2017 had been a fascinating year for the Malaysian automotive industry with a diverse range of new models announcing their arrivals on our shores. Among them were the curvy Lexus LC500, the mighty Honda Civic Type R, and the year’s blockbuster, the third-generation Perodua Myvi. With everyone back to their daily grind, let’s look at the cars we’d love to see arrive in Malaysia.
As you might’ve gathered from our site, planned car launches for 2018 include the Toyota C-HR , Volvo XC60, Proton’s upcoming SUV with Geely and many more. What about the less conventional ones – those which have yet to be determined if they would make business sense but some of us as minorities would like to have?
We begin with a budget SUV from the Renault group which is sure to find its footing in our SUV-crazed market. Its introduction will be timely, given the fact that the new second-generation Duster made its international debut not too long ago. The Duster’s affordable price tag and its unsophisticated characteristics had won sales and accolades in Europe and many other developing nations.
As this Romanian brand is unheard off by most Malaysians, word has it that it could be introduced and rebranded as either a Nissan or Renault SUV. A rugged, unpretentious SUV with the price tag of a B-segment sedan, what could possibly go wrong?
With the huge number of HR-Vs finding their way into Malaysian homes, it is a testament that subcompact SUVs/crossovers are well received here. Toyota seems to have responded as well with the funky C-HR, due for launch locally real soon. However, both Honda and Toyota still trail in the success of a certain Nissan in the UK and Europe – the Qashqai.
Now in its second-generation, and with over half a million units sold in the UK, the Qashqai is Nissan’s “cash” cow and that’s not surprising. The Qashqai is practical and comfortable, traits that resonate well with small families – a sentiment we don’t doubt would be applicable here.
Over here, Mercedes-Benz had pretty much covered all the vehicle segments save for the pickup segment. A few months back, the three point star continued its bid for world domination with the unveiling of its first luxury pickup – the X-Class.
Riding on a platform shared with the Nissan Navara, the X-Class is offered with one petrol and three diesel engines. Our gut feeling tells us that Mercedes-Benz Malaysia (MBM) would bring the X-Class’ range-topper, the Power trim, which is powered by a 3.0-litre V6 turbodiesel. It shows that luxury has no boundaries – literally.
Renault Megane RS
The previous generation Renault Megane RS was a real front-wheel drive force to be reckoned with. On that note, it would be a shame if the new model was omitted; given the fact that the fourth-generation Megane RS would give the Volkswagen Golf GTI and the newly launched Honda Civic Type R a run for its money.
The new model is now powered by an all-new 280 hp 1.8-litre turbocharged engine and gains extra two doors. Also first for a Megane hot hatch is a six-speed dual clutch EDC transmission. So far, Renault has only previewed the Megane’s mild hot hatchback equivalent, the GT, to the Malaysian public. With such respectable performance figures, the Megane RS should be a worthy candidate when the Civic Type R needs a sparring partner.
If a car were to be art, the Volkswagen Arteon would be it. The name Arteon is the portmanteau of “art” and “eon”, indicating the upmarket intention of this Passat CC replacement.
Aesthetics wise, from every angle you look at it, the Arteon could simply do no wrong look again. Despite the Passats stranglehold on the premium sedan segment, we reckon the Arteon can still find its way into our local buyer’s interests.
Alfa Romeo Stelvio
It has been four years since the Italian brand had absent in Malaysia, but word is that the Turin-based manufacturer could be making a comeback. If 2018 is the year to resurrect the Alfa Romeo brand in this country, the best car to represent them is the Alfa Romeo Stelvio.
Named after a remote Alpine pass in Italy, the Stelvio SUV joins the Giulia as the beacon of hope to revive the fortunes of the ailing Italian car maker. It’s one SUV that’s truly worthy of the ‘Sport’ badge, thanks to its powerful four-cylinder turbocharged engine and lovely handling. Being an Alfa, its also more good looking than the likes of Audi Q5 and Porsche Macan.
So here you go, the six cars we would like to so this arrive in our peninsula this year if not soon. What other cars do you think should be introduced here? As always, tell us in the comments section.