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  • 2020 Honda Civic facelift – spec-by-spec comparison

    The 2020 Honda Civic was officially introduced on Wednesday, and three variants of the locally-assembled model are available namely a base 1.8 S, a mid-spec 1.5 TC and range-topping 1.5 TC-P, at prices ranging from RM113,600 to RM139,600.

    The styling revisions for the tenth-gen FC are pretty minimal. There’s a new front bumper, which integrates the black trim into a single piece running across the width of the unit, as well as a new rear bumper garnish. The range-topping 1.5 TC-P also gets a new piano black “wing” on the grille and a boot spoiler, as well as a new 18-inch alloy wheel.

    No mechanical changes, including that of the powertrain/drivetrain combo. A normally-aspirated 1.8 litre SOHC four-pot offering 141 PS and 174 Nm powers the 1.8 S, while the two 1.5 variants feature the familiar L15B7 1.5 litre VTEC Turbo four-cylinder engine, which continues to offer 173 PS and 220 Nm. Both engine choices are paired with an Earth Dreams continuously variable transmission (CVT), which drives the front wheels.

    New equipment being introduced with the facelift include front parking sensors, automatic wipers, and 60:40 split-folding rear seats (previously, a fixed bench), while the seven-inch Advanced Display Audio head unit now features a rotary on/off and volume control knob as well as physical function buttons.

    The 1.5 TC now comes equipped with LED headlamps and fog lamps (previously, halogen units) as well as LaneWatch, while the 1.5 TC-P now features the Honda Sensing suite of safety and driver assistance systems. Standard safety kit for the Civic includes six airbags, front parking sensors, Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA), ABS, EBD, brake assist, Emergency Stop Signal (ESS), Hill Start Assist (HSA) and a reverse camera.

    Five colours are available for the Civic facelift – Lunar Silver Metallic, White Orchid Pearl, Modern Steel Metallic, Crystal Black Pearl and a new shade, Passion Red Pearl.

    For more info on the Civic facelift, check out our review of the refreshed C-segment sedan and compare the new Civic’s specifications against its rivals on, but for now, here’s the spec-by-spec breakdown of the three variants:

    2020 Honda Civic 1.8 S facelift – RM113,600

    Gets as standard:


    • 1.8 litre i-VTEC normally-aspirated engine
    • 141 PS (139 hp) at 6,500 rpm, 174 Nm at 4,300 rpm
    • Earth Dreams continuously variable transmission (CVT)
    • Electronic parking brake
    • Electric power steering (EPS) with 5.7 metre turning radius
    • MacPherson struts (front), multi-link (rear)
    • Ventilated brake discs (front), solid discs (rear)
    • 1,251 kg kerb weight
    • Boot capacity of 519 litres
    • 0-100 km/h in 10.4 seconds
    • 200 km/h top speed


    • Halogen headlights with automatic on/off function
    • LED daytime running lights
    • Halogen front fog lamps
    • Automatic rain-sensing wipers
    • Body-coloured door handles
    • 16-inch alloy wheels with 215/55 profile tyres


    • Three-spoke leather steering wheel
    • Black fabric seats
    • Eight-way power adjustable driver seat
    • Full-colour LCD instrument meter
    • Single-zone automatic air-conditioning with touch panel controls and rear vents
    • Cruise control
    • Econ fuel-saving mode button
    • Smart entry and push-start ignition
    • Remote engine start
    • Walk-away door lock
    • 60:40 split-folding rear seats
    • Seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system with rotary on/off and volume control knob and soft-touch function buttons, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support, smartphone connectivity, HDMI port
    • Eight speakers
    • Two USB ports
    • 16-inch spare wheel


    • Six airbags (front, side and side curtain)
    • Rear seat Isofix child seat anchors with top tethers
    • Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA)
    • Agile Handle Assist (AHA)
    • Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS)
    • Electronic Brake-Force Distribution (EBD)
    • Auto brake hold
    • Brake Assist
    • Hill Start Assist
    • Emergency Stop Signal (ESS)
    • Front and rear parking sensors
    • Multi-angle reverse camera

    2020 Honda Civic 1.5 TC facelift – RM129,600

    Adds on:


