Latest Stories

  • SPYSHOTS: F95 BMW X5 M LCI sighted on road test

    The European summer is underway, and taking to the roads under its sunshine is the forthcoming, LCI-updated iteration of the F95 BMW X5 M which made its debut in 2019 alongside its coupé-roofed sibling, the X6 M, both of which boasting up to 625 hp in their respective Competition variants.

    Camouflage foil has been applied to the front fascia of the X5 M here, where the mid-lifecycle revisions will be applied. Likely to surface are a redesigned front bumper and a slightly revised grille, and the latter is not expected to grow any fuurther in this mid-life update. Changes are also expected to the headlamps, which remain placeholder items on this development vehicle.

    Changes to the rear end appear to be more sparing, where the F95 X5 M’s bodywork appears unchanged. The tail lamps are likely to the revised as is customary for mid-lifecycle updates, and could be joined by a new style of wheels; the items on the development car here appear to be from the Competition First Edition iterations of the X5 M and X6 M.

    Barring the advent of new, more powerful variants, the X5 M LCI is likely to continue with the S63B44T4 4.4 litre biturbo V8 petrol engine producing the same 591 hp and 750 Nm of torque, or 625 hp from the aforementioned Competition variant. Transmission is also expected to be carried over, namely the eight-speed Steptronic automatic and M xDrive AWD with the Active M rear differential.

    Given that the G06 X6 LCI development unit has been spied with its revised interior, the equivalent G05 LCI – and therefore this X5 M – will follow suit, which is to receive the curved display ensemble from the iX, which is comprised of a 12.3-inch instrumentation display and a 14.9-inch infotainment screen.

    As with past sightings of development vehicles, there is likely to be future sightings of this revised BMW X5 M in its more complete form such as including the correct lamps and wheels, before the all-singing, all-dancing M division SUV goes to its actual debut.

  • 2021 Geely Emgrand sedan open for booking in China – 1.5L NA with CVT, priced from RM57k to RM60k

    Unveiled last month, the new Geely Emgrand is now open for booking in its home market of China. The budget-oriented sedan is a big deal for the carmaker, as it replaces the best-selling passenger car in the Middle Kingdom, the nameplate having existed in one form or another since 2008.

    The pricing reflects the car’s entry-level positioning, starting from just 87,000 yuan (RM56,800) for the base Premium model and rising up to 92,000 yuan (RM60,000) for the flagship, uh, Flagship. You may be wondering how Geely has been able to retail the Emgrand so cheaply, given the new B-segment Modular Architecture (BMA), handsome (if a little no-frills) design and premium-looking interior.

    Well, there are a few reasons for this. The first is that the Emgrand doesn’t get the more sophisticated turbocharged engines from its Binyue and Binrui siblings – power comes from the same basic 1.5 litre naturally-aspirated four-cylinder as before.

    No technical details can be gleaned just yet (the official website appears to be broken at the time of writing), but a report from Xcar states that the engine has been retuned for improved camshaft control, throttle response and refinement. Outputs have marginally increased to 114 PS and 147 Nm of torque.

    Drive continues to be sent to the front wheels, with a CVT being the only transmission option, the old five-speed manual appearing to have been dropped. Geely has previously hinted that the Emgrand’s fuel consumption is around the 18 kilometre per litre mark.

    Equipment also looks to be fairly basic, with no hint of any active safety features, such as autonomous emergency braking, that are offered on other Geely models; six airbags are available, however. And while there is a 12.3-inch instrument cluster fitted, it’s a basic LCD display – featuring calculator-esque seven-segment numerals – rather than a full colour unit, although a 10.2-inch infotainment touchscreen running the latest Geely Key User Interface (GKUI) is also fitted.

    The upshot of the redesign is that the Emgrand is priced quite a bit higher than before, starting where the outgoing model – which retails from 62,800 yuan (RM41,000) to 84,800 yuan (RM55,400) – tops out.


  • Land Rover Defender Trophy Edition – 220 units for US

    There have been no shortage of variants, editions and tuner renditions of the new Land Rover Defender since it surfaced in September 2019, but this has to be one of the best so far. If you’re old enough, you’d immediately know what this Defender Trophy Edition references – Camel Trophy, of course.

