Wednesday, November 30, 2016

The Hyundai IONIQ HEV is awarded the EURO NCAP 5 STARS

Hyundai Sime Darby Motors, the official distributor had just launched the all-new Hyundai IONIQ hybrid compact car yesterday and recently, EURO NCAP had tested it and have awarded the car with the overall maximum 5 star safety rating! 

SHORT TEST DRIVE: THE JAGUAR F-PACE 3.0 Supercharged R-Sport - The noise, I love the noise it makes

I must say that this compact luxury SUV is a surprise. The thing about the F-PACE is that it sits on a special to Jaguar-only platform. It uses the same platform as the new Jaguar XE and C-X17 Concept SUV. When it first came out I thought Jaguar Land Rover was going to take the Range Rover Evoque chassis, slap on a Jaguar nose and change the plumbing so that the car sounds like a growly Jag instead of a subdued Landie or Range. But no. I was wrong.

Jaguar F-PACE launched in Malaysia - Link to the short test drive of the F-PACE 3.0 R-Sport inside


The All-New Jaguar F-PACE has been launched. It is a performance SUV from Jaguar with unrivalled dynamics, matched with everyday usability all in a compact luxury SUV package (think Audi Q5, Mercedes GLC in terms of usable size folks - it is not a large X5 or GLE sized SUV). 

PROTON BAGS 3 AWARDS AT THE ASEAN NCAP GRAND PRIX AWARD 2016


Proton has also won a slew of awards at yesterday's ASEAN NCAP Grand Prix Award 2016 which were held in conjunction with ASEAN NCAP'S 5th anniversary and the STOP THE CRASH ASEAN 2016 event held at Sepang International Circuit over the past two days. 

The 3 awards were:

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

The Perodua Bezza receives Best Occupant Protection for child and adult award by ASEAN NCAP

The ASEAN NCAP Grand Prix Awards has just concluded earlier tonight. This is the first time the ASEAN NCAP awards for the most safest vehicle and related categories of the year are announced in conjunction with their two day STOP THE CRASH event at Sepang International Circuit (which continues tomorrow). One happy winner is Perodua.

The STOP THE CRASH event by ASEAN NCAP on Road Safety equipment and tech - Proton, Toyota, Subaru, Volvo and most Importantly, BOSCH with their Motorcycle ABS

I spent this tuesday morning at the Sepang International Circuit at the Stop The Crash Event organised by  ASEAN NCAP and also MIROS (Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research). This was the first ever event conducted by ASEAN NCAP on road safety awareness but from a technology point of view. Vehicles with the latest in road safety technology were brought out and the safety features were demonstrated to the guest who attended the event, which by the way is also carried out tomorrow (the 30th of November 2016) for those who have pre-registered.

The HYUNDAI IONIQ HEV is launched in Malaysia - Priced to go from RM103,390.27!

Hyundai Sime Darby Motors has launched the Hyndai IONIQ Hybrid Electric Vehicle (HEV) in Malaysia. The 'driving device' will be sold in two specifications - the IONIQ HEV and the IONIQ HEV Plus. The prices offered are surprising as their previous press release stated the car to be around the RM130,000 price range. Now at its launch, they've surprised us as the IONIQ HEV comes in at RM103,390.27 OTR with insurance and RM114,165.87 for the IONIQ HEV Plus.

Monday, November 28, 2016

GOODYEAR’S EAGLE-360 CHOSEN AS ONE THE 26 BEST INVENTIONS OF 2016 BY TIME MAGAZINE

Time Magazine has chosen the Goodyear Eagle-360 concept tyre (tire in American English) as one of TIME Magazine's “Best Inventions of the Year 2016.” Of course it is. This tyre is as round as a ball. It isn't a doughnut. It is a sphere. So it definitely is unique and could re-invent the wheel (by not having a wheel in the first place). Wow.

Truck News: UD Trucks’ Extra Mile Challenge 2016 - The Malaysian Team wins first prize!!!