    • 1.5 litre DOHC VTEC Turbo engine
    • 173 PS (171 hp) at 5,500 rpm, 220 Nm at 1,700 to 5,500 rpm
    • 1,314 kg kerb weight
    • 0-100 km/h in 8.2 seconds


    • LED headlights
    • LED front fog lights
    • Chrome-finish door handles
    • 17-inch alloy wheels with 215/50 profile tyres


    • Black leather seats
    • Dual-zone automatic air-conditioning with touch controls and rear vents
    • Paddle shifters
    • Premium interior garnish
    • Auto dimming rear-view mirror


    • Honda LaneWatch camera system

    2020 Honda Civic 1.5 TC-P facelift – RM139,600

    Adds on:


    • 1,327 kg kerb weight
    • Electric power steering (EPS) with 5.9 metre turning radius


    • Trunk spoiler (rear wing)
    • 18-inch alloy wheels with 235/40 profile tyres


    • 17-inch spare wheel


    • Honda Sensing suite of safety/driver assistance systems, consisting of:
    • Forward Collision Warning (FCW)
      Collision Mitigation Braking System (CMBS)
      Lane Departure Warning (LDW)
      Lane Keep Assist System (LKAS)
      Road Departure Mitigation (RDM)
      Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC)
      Low Speed Follow (LSF)
      Auto High-Beam (AHB)

    GALLERY: 2020 Honda Civic 1.5 TC-P facelift

    GALLERY: 2020 Honda Civic 1.5 TC facelift with Modulo accessories package
    GALLERY: 2020 Honda Civic 1.8 S facelift

  • March 2020 week 1 fuel price – RON 97 up, diesel down

    Another Friday, and despite the developments that have unfolded in the past week, there is an update to the fuel price for the coming week (February 29 to March 6), with an increase in the price of RON 97 petrol on the cards.

    Users of RON 97 will have to pay two sen more for the fuel, which will go for RM2.40 per litre in the coming week. There is no change to the price of RON 95 petrol, which continues to stay at its fixed price ceiling of RM2.08 per litre, as it was last week.

    The price of Euro 2M diesel, however, has dropped by one sen to RM2.13 (RM2.14 last week), still below its RM2.18 capped price. This also means that Euro 5 diesel, which costs 10 sen more, will be priced at RM2.23 per litre.

    The finance ministry said that based on Automatic Price Mechanism (APM) calculations, the government will absorb a total of RM6.12 million to subsidise fuel for the period of February 29 to March 6.

    These prices remain effective until March 6, when the next fuel price update is announced. This is the eight edition of the current weekly fuel pricing format for the year and the 60th edition in total for the format, with runs from Saturday until the following Friday.

  • No planned price hike for CKD Toyota models – UMWT

    UMW Toyota Motor (UMWT) has announced that there are no planned price increase for CKD locally assembled Toyota models “at this time”. UMWT’s CKD line-up consists of the Toyota Yaris, Vios, Rush, Hilux, Fortuner, Innova and Hiace.

    “Earlier in the year, the finance ministry gave assurance that if any CKD model was affected by increased prices as a result of the transparent methodology of reporting the open market value (OMV), the increase would be fully absorbed/exempted by the finance ministry during 2020,” the company said in a statement.

    “Factors such as exchange rates and tax revisions can affect prices, but as far as possible, the company has always tried to maintain price stability by absorbing the increases as much as we can,” said UMWT president Ravindran K.

    This statement is a rather obvious response to Honda Malaysia’s announcement on February 21, which saw prices for the locally assembled Jazz, City and CR-V rise by 5.3% to 9.25%. Honda said then that the price hikes were caused by a review of customised incentives for its CKD models, and that it was not related to the OMV/excise duty valuation change issue that surfaced this year.

    What’s this OMV/excise duty issue about? More on that here and here.

  • PLUS Malaysia receives ISO 39001:2012 certification for road traffic safety management systems

    Highway operator PLUS Malaysia is the first in Malaysia to receive the ISO 39001:2012 Road Safety Traffic Management System (RTSMS) standard by the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), after being the first Asia Pacific highway to receive the Prince Michael International Road Safety Award last December.