    Based on the 2022 Defender 110 P400 X-Dynamic SE, the Trophy Edition is a 220-unit special for the US market. The colour scheme of Eastnor Yellow and black – replete with the classic Land Rover logo on the front doors – take after the old-bodied Defender Works V8 Trophy that we saw in February.

    Defender is one of the most iconic off-road names in the world, and these things can go further than most out of the box, but the Trophy Edition gets some extra accessories for the trail life. A front skid plate, roof rack with deployable ladder, mud flaps, and an integrated air compressor are included, but a winch is optional. The cargo area has rubber mats for muddy gear.

    The self-explanatory Extended Black Exterior Pack is standard, and optional kit such as air suspension, cold climate pack, off-road pack, advanced off-road capability pack, rearview mirror camera system and tow hitch are all included in this highly specified LE.

    By the way “110” means the five-door body in Defender speak (90 is the three-door) and P400 versions are powered by a 3.0 litre Ingenium inline-six mild-hybrid with 400 PS and 550 Nm of torque from 2,000 rpm to 5,000 rpm.

    One should not buy a cool off-roader like this purely for the school run, so each Defender Trophy Edition comes with a matching experience. Buyers get to join a one-day, off-road Trophy Competition event at the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina. Winners get to compete at the finals at Eastnor Castle in the UK next year. The Defender Trophy Edition will go on sale in the States next month for US$90,000 (RM380,893).

    GALLERY: Land Rover Defender Works V8 Trophy

  • PDRM reminds the public to follow SOPs under NRP – 10 km travel radius and two-to-a-car rules still apply

    The Royal Malaysian Police (RMP, or PDRM) is reminding the public to comply with the standard operating procedures (SOPs) issued by the National Security Council (NSC, or MKN) to curb the spread of Covid-19.

    Under phase one and two of the national recovery plan (NRP), which is what the movement control order (MCO) is now known as, no inter-district or inter-state travel is allowed, unless permission is obtained based on valid reasons beforehand.

    For those travelling between districts or states to get vaccinated, there’s no need to obtain permission to do so, as they will only need to show details of their appointment to the police at roadblocks.

    The list of SOPs also states that two people per household are allowed to go out in one vehicle to buy essentials, but travel is restricted to a 10-km radius from the point of residence. An allowance is given for a maximum of three people to travel in one vehicle to seek medical care or emergency medical services, including the person requiring medical attention.

    This is also subject to the 10-km radius rule, but there is some leeway given in the event the medical facility is located beyond 10 km from the point of residence. Just make sure you have the necessary documentation and proof before you make the trip.

    As an additional note, for taxis and ride-hailing services, the number of people in a car will be limited to two, including the driver, and the passenger must sit in the rear. Passengers must also ensure that they carry the required travel permissions.

    It goes without saying that all social activities involving a large group of people in one area are not permitted. The RMP notes that any individual found breaching SOPs will have action taken against them under the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act 1988 (Act 342).

  • Clear policy, incentives from government needed to drive wider adoption of electric vehicles – Invest Asean

    The recently-held Invest Asean webinar, themed “The Rise of Asean EV” organised by Maybank Investment Bank found that the government’s direct involvement is key to driving the adoption of electric vehicles, according to industry players in attendance. These would require the laying out of clear policy along with incentives to change consumer behaviour towards their choice of vehicle, the webinar found.

    In order for the developments to be set in motion, according to the webinar, clear timelines will need to be set for the wider adoption of electric vehicles and the phasing out of internal combustion-engined vehicles, and putting in place incentives for using EVs – as well as disincentives for using ICE vehicles – will increase the demand for EVs, it said.

    Stakeholders such as automotive OEMs, oil and gas companies, utility firms, EV charging station operators in addition to the government should be working together to build a well-planned charging infrastructure, director of EV Connection Lee Yuen How.

    “If you leave it to the private sector, they will only build the charging infrastructure where there are high concentrations of EV users, leaving the semi-urban and rural areas to become EV-charging deserts. Therefore, the government plays an important role in ensuring investment across all areas,” Lee said.