Congratulations is in order. A UD Trucks team from Malaysia took part in this year's ‘UD Trucks Extra Mile Challenge 2016’ and came out tops in the competition. The UD Trucks Extra Mile Challenge took place in UD Experience Centre at the company's headquarters in Ageo, Japan.

Scooter & Industry News: MODENAS Launches 3 scooters - The Modenas Karisma 125, Elegance 250i & KYMCO 250i Downtown



I had nothing better to do last friday afternoon. It was after lunch and I had no appointments as it was friday. No one does appointments on friday after lunch these days (unless your boss is cruel or you are a cruel boss). So anyway, I had an invite from the people at DRB-Hicom to attend the launch of two new scooter models from MODENAS (their motorcycle division basically) - the all-new Karisma 125 and Elegan 250i as well as the launch of the KYMCO 250i Downtown. The Kymco scooter is actually a new model from Modenas' latest principal KYMCO, who make and sell scooters in many parts of the world, and is a market leader in its home-country, Taiwan.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Happenings: Ford / Sime Darby Auto Connexion's Third Annual 'World Cup' Challenge skills competition for sales consultants


The Ford and local partner Sime Darby Auto Connexion's 2016 World Cup Challenge reflects Ford’s investment in developing the skills of their sales consultants through intensive trainings as well as provides a platform for our sales consultants to sharpen their skills and knowledge in order to deliver competent sales experience to their customers

Haval Malaysia offers very generous incentives on the Haval M4 Crossover

If you are interested in buying something that is very different but in the price bracket of the usual Perodua and Proton range of vehicles there is that compact crossover from Haval Malaysia to consider. Now, Haval have announced a slew of incentives including a fantastically long 7 year unlimited mileage warranty. It would make sense as these days a lot of Malaysians take car loans of up to 9 years.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Happenings: BMW Group Malaysia Reveals Finalists for BMW Shorties 2016 - 12 from a record total of 115 entries.

7 of the 12 finalists with BMW's Mr Sashi Ambi, Head of Corporate Communications, BMW Group Malaysia (left) & Nadira Llana (2nd from left)

BMW Group Malaysia has announced the finalists of the BMW Shorties 2016 short film making competition. 12 finalists’ short films are up to contend for the People’s Choice Award which opens for public voting from the 30 th November to 7 th December, 2016 on www.bmwshorties.com.my.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

PROTON launches the Ertiga compact MPV

The Proton Ertiga has been launched. Proton Ertiga is a compact sized MPV and it is the first model introduced through Proton’s collaboration with Suzuki.  It comes in 2 variants – the Executive (manual [MT] and automatic [AT]); and Executive Plus (AT) transmissions respectively with prices starting from RM58,800 up to RM64,800 for Peninsular Malaysia.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Young Aces Technical College (YATC) for automotive courses officially opens its doors



The Young Aces Technical College (YATC) officially launched its vocational learning centre last friday, the 18th of November 2016. The launch was graced by Yang Amat Mulia Tengku Syarif Temenggong Perlis, Dato’ Seri Diraja Syed Amir Abidin Jamalullail (brother to the Raja of Perlis) and his wife, Yang Mulia Che Puan Temenggong Perlis, Datin Seri Diraja Farinawati Datuk Mohd Din. The launch was also attended by Leona Chin, celebrity female drifter and motorsport athlete as well as YATC partners from Mintye Industries Berhad, JPK Malaysia and SkillsMalaysia.

The 2017 Hyundai Grand Starex Royale is launched in Malaysia

Hyundai Sime Darby Motors has launched the latest facelifted Hyundai Grand Starex Royale in Malaysia. The new 2017 Model Year Grand Starex Royale gets some exterior updates starting a new massive looking front chrome grille and bumper. 