    Managing director of PLUS, Datuk Azman Ismail received the certification from NIOSH chairman, Alice Lau Kiong Yieng in conjunction with the recently-held OSH Unity and Sustainability programme. The highway operator has rolled out a series of short- and long-term initiatives for the improvement of road safety by reducing the severity of road crashes, with the International Road Assessment Programme (iRAP) being used as the benchmark for road improvement, it said.

    The human factor is a key element in preventable mishaps, and to that end PLUS has collaborated with NIOSH for the co-development of the Expressway Operations Safety Passport (EOSP) programme to prevent human errors, especially amongst highway workers. The EOSP certification is mandatory for all roadside workers on PLUS highways before they are allowed to enter their work zones, the highway operator said.

    The strategic collaboration between PLUS and the authorities has reaped the rewards, the highway operator yielding the lowest accident rates (2.4%) compared to other roads and highways around the country. PLUS has also employed modern technology for the enhancement of its highway operations and services, applied to its highway patrol vehicles, traffic monitoring centre and the upskilling of its employees’ digital capabilities.

    With 1.7 million users served daily with a staff count of 4,000, PLUS leverages on the 3E (engineering, education and enforcement) approach towards managing safety on its highways since 2017, according to the highway operator.

  • Suzuki Jimny production to start in India in May 2020, mostly for exports – could be a new 5-door version

    The fourth-generation Suzuki Jimny is a car that’s high in demand from markets across the world, and the sole Japanese factory producing the small off-roader is at full stretch. Help is on the way though, from Maruti Suzuki in India.

    According to Autocar India, production of the Jimny will start in May this year, at Maruti Suzuki’s factory in Sanand, Gujarat, which has spare capacity. According to a source, “a bulk of the production will be exported,” which gives Maruti a business case for introducing the model in India, as domestic demand alone would not suffice.

    The source added that Maruti is looking at monthly production of 4,000 to 5,000 units of the Jimny, and six months after exports commence, the model will be launched in India with a sub-Rs 10 lakh (RM58k) price tag. The Jimny is also known as the Gypsy in India.

    There are separate reports saying that the Indian-made Jimny will be a five-door version of the existing model, which has a three-door body. However, the rumoured five-door model should tuck in under four metres in length to benefit from lower taxes in India. The three-door Jimny is 3,480 mm long, so there’s some room to grow.

    The Jimny is powered by the widely-used K15B 1.5 litre naturally aspirated engine with 102 hp/130 Nm, paired to a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic. The transmissions are linked to a part-time 4WD system with low range transfer gear (2H, 4H, 4L) – this ain’t no soft-roader.

    Now, with recent rumours of the Suzuki brand making a comeback in Malaysia via the Naza Group, perhaps there is a chance of this Indian-made five-door Jimny reaching our shores? With five doors and a slightly longer body, this Jimny might be an even better canvas for those cute Little G and Little D conversions.

    The price has to be right though, for both the importer and consumer. The Jimny is coveted by many, but its ASEAN prices vary – from RM93k in Indonesia to RM199k in Thailand and the equivalent of RM346k in Singapore.

    Are you interested, and if yes, what would be a fair price? Before you shout RM50k, bear in mind that the third-gen Jimny was launched here back in 2013 from RM87k, and that was an old car (it arrived after 15 years in production) with zero hype. And our ringgit was stronger back then.

    GALLERY: Suzuki Jimny at GIIAS 2019

  • Pure electric BMW 5 Series, 7 Series to debut soon?

    BMW’s aggressive expansion of its electromobility portfolio has given rise to many highly anticipated products, such as the iNEXT electric SUV and Vision M Next. Now, reports suggest that the automaker will introduce battery-electric versions of the existing G30 5 Series and G12 7 Series.

    According to German newspaper Handelsblatt, the 7 Series electric is expected to be launched in 2022, while the 5 Series is due a year later in 2023. Both models will be made at the existing production line and crown their respective model range.

    Before some of you start dismissing the legitimacy of this news, it’s worth remembering that BMW has already started doing road tests for the upcoming G20 3 Series electric. All three sedans share the same CLAR underpinnings, so battery-electric versions of the 5 and 7 is only a question of when, not if. Expect the larger sedans to be fitted with larger battery packs, as well as more powerful motors to match their petrol or PHEV counterparts.

