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Second generation of Volkswagen Amarok to go on sale from end of 2022

2022 Volkswagen Amarok

Collaborating on products is nothing new nor unusual in the auto industry. It costs a massive amount of money to develop a new model and unless the potential volume over the life of the model is sufficiently high, it may not be worth the expenditure on R&D. So carmakers will team up and jointly develop a new model and share the costs, which would make better business sense if the volumes are not going to be very big.

Even our Perodua teamed up with Toyota and Daihatsu to develop the first Myvi, which each carmaker then added its own styling differences for differentiation. The sharing of costs sometimes allows a better equipped product to be developed as the money saved can be used for better features.

Volkswagen is no stranger to such partnerships and has shared products with companies like Ford and Toyota, among others. In the past, its Sharan MPV was also sold as a Ford Galaxy and now, the latest model to be shared by the two companies is the Amarok, which is adapted from the latest 4th generation Ford Ranger (to be launched in Malaysia this month).

2022 Volkswagen Amarok

First generation of the Amarok.

To be built in South Africa
The new Amarok is like the previous Rangers and Mazda’s BT-50, which was a shared product as well. And like those trucks, the Amarok will also be initially built at the same plant as the new Ranger in South Africa. Later on, production will also start at Volkswagen’s own factory in Argentina which has been making the first generation of the Amarok that was introduced in 2010.

The new Amarok was developed largely in Australia, probably at Ford’s facilities, but Volkswagen also mentions Germany which would have been where the styling work would have been done. It will be sold as a premium pick-up truck and appear in Australia and New Zealand, numerous countries of Africa, the Middle East and Europe. While North America is not mentioned and perhaps it would be a tough market to enter, it’s interesting that Volkswagen does not have Asian markets in mind either. Perhaps the dominance of models like the Toyota Hilux and Isuzu D-MAX also make it challenging to compete in, not to mention the fact that the Ford version is sold widely.

The first generation of the Amarok now looks pretty dated but then again, it was developed over 15 years ago. Since then, many new technologies have been developed and trucks have also gained more sophistication. Thus for the new model, it is a big leap technologically with over 20 new driver assist systems, mobile online services, all-wheel drive technologies, and high efficiency/high-torque powerplants.

With over 830,000 units sold, the first generation established the Amarok as a tough vehicle, though a bit basic in comparison to rivals. The new one is bigger, more powerful and more athletic. It has a frontal appearance that follows Volkswagen’s design language so it is well differentiated from the Ford.

2022 Volkswagen Amarok

“For the new generation, we have significantly modified the Amarok’s archetypal design. It is now unambiguously more expressive and even more impressive”, said Albert Kirzinger, Head of Design at Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles. Making a statement in itself is the new front section of the truck which will have three specification variants, as well as the top versions with off-road styling and exclusive styling. The new Amarok will be offered with two bodystyles – a 4-door double cab and 2-door single cab.

Long wheelbase enhances proportions
At 5350 mm, the new Amarok is 96 mm longer than its predecessor. The wheelbase has also been extended to 3270 mm, representing an increase of 173 mm. That allows more room within the cabin, especially for the rear passengers in the double cab. The longer wheelbase shortens the body overhangs, which is not only gives sharper proportions but is also advantageous in off-roading as there are better approach angles. The off-road capabilities of the Amarok are also enhanced by a much greater fording depth for driving through deep water; previously it was 500 mm, now it’s 800 mm.

High-quality interior
With its self-explanatory and digital displays, the interior has been configured by the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles design team in a very functional and high-quality way. The spectrum of display units is made up of digital 8-inch instruments (Digital Cockpit, fully digital) and 12-inch panels with a large touchscreen in tablet format.

2022 Volkswagen Amarok

2022 Volkswagen Amarok

2022 Volkswagen Amarok

After much research, the interior designers implemented a mix of digital functions and ergonomically configured buttons and/or push/rotary switches in the Amarok that are intuitive to use. The infotainment system’s volume and all-wheel drive system’s settings are controlled via such hard keys which make better sense than touch operation.

