The Malaysian Autoshow’s 9th edition took place at the MAEPS in Serdang. You might be wondering about why having two major car events in Malaysia within 4 months (KLIMS was last December 2018 – check the article here) and to be frank, so did I. But after reading this article you will see that the brands had a lot of new cars to present.
It was definitely worth it and the presence of IAM « International Automodified » for the first time, did bring a special feeling to the event.
The exhibition was hosted in 3 large halls of the MAEPS, one was for the regular brands, one was for IAM and the latest was dedicated to robotics and the future of mobility. In addition a big outside area was dedicated for SUV passionate.
In the robotic hall, the Malaysia Automotive, Robotics and IoT Institute (MARii), was hosting different competitions. One was on the automatic self-driving. Different teams had to program a robot to self drive on a track. A very useful skill for the present and near future! A robot combat competition was organised and it was very impressive and enjoyable, but let’s wish this won’t be the future of mobility!
Let’s focus first on the main hall. 18 brands were present: Asian first of course, some European and some motorbikes players.
I will start with Honda first, just because they brought the most exciting car of the show. For the first time in SEA, they presented the Type R Mugen Concept car! The pictures speak for themselves. It’s a very aggressive look, full of carbon and racing codes. The front and rear spoilers are almost full carbon, 20 inches wheels, amazing racing front seats, 3 exhaust and manual gearbox, but we don’t have any informations on the engine. We can assume that the design is more important on this concept and to have feedback from the clients.
What else with Honda? Some great pieces we already knew but still great. The CR-V Mugen, the Jazz Mugen, the BR-V SE, the HR-V RS and a new HR-V. For the first time as well the new HR-V Hybrid. It is powered up by 1.5L i-VTEC engine + an electric motor. There is a lot of new tech inside this car, with the possibility to drive on full electric. 132PS for the 4 cylinders + 20PS for the electric, with a total of 152PS and 190Nm it’s 10PS and 18Nm more than the already great 1.8L i-VTEC.
They didn’t only present cars but bikes on top of that. All the line was here + the new CBR650R and CB650R. Both based on the same new engine who is now delivering 95PS and both with a lighter body.
Toyota presented us the new Yaris in a flashy yellow colour. The biggest change is the design, more aggressive and dynamic, especially in this yellow robe. New connectivity as well with your smart phone as you can expect from a last generation car. An Hybrid version will be most probably available as well in Malaysia.
First time in Malaysia Nissan too X-Trail Hybrid was showcased. New design, new interior and plenty of new technologies under the Nissan Intelligent Mobility. In 2 words they put a lot of smart sensors all around the car helping you to detect collisions if someone is braking in front of you, or if you are drifting out of your lane. It even helps you detecting collision when you are exiting your parking space in a mall for example and someone is arriving in your blind spot. The Hybrid power is 144PS for the 2.0L X-CVT engine + 41Ps for the electric. With a total of 185PS one more time the Hybrid version becomes the most powerful of the family.
If you are looking for a bigger car Mitsubishi has a new Triton just for you. New design, new tech, led lights and more importantly for this SUV, a new gearbox with a full differential lock and even a low gear mode. This new Triton can go everywhere with style and this without any increase on the price compare to last model.
Something more fancy? You will love the next Mazda CX8! For the first time seen in Malaysia this 7 seater is a stunning high end car, it will be possible to have a 6 seats configuration, 3 lines of 2 seats which will be for sure even more comfortable. A beautiful design with a luxury interior and we can expect a dynamic driving experience as all CX line. The 2.5L SkyActiv-G will be one of the engine option (192PS) the second one will be a 2.2L SkyActiv-D Diesel.
Kia pushed as well the Diesel technology with the new Sorento. The Diesel option is a 2.2L CRDI with almost 200PS, linked to a 8-speed transmission, it looks like a dynamic option. They displayed the new Sportage and New Sorento but something more exiting was around the corner, the new Picanto GT Line. As the name conveys it well it is all about the line. No fancy engine or transmission but a very nice racing design. We really love this GT line especially in black and red.
Regarding the locals brand - Proton was present, displaying of course the new X70. We can see more and more of the first SUV of the brand on the roads in Malaysia.