    Meanwhile, EV batteries need to be considered separately from the vehicles themselves in order to maximise environmental benefits, said Oyika founder and CEO Jinsi Lee.

    “The party that sells the vehicle must be responsible for the battery across its entire lifecycle, instead of transferring ownership [of the battery] to the vehicle buyer. The seller will be required to take the battery back, recycle it and reuse it as second life storage, decommission it and so on,” he said.

    “From a consumer’s point of view, if the battery is leased, then one can buy a second-hand EV and still get the latest battery technology. [The technology is already in place] for motorbikes, I don’t see why we can’t do it for vans, trucks and cars,” the Oyika chief executive added.

    Honda, Yamaha, KTM and Piaggio and founding members of a consortium for a swappable battery standard

    Though Asean countries are progressively updating their EV roadmaps, Malaysia and the Philippines are laggards in this regard, according to research by Maybank Kim Eng, which also predicts that EV sales will reach parity with those of ICE vehicles by 2030 driven by the global decarbonisation agenda and millenial consumer preferences, among other factors.

    In Europe, the United Kingdom has confirmed a ban on the sale of petrol- and diesel-powered cars and vans from 2030, while closer to Malaysia, neighbouring Thailand has announced the ban on petrol and diesel vehicles – effectively to only sell EVs – in the country from 2035. Last month, Canada announced a similar ban, also from 2035.

    While Malaysia’s Low Carbon Mobility Blueprint “is an important catalyst,” the report finds that more focus should be placed on battery EV instead of hybrids or PHEVs in order to be fully onboard the decarbonising agenda, it said, while the Philippines’ EV roadmap direction still lacks clarity and direction, it said.

    The webinar also found that Asean nations should look at China and to pure EV companies for partnerships and investment, as well as simultaneously pursue other green technology avenues such as hydrogen.

  • 2021 Hyundai Kona 1.6 Turbo and N Line launched in Malaysia – 198 PS, 265 Nm, 7DCT, from RM146,888

    Hyundai-Sime Darby Motors (HSDM) has officially launched the 2021 Hyundai Kona 1.6 Turbo, as well as the Kona N Line with the same turbo engine. The Kona 1.6 Turbo is priced at RM146,888, while the sporty N Line tops the range at RM156,888, on-the-road with sales tax exemption (50% for CBU imports), without insurance.

    The most powerful B-segmemt SUV in Malaysia is powered by Hyundai’s Smartstream G1.6 T-GDi turbocharged engine with 198 PS and 265 Nm of torque at 1,600 to 4,500 rpm. Power goes to the front wheels via a Smartsteam 7DCT seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.

    Compared to the previous 1.6T engine, the Smartstream G1.6 gets Continuous Variable Valve Duration (CVVD) and makes 21 PS more. 0-100 km/h is close to hot hatch territory at 7.7 seconds, two tenths quicker than the old Kona Turbo. The Kona facelift was launched here in April with a 2.0 litre MPI engine with 149 PS and 180 Nm at 4,500 rpm, so the Turbo is a big upgrade in the power department.

    The facelifted Kona comes in two distinct faces, with one reserved for the N Line. The regular face is a heavy rework with a slimmer and wider grille taking centre-stage, and the Hyundai logo now sitting on the bodywork above the grille (previously in the middle of the face). The letterbox vent above the grille is no more.

    The SUV-style black plastic body cladding is connected from the bumpers to the wheelarches, and there are silver elements in the front and rear bumpers. This is the look of the 2.0 Active and 1.6 Turbo, but the latter gains a roof rack and two-tone body colour.

    Of the two facelift looks, the Kona N Line’s face is more similar to the original, with the logo in the grille and a vent above the grille, although it’s now split into three. Below, you’ll find an N-style aerodynamic lip with low-lying corner fins plus larger and “more technical” air intake features.

    The N Line does away with the new full-width black cladding, or any cladding for that matter – it’s all body colour here. No skid plate-mimicking trim too – the rear end sports a diffuser and twin pipes on one side. The one big pipe on each side layout is reserved for the full cream 280 PS/392 Nm Kona N.

