Perodua Ativa? Nothing is impossible, but generally, it’s very difficult for non-national brands to introduce entry-level models in our market and be competitive with national rivals in terms of specs/price. It’s not easy to top the Ativa AV’s kit list (even the base HR-V at RM114,800 fails to do so) without incurring a big premium, which will then bring the small SUV’s price close to the HR-V. Such are the intricacies of our market, which unlike our ASEAN neighbours, has national brands.

  • 2022 Mitsubishi Xpander Cross facelift revealed in Indonesia – Thor’s hammer lighting, digital air-con

    The new Mitsubishi Xpander Cross facelift has been unveiled at the Gaikindo Indonesia International Auto Show (GIIAS) 2022, and courtesy of Autonetmagz, here’s what it looks like – we also included an official gallery below.

    The regular Xpander facelift was officially launched in Indonesia in November last year, and the latest Cross version adopts most of the styling changes seen on that model. These include the LED positioning lamps near the bonnet shut line which makes up part of the evolved Dynamic Shield visual signature.

    The grille you see here is model-specific and more closely resembles what you find on the Triton, replete with angular chrome bars that trail from the top LEDs. Elsewhere, the headlamp design mimics Volvo’s Thor’s hammer look, although this is another cue that is carried over from the normal Xpander. The headlamps are full LEDs with tri-projectors within each cluster.

    The new rectangular front fog lights, which replace the round units from before, have been moved further to the corners of the front bumper, while the number plate sits further down the front bumper instead of near the front grille.

    At the rear, the Volvo-inspired Thor’s hammer graphic is even more apparent on the LED taillights – a departure from the L-shaped graphics in the pre-facelift model. The rear bumpers have also been revised, with new horizontal reflectors replacing the vertical units from before.

    To complete the rugged theme, the Xpander Cross comes with robust-looking skid plates front and rear. Despite its appearance, the Xpander Cross has the same ride height as the normal Xpander – 220 mm for the CVT variant and 225 mm for the manual transmission variant. The length (4,595 mm) is the same too, although the tweaked body is a tad wider at 1,790 mm (+40 mm).

    There are more significant changes on the inside, with the straight-cut dashboard playing host to more than one new item. For starters, the infotainment display is no longer integrated into the dashboard and is given a floating appearance instead. As for the air-conditioning system, the three-knob layout has been replaced with switches and toggles that are accompanied by a digital display.

    In other areas, the semi-analogue instrument cluster has been replaced with digital display instead, while a new piece of tech introduced is a Qi wireless charger that sits in a cubby just ahead of the gear lever. Ahead of the driver is a new steering wheel similar in design to the one in the Triton. Smaller details are the rectangular air-conditioning vents that have been slightly reprofiled from the pre-facelift model.

    The variant line-up consists of just two options, namely the MT that retails at 309.95 million rupiah (RM93,437) and the top-spec Premium CVT at IDR335.75 million (RM101,215). The base option gets 17-inch wheels (with 205/55 profile tyres), LED exterior lighting, a two-tone (Black and Navy Blue) dashboard with soft-touch pads.

    It also gets keyless entry and engine start, an eight-inch digital instrument cluster, a wireless charger, a nine-inch infotainment touchscreen (with smartphone connectivity), digital AC controls, fabric upholstery and a regular handbrake.

    Click to enlarge

    Stepping up to the Premium CVT, buyers will get cruise control, synthetic leather seats, USB ports on the centre console and an electronic parking brake with auto brake hold – rear drum brakes and front disc brakes are standard across the range.

    Safety-wise, both variants get the same items, including dual front airbags, Active Stability Control, Hill Start Assist, ABS, EBD, brake assist, Active Yaw Control and a reverse camera with different viewing angles.

    Under the hood, the familiar 4A91 1.5-litre naturally-aspirated four-cylinder MIVEC engine makes its return and continues to deliver 105 PS at 6,000 rpm and 141 Nm of torque at 4,000 rpm. The five-speed manual transmission is also retained, but like the normal Xpander, the previous four-speed automatic has been dropped in favour of a CVT – drive goes to the front wheels.