2022 Volkswagen Amarok

The sound system is from Harman Kardon and will be standard for the high-end versions and optional for others. It is used exclusively in the Amarok and complements the premium appearance of the leather-look instrument panel with elegant contrast stitching. The premium positioning is also matched by the seating which has electric adjustments.

2022 Volkswagen Amarok

Payloads of up to 1.16 tonnes
Behind the cab is a spacious load area which Volkswagen refers to as a ‘cargo box’. Its dimensions are sufficient for a Euro pallet loaded sideways. The single cab version can even take two pallets loaded sideways. The load is strapped down via eye rings on the cargo bed, each of which can take a load of up to 500 kgs. There is also boosted load capability – the maximum payload has gone up to 1.16 tonnes.

2022 Volkswagen Amarok

The cargo box can also be secured using an electrically operated roll cover, protecting the items inside. This roll cover can be opened and closed from the cargo box itself, from inside the vehicle or by remote control via the vehicle key.

5 turbocharged engines
Customers will have a choice of 4 turbodiesel engines and 1 turbocharged petrol engine. All the engines have high efficiency and high levels of torque. The engines offered in each market will depend on the needs of the customers. In African markets, for instance, the base specification engine will be a 4-cylinder, 2-litre turbodiesel with 150 ps output. But for many other markets, there will be a more powerful version which produces up to 170 ps.

10-speed automatic with 4MOTION systems
Amaroks with engine outputs of more than 209 ps will have a 10-speed automatic transmission as standard. This transmission is operated by an e-shifter which is a by-wire system. In addition, there will also be a 6-speed automatic transmission and manual 6 or 5-speed gearboxes for various engines and market preferences.

In many markets, the Amarok will come with Volkswagen’s 4MOTION all-wheel drive system as standard. Depending on region and engine, there will be two different 4MOTION systems. One will have selectable all-wheel drive based on the given situation, and one will be permanent all-wheel drive.

2022 Volkswagen Amarok

Driver assist systems
With pick-up trucks spending more time on highways rather than off-road, the need for driver assist systems to make driving safer is greater. To provide this, there are more than 20 of the driver assist systems in the Amarok. Where markets are suitable, the ACC+ Adaptive Cruise Control can incorporate road signs into the automatic control of speed via camera scans.

There are also 6 different driving profiles (Drive Modes) to assist the driver in a variety of terrain conditions. These customise the characteristics of the engine and drivetrain to optimise grip and stability so the driver can confidently explore off-road areas.

2022 Volkswagen Amarok

Volkswagen’s design boss wants to know what you think of a pick-up version of the ID. Buzz

Pirelli Cinturato Rosso launched in Malaysia, priced from RM250 – RM1,500

Pirelli’s Cinturato tyre is a historically significant product, having possessed a revolutionary design approach. Its structure has a belt encircling the radial carcass, and this provided a higher level stability that made it especially suitable for the growing number of high-performance cars as well as in motorsport.

From the time it was launched into the market in 1951, the Cinturato has had safety as its key proposition. Although its initial popularity was among sportscar owners and luxury models, the tyre became popular in other segments as its enhanced safety was appreciated and desired.

Over the decades, the Cinturato evolved with different versions to meet specific needs of different segments of the market. In 2022, this includes the Cinturato Rosso which has a strong focus on safety and comfort (including quietness) as long life.

These are basic requirements of a broad segment of motorists and Pirelli is marketing the tyre as a  replacement tyre, rather than as original fitment by carmakers. It is suitable for passenger vehicles, including compact SUVs and also MPVs, so it covers a very broad section of the market.

 

The Cinturato Rosso has been engineered to deliver good performance on both wet and dry surfaces with a number of features on its ample tread. For instance, the transverse grooves have variable depths and together with the 5o longitudinal channels, there is very efficient removal of water from under the tyre to reduce the risk of aquaplaning.

On dry surfaces, the tyre also has optimum grip not only for sharp handling but more importantly, short stopping distances. The high shoulder curvature and 6% broader footprint area put more rubber on the road to maximise grip.

But high performance tyres sometimes have too much focus on performance that comfort is compromised. Because the Cinturato Rosso is intended for everyday drivers in ‘normal’ cars, attention has been given to ensuring a comfortable ride. This is achieved with full grooved ribs with progressive phasing of the sipes. The noise generated by the tyre is lower and this matters a lot especially in European environments, and it also benefits the occupants who enjoy a quieter journey.