    Like the 2.0 Active, both the 1.6T and N Line come with 18-inch alloys, but the sportier version gets a dedicated rim design. The new variants can be had in five colours – Surfy Blue, Dive in Jeju, Ignite Flame, Pulse Red and Misty Jungle – all with a black roof (A pillars and wing mirror caps are also in black) for the two-tone look.

    Inside, both variants get a 10.25-inch digital cluster in addition to the 8.0-inch head unit with Bluetooth and wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, electric parking brake, new ambient light tech (illuminates the centre cupholders and footwell) and aluminium rings around the speakers and air vents.

    The N Line cabin features black leather combined with suede, ventilated and heated front seats, red stitching, metal pedals and N logos on the gear lever, steering wheel and seats. Speaking of interior themes, HSDM is offering an alternative to the dark interior for the non-N Line 1.6 Turbo, which can be had with light beige interior trim.

    The new Kona variants come with Hyundai’s Smartsense active safety and driving assistance tech. The pack includes Blind-Spot Collision Avoidance Assist (BCA) with Rear Cross-Traffic Collision-Avoidance Assist (RCCA), Lane Keeping Assist (LKA), Lane Following Assist (LFA), and Smart Cruise Control with Stop and Go that keeps the SCC running even when the vehicle comes to a complete stop.

    Other features are Forward Collision Avoidance Assist (FCA), Driver Attention Warning (DAW) with Leading Vehicle Departure Alert (LVDA), Rear Occupant Alert (ROA), Safe Exit Warning (SEW) and High Beam Assist (HBA). All these are also on the 2.0 Active, but SCC, or adaptive cruise control, is exclusive to turbo variants.

    With the two new variants, the CBU Kona range consists of the base 2.0 at RM119,888, the 2.0 Active at RM136,888, the 1.6 Turbo at RM146,888 (RM10k extra) and the N Line at RM156,888 (another RM10k extra). As usual for HSDM, the Kona comes with a five-year or 300,000 km warranty and a three-year or 50,000 km free maintenance package.

    So, what do you think of the new Kona variants? If you’re thinking RM157k is a bit steep for a small SUV, how about seeing it this way – what other 200 hp new car can you find for the money today? More on the 2.0L NA variants here.

    GALLERY: Hyundai Kona 1.6 N Line

    GALLERY: Hyundai Kona 1.6 Turbo

    GALLERY: Hyundai Kona 2.0 Active

    GALLERY: Hyundai Kona 2.0 facelift


    2021 ##Hyundai ##Kona N Line launched in ##Malaysia. Decent performance for the price! ##paultancars ##paultan ##carsoftiktok ##fyp? ##foryou ##foryoupage

    ? ??? (Maria) – ??(???)

  • Aston Martin sales up by 224% in H1 2021 compared to H1 2020 – DBX SUV is the brand’s best-selling model

    Aston Martin has announced its financial results for the first half of 2021, which show that the company is slowly recovering from the global pandemic that left quite a mark on its sales and profits during the same period last year.

    The big news here is the 2,901 vehicles that the company managed to deliver in the first six months of 2021, which is a 224% increase from the 895 units recorded in H1 2020. From the four-figure total, the company’s DBX accounted for over half of all deliveries with 1,595 units making their way to customers.

    Meanwhile, Aston Martin’s sport and GT models accounted for 1,280 units, with the former being 137% more than H1 2020. The remainder units are made of special and other models, including the V12 Speedster.

    Geographically, the Asia Pacific region recorded 811 units sold, which is a 444% increase compared to H1 2020, with China alone seeing an increase of 620%. The Americas registered the second largest growth at 277%, followed by EMEA (Europe, the Middle East and Africa) at 214%, while it’s just 58% in the United Kingdom.

    With the drastic increase in sales, Aston Martin’s revenue in H1 2021 is 498.8 million British pounds (around RM2.9 billion), which is 242% more than H1 2020’s 146 million British pounds (around RM863 million). As a result, pretax loss fell from 227.4 million British pounds (around RM1.3 billion) in H1 2020 to 90.7 million British pounds (around RM536 million) in H1 2021.

    “The demand we see for our products, the new product pipeline and the quality of the team we have in place to execute, gives me great confidence in our continued success,” said Aston Martin executive chairman Lawrence Stroll, as reported by Automotive News.