BMW Dealer Tian Siang Premium Auto is the official automotive partner for the new Design Village Mall in Batu Kawan - BMW Roadshow on 25th-27th November 2016

Tian Siang Premium Auto, the authorised representative for the BMW brand in the Butterworth and Prai in Penang is the Official Premium Automotive Partner for the Opening Ceremony of the new Design Village Mall in Batu Kawan, Penang. The premium automotive dealership will be shuttling Dignitaries and VIPs in a Fleet of BMW 7 Series, BMW X4, BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer and BMW 1 Series vehicle during its opening day.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Spotted For Sale: Sometimes, a Toyota Avanza's condition is so good until its God-like


A typo. Or an actual lack of how to spell correctly. Anyway, a 'God Condtion' Toyota Avanza is all you need. Full Loan available too. Most probably endorsed not by a local bank but by heaven.

Six new Vespa models displayed at 70th Anniversary Vespa celebration in Publika Shopping Gallery, Kuala Lumpur

I actually went to see some Vespa scooters at the recent Malaysian Vespa 70th Anniversary Celebrations. A big thing since I am not really a bike kinda guy. But this is a Vespa. Something cute, cuddly and very Italian. Not to mention a style icon. I like style icons.  The event, “The Largest Vespa Gathering”, was held at Publika Shopping Gallery last Saturday, 19th November 2016. 

Caltex Fuel Your School Programme creates positive impact for over 10,000 students



Caltex (aka Chevron Malaysia) has successfully completed its annual Caltex Fuel Your School programme (“Caltex FYS”) in partnership with MyKasih Foundation. This year, this Corporate Social Responsibility programme has benefited over 10,000 students collectively in both Pahang and Kelantan schools.  

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Updated: PROTON ERTIGA MPV - PICS, DETAILS AND FIRST TEST DRIVE -



It has been a whirlwind for Proton these past few months. One car launch after the other. We have had the new Proton Perdana, Persona and the Saga launched one after the other. Even at the end of the year, a period when most auto makers slow down a little, Proton is still at it. Making up for lost time. And also making up in terms of quality as the cars launched so far have been pretty amazing for such a small (in global terms) manufacturer.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Happenings: Caltex Celebrates Its One Millionth Caltex JOURNEY™ Card Member

Wow. One million people in Malaysia are Caltex JOURNEY™ Card Members. This is quite remarkable since we have 30 million people give or take a couple of million in Malaysia. 

HAPPENINGS: ZF Sales & Service Sdn Bhd wraps up its charity programme, raising RM10,000 for the Selangor Family Aid Association shelter

We've been writing about car manufacturers and petroleum companies giving back to society but we have never reported anything regarding parts manufacturers or their dealers. Now, most of you would have heard about ZF, the German parts manufacturer famed for their gearboxes and transmission units as well as Original Equipment (OE) parts like damper units (Sachs, Lemforder and Boge to name a few).

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Media statement regarding the Perodua Axia steering lock up issue by Perodua Sales Sdn Bhd Managing Director, Dato’ Dr. Zahari Husin

Axia SE dashboard and steering wheel

Perodua Sales Sdn Bhd Managing Director, Dato’ Dr. Zahari Husin (pictured below) has come up with a statement regarding allegations on social media (most likely Facebook) that the compact Perodua Axia's steering will lock up at certain speeds.  Here is the statement in full:-

Media statement by Perodua Sales Sdn Bhd Managing Director, Dato’ Dr. Zahari Husin

VOLKSWAGEN PASSAT B8 OFFICIALLY LAUNCHED IN MALAYSIA - Prices from RM159,990 onwards (UPDATED - with full press release)

Florian Steiner, Managing Director of Volkswagen Passengers Cars Malaysia with the new Passat.

Volkswagen Passenger Cars Malaysia (VPCM) has officially launched the eighth generation Volkswagen Passat (B8) here in Malaysia. It is available in three variants with two engines. The 1.8 Trendline at RM159,990, 1.8 Comfortline at RM179,990 and the 2.0 Highline at RM198,990. All are prices in Peninsular Malaysia without registration and insurance charges. 