Full grooved ribs with progressive phasing of the sipes

With inflation bumping up living costs, consumers will appreciate a tyre that can last long. To provide improved mileage, the Cinturato Rosso has additional sipes on the centre rib to give more uniform tread pattern stiffness. The more event contact with the road will moderate wear and depending on driving conditions, give the tyre a longer service life. Factory tests against the Cinturato P1 show an 8% improvement.

Proof of better performance
Pirelli’s regional office organized a series of tests at the Sepang Circuit to allow the media to experience for themselves the performance claims. The tests were straightforward braking tests on wet and dry surfaces using Toyota Camrys fitted with Cinturato Rosso and Cinturato P1 tyres so that comparisons could be made.

Different drivers got different braking distances from a speed of around 80+ km/h. The distances ranged from 26 metres to 30 metres and when braking on the Cinturato Rosso, there was a difference of about 2 or 3 metres. That distance could make the difference between stopping in time to avoid colliding with a vehicle ahead or hitting it and having an expensive repair bill.

To experience the quietness, we were offered a ride in a Toyota Alphard, which is a suitable vehicle for such a test since it is already well insulated as a premium MPV. The level of quietness was not really surprising then but it was apparent that the Pirelli tyres (like other tyres) still could not overcome the noise generated by some of the rough sections of our road surfaces. This has nothing to do with the tyres but is just the way they surface the road.

We understand that the Cinturato Rosso tyres sold in Malaysia come from a Pirelli factory in China. That they can be priced from RM250 (up to RM1.500, depending on the size) is certainly noteworthy for such an established brand better known for high-performance tyres (they supply tyres to all the F1 teams). As mentioned earlier, the extremely competitive market at the lower end makes it difficult for the reputable global players to offer attractively priced products because there is a minimum standard of quality they will not compromise on.

Pirelli’s Track Adrenaline system can make you a better driver on the track

 

CCTVs to also be used to catch traffic offenders in Kuala Lumpur?

For a long time now, CCTV (close-circuit TV) cameras have been watching major roads around Kuala Lumpur and even along the highways. The thousands of cameras (some of which are also accessible by the public at this website) help the authorities and highway operators to monitor the traffic conditions in real-time so that they are immediately aware if there is a bad jam or accident.

Now, the Federal Territories Ministry has come up with the idea that, besides monitoring the traffic situation, the cameras can also be used to catch road-users committing traffic offences. The ministry will discuss with Dewan Bandaraya KL (DBKL) and the police about applying this approach but before anything can start, there are still legal issues to be examined.

Images at the Jalanow website from CCTV cameras located around KL. There are probably many more which are not accessible by the public.

This would relate to whether images captured can be used as evidence to issue summonses and make charges for offences committed. Technically, this should be possible and in fact, camera imagery has long been used by speedtrap cameras as evidence of exceeding speed limits or going through red lights. More recently, the police have used drones to record motorists who have used emergency lanes to beat jams along the highways during the festive season. Presumably, the police will be able to use the images as evidence in court if challenged.

Use of traffic and other surveillance cameras to catch people committing offences is done in other countries. China, for example, has a very extensive network of cameras in its big cities and these use sophisticated recognition technology to identify vehicle numberplates. They also have sophisticated facial recognition technology to identify people moving on the streets. In Europe, the authorities have been using their cameras to catch motorists who are using their mobilephones while driving.

The AES cameras have been in use for many years to catch vehicles breaking speed limits.

So George Orwell’s 1949 book ‘Nineteen Eighty-Four’ about a society where ‘Big Brother’ is always watching you is actually happening in the 21st century. Orwell’s book wrote about a society where citizens were constantly being watched by ‘telescreens’ to keep them under control. It gained wider publicity when Apple Computers produced a commercial that used the ‘1984’ scenario and showed how one citizen rebelled against the control. It suggested that Apple’s products would ‘free’ people in some way where computers were concerned.