    Speaking of the powertrain, all electrified BMW models will be powered by the automaker’s fifth-generation eDrive technology, which it claims can deliver a zero emissions driving range of up to 700 km. The system will first be introduced with the iX3, which boasts a driving range of 440 km thanks to a 74 kWh prismatic battery pack. There will still be some use of cobalt in the battery, but reduced by two thirds, BMW says.

    In fact, just last June, BMW showcased the Power BEV, a mad electric rocket powered by three motors that produce over 710 hp. It was clad in the shell of the G30 5 Series, and at full pelt was good for a 0-100 km/h sprint time of under three seconds.

    The three drive units are split – one mounted at the front axle and two (a double drive unit) at the rear axle. Those at the back are control separately, allowing e-torque vectoring and maximum thrust in the corners. BMW says this setup offers a more effective and precise power delivery, and acts as an “enhanced” version of a limited slip differential, much like what the folks at Porsche are doing.

  • AD: Win 3 years of Shell Helix for more journeys!

    Life is a journey, and as with any other journey, it’s full of ups and downs. Like you, your car will have to be ready to handle everything life throws at you, whether it’s going on a road trip with your friends, managing a crisis or an emergency, bringing your family back home for the festive season or attending your child’s graduation. Sound familiar?

    This means that you will need to rely on your car to start and drive, day in, day out. Now, even the most reliable car will break down if you don’t take care of it properly. Maintenance really is key; choosing the right engine oil for your car is crucial to ensure it runs smoothly for decades, just like a reliable friend who is always there for you at all times.

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    1Compared with API SN specification and based on Sequence IIIG oxidation test
    2Based on Sequence VG sludge test results using 0W-40
    3Based on ASTM D5800 NOACK volatility test
    4Based on ACEA M 111 fuel economy results compared with the industry reference oil)
    *Source: Based on a study conducted by an international market research company commissioned by Shell
    **Terms and conditions apply

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  • Citroen Ami revealed – cutesy fully-electric microcar with 8 hp electric motor, 5.5 kWh battery; from RM28k

    Earlier this month, Citroen dropped teasers for a new electric vehicle and we now know exactly what they cooked up. This is the new Ami, and it is the production version of a similarly-named concept that made its debut one year ago. Designed to make electric mobility accessible to the masses, the cute, two-seat microcar is actually classified as a light quadricycle in France, just like the Renault Twizy.

    Measuring just 2,400 mm long, 1,390 mm wide and 1,520 mm tall, the 485-kg Ami doesn’t take up a lot of space and with a turning diameter of just 7.2 metres, is perfectly suited for urban city driving. Fun fact, the Ami is actually smaller than a smart EQ fortwo.

    Featuring a boxy and an almost symmetrical shape, the Ami is certainly a unique sight to behold. Unlike the concept that had a more futuristic vibe to its design, the look of the end product is a lot more down to earth, even if it is still a bit unconventional.

    According to Citroen, the large glass panels represent 50% of the total surface above the body line, allowing for plenty of natural light to flood the cabin and promotes visibility. In a nod to the carmaker’s history, the side windows open by manually tilting upwards, just like the classic 2CV.

    On both ends, there’s a double-tier lighting setup for the headlamps, taillights and turn indicators, making it tricky to tell which way the vehicle is facing at first glance. To add to the confusion, the Ami sports asymmetrical doors that open in opposite directions, and the raised “bumps” seen on both sides of the vehicle perfectly mirror one another. You want quirky French design? Well, here you go.

    Fortunately, Citroen designed the rear of the car to have a window that extends a little further outward, as opposed to the one in the front that neatly tucks into the top of the vehicle’s nose. This, along with the decorative stripes on the quarter windows, do help to lessen the confusion.

    For customers who want some degree of customization, the Ami can be had with Pop or Vibe styling packages. The former adds on a roof spoiler along with sporty decals, while the latter goes for a more chic look featuring graphic accessories and roof rails.