Volkswagen Beetle Dune launched - Only 50 units from RM179,900

Volkswagen Passenger Cars Malaysia (VPCM) has surprisingly launched a very cool looking Beetle limited edition at the new Passat launch earlier today. The Volkswagen Beetle Dune was previewed and launched just prior to the launch of the new Passat B8. 

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

BMW Malaysia and Khoon Hooi collaborate to present Fashion in Motion - And a FACEBOOK CONTEST for you to win passes to the fashion show



BMW Malaysia and Malaysian fashion designer Khoon Hooi has extended their partnership which had arisen from the introduction of the new BMW 7 Series by presenting the designer's 2017 Spring/ Summer Collection inspired by Fashion in Motion (Fashion in Motion).

Mindless Ramblings: The Honda BRV is like Kim Kardashian...it has a big behind.


I wrote about the preview of the upcoming Honda BRV at the Malaysia Autoshow 2016 recently but I think my current opinion about what I think about this 7 seater SUV warrants a separate article. 

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Happenings: Six Lucky MICHELIN Fans Receive Exclusive VIP hospitality and Get Behind-the-scenes Tour at MotoGP 2016

There is a backlog of events that I have to write about. So many things have been happening over the past month or so and I have only two hands and ten fingers (any more hands or fingers would be scary actually, but you get my point). Anyway....the recent 2016 Shell Malaysia MotoGP events had some interesting events that have actually allowed the regular Joe to take a peek into the happenings of motorsport and the automotive industry.

Happenings: The 2016 Shell Malaysia MotoGP with Shell Advance motorcycle engine oils


The recently concluded 2016 Shell Malaysia MotoGP™ was a memorable event. It was Ducati Corse rider Andrea Dovizioso’s first MotoGP™ win in seven years and since 2016 also marks 125 years in Malaysia for Shell, the company has decided to reach out to motorcycle-owning MotoGP™ fans who were at the Sepang International Circuit (SIC) over the race weekend with the first-of-its-kind “Shell Advance Ride-Thru Service” for motorcycles below 250cc.

TEST DRIVE: 2016 VOLKSWAGEN PASSAT DRIVEN - 1.8 TSI COMFORTLINE & 2.0 TSI HIGHLINE, INITIAL DRIVE EXPERIENCE

I was in Langkawi recently courtesy of Volkswagen Passenger Cars Malaysia. We were flown in to try out the better late than never all-new Volkswagen Passat B8. It replaces the Passat B7 which has soldiered on for at least a year and a half longer than what should have been. A mid-2015 launch in Malaysia.

Monday, November 14, 2016

PROTON IRIZ 1.3 LIMITED EDITION FROM THE PROTON 'DESIGN SERIES' & FUTURE UPDATES ON THE IRIZ

National car company Proton has unveiled the PROTON Design Series Iriz. The Limited Edition Iriz comes in 2 variants, the Iriz 1.3 standard CVT and the Iriz 1.3 Executive CVT with Honeycomb or The Stripe decals. The Honeycomb decals are found on the Graphite Grey and Cotton White coloured cars and the Stripe decals on the Fire Red and Atlantic Blue coloured cars. Only 2,000 units of the Limited Ed. Iriz will be available with prices starting from RM44,450 to RM49,130 for Peninsular Malaysia. 

Friday, November 11, 2016

PETRONAS SYNTIUM SE engine oil launched exclusively for Proton cars


National car maker PROTON, in collaboration with our national petroleum company PETRONAS, has launched an exclusive range of engine oil for Proton cars. The PETRONAS Syntium SE range is now made available at all Proton authorised service centres. 