    GALLERY: 2022 Mitsubishi Xpander Cross facelift official photos (Indonesia market)


  • 2022 Honda Dax ST125 minibike in Indonesia, more expensive than a Honda CBR250RR at RM24,600

    Launched last march in the European market, the 2022 Honda Dax ST125 is now in Indonesia, priced at 81.75 million rupiah (RM24,600). For comparison, this lifestyle motorcycle is more expensive in Indonesia than the Honda CBR250RR which has a retail price of 62.32 million rupiah (RM18,700, RM25,999 in Malaysia).

    Honda’s other lifestyle motorcycle in Indonesia, the Honda Monkey, goes for 82.53 million rupiah (RM24,869) while in Malaysia, the Monkey when it was introduced here was priced at RM13,999. The Dax has been a evergreen catalogue model for Honda since 1969 and in production in Japan for its domestic market from 1995 to 2003.

    The name “Dax” is a contraction of the Dachshund dog breed and this minibike shares underpinnings with Honda’s other minibike, the MSX125 Grom. Power for the Dax ST125 comes from a Euro 5 compliant, air-cooled 124cc, single-cylinder engine mated to a four-speed gearbox with centrifugal clutch.

    The Dax’s SOHC, two-valve mill produces 9.25 hp at 7,000 rpm and 10 Nm at 5,000 Nm. 240 km of range is available from the 3.8-litres of fuel in the tank while top speed is said to be 90 km/h.

    Single-channel ABS on the ST125 Dax acts on the 220 mm front hydraulic disc, while a 190 mm disc stops the rear wheel. Suspension is done with telescopic forks in front and twin shock absorbers at the back, adjustable for preload.

    Inside the cockpit, the round instrument binnacle houses an LCD display with white-on-black readout, while LED lighting is used throughout. Seat height for the Dax is a rider friendly 775 mm and kerb weight is claimed to be 107 kg.

  • Puspakom welcomes JPJ move to step up monitoring of its heavy vehicle inspection process at its centres

    Following the recent increase in road accidents involving heavy vehicles, Puspakom has welcomed the road transport department’s (JPJ) plans to step up the frequency in monitoring heavy vehicle inspection operations at all its 54 inspection centres nationwide.

    In a statement, the vehicle inspection company, which undertakes all mandatory inspections for both commercial and private vehicles in the country, said the move to increase the frequency of monitoring – in addition to its own internal monitoring – would ensure a high level of inspection quality at all times and enable appropriate follow-up action to be carried out in quicker fashion if it was needed.

    The company said that in 2021, JPJ carried out 741 monitoring operations at Puspakom inspection centers across the whole country. It added that during the first six months of 2022, it carried out periodic inspection on a total of 270,385 heavy vehicles.

    From that total, 15.8% or 42,772 heavy vehicles failed to comply with the standards set by JPJ. These included 12,339 heavy vehicles (or 4.6% of the total) failing the brake efficiency test. It said that any vehicle that fails a test must undergo an inspection again before being licensed by JPJ.

    Puspakom also said it would give its full cooperation to the proposal by JPJ to implement several improvements in vehicle inspection procedures, including those concerning brakes and tyres.

    Presently, it is adhering to the inspection methods as stipulated under the Rules-Motor Vehicle method (Periodic Inspection, Equipment and Inspection Standards) 1995. It added that it would adjust vehicle inspection methods to those recommended by JPJ when these are determined by the department, with the new process not expected to involve changes to existing inspection equipment.

    It added that inspections, which are carried out every six months, are intended as an early preventive measure in reduce the number of unsafe vehicles on the road, and that efforts to review the safety level of heavy vehicles must go hand in hand with other road accident prevention measures such as having drivers adopting a safe driving attitude and for vehicle owners to maintain their vehicles properly.

  • Test drive the new VW Golf R-Line, Tiguan Allspace Life at showrooms this weekend, August 13-14 [AD]

    If you’ve been wanting to check out the new Volkswagen Golf R-Line, here’s your chance. Volkswagen is holding a nationwide showroom event at dealerships across the country this weekend – August 13 – 14 – and the Mk8 Golf R-Line will be at all the outlets for viewing and test drives!

    Also on hand will be the new Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace Life. Both the SUV and hatchback were recently introduced in the Malaysian market and this will be the first time that they are available for public test drives. The dealerships are accepting orders, so you can place a booking on the spot.