    The Ami’s cabin is equally as interesting, with a flat-top dashboard that has an organiser to keep regularly-used items within easy reach. The carmaker says that “every nook and cranny is exploited to its fullest while storage space is cleverly distributed throughout the passenger compartment,” and this includes a recess at the passenger’s feet that can accommodate a cabin-sized suite case.

    Creature comforts include air-conditioning and that’s about it. There’s no dedicated infotainment system, and you’ll need to rely on your smartphone and/or a Bluetooth speaker for entertainment and navigation functions. Not a bad idea, considering how many of us rely on Google Maps, Apple Maps and Waze for the latter instead of a built-in solution.

    For motivation, the Ami is powered by an 8 hp (6 kW) electric motor – about eight times that of a standard home air-conditioner unit – that is good for a top speed of 45 km/h. The motor draws power from a 5.5-kWh lithium-ion battery, which provides a driving range of up to 70 km and can be charged via the on-board electric cable tucked near the right door. Once plugged in to conventional 220-volt socket, a full charge takes about three hours. Recharging can also be done at a regular charging station wallbox using a suitable cable.

    To keep track of the vehicle’s status, there’s the My Citroen mobile app that provides drivers with access to information like available range, charge status and time remaining for a 100% charge, mileage, maintenance alerts, after-sales appointment scheduling, and even locate nearby public charging stations.

    Given its classification as a quadricycle, the Ami can be driven without a driving license in the European Union from 16 years old on average (14 years old in France). There are also several ways of using the EV, including buying it outright, long-term rental or car-sharing when order books open from March 30 in France (first deliveries in June) – other countries (Spain, Italy, Belgium, Portugal and Germany) will follow later.

    Those who prefer the first option will need fork out the base price of 6,000 euros (RM27,890) including VAT in France. There’s also the option of a long-term rental contract (48 months) with a monthly payment of 19.99 euros (RM93) per month and downpayment of 2,644 euros (RM12,290). Lastly, the Ami will be part of PSA’s Free2Move car-sharing fleet with a price of 0.26 euros/minute (RM1.21/min) on top of a monthly subscription fee of 9.90 euros (RM46).

  • SPIED: Porsche Cayenne Coupe GT – new tailpipes signify higher performance version with over 800 hp?

    There’s more to come from the Porsche Cayenne Coupe line-up, as it appears that another variation on the sleek-roofed SUV is in the works. Dubbed the Cayenne Coupe GT based on information sourced by our spy photographers, a more potent powertrain is likely to be key differentiator here, judging by the revised exhaust outlet layout seen on the development vehicles here.

    Both the red and silver units seen here sport a pair of exhausts inboard of the dummy tailpipes, and past Porsches that have worn a different exhaust outlet design for the same model generation have meant a different engine; think 991-generation 911 facelift compared with various versions of the GT3, or 718 Boxster and Cayman with the addition of the Spyder and GT4 versions respectively.

    It however remains to be seen what engine exactly will go into the even more potent Cayenne Coupe seen here, though this will likely be a reworked version of the 4.0 litre biturbo V8 petrol engine which produces 550 PS and 770 Nm of torque in the fully internal-combustion Cayenne Turbo, or 680 PS and 900 Nm of torque from the same petrol V8 with the aid of a 136 PS/400 Nm electric motor in the Cayenne Turbo S E-Hybrid.

    Fitted with silver brake calipers and without a battery charging flap in sight, the development units here appear to be purely internal combustion, which could mean the Cayenne Coupe GT has the Lamborghini Urus and the W12-powered Bentley Bentayga in its sights in terms of outright horsepower.

    A report by Car Magazine however shows an earlier example of what appears to be the PHEV Cayenne Turbo S E-Hybrid with the new exhaust layout, complete with battery charging door and green brake calipers.

    This forthcoming electrified SUV has been said to use the powertrain from the also-forthcoming high-performance Panamera Turbo, which – according to sources – has been ‘confirmed’ by Porsche insiders to make 820 hp. Epic performance is on the cards, then, especially for an SUV weighing well over two tonnes. More details should surface in the coming months; until then, check out the gallery below.

