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  • Renault Subscription in Malaysia – why this new ownership plan is the way forward for TC Euro Cars

    If we can subscribe to music and TV, why not mobility? That’s the question car subscription schemes are asking. A pioneer in car subs in Malaysia is TC Euro Cars (TCEC), the Renault distributor. The idea of car subscription taps into humans’ desire for freedom, specifically the freedom from commitment. Think of it as dating, versus marriage.

    As opposed to the traditional way to have a car in your porch – which is the classic hire purchase loan with you as the “owner” – Renault Subscription allows you to essentially “rent” the car full time. The promise is no downpayment, no long-term commitment, no worries about depreciation and no servicing costs to think of. Just pay and drive. Freedom is the buzzword.

    Ride hailing (Grab) and on-demand car rental (Socar) are also alternatives to traditional car ownership. While those services are great and fit some lifestyles to a tee, you’re always at the mercy of driver availability for the former, and car availability/location for the latter. When you want to achieve maximum time efficiency and have full control of your schedule, nothing beats having your own set of wheels on standby, 24/7. That’s something even the biggest ride hailing fan cannot disagree with, surely.

    Some of us might not realise it, but many in the younger generation are not as hung up on owning things such as a car and house, preferring instead to spend money on experiences and learning. With car subscription, Renault and TCEC are catering to such lifestyles.

    “Our principal Renault believes that moving forward, this (car subs) is definitely an area of growth. In a lot of developed countries, the market is getting very saturated. People spend their money on experiences, to enjoy the things that they really want to enjoy,” said Wong Hoe Mun, CEO of TCEC.

    “They don’t want to be bogged down by long term commitments, and worry about depreciation, and in the West, the depreciation rate is even worse. Moving forward, we definitely believe that this is an area of growth. Eventually more and more players will be coming, so we want to ensure that we’re first in this space,” Wong added.

    Just drive, that’s the promise

    Here’s how Renault Subscription works. There are two plans – Fixed and Switch – and all models in TCEC’s local range can be had via subscription, including the Renault Megane RS hot hatch. The Fixed plan is pretty straightforward. Sign up for a one-year or two-year plan, with the longer term plan costing you less per month, naturally. For the Captur, it’s RM1,499 per month for a year vs RM1,299 for two years, for instance.

    The Koleos SUV is available from RM2,299 to RM2,899 per month, depending on tenure and spec, while the Megane RS will cost you anything from RM3,999 to RM6,299 per month. There’s a three-year package for the RS hot hatch, in addition to the one- and two-year packages available across the board.

    Fixed plans – click to enlarge

    Unlike buying a car, there’s no downpayment involved here, just a refundable security deposit (RM2,500 for the Captur). Every subscriber will get a newly-registered car and the annual mileage cap is 20,000 km, which works out to 1,667 km per month. That should be fine for most urban commuters, but should you need more miles, TCEC sells a “top up” of 10,000 km per year for an additional RM200 monthly. At the end of your subscription term, any excess mileage will be charged 50 sen per km.

    Subscribers need not worry about road tax, insurance or service costs – all are included in the package and the real owner of the car – remember, it’s not you, but TCEC – will take care of those.

    What’s not included in the Fixed package are wear and tear items. Wong believes that wear and tear costs will be minimal, given that all subscribers will be given brand new cars. However, if you want ultimate peace of mind, two-year plan customers can top up RM100 per month for full coverage, which includes brake pads, wiper blades, tyres and alignment/balancing. (excluding Megane RS).

    No extras, just the monthly fee. “For a lot of customers, when they own a car, they forget, they don’t budget (the extras), they just think ‘every month I need to pay RM1,200’ and they have just enough money for that. All of a sudden they realise that road tax and insurance is due, and more funds are needed,” Wong said, stressing on the no-hassle, just drive part of subscription.

    Subscription would also work well for those who need a car full time, but for a short term. Say you’re being posted somewhere within Malaysia for work and need a car for a year or two – subscribing would then be more convenient than buying a car just to use it for a short period.

    Switch plans – click to enlarge

    Adding spice into the garage

    Another novel thing about Renault Subscription is the ability to call upon another Renault model when you need it. The Switch Plan is a single year plan offering you a Captur, but with access to the Koleos SUV and Megane RS.

    Say, you need to balik kampung with the family during the festive period, the tall and roomy Koleos would do a much better job than your daily ride. Clearing annual leave and have some “me time” to burn? Go somewhere and reignite your passion for driving with the Megane RS. A car for every occasion? With a compact daily runabout, a big SUV and a fun driving machine to call upon, this comes pretty close.