BAIC INTERNATIONAL AND AMBER DUAL SDN BHD unveil the D20 Hatchback and EV200 Electric Car


A new passenger vehicle player is in town. BAIC International and local partner Amber Dual Sdn Bhd have unveiled two new cars at the 2016 Malaysia Autoshow. The BAIC EV200 – the first Malaysian Assembled / Manufactured Electric Vehicle for homologation and research purposes and production ready BAIC D20 - the first Right-Hand Drive variant of the BAIC D20 compact car which will be sold early 2017.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

J.D. Power 2016 Malaysia Initial Quality Study (IQS) finds that Malaysian National Carmakers are improving in terms of overall quality

The latest J.D.Power findings are out folks. According to the people who are experts in statistics, the New-vehicle quality in Malaysia has improved by 18% from 2015. This year marks the largest improvement in the 14 year history of the study, with the gap between national and non-national brands the smallest it has ever been according to the J.D. Power 2016 Malaysia Initial Quality StudySM (IQS), released today.

All-New B8 Volkswagen Passat Now Open for Pre-Booking from RM160,000 to RM199,000


Volkswagen has announced that they are now accepting pre-bookings for their flagship model, the all-new B8 Volkswagen Passat. It will have an estimated price range from RM160,000 to RM199,000. 

Malaysia Autoshow 2016 opens its doors today - Highlights of the Autoshow and other details

This year's Malaysia Autoshow has started today and will continue till the 13th of November 2016 over at the Mines International Exhibition and Trade Centre in Seri Kembangan. The Malaysia Automotive Institute, a government body under the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) is the sole oorganiser of the autoshow and it is a showcase of the Malaysian automotive industry as well as the National Automotive Policy 2014, the automakers and other parts of the automotive industry. It is also a place to showcase and create awareness to help turn the country into a regional base for Energy Efficient Vehicle (EEV) production.

Wednesday, November 09, 2016

HYUNDAI Sime Darby Motors starts taking bookings for the soon to be launched Hyundai IONIQ Hybrid - Estimated price RM130k


Hyundai-Sime Darby Motors (HSDM) has begun accepting order for its new IONIQ Hybrid, which will be launched in Malaysia by the end of the year. The IONIQ will also be on display at the Malaysia Autoshow 2016 which will be held at the Mines International Exhibition and Convention Centre (MIECC) from November 10 -13, 2016. Interested parties can also place their order at Hyundai’s booth. 

Tuesday, November 08, 2016

THE AUDI KUALA LUMPUR SERVICE CENTRE IS NOW OPEN ON SUNDAYS


Euromobil Sdn Bhd, who operate the Audi Kuala Lumpur Service Centre at Jalan Chan Sow Lin  has announced that the Service Centre is now open on Sundays, as part of the company’s effort to improve its after sales service. Sunday operations have begun since 18 September 2016.

Daihatsu Perodua Engine Manufacturing Sdn Bhd officially opens its new plant in Sendayan, Negeri Sembilan

Daihatsu Perodua Engine Manufacturing Sdn Bhd (DPEM) has officially opened its new RM500 million joint venture plant in Sendayan, Negeri Sembilan.  This new facility is the second significant investment made by Daihatsu after their transmission manufacturing facility, Akashi Kikai Industry (M) Sdn Bhd, in Senawang began operations in July 2015.

Monday, November 07, 2016

MOTORSPORT: ALEX YOONG wins big at the 2016 AUDI R8 LMS Cup

Former Formula 1 driver and fellow Malaysian Alex Yoong has captured his third consecutive championship in the Audi R8 LMS Cup. Mr Yoong, who drives for team Audi TEDA Racing secured the championship by just one point ahead of Alessio Picariello of the MGT Team by Absolute.

Commercial Vehicles, Truck & Bus: 5 Cost Saving Tips for Commercial Fleet Operations by Caltex, featuring their Delo 400 MGX Oil



One of the challenges facing commercial fleet operators is the struggle to deal with cost pressures. The issue of lowering fleet costs stems from, among several factors, the instability of global prices of crude oil. With crude oil prices impacting world currencies, fleet operators are faced with keeping their expenses in check while managing their assets and inventories to ensure that supply meets demand.

