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  • SEAT Arona: Ibiza-based B-segment crossover shown

    Spanish carmaker SEAT is working quickly to expand its SUV lineup – fresh from unveiling its first, the Ateca last year, the Volkswagen subsidiary has come up with a second, smaller model called the SEAT Arona.

    Built on the same modular MQB A0 platform as the new Ibiza and Volkswagen Polo, the new car forms the bottom end of SEAT’s three-pronged SUV offensive, with a larger model – likely based on the Skoda Kodiaq – coming in 2018. Looks wise, the Arona appears like a shrunken Ateca, with sharp headlights that flank a six-point upper grille, a large trapezoidal lower grille, upswept window line and two-piece tail lights.

    However, there are certain design elements that inject a more youthful feel, including a contrasting roof colour option highlighted by aluminium-look window trim that flows into the rear spoiler, as well as bold slashes along the side surfaces.

    As with the Leon, Ibiza and Ateca, the Arona will be available in Reference, Style, sportier FR and more rugged Xcellence trims. Aside from the more aggressive aesthetic, the FR also comes with dual-mode suspension and the SEAT Drive Profile system with Normal, Sport, Eco and Individual modes.

    Inside, the Arona looks pretty much identical to the Ibiza, with the same horizontal dashboard design that SEAT says emphasises the car’s size. Increased headroom, a larger 400 litre boot and a higher driving position are promised, thanks to it being 79 mm longer and 99 mm taller than its hatchback sibling.

    Options include ambient lighting, dual-zone climate control and a six-speaker, 300 watt BeatsAudio sound system, and there’s also Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and MirrorLink connectivity, a reverse camera camera, an eight-inch black panel touchscreen and a wireless smartphone charger with a GSM signal amplifier.

    Safety-wise, the Arona is available with Front Assist autonomous braking, Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop&Go functionality, Hill Hold control, Fatigue Detection and Multi-Collision Brake. Buyers can specify Rear Traffic Alert, Blind Spot Detection and the Park Assistance System, which provides autonomous parallel and perpendicular parking.

    The engine range consists of three petrol and two diesel mills, with the entry-level powertrain being a 95 PS 1.0 litre TSI three-pot mated to a five-speed manual transmission. A 115 PS version is paired to either a six-speed manual or a seven-speed DSG dual-clutch transmission, while a 150 PS 1.5 litre TSI four-pot with a six-speed manual is available exclusively with the FR model.

    On the diesel side, there’s a 1.6 litre TDI four-pot in 95 PS and 115 PS guises, with the former mated to a five-speed manual or a seven-speed DSG, and the latter to a six-speed manual. There will also be a 90 PS 1.0 TSI powered by compressed natural gas (CNG) that will be coming in mid-2018, as well as a 110 PS 1.6 litre naturally-aspirated MPI engine with either a manual or automatic gearbox in certain markets.

  • BARU: Artikel terkini dalam Bahasa Malaysia

  • About 100 AES cameras to be installed next year

    Deputy transport minister Datuk Ab Aziz Kaprawi has revealed about 100 Automated Enforcement System (AES) cameras will be installed nationwide next year. In a report by Bernama, he said the cameras will be installed at strategic locations, including along highways and federal roads.

    The move is to ensure motorists comply with traffic rules, and to help reduce the country’s road accident rate. “The AES cameras will be added as we are targeting a 50% reduction in the accident rate by 2020, as per an international agreement,” said Ab Aziz, adding that there are currently about 50 AES cameras installed nationwide.

    As part of the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020 plan by the World Health Organisation (WHO), participating countries have been urged to reduce their accident rates by 50% by 2020. In 2016, Malaysia recorded 521,466 road accidents and 7,152 road deaths, according to data by the Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research (MIROS).

    “The AES is the best method since it is impartial. The cameras do not recognise people and will record all vehicles,” said Ab Aziz.