    There are two one-year Switch plans – Base and Prime, priced at RM1,999 and RM2,199 per month, respectively. Everyone gets a Captur – the Base subscriber gets two months of “Renault family access”, and from there, the Megane RS can be yours for two weeks. Pay for Prime and the time away from the Captur increases to four months, with four weeks of those being Megane RS days.

    Usage of the Koleos and Megane RS are in 14-day blocks, and bookings have to be made minimum 30 days in advance. Availability of these fleet cars are on a first come, first served basis, so it’s best to submit preferred dates early. Subscribers can start tapping into the Koleos/Megane RS fleet one month after the subscription start date.

    Access to other models aside, the benefits of Switch over Fixed include unlimited mileage and the freedom to cancel anytime, as long as 30 days notice is given. The monthly fee difference between Switch Base and a one-year Fixed plan is RM500, and so far, 10% of Renault Subscription members have opted for the extra flexibility.

    So, if car subscription is akin to dating without the obligation of marriage, then is the Switch plan that, plus two part-time lovers on the side? This lifestyle isn’t for everyone, but those who enjoy a bit of variety every now and then would surely appreciate the change of scene. Before you censure this writer for suggesting immorality, isn’t this the Tinder era we’re living in?

    Try first, commit later

    Staying on the theme, Renault Subscription could be a good way to sample Continental cars in general and Renault in particular, without taking the plunge and buying one. Generally, Malaysian car buyers are a conservative lot, often putting their money in what’s perceived as safer bets, the supposedly tried and tested known quantities. Renault definitely isn’t in this category.

    As with other “cold door” cars (direct translation from a Cantonese term that means not high in demand), common worries include low resale value and perceived poor reliability. Wong concurs, but points out that the RV issue isn’t as one sided as before.

    “True, I’m sure you would have noticed comments from customers – especially when it comes to Continental brands – that they’re worried about resale value. But these days, other brands – Japanese and Korean – also have this same problem, because OEMs are giving off huge discounts. That affects resale value. It’s the same for Renault; we have the same problem, maybe greater.

    “By doing subscription, we allow customers to come in at a lower barrier so they dont need to be worried about RV at the end of the two, three years. That issue of ‘what do I do, I would like to change cars but I still owe the bank more than the car’s RV’ will be eliminated,” he declared.

    The TCEC boss revealed that Renault cars, with their expressive French design, draw in many interested parties at roadshows and events. “The crowds are there, the customers are keen, they like the design, people are emotionally attracted to these cars.” However, it’s when the head takes over from the heart – so to speak – when the rational side asks a few questions, the case for a Renault usually gets weaker. Often, feedback from family and friends serve as the final blow to kill off the idea.

    “By having subscription, it allows customers to drive for up to two years with no strings attached, just enjoy. Only when you’re happy with it – really love owning a Continental car, a Renault – then you can choose to buy a new one, or continue subscribing. Maybe you’re emotionally attached to the car after two years, you can even buy the same unit. We’ll work out a price for you based on the market value at that time, or the new car price minus what you’ve paid in fees, whichever is lower,” Wong said.

    Click to enlarge

    Sounds like a no-lose deal, right? Which led us to ask: in pure ringgit and sen terms, which is better value for money – purchasing or subscribing?

    “Purely money, and if you utilise all the programmes we have for the Captur – trade-ins and the Renault Honour Programme with its guaranteed future value – it’s actually more worthwhile to buy,” Wong said.

    However, he pointed out that the Honour programme has conditions (must upgrade to another Renault) and there are many plus points for subscription that can’t be valued in numbers, such as the all-included convenience and the ability to just walk away at the end of the tenure. Also, Renault Subscription allows one to choose a price that suits his/her usage. If you buy a car, you’ll be paying a fixed amount every month, regardless of how much you use it.

    “For subscription, the consumer needs to determine what he actually wants, what’s his usage and for how long. Say he wants to use the car for two years, doesn’t travel a lot, and is not a heavy user, then he can opt for the no frills package with a basic 20,000 km limit for a better price. But if a customer is undecided – let’s say he’s in sales and travels a lot, or can’t commit to a fixed period, maybe gets relocated by the company – if you’re that, Switch is for you.

    “Of course, if you can plan what you want upfront, then you get to enjoy lower rates. With this mix and match type of system, you can enjoy a price that suits your requirements – not more not less. If you buy a car, whether you use it only once a week, you still pay the full amount; with subs, we’re more flexible in terms of usage,” he said.