    The latest Golf’s timeless design is made sportier with R-Line styling, complemented by 17-inch Valencia alloys and twin faux exhaust tailpipe trim in chrome. The Mk8 is easily distinguished from its full LED headlights and taillights, with a slim LED illumination strip that runs across the front grille.

    The Golf R-Line is equipped with an intelligent voice control system (activated by saying ‘Hello Volkswagen’ or by pressing a button on the steering wheel), front sport seats in Sardegna fabric and Art Velours side bolsters (with R-line logo on the headrests), three-zone Climatronic air con with Air Care filter, 30-colour ambient lighting and quick entry access (automatically unlocks doors when key is within detection zone).

    Under the hood is a 1.4 TSI turbocharged engine with 150 PS and 250 Nm of torque, paired with an eight-speed automatic shift by wire transmission. The new Volkswagen Golf R-Line is priced from RM169,990.

    The Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace Life is a new entry-level variant of the popular SUV line. Priced from RM172,990, the Life offers the Tiguan Allspace’s versatile seven-seat configuration and class-leading 1,775 litre boot space in an affordable package.

    The Tiguan Allspace Life is powered by a 1.4 TSI turbocharged engine with 150 PS and 250 Nm of torque. Paired with the quick and efficient six-speed DSG transmission, the powertrain combination delivers a pleasurable driving experience and good fuel consumption of approximately 7.7 litres per 100 km.

    The SUV’s headlamps and tail lights are fully powered by LED. The headlamps include an all-weather light system and dynamic cornering lights for improved visibility. Safety is prioritised with six airbags, Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Lane Assist and Driver Alert systems. An Electronic Parking Brake (EPB) adds convenience to daily urban driving.

    To see, touch and test drive the new Volkswagen Golf R-Line and Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace Life, head to your nearest VW dealership this weekend. Find an outlet here.

    GALLERY: 2022 Volkswagen Golf R-Line

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  • Zeekr 009 unveiled – Single- and dual-motor EV MPV with up to 700 km range; on sale in China end of 2022

    Geely group brand Zeekr has unveiled its latest product, the 009 MPV. This is a fully electric people-mover that takes aim at the luxury MPV segment populated by the likes of the Toyota Alphard.

    The Zeekr 009 is, in fact is larger that the Japanese brand’s established offering; the Zeekr 009 measures 5,209 mm long, 2,024 mm wide and 1,856 mm tall with a wheelbase of 3,205 mm, according to Car News China, while the Alphard measures 4,945 mm long, 1,850 mm wide with a wheelbase of 3,000 mm.

    Based on Geely’s Sustainable Experience Architecture (SEA) which also underpins the EV brand’s first model, the 001, this makes the 009 the group’s first MPV to use the platform. Other vehicles within the group also on the SEA platform include the smart #1, Lotus Eletre electric SUV, and the Geely Radar RD6 EV pick-up truck.

    Click to enlarge

    Compared to the likes of the Alphard and Vellfire, the Zeekr 009 has a more pronounced bonnet along with more aggressive overall styling, where the main headlamps are topped with vertically-oriented LED DRLs which are mirrored by the motif in the front silver grille, extending all the way downwards. Geely calls this design the ‘Fountain of Light’, which consists of 154 LED strips.

    Viewed from the side, the 009 rides on a set of multi-spoke wheels designed to mimic the staggered lines of the front grille. Its designers have included a ‘shark fin’ shape at the base of the C-pillar, where the window line slopes upwards to meet the gloss black pillar finished with a seven-strip pattern, itself topped by another set of staggered lines in gloss black.

    Inside, the 009 offers a 2+2+2 seating configuration as standard, though a VIP version is understood to be also offered, providing just two seats in the passenger compartment, according to Car News China. From these images, the 009 can be seen to feature a sunroof over the first row of occupants, and a larger panoramic unit over the second and third rows.

    Official details are scarce regarding the 009’s powertrain, though as it is based on the SEA platform, this is likely to accommodate a single- or dual-motor configuration, producing 272 hp and 544 hp respectively. These are available with battery packs of 86 kWh and 100 kWh capacities, and the larger battery mated to the single-motor powertrain will likely be the one to achieve the headline 700 km range on a single charge.