  • Indonesia’s new capital city to use autonomous cars and EVs only – non-EVs prohibited from entering

    Indonesia will be relocating its capital city from Jakarta to East Kalimantan, and president Joko Widodo revealed recently that the city will only use autonomous and electric vehicles for mass transportation, The Jakarta Post reported. East Kalimantan is a province on the island of Borneo, one which it shares with Malaysia and Brunei.

    The president aims to turn the new capital into the first city in the world to use EVs and self-driving cars. “Mass transportation will be autonomous there. Private cars will also be autonomous or electric,” Jokowi said recently at the Indonesian Young Entrepreneurs Association. “We can be the first capital city with mass and private transportation using autonomous and electric vehicles. We will build it that way so everything can be efficient and cheap,” he added.

    The plan aligns with the Indonesian government’s vision of promoting electric cars, with a greater goal of reducing the country’s carbon emissions (its greenhouse gas emissions ranks among the highest in the world) while promoting domestic battery production. Indonesia is rich in cobalt and manganese, the two main components for making EV batteries.

    Coordinating Maritime Affairs and Investment Minister, Luhut Pandjaitan said: “Non-electric vehicles cannot enter the new capital city. They must park and the passengers enter the city using public transportation. There will be parking lots for non-EVs.” The Indonesian government added that the public transport sector will use autonomous systems such as autonomous bus rapid transit and an autonomous railway.

    To further drive EV uptake, Luhut said there will be lithium battery-production facilities in the new capital city to ensure the availability of power for the EVs. “We will produce lithium batteries in the region with hydropower energy. At the moment, Andrew Forrest (mining tycoon) from Australia is there to conduct [feasibility] studies, and also to look at hydro-green energy that will be produced after lithium batteries.”

    Apparently, the new capital will be developed using transit-oriented development (TOD) methods, which means every business and entertainment centre will be accessible within walking distance. Unlike Jakarta, the city will be compact, connected, and developed into clusters. This way, individuals can get to different destinations in just 10 minutes instead of travelling two hours by car to work.

    The government aims to have 80% of the people’s transportation needs to be served by public transportation, walking or cycling. This may prove to be a challenge considering the temperate, tropical conditions, but the land which the new city will sit on is currently a forested area. The new city will be developed on 256,000 hectares, but buildings and infrastructure will only take a fifth at 56,000 hectares. The rest are green areas.

    Now, the project is expected to cost 466 trillion rupiah (RM138.2 billion). The construction of government buildings and facilities will be fully funded by the state budget, while other development projects are expected to be funded by private sector funds and investments. The capital city relocation will take place by the end of Jokowi’s second term in 2024.

    What’s more, road access to and from the new city will be built this year, and the Indonesian government is looking for several foreign partners to help develop the green capital city. Discussions with SoftBank Group founder and CEO Masayoshi Son, SoftBank-backed ride-hailing Grab CEO Anthony Tan are ongoing; Jokowi had also offered the Crown Prince of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, a position on the steering committee of the new capital city project.

    The relocation project is undoubtedly ambitious. With this, the government wants to depict Indonesia as a forward-thinking and futuristic civilisation, but that doesn’t mean it’s free from controversies.

    One of the biggest risks in building a new capital in Borneo, according to Business Insider Malaysia, is that the planned deforestation could further raise Indonesia’s greenhouse gas emissions. Borneo’s forests consist largely of peatland, a type of wetland that holds about 12 times more carbon than other tropical rainforests. Just one hectare of peatland can release around 6,000 metric tonnes of CO2 when cleared.

    And then there’s the residents. The clustered “compact city” may take up less land mass, but the relocation could see more than 1.5 million new residents, mostly government employees and their families, uproot from Jakarta, according to Indonesia’s planning minister. To accommodate these residents, Indonesia plans to develop hundreds of thousands of acres of land.

    However, the minister has promised not to clear any protected forests, but the peatlands will have to be drained to support the construction buildings and highways, which could make the turf drier and more vulnerable to fires. Many parts of Borneo’s peatland forest have been cleared via burning for palm oil plantations, which released more than 140 million metric tonnes of CO2. That’s about the same as the annual emissions of 28 million cars.


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Last Updated 22 Feb 2020


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