    To each his own

    Interestingly, despite the innovation behind this newfangled form of car ownership, the profile of the customer opting for Renault Subscription isn’t significantly younger than the brand’s regular clientele. For sure, it’s not the typical Netflix/Spotify crowd that TCEC first envisioned.

    “People who are into subscription services are generally younger, but what we’ve seen over the last four months, which has surprised us, is the traditional carbuyer that you see everyday. Slightly younger, with a median age about five years lower, but overall, still the same profile, those in their 50s, families above 40,” Wong shared.

    Which begs the question: will subscription eat into Renault’s normal sales? The TCEC boss admitted that cannibalisation was a serious concern when they launched the programme.

    “When we started this, we were very worried that it might affect our normal sales, but actually it didn’t. The customers who wanted to buy – and there are a lot of old school, traditional mindset people who want to own the car, to say ‘it’s mine, I have the asset’ – this group of people is still there.

    “But subscription allows us to lower the barrier. We get to attract more people to come to Renault, and now they have a different way of ownership, a different way of enjoying the car without full commitment. We get more people and a larger pool,” Wong said, while maintaining that the hire purchase route remains worthwhile thanks to good overtrade value, guaranteed future value and five years of free maintenance.

    This is not a drill

    It’s pretty clear that TCEC is serious about subscription – this is not an experiment and will be a permanent fixture for the company moving forward. In fact, Wong expects more brands to join the fray in the future. New features and packages are on the cards, but for now, the Renault distributor’s challenge is awareness and education.

    “We believe that once the customer is familiar with these benefits and they start to enjoy it, it’ll be quite difficult to go back to the traditional business model (of buying cars). In short, subscription is like a long term trial. You pay for usage, which is fair because you’re using the car. It’s like being in a relationship, followed by a (marriage) registration with a proper tea ceremony. Isn’t that a good deal?” Wong joked.

    We both laughed, but there’s nothing funny about car subscription, which is a serious proposition.

  • 2019 WTCR Sepang: BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse on pole at 2:13.141, “nice feeling” says Michelisz

    Stamping his domination in the 2019 FIA World Touring Car Cup (WTCR) round at Sepang Internation Circuit is Norbert Michelisz from BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse with top finishes in both qualifying rounds. Driving a Hyundai i30 N TCR Michelisz set a best time of 2:13.141, edging out Esteban Guerrieri of ALL-INKL Munninch Motorsport driving a Honda Civic Type R TCR who came in 0.786 seconds behind.

    Michelisz who comes from Hungary currently has a 15 point lead in the WTCR drivers standings with an overall 316 points after nine races. However, the WTCR is still up for grabs, with three other drivers having a chance of grabbing the title, depending on the outcome of the first and second races.

    While the mathematical possibilities for the championship win are almost endless, other contenders for the 2019 WTRC title include Guerrieri with 307 points as well as Yvan Muller of France driving for Cyan Racing Lynk & Co with 305 points and Thed Bjork with 288 points, also driving for Lynk & Co.

    The first running of WTCR in Sepang sees Malaysian Mitchell Cheah in the race as a wildcard, scoring 28th position driving for Hyundai Tema Engstler in Hyundai i30 N TCR. Cheah currently competes in the ADAC Touring Car Championship in Germany.

    Malaysian motorcycle racer Hafizh Syahrin who recently left the championship series after relinquishing his spot with Red Bull KTM MotoGP, is also entered as a wildcard, doing a double header in the 2019 Endurance World Championship (EWC) 8-Hour motorcycle race with Yamaha Sepang Racing. In his first time driving a full-on race car, Hafizh sits one position behind team mate Cheah, driving a Hyundai i30 N TCR while another Malaysian competing in the Sepang round of WTCR is Douglas Khoo of Viper Niza Racing in a Cupra TCR.

    In an interview with, Francois Ribiero, head of Eurosport Events, said the main philosophy behind both WTCR and EWC is approachability to the fans. “In no other FIA or FIM race series can fans get the opportunity to come this close to the racers and the cars and bikes.”

    “We are a big family here in WTCR and EWC and the fans are a part of the family,” said Ribiero. “Certainly, we hope to see some close racing this weekend at Sepang and with the (WTCR) drivers championship still open, anything can happen,” he said.