  • July 2017 week one fuel price – petrol, diesel all down

    It’s Wednesday again and it’s three cheers for motorists this coming week, as the latest weekly fuel price update sees all grades becoming cheaper – the fifth straight week of price decreases.

    From tomorrow, June 29, RON 95 petrol will be priced at RM1.89 per litre (down two sen from RM1.91 per litre last week), while RON 97 petrol is priced at RM2.15 per litre (down two sen from RM2.17 per litre last week).

    As for Euro 2M diesel, the price will drop to RM1.84 per litre (down four sen from RM1.88 previously) this week, while Euro 5 diesel will be priced at RM1.94 per litre (down four sen from RM1.98 previously). These prices take effect from midnight until July 5, when the next price adjustment will be announced.

    This is the 14th weekly fuel pricing update since the system’s implementation on March 30. Compared to March 2017 prices, which was before weekly pricing took effect, RON 95 is down by 41 sen (from RM2.30 per litre), RON 97 by 45 sen (RM2.60 per litre), and diesel down by 36 sen (RM2.20).

  • Volvo, Autoliv and Nvidia team up for self-driving cars

    Volvo, Autoliv and Nvidia will team up to develop advanced systems and software for self-driving cars, the Swedish carmaker recently announced. All three companies will work together with Zenuity, a newly-formed automotive software development joint venture equally owned by Volvo Cars and Autoliv, to develop next generation self-driving car technologies.

    Nvidia will contribute to the collaboration by supplying its AI car computing platform as the foundation for Zenuity’s advanced software development. Many carmakers are looking at artificial intelligence as an important element in future autonomous driving systems, whereby vehicles will be able to assess situations and react accordingly.

    The partnership will allow for the development of systems that can utilise deep learning – a form of artificial intelligence – to identify objects in the environment and anticipate potential threats. Combined with other supporting systems like high-definition maps and on-board sensors, this allows the vehicle to navigate itself safely without human intervention.

    “This cooperation with Nvidia places Volvo Cars, Autoliv and Zenuity at the forefront of the fast moving market to develop next generation autonomous driving capabilities and will speed up the development of Volvo’s own commercially available autonomous drive cars,” said Hakan Samuelsson, president and chief executive of Volvo Cars.

    Zenuity will provide Volvo with self-driving software, while Autoliv will also sell this software to third party OEMs using its established and broad sales, marketing and distribution network.

  • REVIEW: 2017 Ducati XDiavel S – the devil inside

    Cruisers are strange creatures in the motorcycle world. Visually appealing to non-riders, cruisers are firm favourites with many riders, especially fans of that American brand. But what happens when you try to make a cruiser that performs?

    While sounding a bit of an oxymoron, cruisers are not just for, well, cruising. The image of the big V-twin, decked out in chrome, is a trope in the popular imagination for many, and the typical Hollywood cliche of what motorcycles are supposed to be doesn’t help things either.

    So, what happens when you take all the equipment found on a modern sportsbike, such as ride modes and traction control, racing brakes and premium suspension, and mould it into something that looks like a dragster-styled cruiser, but isn’t? Well, you end up with the Ducati XDiavel.

    The first iteration of the dragster cruiser would perhaps have been the Yamaha V-Max, back in 1985. This design trend was followed in later decades by machines such as the Honda Magna and recently, the Harley-Davidson V-Rod series, which sees its final production run this year.

    But Ducati, in its infinite wisdom, decided what the world needed was a sports-cruiser, and created the Diavel, back in 2011. And then, in the sixth year, Ducati gave rise to the XDiavel, and Ducati Malaysia let us dance with the devil.

    Read the full review after the jump.

  • SPIED: New Peugeot 3008 sighted testing, LHD model

    After being spotted on a trailer in March, the new Peugeot 3008 has now been sighted on the road in Malaysia, photos of which come courtesy of reader Zulhizain Yunus. The sharply-styled SUV has already been teased here, and is set to arrive soon – it was previously reported that the French crossover would be introduced in the second quarter of 2017.

