UMW Toyota Motor (UMWT) has officially launched the 2016 Toyota Vios at its headquarters in Shah Alam. Revealed online last week and already available in showrooms, the latest Vios looks rather familiar, but packs plenty of changes under the skin, which we’ll go through here. There’s an all-new powertrain under the hood of the B-segment sedan, which is now classified as an Energy Efficient Vehicle (EEV). The familiar 1NZ-FE engine and four-speed automatic combo has been replaced by a new 2NR-FE 1.5 litre Dual VVT-i unit, with variable valve timing on both intake and exhaust valves. It’s a member of the NR engine family, which also powers the Toyota Avanza facelift and Perodua Bezza 1.3L, among other cars. The all-aluminium engine with Iridium spark plugs is paired to a CVT automatic gearbox with a seven-speed Sport Sequential Shiftmatic manual mode. The five-speed manual gearbox option has been retained on the base 1.5J. Outputs are actually down compared to before … [Read more...] about New 2016 Toyota Vios launched in Malaysia
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The overarching trend of the past few years has been that the manual transmission is on the way out. People like automatics, they can be faster than manually shifting, and they're frequently better at saving fuel. But there's still a sizable enough minority of manual fans and buyers that automakers continue to offer a manual in nooks and crannies of the automotive market. And you might be surprised at some of the offerings. We certainly were, so we thought we'd compile a list of cars with an available manual, to narrow the options for those of you who absolutely must have three pedals. There are a number of surprises on this list. For instance, Jeep has quite a range of manuals. They're available on the Compass and Patriot, and amazingly, they can be coupled to four-wheel-drive and trim levels that aren't completely basic. A weird omission we found was the Mini Cooper Countryman. Every version of it is available with a manual, except the front-wheel-drive version of the Cooper S … [Read more...] about Shift list: All the new cars you can buy with a manual transmission
The term “game changer” has been thrown around rather liberally these days, although more often than not, the cars carrying the label have failed to shake up the segment. UPDATE: The Perodua Bezza has now been officially launched, with official prices ranging from RM37k to RM51k. ASEAN NCAP has also officially released the crash test results. As reported earlier, it’s five stars for the VSC-equipped 1.3L Advance and four stars for the other four variants. The Kia Optima K5 facelift was branded as such in Malaysia, and we’ve seen the phrase repeated in the local review blitz of the Volkswagen Vento. While certain elements are standout – the design of the K5 and the sophisticated drivetrain of the Polo Sedan facelift, for instance – the segment leaders have been untroubled. While the tenth-generation Civic has revitalised the fading C-segment, it’s a relatively small game in the tournament. Here’s something that I feel is a true game … [Read more...] about DRIVEN: 2016 Perodua Bezza Sedan
There’s no automotive segment in Malaysia that is quite as competitive as the B-segment sedan market. The crossover may be the darling of the car-buying public right now, but the affordable three-box, four-door with a small engine and a big boot remains firmly in the mainstream, and pretty much every mass-market carmaker that has a proper foothold in the Malaysian market has an entry in this cutthroat sector. For years, the Toyota Vios and its arch-rival, the Honda City, have sat at the top of the food chain, being the progenitors of the genre. At the time when the latter was an ungainly Jazz sedan, the world’s largest carmaker showed with the original Vios that you could have a handsome, reliable sedan for minimal outlay, and it established an early dominance. Fast forward to today, and the City has turned into a formidable competitor, with thrusting, square-edged styling hiding a new drivetrain and plenty of new toys. Hamstrung not least by an engine and gearbox … [Read more...] about DRIVEN: 2016 Toyota Vios review – new heart, but any better?