    Adding to this, SIC chief executive officer Datuk Razlan Razali said a three-year contract has been signed with WTCR and EWC to hold double-header races in Sepang. “The main advantage we have in Sepang is we have a track that is top-ranked with both FIA and FIM, the governing bodies for four-wheel and two-wheel racing, plus night racing. This allows us to hold events that cater to viewers in any time zone in the world plus accessibility to local race fans,” said Razlan.

  • 2020 Honda CBR1000RR-R unveiled in Malaysia

    After its worldwide reveal at the 2019 EICMA motorcycle show in Italy, the 2020 Honda CBR1000RR-R was unveiled at Sepang International Circuit during the 2019 Races of Malaysia. The CBR1000RR-R replaces the CBR1000RR and features design and styling taken from Honda’s MotoGP racing motorcycles.

    Intended for competition in the World Superbike Championship (WSBK) that is currently dominated by the Kawasaki ZX-10RR, the CBR1000RR-R uses a chassis and bodywork derived from the Honda RC213V-S race replica with 214 hp at 14,500 rpm and 113 Nm of torque at 12,500 rpm coming from the inline-four. Racing technology features in the CBR1000RR-RR with items such as titanium connecting rods, forged pistons and finger-follower rocker arms for valve actuation.

    The base model CBR1000RR-R displayed comes with Showa fully-adjustable front forks with Nissin brakes callipers while the SP version will come with Brembo Stylema callipers and Ohlins electronic suspension. Riding aids abound on the CBR1000RR-R with Honda Selectable Torque Control (HTSC), power, engine braking and wheelie control with the addition of launch control.

    The frame is all new and is designed to be stiffer in the vertical plane with increased torsional resistance but more compliant in the horizontal axis to boost grip and feel. Winglets now sprout from either side of the fairing as aerodynamic aids but we think its utility on the CBR1000RR-R for road use will be more cosmetic than functional.

    There is no pricing as yet for the 2020 Honda CBR1000RR-R in Malaysia and as to when it might be available for sale, Boon Siew Honda declined to commit to a date. However, a source inside Boon Siew said the CBR1000RR-R might make it to Malaysia “sooner rather than later.”

  • NAP 2020 to be launched early next year – Leiking

    The launch of the revised National Automotive Policy (NAP) has been shifted again, with the policy now set to be announced early next year. This was revealed by international trade and industry minister Datuk Darell Leiking today at the Proton X70 CKD rollout event in Tanjung Malim.

    He said that there were still things to be incorporated into NAP 2020, which will cover the entire automotive eco-system. This includes new and emerging tech, reiterating what he said in October. “Works are in progress because we want to add a lot of things. As you can see in the coming days, if not weeks and months, something new will come of it and we have to be adaptive to it as well,” he had said back then.

    The announcement of the reworked NAP has been in review since last July, and was previously due to be announced in the second quarter of this year. At last juncture, the policy was reportedly set to be presented to Cabinet for approval in November.

    In September, Malaysia Automotive, Robotic and IoT Institute (MARii) CEO Datuk Madani Sahari revealed that the new NAP will be implemented in three phases until 2030, with the first phase ensuring the continuity of NAP 2014 and introducing necessary elements to prepare the country to become a producer of EEVs (energy efficient vehicles).

    The new policy is expected to see a shift in focus from energy-efficient vehicles (EEV) to the ‘next-generation vehicle’ (NxGV), with the first phase of this focusing on battery production, management systems and the establishment of EV charging stations, while the following stages will focus on other technological advancements such as 5G connectivity.

    The criteria for a national car will also be defined in the policy. As previously reported, six criteria make up the requirements: it has to be majority-owned by Malaysians, receive its funding from the public sector, be comprised of 75% local supply chain, have 98% local workers, have research and development conducted in Malaysia as well as to take steps to align with the definition of next-generation vehicles.

  • VIDEO: How to drive a BMW PHEV to its full potential

    Plug-in hybrid vehicles, or PHEVs are increasingly commonplace as more and more automakers embrace electrification gradually. The appeal of electrified vehicles lies mainly in their reduced emissions compared to conventional, pure internal combustion-engined vehicles, as well as their ability to operate in relative silence and better refinement.

    With conventional petrol- or diesel-engined vehicles, methods for maximising fuel economy are already somewhat widely known; smoothness is key, especially with acceleration and braking, and anticipating road conditions will certainly help.

    In the case of cars with electrified powertrains, the same guidelines also apply, though more complex systems are at work and therefore, there are more parameters to maximise efficiency with. BMW has released this video explaining what can be done operate its plug-in hybrid models to the full potential of efficiency.