    As with the French-registered units spied before, however, do not take the car here as being representative of the local model – the left-hand drive sticker on the test unit alone is indicative of such. It should be noted, however, that our 3008s will likely come in the mid-range Allure trim seen here, which slots under the GT Line and GT models that are available in other markets.

    Inside, the 2017 European Car of The Year will feature a more premium look and feel, and incorporate the i-Cockpit dashboard architecture also seen on the 208 and 308. The kit list includes a high-resolution, configurable 12.3-inch display screen that makes up the instrument cluster, a centrally-mounted eight-inch touchscreen and piano-key toggle switches.

    Built on the Efficient Modular Platform (EMP2) that also underpins the 308, the 3008 will likely be powered by a 165 hp 1.6 litre Turbo High Pressure (THP) engine as before, but with the addition of auto engine stop/start. A six-speed automatic gearbox is expected to send power to the front wheels. Pricing has yet to be revealed, but expect the new car to command a premium over the RM159k asked for the outgoing model.

    GALLERY: New Peugeot 3008 in Bologna

  • 2018 Nissan Leaf – second-gen electric vehicle teased

    Nissan has begun teasing the arrival of the 2018 Leaf, which will come with the brand’s ProPILOT Assist driver-assistance technology. Here, the company is demonstrating how the system works in a video, accompanied by an image of the car’s digital instrument cluster showing the display when ProPILOT is active.

    The system will provide drivers with a helping hand should they find themselves stuck in a traffic jam, controlling the car’s steering, accelerator and brakes during single-lane driving. Nissan says the system will eventually be able to navigate city intersections, one of the many goals of the Nissan Intelligent Mobility blueprint.

    Unlike the first Leaf that left many polarised in regards to how it looked, the new one will get a more aggressive design inspired by the Micra, with sharper-looking headlights. A prototype spotted out in the wild previously supports this notion, with certain cues from the IDS Concept are visible through the test mule’s camouflage.

    Nissan hasn’t revealed any information about the new Leaf’s all-electric powertrain, but it is rumoured to offer significantly more range than its predecessor thanks to larger battery packs. On today’s Leaf, the highest-spec version only comes with a 30 kW lithium-ion battery pack.

    GALLERY: 2018 Nissan Leaf spyshots

  • Klang Valley MRT 1 second phase is “99% ready”

    The second phase of the Klang Valley MRT 1 project which runs from Semantan to Kajang is now “99% ready,” according to a report in the New Straits Times. “We are currently running final test runs on the trains. This is to ensure smooth running of the trains during and after the launch,” said Datuk Azmi Abdul Aziz, president and group chief executive officer of Prasarana Malaysia.

    Phase 1 of MRT 1 commenced operations on Dec 16 last year, and the second phase appears to be on track for its launch on July 17, which will complete the 51 km Sungai Buloh-Kajang (SBK) line, the report says. Approximately 500,000 passengers are expected to pass through both phases on a daily basis.

    On its opening day, we’ve tried out Phase 1 of the Sungai Buloh-Kajang Line, which travels from Sungai Buloh to Semantan in Damansara Heights across 12 stations on 21 km of elevated tracks at the time. Check out Danny Tan’s experience of the Mass Rapid Transit line here.

    GALLERY: MRT Sungai Buloh-Kajang (SBK) Line Phase 1

  • 2018 Maserati GranTurismo debuts with subtle updates

    The facelifted Maserati GranTurismo has been unveiled for the 2018 model year, which introduces several revisions to the grand tourer that was first launched in 2007.

    On the exterior, the Pininfarina-designed body remains largely untouched, with notable changes seen at the front and back. The former sees the adoption of a new hexagonal-shaped front grille inspired by the Alfieri concept, providing the GranTurismo with three-dimensional effect at first glance.