The presence of cameras watching 24 hours a day may seem intrusive but if people are aware and behave themselves rather than think they can easily get away breaking laws, then at least the objective is achieved. It is like the AES speedtrap cameras – motorists know they are there and will stick to the speed limit.

And the good thing about this automated process is that corruption can also be prevented. Without any human interaction, ‘black sheep’ in enforcement agencies would not have an opportunity to try to get bribes for not issuing summonses. The process will be automatic – an offence is confirmed and the summons is sent out, and it is up to the motorist to accept the charge and pay the fine or challenge it in court.

Police in Spain testing speedtrap camera systems that can detect vehicles braking to reduce speed!

Next Generation Ranger Set To Debut At The End of This Month!

An all-new next generation of the Ford Ranger makes its debut in Malaysia at the end of this month. Already being progressively introduced around the world, this is the smartest, most versatile and most capable Ranger to be introduced and will once again redefine the segment as a lifestyle vehicle for work, family and play – just like the first Ranger in the late 1990s.

Sime Darby Auto ConneXion (SDAC), the sole distributor for Ford in Malaysia, will start off with localised introductions of the next-generation Ranger in 5 regions (including East Malaysia) over 5 weekends from July 22, 2022, ahead of its nationwide availability.

Those who want to get the first look can sign up here to receive regular updates and exclusive debut invitations. Attendees will receive an in-depth product presentation and walk-around of the vehicle as well as be able to talk to a sales consultant and place bookings.

Everything about this next-generation Ford Ranger is new as it has been redesigned from the ground up. As with every Ford vehicle, the new Ranger is Built Ford Tough and has been developed and tested over millions of kilometres in the toughest conditions on the planet.

For this new model, the design team looked at the much larger F-150 truck – one of the best-selling vehicles in the world – and also considered the iconic features that have evolved with the Ranger over the years. The bold looks are maintained, with evolutionary changes in the surface treatments that are stronger and more muscular for added distinctiveness.

As the smartest, most versatile and most capable Ranger ever, the next-generation Ranger is an even more desirable and trusted partner for work or for play… or both. It offers a refined interior with premium comfort, advanced technologies and safety features that keep it in a leadership position among pick-up trucks.

“Ranger customers are proud makers and doers who value a well-rounded quality of life. The next-generation Ranger is exactly the vehicle these customers need to Live the Ranger Life – to take control of their work, fearlessly explore the places they like to play and strengthen connections with family, community and other like-minded individuals,” said Turse Zuhair, Managing Director, Sime Darby Auto ConneXion-Ford.

Once they have joined the Ranger family, owners can join the Ford Ranger Getaways – an immersive Live the Ranger Life experience. This community-based adventure platform brings to life the unique experience of Living the Ranger Life through a series of handpicked local adventures. Like-minded individuals who are part of the Ford Inner Circle can gather to build kinships while enjoying the versatility, capability and full potential of their Rangers across all variants.

Ranger owners can choose from a range of getaways, including off-roading courses to test the limits of their vehicles, becoming a pilot for a day, enjoying a leisurely day with nature or relaxing during a simple retreat with family.

To find out more about other fun and exciting outings and to book a special Ford Ranger Getaways visit here.

For more information about the next-generation Ranger, SDAC and Ford, follow the Ford Malaysia Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube channel or visit www.sdacford.com.my.

2022 Nissan Serena S-HYBRID updated with cosmetic changes and added safety features

2022 Nissan Serena S-HYBRID

Though SUVs seem to be what everyone wants these days, there is still good demand for other types of vehicles and for those who want space and versatility, the MPV remains a good choice. Among the MPVs sold by the non-Malaysian brands, the most popular model in 2021 was the Nissan Serena S-HYBRID. It was the first hybrid MPV to be assembled locally and is still the only MPV assembled in Malaysia with a hybrid powertrain.

When this generation was first introduced by Edaran Tan Chong Motor (ETCM), it was already equipped like a premium MPV – but without the premium price. Local assembly kept its price a long way down from the big Japanese MPVs and it very quickly established itself among businessmen wanting a mobile office and families with lots of members.

That it was already good value for money and selling very well made it tricky for the product planners to make it better. Nissan had updated the model, which is also very popular in Japan, and refreshed the styling a bit as well as enhanced safety.