    Firstly, ensuring that the vehicle is charged as much of the time as possible will maximise electric driving range and therefore reduce petrol consumption, and the vehicle can be programmed from the mobile app to pre-condition the cabin’s temperature before heading out on a journey. This way, the electric drive battery can be dedicated to propelling the vehicle instead of heating or cooling the cabin.

    The most efficient way of driving can be summoned in BMW PHEV models through Hybrid Eco Pro mode; the included route assistant indicates when the driver should release the accelerator via a graphic on the instrument cluster, for when the vehicle is approaching reduced speed limit zones, junctions or entrances into towns.

    The systems for powertrain will also elect to either coast or employ energy recuperation; the adaptive approach employed aims to enable deceleration in the most efficient way possible, depending on the driving situation. Fascinating? Watch the video below to see the systems in action.

    GALLERY: G20 BMW 330e plug-in hybrid

    GALLERY: G11/G12 BMW 745e LCI

  • 2020 Proton X70 CKD rolls out of Tanjung Malim plant – launch soon, right-hand drive exports planned

    One year and one day on from the launch of the Proton X70, the CKD version of the SUV has finally entered production at the Tanjung Malim factory. The first locally-assembled units are rolling out of an extension of the plant, which cost RM1.2 billion to develop.

    The car is largely identical to the one that was imported from China, with the exception of the new Proton roundel in front that replaces the previous shield-shaped badge. There will apparently be more changes to be found inside, which include a powered tailgate and possibly a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.

    We expect the car to soldier on with the same 1.8 litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine as before, and in China this very configuration produces the same 181 hp, but an extra 15 Nm of torque at 300 Nm. The CKD X70 will be launched very soon, and we will of course be there to bring you full coverage.

    The national carmaker says that it has fulfilled its promise it made at the launch of the imported model, to commence production of CKD units by the end of 2019. And that’s just the beginning – Tanjung Malim will also be hub of joint venture partner Geely’s right-hand drive production, with global exports in the pipeline.

    A map flashed up on the screen during the event showed various planned export markets, which not only included regional countries such as Brunei, Thailand and Indonesia, but also those further abroad like Australia, Pakistan, South Africa, South America and even the United Kingdom.

    “By producing the Proton X70 in Tanjung Malim, we have taken a quantum leap in our abilities and this is by far our most ambitious undertaking to date,” said chairman Datuk Seri Syed Faisal Albar. “This new plant will not only produce future products jointly developed with Geely but it will also be a centre for right-hand drive production as we begin exports to countries all over the world.”

    Geely president and CEO An Conghui said, “Proton has undergone a tremendous transformation over the past two years. This experience has worked out very well for us at Geely Auto as we are happy to help Proton realise its global aspirations. We will continue to support Proton as it grows in the Malaysian market and in the wider ASEAN region and beyond.”

  • December 2019 week 2 fuel price – RON 97 unchanged

    It’s Friday, which means time for the usual weekly price announcement for RON 97 petrol. The price of the fuel is set to be unchanged from last week, remaining at RM2.64 per litre for the period December 14 to 20.

    No change of course to RON 95 petrol, which continues to stay at its fixed price ceiling of RM2.08 per litre. It’s the same for diesel – the price of Euro 2M diesel remains at RM2.18 per litre, and Euro 5 diesel, which costs 10 sen more, stays fixed at RM2.28 per litre.

    According to the finance ministry, Automatic Price Mechanism (APM) calculations show that RON 95 and diesel fuels would be priced at RM2.34 and RM2.32 per litre respectively if there were no price cap in place. It added that for the period of December 14 to 20, the government will absorb a total of RM111.44 million to subsidise these fuels.

    These prices will remain effective until the next fuel price adjustment is announced on December 20. This is the 49th edition of the weekly fuel pricing format which is announced every Friday and runs from Saturday until the following Friday. This pricing mechanism and existing subsidy system will come to an end when the government begins its targeted petrol subsidy programme (PSP) for RON 95 petrol early next year.

  • Proton Saga, X70 make up nearly 90% of total sales – automaker looking to increase exports to 5,000 units

    While official figures for the year have yet to be revealed for it, the Proton X70‘s performance in 2019 has been deemed a success by the automaker. The first year of sales for the SUV has seen a total of 26,000 units being shifted, and while the car has missed the target set for it, Proton CEO Li Chunrong says that he’s happy with the results.

    “We sold 26,000 of the X70 in the last one year and although that did not meet my target of 30,000, it was considered successful,” he told Channel News Asia in an interview earlier this week.