    Together with the lower air ducts that are now further separated from the front splitter, these changes contribute to a lower aerodynamic drag coefficient of just 0.32 from 0.33 before. Elsewhere, the rear bumper now features a neater design with a twofold layout.

    For the 2018 model year, Maserati has decided to streamline the GranTurismo range to include two version – the Sport and the MC – both powered by a Ferrari-sourced 4.7 litre naturally-aspirated V8 engine.

    The mill serves up 460 hp at 7,000 rpm and 520 Nm of torque at 4,750 rpm, directed to the rear wheels via a ZF six-speed automatic gearbox. In terms of performance, the Sport will complete the century sprint in an unchanged 4.8 seconds (299 km/h top speed), while the lightweight MC will do the same a fraction quicker at 4.7 seconds (301 km/h top speed).

    Inside, there continues to be seating for four occupants with individual Poltrona Frau leather or Alcantara/leather seats. For 2018, the grand tourer gains a new 8.4-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support, as well as a Harmon Kardon sound system.

    Maserati has also redesigned the car’s centre console to accommodate a double rotary knob for the infotainment system, made of forged aluminum. Additionally, the controls for the car’s driving modes has been repositioned to the lower section of the centre console, next to the gearshift lever.

  • Jaguar XE SV Project 8 – 600 PS four-door monster

    This phenomenal-looking sedan is the Jaguar XE SV Project 8, a limited edition track-bred version of Coventry’s 3 Series fighter. Elevated beyond the realm of the Mercedes-AMG C 63 and even the fairly hardcore BMW M4 GTS, it’s the most powerful and extreme car to have come from the Leaping Cat. Just 300 units will be made, all hand-built at the Special Vehicle Operations (SVO) Technical Centre in Warwickshire.

    Looking very much like a touring car refugee, the Project 8 sports some fairly aggressive exterior modifications, including carbon fibre front and rear bumpers (the former featuring extra hexagonal cooling ducts), an adjustable front splitter, a vented carbon fibre bonnet, purposeful flared wheel arches that hide broad 20-inch aluminium alloy wheels and a massive adjustable rear wing.

    Also fitted is a flat underbody and a large rear diffuser incorporating quad exhaust exits, the latter connected to a Titanium Variable Active Exhaust system. Interior accoutrements include an Alcantara trim and gloss carbon fibre on the sport steering wheel, instrument cluster and door cards. There are also paddle shifters and an F-Type-style pistol-grip gearlever that replaces the regular rotary dial.

    But the main event is found under the bonnet, in which resides the most powerful version of Jaguar’s venerable 5.0 litre supercharged V8. Here, it pushes out a stonking 600 PS, routed through an eight-speed automatic transmission to an all-wheel drive system – allowing the Project 8 to blow past the 100 km/h mark in a scarcely believable 3.3 seconds, and onwards to a top speed of 322 km/h.

    Under the skin, the double wishbone front and integral link rear suspension carry stiffer springs and manually-adjustable Continuously Variable Dampers, lowering the ride height by 15 mm for track use. You’ll also find carbon ceramic brakes, Formula One-style silicon nitride ceramic wheel bearings – a first for a road car – and a rear Electronic Active Differential (EAD) with an oil cooler. There’s a dedicated Track Mode, too.

    The Project 8 will be available in two versions, with the more sedate option being a four-seat model with front Performance seats with magnesium frames, along with more heavily contoured rear squabs for increased support. There’s also an optional two-seat Track Pack that throws in lightweight front carbon fibre race seats, four-point harnesses and a harness retention hoop in place of the rear pews. All cars are left-hand drive only.


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Latest Fuel Prices

RON 95 RM1.91 (-0.07)
RON 97 RM2.17 (-0.07)
RON 100 RM2.92
VPR RM2.84
EURO 2M RM1.88 (0.00)
EURO 5 RM1.98 (0.00)
Last Updated 22 Jun 2017


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