This updated model has reached Malaysia and was launched today with two variants being offered – the Serena S-HYBRID Highway Star and Serena S-HYBRID Premium Highway Star. priced at RM149,888 and RM162,888, respectively (without insurance, for registration in Peninsular Malaysia).

Cosmetic changes with new grille
The cosmetic changes on the exterior include redesigned dual projector LED headlamps on either side of the new V-Motion grille that now has a sophisticated chrome pattern over its expansive surface. The front bumper has also been redesigned with integrated foglamps incorporating Daytime Running Lights at each corner.

2022 Nissan Serena S-HYBRID

2022 Nissan Serena S-HYBRID

At the rear the bumper is also a new moulding and has Gloss Black finishing for a classy touch. The rear light units have also been redesigned, providing immediate identification for the latest Serena S-HYBRID.

All-round protection with 360° Safety Shield
The latest Nissan models, including the Serena S-HYBRID, have a range of Nissan Intelligent Mobility technologies to increase safety and also make journeys more comfortable. These technologies make up the 360° Safety Shield to give complete all-round protection.

For the new Serena S-HYBRID, the 360° Safety Shield has enhanced Active Safety with 5 new systems added. These systems not only improve the driver’s awareness of the surroundings but can also autonomously take action to prevent an accident. They are Intelligent Predictive Forward Collision Warning & Intelligent Forward Emergency Braking, Lane Departure Warning, Blind Spot Warning, and Rear Cross Traffic Alert.

While most of the systems will provide alerts to the driver when there is another vehicle nearby and there is a risk of collision, the Intelligent Predictive Forward Collision Warning & Intelligent Forward Emergency Braking systems go further. The radar sensor located in the front of the vehicle detects the distances between the two cars ahead, as well as their relative speed. This allows the system to assess the situation ahead and determine whether there is a collision risk.

In most cases, the driver would either decrease speed or brake to avoid colliding with the vehicle in front. But there may be times when he or she may not react in time (due to being distracted by something or not attentive) and if no correct response occurs after the alert has been given, the system will automatically apply the brakes (Automatic Emergency Braking).  In this way, a potential collision with a vehicle ahead could be avoided or if not, then the damage could be reduced due to the lowered impact speed.

2022 Nissan Serena S-HYBRID

Also helping the driver’s awareness of the surroundings is the Intelligent Around View Monitor. This can be found in more and more vehicles today but the one in the Serena S-HYBRID has one extra feature: Intelligent Moving Object Detection. While small cameras capture the image on all sides of the vehicle to form a simulated overhead view, sensors also monitor the areas and if there are moving objects, the driver will be alerted.

2022 Nissan Serena S-HYBRID

On long journeys, fatigue can set in and make the driver drowsy. While the Lane Departure Warning system will alert the driver if the vehicle starts to drift out of its lane dangerously, there is also an Intelligent Driver Alertness system that monitors the driving behaviour.  If it determines that the driver is behaving in a manner that suggests drowsiness, an alert will come on and the driver should take a break.

Being a long MPV with three rows of seats means that there is more glass area along the sides. For added protection during a side impact or violent accident, full-length curtain airbags will deploy downwards. These airbags will cover the window openings, greatly reducing the risk of not only injuries but also being ejected from the vehicle. The driver and front passenger also have airbags at the front and sides for their protection.

‘Zero Gravity’ seats
The long and spacious cabin has three rows of seats, with Captain’s Seats in the second row. These provide more comfortable seating with their generous width and like the front seats, they have a ‘Zero Gravity’ design. The design concept, which was inspired by NASA studies on astronauts, creates a neutral posture position which is proven to reduce fatigue

2022 Nissan Serena S-HYBRID

As with all MPVs, the seating can be arranged in various ways to carry more people or more cargo or long items. Quality materials are used and with the Premium Highway Star variant, combination quilted Nappa leather (available in brown or black) has a premium look and feel.

To add to the premium ambience within, soundproofing liners have been added to the rear wheel housing. This supresses NVH (Noise, Vibration & Harshness) levels to deliver a quieter, experience for all passengers.