  • Toyota GR86 gets GR Parts bodykit, suspension, wheels and brakes; GR Parts Concept also shown

    The new Toyota GR 86 has yet to go on sale in Japan, but Toyota Racing Development (TRD) has wasted no time in offering a range of GR Parts for the sports car. Customisation and modification are part and parcel of the 86 experience, after all, so it’s vital to get these things out the door quick.

    While the car already looks pretty sporty out of the box, the new bodykit cranks the visual aggression up to 11. The deep front splitter features black “claws” that are joined together by a body-coloured lip; it also extends to the sides to cover up the front tyres and reduce drag, TRD says.

    This “claw” motif extends to the side skirts (which are claimed to reduce “wobbling” in the corners) and rear diffuser, giving the car a more unified look. Completing the aesthetic is the ducktail bootlid spoiler, which is said to balance out the downforce generated by the front splitter.

    Filling up the diffuser’s deep channels is a sports muffler with large quad tips, engraved with the GR logo. Other bits include front flics, a black appliqué for the front fender vents and door visors with aero fins that, rather optimistically, are claimed to deliver increased steering feel and more linear handling. There’s even an aluminium and carbon fibre fuel filler lid garnish with an old school “Unleaded Fuel Only” engraving.

    Most of the stuff here is aesthetic in nature, but you can also get a couple of performance parts, such as a GR suspension kit with a diamond-like carbon (DLC) coating on the damper rod, reducing friction and, thus, improving the ride and handling. Also available is a very serious-looking big brake kit with monobloc callipers and large slotted discs.

    Wrapping up the exterior are 19-inch Y-spoke forged aluminium wheels, which feature holes and a truss structure to reduce weight while maintaining optimum rigidity. The lower unsprung mass is said to deliver a more linear steering response and an improved ride, helping to offset the one-inch upsizing.

    Inside, the GR 86 can be dressed up with trim panels that mimic the chopped carbon look seen in supercars, along with a suede-covered driver’s side knee pad. You can also get an aramid fibre key cover, replete with an aluminium frame inspired by the wheels’ design.

    Toyota GR 86 GR Parts Concept

    No changes to the car’s trademark naturally-aspirated flat-four engine, now displacing 2.4 litres and producing 235 PS at 7,000 rpm and 250 Nm of torque at 3,700 rpm. Drive is sent to the rear wheels through the same six-speed manual and automatic gearbox options as the outgoing model, allowing the GR 86 to get from zero to 100 km/h in 6.3 seconds. You can, of course, look forward to the inevitable slew of performance modifications from everyone from HKS to Greddy, if you want more power.

    The company has also released a full image gallery of the GR Parts Concept that it showed at the Fuji 86 Style with BRZ 2021 event last month. It shares a similar design philosophy with the parts you can actually buy but in a more exaggerated form, with an even deeper front splitter, bigger front flics, a front grille intake, extended side skirts and diffuser and a massive rear wing, most of which are made from carbon fibre.

    Stealing the show, however, are the fender extensions that add a whopping 43 mm to each side, giving the car a mean stance that the standard GR 86 cannot hope to match. The bonnet and front fenders are also vented, the latter alleviating the turbulent air in the wheel wells, producing downforce.

    GALLERY: Toyota GR 86 with GR Parts

    GALLERY: Toyota GR 86 GR Parts Concept

  • CATL unveils its first-generation sodium-ion battery

    Contemporary Amperex Technology Limited (CATL) has unveiled its first sodium-ion battery, which it hopes to form a supply chain for by 2023. The new battery does not contain lithium, cobalt or nickel, which the company says makes it a more cost-effective alternative to the likes of nickel-cobalt-manganese (NCM) and lithium iron phosphate (LFP) batteries that are currently available.

    The sodium-ion battery has a similar working principle to the lithium-ion battery. Sodium ions also shuttle between the cathode and anode, but have a larger volume and higher requirements regarding structural stability and the kinetic properties of materials compared with lithium ions.