But the novelties was the IRIZ and the PERSONA. Both have new exterior design as well as interior. They are pursuing the new design direction initiated with the X70. The general quality is going up and a lot of new technologies are now present under the name of Intelligent High Beam Control (IHBC). For example you have now Voice Command, Autonomous Emergency Braking, Blind Spot Information System, Adaptive Cruise Control and a smartphone app dedicated to monitoring and controlling some of the car functions.
Perodua is coming with a new SUV named the ARUZ. It’s a 7 seats SUV with a great design. As customary for Perodua, the price is very attractive. The starting price is 73.000RM. It's indeed the price of a Yaris. The engine is a 1.5L of 101PS but with a 4-speed automatic gearbox, this will need to be tried before commenting. For the others features, all seems great, including the led lights, keyless entry and start, 6 airbags and much more.
A 2019 AutoShow Bezza Limited Edition was displayed. A more aggressive look with touch of red on a white body.
Some European brands were present such as the French Peugeot and Citroen. Peugeot was displaying the new 5008 SUV and they are getting closer and closer to the German standards. The quality is stunning, the technology is on the top. Next to it was standing its smaller brothers the 3008 and 208 PURETECH. This 208 is powered by an amazing 1.2L engine. It seems small at first but it is just on the petrol consumption. For only 4.2L per 100km this engine as 112PS and 205Nm and as always with Peugeot the car is designed for the pleasure of driving with very dynamic driving settings.
Citroen DS had something brand new for us: the new DS 5. The big car from DS has a new design, very chic from the outside and cosy inside. The quality of the materials are among the best you can find and very customisable. If you have a driver this can be an option for you, as the rear seats are very comfortable with enough space for the legs.
The two last brands were German with VW and BMW. VW had nothing really new but they made it so thank you for your presence. You could enjoy the great SUV Tiguan, the Beetle and the legend Golf R line 280TSI. The 2.0L TSI R engine strong of 280HP as it’s written on the car is a great engine to « smoke » the road.
BMW had only car but something very interesting and for the first time in Malaysia - the new BMW i3s. If you are not familiar with the BMW i3, this is a full electric premium compact car from BMW. As you can expect from the brand the car is really premium and for the first time this 100% electric car will be sold in Malaysia. What is the difference from the previous version? Mostly a new engine, more powerful and a new battery, the car is also more powerful as well. We are speaking about 300Km of autonomies now and around 185PS.
I told there were a lot of news cars during this event but there were also a lot of motorbikes.
Vespa was here with the new family : Vespa S, Super, Primavera and the powerful GTS 300.
Indian Motorcycle displayed 2 bikes: the Chief Dark Horse and the Indian Scout Bobber. Too bad the FTR 1200 was not displayed, this model is amazing.
Last but not least, Ducati was displaying the news Monsters Multistrada and the Panigale V4S. Yes V4 and not V2! From the outside you cannot really tell the difference as the new V4 is very compact but are we really happy about it? I’m sure this engine is amazing and more powerful, but a Ducati has to be a V2 - no? The future will tell if it was a good choice or not. A special area was also dedicated for the new Scrambler. Two models were displayed. Have look at the « CaféRacer » and « Desert Sled » those could be the best bikes for KL.
Last hall was for IAM! If you are not familiar with IAM let me enlighten you. IAM stands for International Auto Modified.
So what is it? It’s the only touring automotive lifestyle show series in the region.
It included tuning cars of course but as well a lot of animations and give-away. The event exists in 28 cities throughout Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore and Malaysia.
Some of the displayed cars belonged to private owners but most of them were originating from clubs, such as Adam Photography, Blackmailz, GarageLife, XBTCe, Blackmailz, B.A.R Boone Ae.Ro, LebaiGame, Acad, AOS, Black Daimon, Fydography, 4Flex and the top from IAM Bangkok.
Most of the tuned cars were of course Japanese brands: Toyota, Mitsubishi, Honda, Subaru, Mazda and last but not least a bench of Nissan GTR from all generations. Some locals car as Perodua with the Myvi and Proton with the Pervé RS were also tuned. The German makers were also featured with several Porsche, BMW, Mercedes-Benz and VW.
All your favourite accessorises brands were visible both on and in the cars: Bilstein, K&N, Michelin, Akrapovic, Yokohama, HKS, AEM and the very visible Prince Lubricants as many girls were dressed by them.
As the days was going on a lot of competitions took place. First and no surprise was for the best tuned car. We did enjoy as well amazing DJ battles who put to dance all the HIN Girlfriends and photo competitions.