Entertainment on the move is provided by a 6-speaker infotainment system managed from a new 9-inch full-colour touchscreen. Besides the standard functions, there is also Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, enabling favourite apps from compatible smartphones to be transferred onto the display panel. This means that navigation apps like Google Maps or Waze can be viewed and accessed from the touchscreen and/or voice-activated too.

2022 Nissan Serena S-HYBRID

As almost everyone has at least one portable electronic device nowadays, recharging the battery is a daily requirement. When in the Serena S-HYBRID, there won’t be fighting over the recharging port as up to 7 USB ports are provided around the cabin.

Convenient side and back doors
Retained from the 2021 model are the highly appreciated Dual Back Door and Hands-Free Dual Power Sliding Doors. The Dual Back Door concept is unique to the Serena S-HYBRID and provides convenient and faster access to the ample cargo area. For large and tall items, the whole of the rear door can be raised but if there are small items like groceries, it is unnecessary to lift the whole door. The upper half can be opened separately and the items can be easily dropped inside. This is also extremely useful in tight spaces.

2022 Nissan Serena S-HYBRID

2022 Nissan Serena S-HYBRID

While powered dual sliding doors are found on many MPVs these days, the Hands-Free Dual Power Sliding Doors on both sides of the Serena S-HYBRID are less common and usually available only on more expensive models. With the hands-free capability, the doors can be opened by just placing a foot under the side of the vehicle (provided the remote key fob is in the pocket or handbag).  A sensor will detect the foot and automatically power the door open.

Hybrid tech for efficiency
Hybrid technology continues to power the MPV and the hybrid drivetrain incorporates an Energy Control (ECO) electric motor which controls the idle-stop system. It also provides torque assistance on moving off, the period when the engine is under high load. The assistance reduces this load, thereby improving fuel efficiency. The S-HYBRID system thus gives some of the benefits of a hybrid powertrain without the associated high costs.

2022 Nissan Serena S-HYBRID

The petrol engine is a 2-litre Twin CVTC (Continuously-variable Valve Timing Control) 4-cylinder unit which has proven its reliability and durability over the years. It is equipped with a Dual Arm Tensioner which optimises tensile force on the belt to reduce friction, power losses and increases fuel efficiency. An ECO MODE can also be activated to assist the driver to improve fuel efficiency without losing driving pleasure or comfort.

2022 Nissan Serena S-HYBRID

The hybrid drivetrain is paired with the Nissan XTRONIC CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission) with Adaptive Shift Control to coordinate control between engine and transmission.  The intelligent control system interprets the driver intentions from the acceleration and steering and determines the optimum transmission ratios to deliver class-leading fuel economy.

The new Serena S-HYBRID is available for viewing and test-drives at all Nissan showrooms throughout Malaysia. To locate a showroom, visit www.nissan.com.my. For those who are not able to visit Nissan showroom, they can also go to the Nissan Online Showroom where there is information on Nissan products and services in Malaysia.

Perodua received 25,100 bookings in just one day!

Earlier this year, Perodua stated that its sales target for 2022 is 247,800 units, a 30% increase over the 190,291 units it delivered nationwide in 2021. So far, in spite of the shortage of vehicles due to production limitations causes by the global microprocessor shortage, the company says it will still maintain that target.

It has in fact done slightly better in the first half of the year, delivering 127,343 vehicles – slightly more than half of the year’s target. The volume is a 30% jump from the 97,290 units sold during the same period from January to June in 2021.

It is clear that the exemption of sales tax allowed by the government to help the industry in its recovery has encouraged many to get a new vehicle – even at a time when there are financial challenges as living expenses keep going up.

In fact, on June 30 – the last day of the exemption period – Perodua alone received an incredible 25,100 bookings by customers wanting to be eligible for the 10% tax exemption. While it obviously could not deliver all the vehicles booked by the deadline, the government is allowing later deliveries for the orders to still be entitled to the exemption provided the new vehicles are registered not later than March 31, 2023.

The 25,100 bookings were an unprecedented number in Perodua’s history and stunned everyone in the company. On just that one day, the number of orders received exceeded the monthly average (20,650 units) necessary to meet the 2022 target.