    For reference, the Zeekr 001 that is also offered with these two battery capacities is rated for a maximum battery range of between 536 km and 732 km. Judging from the frontal exterior images of the 009, the electric MPV has provisions for ADAS features such as cameras and sensors, located on the lower part of the front bumper as well as behind the windscreen just ahead of the interior rear view mirror.

    The Zeekr 009 full electric MPV is set to make its public debut at the 2022 Chengdu Motor Show that commences August 26, and it is set to go on sale in China before the end of this year.

  • Daihatsu Ayla EV Concept unveiled at GIIAS 2022 – electric Perodua Axia with 32 kWh battery, 80 hp motor

    Astra Daihatsu Motor has unveiled the Daihatsu Ayla EV Concept at the Gaikindo Indonesia International Auto Show (GIIAS) 2022 at BSD City just outside of Jakarta. Yup, this showcar’s concept is as straightforward as its name – this is a battery-powered version of the Daihatsu Ayla, which is of course the Indonesian sister to our Perodua Axia. There’s also a Toyota-badged version called Agya.

    Built by ADM at its R&D centre in Indonesia, the Ayla EV Concept swaps out the regular Low Cost Green Car’s 1.2 litre 3NR-VE four-cylinder engine and gearbox (Ayla is available with 5MT or 4AT), fuel tank and spare tyre for an electric powertrain. The latter is a combo of a 60 kW (80 hp) electric motor and a 32 kWh EV battery. No further details are given.

    To give you a benchmark, the MINI Cooper SE – the EV with the shortest range currently on sale in Malaysia – has a 28.9 kWh battery that delivers a claimed range of up to 232 km, although real-world range is below 200 km. The Ayla EV is sure to be lighter, and it has a much less powerful motor too.

    Daihatsu says that it also fitted the Ayla EV Concept with stronger suspension. This is likely due to the electric version weighing a fair bit more than the original ICE car, as EVs always do. ADM also worked on the car’s underbody. They didn’t elaborate, but perhaps it’s a smooth, fully-covered underbody for safety and aerodynamics.

    Looks wise, the familiar Ayla/Axia shape is apparent on this silver-black showcar, but with a closed-off front end typical of EVs, as they don’t need so much cooling. We also see LED light bars that go all the way to the logo (Mk8 VW Golf-style), camera-style wing mirrors (screens inside show live feed), a digital meter panel and twin-bar LED tail lamps. Aero two-tone wheels, too.

    Is an Ayla EV or Perodua Axia EV just around the corner? Most possibly not, as this is merely a simple concept for now, with the ICE bits thrown out for an electric powertrain.

    However, it’s a sign of intent from Daihatsu-Perodua, proving that EVs are indeed in their long-term plans for our region. “By exhibiting these vehicles, Daihatsu will convey its approach of promoting the sustainable spread of practical electrified vehicles to visitors. It will also communicate its corporate commitment to contributing to the realisation of carbon neutrality in Indonesia,” Daihatsu said.

    As we’ve seen with the just-revealed Toyota Vios and the Perodua Ativa/Daihatsu Rocky (click on the links to see the early Daihatsu concepts), GIIAS concept cars could very well morph into future production models. An affordable Perodua Axia EV for the masses – what do you think?

    VIDEO: Daihatsu Ayla EV Concept unveiling

    GALLERY: Daihatsu Ayla EV Concept

  • 2022 Harley-Davidson Pan America 1250 Special and Tri Glide Ultra G.I. limited editions honour US military

    We know Americans love their military, and in tribute of that, Harley-Davidson (H-D) has released two special edition motorcycles, the Harley-Davidson Pan America 1250 Special G.I. and the Tri Glide Ultra G.I. Both limited edition bikes come in Mineral Green Denim Deluxe paint along with a military motif.

    H-D’s involvement with the US military dates back to World War I in 1917 as well as the 1910 Mexican Revolution when it supplied its J-series Flathead V-twin, displacing 1,000 cc and producing 15 hp. World War II saw thousands of WLA specification motorcycles supplied to US forces, the WLA standing for 740 cc Flathead V-twin, high compression, Army, with production beginning 1940.