ISUZU Mu-X SUV awarded 2016 Borneo Safari International Offroad Challenge's ‘VEHICLE OF THE YEAR’

It looks like the entry of the Isuzu Mu-X lifestyle SUV in the 2016 Borneo Safari International Offroad Challenge was a successful one as it won the 'Vehicle of the Year' award there. This year's Borneo Safari was deemed to be the toughest in 12 years with daily rainfall causing delays. 

Sunday, November 06, 2016

Sunday (Not So) Lite: My first ever oversteer wet-in-my-trousers moments

I got my driver's licence in 1990. I started out driving the driving school's Datsun 120y as well as practicing in my mum (and then hand-me-down) 1981 Honda Civic 1.3 3 door hatchback (paint the car above beige and that was it). The freedom to travel where I wanted to (within my weekly allowance) was fantastic. Of course, In my first few years of driving I was pretty gung ho about my supposed car control skills (I did not have any actually). 

Friday, November 04, 2016

New Authorised Volkswagen Service center in Kota Kinabalu - Kota Bumi Sdn Bhd

An official Volkswagen service centre in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah is now open for business. This service centre is operated by Kota Bumi Sdn Bhd and it is currently the only authorised service centre for Volkswagen in Sabah. 

Thursday, November 03, 2016

Ficosa opens a new factory for rear view mittors in Tennessee, USA - Some thoughts about production costs in high income nations


 Ficosa, who are one of the major manufacturers of rear view mirrors in vehicles on earth have opened a new facility in America. With an investment of over 50 million dollars, the new plant is equipped with the sector’s latest technology, becoming the most advanced in Ficosa’s global portfolio. The Cookeville, Tennessee facility, which has a total surface area of 270,000 square feet, is dedicated to producing rear view systems for automotive manufacturers such as Nissan, Ford, Volkswagen, Fiat Chrysler and General Motors. 

Upcoming Events: Largest Vespa Gathering at Publika Shopping Gallery on 19th November 2016


The Vespa scooter is an iconic piece of personal transport. It celebrates its 70th anniversary this year. Naza Premira, official distributor of Vespa in Malaysia is celebrating in a big way. Do read the press release below for the exact date and time of the Vespa Gathering at the Publika Shopping Gallery in Kuala Lumpur on saturday, 19th of November 2016. 

Off Topic - HARD ROCK CAFE KUALA LUMPUR Celebrates 25 years - Wings Concert, Special Burgers, Limited Ed. Tees


This is slightly off topic than the usual automotive/motoring related posts. But there is some motoring history in some ways. The Hard Rock Cafe Kuala Lumpur has been around for a while now. 25 years this year. I was one of the first few people who frequented this establishment. In those days, as well as today, it was a place frequented by people who had association with fast vehicles - the superbikers and also the Harley Davidson riders from everywhere in the world.

Wednesday, November 02, 2016

Some pointers by Ford to new drivers out there...as well as a reminder to those of us who've been driving for a while too.

The following bits of information are courtesy of Ford Motor Company. The pointers below could help you in the daily grind. 


Are you a new driver? Or know someone who is? Here’s a checklist you need to read

News: Mercedes-Benz Malaysia's PR Consultants pick up Bronze Award in the Corporate Branding category at the 2015/16 Malaysia PR Awards

All smiles at the 2015/16 Malaysia PR Awards.  Mercedes-Benz Malaysia Corporate Communications Manager, Emily Lek (second from left), with the Centriq PR account team, (from left) Jeannette D’Netto, Jacqueline Arnold and Teri Wong.

Mercedes-Benz Malaysia’s corporate public relations programme received the Bronze award in the Corporate Branding category at the 2015/16 Malaysia PR Awards held in Kuala Lumpur recently. The entry titled, ‘Going Beyond Boundaries’, was submitted by Centriq PR Sdn Bhd, who are Mercedes-Benz Malaysia’s public relations consultancy.

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