    The company said it came up with novel solutions to address these issues. In terms of cathode materials, it applied Prussian white material with a higher specific capacity and redesigned the bulk structure of the material by rearranging the electrons to solve the issue of rapid capacity fading upon material cycling.

    As for the anode aspect, a hard carbon material with a unique porous structure was developed, enabling abundant storage and a rapid movement of sodium ions as well as an outstanding cycle performance. Based on these innovations, CATL claims that its sodium-ion battery offers high-energy density, fast-charging capability, excellent thermal stability, great low-temperature performance and high-integration efficiency, among others.

    The energy density of sodium-ion battery cell can achieve up to 160 Wh/kg, and the battery can charge in 15 minutes to 80% SOC at room temperature. While that density is still lower than that of LFP batteries, the sodium-ion design performs well in cold-weather and fast-charging scenarios, said Huang Qisen, deputy head of CATL’s research centre.

    At -20°C, the sodium-ion battery has a capacity retention rate of more than 90%, and its system integration efficiency can reach more than 80%. More importantly, energy density is expected to increase as the tech progresses – the company says it is aiming to get the next generation of sodium-ion batteries to exceed 200 Wh/kg.

    The debut of the new sodium-ion battery also saw the Chinese battery manufacturer introducing its AB battery pack solution, which allows sodium-ion cells and lithium-ion cells to be mixed and matched in series or parallel configuration and integrated into a single battery system, with both battery systems controlled through a battery management solution algorithm.

    According to CATL, the AB battery system solution can compensate for the current energy-density shortage of the sodium-ion battery, while taking advantage of its high power and performance in low temperatures.

  • Audi Q4 e-tron gains new AWD, long-range variants in Europe – up to 265 PS and 534 km; from RM249k

    Audi has introduced two new variants of the Q4 e-tron to provide customers with more options, with both being available to order now in Europe.

    First up, there’s the new Q4 Sportback 40 e-tron with a base price of 49,500 euros (RM248,746), which is capable of providing 534 km of range following the WLTP test cycle. The German automaker says this is not only more than all other Q4 e-tron variants, but also the most out of all of its electric models.

    This is made possible thanks to a battery with a gross energy capacity of 82 kWh (76.6 kWh net), which powers an electric motor fitted to the rear axle that provides 204 PS (201 hp or 150 kW) and 310 Nm of torque. In this configuration, the Q4 Sportback 40 e-tron takes 8.5 seconds to get from 0-100 km/h and will hit a limited top speed of 160 km/h.

    The other variant being revealed is the Q4 45 e-tron quattro listed at 50,900 euros (RM255,780) and comes with all-wheel drive as standard. The two electric motors at either axle provide a combined 265 PS (261 hp or 195 kW) and 425 Nm, which is good for a 0-100 km/h time of 6.9 seconds and a top speed capped at 180 km/h. The Q4 45 e-tron quattro uses the same 82-kWh battery as the Q4 Sportback 40 e-tron, but has a shorter range due to its dual-motor setup.

    Both variants launched come with an 11-kW onboard AC charger and also support DC charging up to 125 kW, with the latter requiring just 38 minutes to get the battery from a 5-80% state of charge. Other available variants include the Q4 50 e-tron quattro, which has a dual-motor setup that delivers 299 PS (295 hp or 220 kW) and 460 Nm for a 0-100 km/h time of 6.2 seconds and a top speed identical to the Q4 45 e-tron quattro.

    There’s also the Q4 35 e-tron with a rear electric motor rated at 170 PS (168 hp or 125 kW) and 310 Nm. Unlike the higher-spec variant. Unlike the higher-spec variants, the base option’s battery has a gross energy capacity of just 55 kWh (51.5 kWh net). It’s 0-100 km/h time is the slowest of the bunch at nine seconds, although the top speed is 160 km/h.


Browse Stories by Car Maker

  Alfa Romeo
  Aston Martin

  Great Wall

  Land Rover



Latest Fuel Prices

RON 95 RM2.05 (0.00)
RON 97 RM2.74 (+0.01)
RON 100 RM3.35
VPR RM3.57
EURO 5 B10 RM2.15 (0.00)
EURO 5 B7 RM2.25 (0.00)
Last Updated 29 Jul 2021