    The pair of G.I. edition (G.I. meaning “General Issue” or “Government Issue” in US Army parlance for its equipment and used as a slang term for servicemen) bikes are otherwise stock standard. For the Pan America 1250 Special G.I., power comes from the Revolution Max 1250 V-twin, which pumps out 150 hp and 127 Nm of torque from 1,250 cc.

    The three-wheeler Tri Glide Ultra G.I. is fitted with a 1,868 cc Twin-Cooled Milwaukee-Eight 114 featuring combination oil-cooled engine and liquid-cooled cylinder heads. Power figures for the Tri Glide are 93 hp at 5,020 rpm and 164 Nm of torque at 3,250 rpm.

    In Malaysia, the 2021 Pan America 1250 is priced at RM99,900 for the base model and RM115,900 for the Special. As for the Tri Glide Ultra, this trike is not offered locally in 2022 but was priced at around RM280,000 in 2021.

  • Honda CR-V gets Ignite Red, Meteoroid Gray colours in Malaysia, replaces Passion Red Pearl, Modern Steel

    Honda Malaysia (HMSB) has introduced two new colour options for the facelifted fifth-gen CR-V. Ignite Red Metallic and Meteoroid Gray Metallic are now on the palette of exterior colours available for the SUV, and these replace Passion Red Pearl and Modern Steel Metallic.

    The decision to introduce the colours on the refreshed RW – which contributed 12% to HMSB’s total sales between January and July this year – was because of their popularity with buyers, as seen on other Honda models.

    “The Ignite Red Metallic and Meteoroid Gray Metallic colours received good market acceptance since they were introduced in models such as the City, City Hatchback, Civic, BR-V and the newly-launched HR-V, while the Accord also offers the Meteoroid Gray Metallic colour,” said HMSB MD and CEO Hironobu Yoshimura.

    “Both colours were popular options for these models, with Ignite Red Metallic colour contributing an average of 18% to the sales of each of the five models, while Meteoroid Gray Metallic has contributed an average of 24% to the sales of each of the six models (including the Accord). We are confident that both new colours will further accentuate the appearance of the CR-V for customers who seek an SUV with a bolder and modern exterior,” he added.

    Launched in November 2020, the facelifted CR-V is available in three variant forms. There’s a 2.0 2WD (RM146,900), which is powered by a 2.0 litre SOHC i-VTEC naturally-aspirated four-cylinder petrol engine making 154 PS (152 hp) and 189 Nm, as well as two turbo variants, the 1.5 TC-P 2WD (RM165,800) and 1.5 TC-P 4WD (RM171,400). Both feature a 1.5 litre DOHC VTEC Turbo four-pot rated at 193 PS (190 hp) and 243 Nm.

    There’s also a CR-V Black Edition, which is a dark-themed version of the SUV. Based on the mid 1.5 TC-P 2WD with a Crystal Black Pearl exterior, the variant goes for RM170,400.

  • 2022 Honda CB300F in India, two versions, RM12,671

    Released in India for the beginner rider class is the 2022 Honda CB300F, joining the CB300R, CB350RS, and CB350 H’ness in that market. There are two variants on offer, the DLX and DLX Pro, priced at at 225,900 (RM12,671) and 228,900 (RM12,839) in India, respectively.

    Styling for the CB300F follows typical naked sportsbike design, but moving away from Honda’s current language of Neo retro modern classics. Body shape on the CB300F is sharp and aggressive, unlike the CB300R and CB300RS.

    Power for the CB300F comes from a single-cylinder, four-stroker mill displacing 293.5 cc fed by PGM-Fi. Cooling for the CB300F is done with an oil-cooler with power claimed to be 24 hp at 7,500 rpm and 25.6 Nm off torque at 5,500 rpm.

    Listed as a global product in Honda’s two-wheeler catalogue, the CB300F comes equipped with modern riding conveniences including a digital LCD instrument panel with Bluetooth smartphone connectivity with voice control. Also standard is traction control, two-channel ABS, LED lighting throughout and USB charging socket.

    Fuel for the CB300F is in a 14.1-litre with a claimed weight for 153 kg. Tyre sizing is 17-inches shod with 110/70 in front tyre and 150/60 at the back, fitted with upside-down forks and preload-adjustable monoshock, with single hydraulic brake discs.


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Last Updated 11 Aug 2022