    He said the facelifted Saga has also been a stellar performer for the brand this year, contributing 70% to the company’s overall sales. Since its launch in August, the car has recorded more than 35,000 bookings, and sales of the car have breached the 4,000 unit mark for three consecutive months. With the X70 contributing 19%, the numbers generated by the two models represent nearly 90% of the automaker’s total sales.

    Li, who says that the national carmaker is now aiming to go head-to-head with the likes of Toyota and Honda in terms of quality and branding, said that the company will seek to become an “international brand” by 2027. Exports will play an important part in achieving this.

    He said that Thailand, which produces two million cars annually, exports a million units. “That is half to export, while Indonesia’s export is at 30%. With Malaysia however, exports are only 3%,” he said.

    He added that for Proton, the best export performance was last managed in 2005, when the company exported 20,000 cars annually. “But in 2017, the numbers reduced to 200 cars per year. Why? Because of the product,” he said.

    In the last two years, Proton has been able to increase its exports to 1,000 units, but Li says this is not enough. “Once we launch our upgraded models next year, our exports will increase and our aim is 5,000 cars a year,” he said.

    The automaker’s largest export market currently is Egypt, where it sells left-hand drive Saga and Exora models. Proton is also looking to ramping up exports to Pakistan, where it is collaborating with Alhaj Automotive to establish an assembly plant in the country.

  • C118 Mercedes-Benz CLA vs C117 – what’s changed?

    In January, Mercedes-Benz revealed the second-generation C118 CLA, which rides on the carmaker’s Modular Front Architecture (MFA2) platform that also underpins the W177 A-Class, V177 A-Class Sedan and X247 GLB.

    Design-wise, the style-focused four-door coupe appears to be a scaled-down version of the larger C257 CLS, but if you are still having a hard time spotting what’s new from the first-generation C117 CLA, Mercedes-Benz has prepared a handy video to assist you in that regard.

    The video, which is just over two minutes long, highlights both the exterior and interior differences between the two generations, while listing some of the advanced safety systems from Mercedes-Benz’s higher vehicle classes that have made their way to the new car.

    The C118 is also available with a choice of six petrol engines with the CLA 180, CLA 200, CLA 220 and CLA 220 4Matic, CLA 250 and CLA 250 4Matic, CLA 35 4Matic and CLA 45 4Matic+ and CLA 45 S 4Matic+, – the CLA 35 being something that wasn’t offered for the C117. There’s also a choice of three diesel engines in the CLA 180 d, CLA 200 d and CLA 220 d.

    What isn’t mentioned in the video are the revised dimensions, as the new CLA is much larger than its predecessor, measuring 4,688 mm long (+48 mm), 1,830 mm wide (+53 mm), 1,439 mm tall (-2 mm) and with a wheelbase spanning 2,729 mm (+30 mm). The C118 has yet to make its launch debut in Malaysia, but are you looking forward to its arrival and do you like the look of it compared to its predecessor? Let us know in the comments below.

    GALLERY: C118 Mercedes-Benz CLA

    GALLERY: C117 Mercedes-Benz CLA 200 (Malaysia-spec)

  • SPIED: Volvo S90, V90 and V90 Cross Country facelifts

    It appears the Volvo S90, V90 and V90 Cross Country are set to be updated soon, as prototypes of all three models have been sighted by our spy photographers undergoing testing in sub-zero temperatures near the Arctic Circle.

    Based on these photos, it appears there won’t be any major styling updates, despite the generous amount of black tape used to mask the cars. Instead, we see lightly revised bumpers, along with light signatures for the headlamps and taillights. Viewed from the front, the LEDs within the clusters appear to be more prominent than before, while the reverse lights in the rear appear to have been repositioned.

    On the inside, expect the familiar layouts of the three to remain largely the same, with expected changes being the adoption of a new infotainment system that runs on Android Automotive OS in place of the Sensus system, which appeared in the XC40 Recharge.

    Other changes include a revised range of safety and driver assistance systems, as well as a speed limiter set at 180 km/h – a move that is part of the company’s Vision 2020 aspirations for road safety that aims to have no one killed or seriously injured in a new Volvo.

    More significant updates involve the list of available powertrains, as the “B-badged” mild hybrid powertrains found on the XC90 SUV are likely to join the regular “T- and D-badged” petrol and diesel engines, along with the carmaker’s Twin Engine plug-in hybrid options.

    Volvo S90 facelift spyshots

    Volvo V90 facelift spyshots

    Volvo V90 Cross Country facelift spyshots


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Last Updated 14 Dec 2019


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