Now it is up to Perodua to keep pushing out as many units as its two plants can. While the microprocessor shortage is one issue preventing completion of vehicles, there is also the problem of shortage of parts from some suppliers who are facing worker shortages, affecting their output.

“While the increase in registrations in June 2022 was partly due to better parts supply compared to the month of May, there are also issues such as skilled labour and parts shortages [at the suppliers] still present,” said Perodua President & CEO, Dato’ Zainal Abidin Ahmad.

Dato’ Zainal asked for understanding from customers in terms of delivery, apologising for the long wait. “We are doing everything in our power to further improve production for the benefit of our customers,” he said.

Some of the actions being taken include working closely with suppliers and, in some cases, providing Perodua staff to work at their premises to ensure that parts supply continue to flow.

“That being said, we hope that the manpower issue can be resolved quickly as the impact to the industry and, to some extent, the country is significant,” he said, adding that there is ongoing communication with the suppliers and partners to find alternative supply of the needed components.

Of the 127,343 units registered in the first 6 months of 2022, the Myvi was still the most popular model with 38,039 units registered. It was followed by the Axia (29,183 units) and Bezza (28,719 units). More recent data shows that the Bezza is the most sought-after model at the moment. There has also been strong interest shown in the all-new Alza MPV which will be launched in the very near future.

Visit www.perodua.com.my to find out more about Perodua’s products and services or to locate a showroom to view and test the latest models.

Perodua to surge forward in 2022 with RM1.326 billion investment

 

Bonuslink rewards programme enhanced with 4-level structure

From this month Shell Malaysia and BonusLink are offering their Extra rewards and loyalty programme with enhancements. The consumer rewards programme, now having more than 14.9 million members nationwide, has a new 4-level structure – Member, Silver, Gold and Platinum – which increases the level of rewards as members collect more BonusLink points at Shell stations nationwide.

Get points with card or app
As always, getting Bonuslink points can be done by fuelling up, or buying snacks or lubricants at the stores in the stations. Points can be collected either by using the BonusLink card or the BLINK App with each purchase.

Depending on the tier status, members are entitled to enjoy customer-exclusive rewards and various perks of up to 3X BonusLink Points multiplier, Deli2Go and Upsize Coffee promo, discounts on Shell products, birthday treats and more.

Extra rewarding experience
“As a mobility retailer, we are constantly evolving with our customers and striving to provide quality at every touchpoint. Our partnership with BonusLink allows us to give our customers an extra rewarding experience every time they fuel and shop at our stations,” said Seow Lee Ming, General Manager Mobility, Shell Malaysia & Singapore.

“Starting July 2022, BonusLink is taking the loyalty services one step further to reward our loyalty members. This is an exciting time for us as we begin to transform our service offerings to add value and to offer more rewards to our members based on their level. With this, members can enjoy an array of goodies and Extra Points simply by continuing to swipe their BonusLink Card or their Virtual Card via BLINK App at Shell,” explained Melvin Ooi, CEO of BonusLink.

Sunshine powers Shell stations in Malaysia

Mazda to introduce all-new e-SKYACTIV-D 3-litre 6-cylinder turbodiesel engine

Contrary to whatever you make think, the internal combustion engine that Rudolf Diesel invented in the late 19th century is not ready to go into the history books yet. The engine named after him that has powered millions of vehicles – and not just motor vehicles – for more than 100 years may have gained a bad reputation at various times in its life, but its robustness and fuel efficiency have made it the preferred choice for commercial vehicles.

The introduction of the commonrail high-pressure fuel delivery system 20 years ago made it more popular for passenger vehicles as it enhanced performance and various solutions were found to reduce its ‘dirty’ image (although ‘dieselgate’ was damaging). Nevertheless, today’s diesel engines, mostly with turbochargers boosting output, are still popular powerplants for vehicles like pick-up trucks and SUVs in the passenger-carrying category.

Mazda began developing its SKYACTIV technologies over 10 years ago to raise fuel efficiency and engine output, and it has been constantly upgrading the technologies which are applicable to both petrol and diesel powerplants.

Mazda has been one of the diesel ‘loyalists’ and used its long engineering expertise to develop powerful, clean and efficient engines as part of the SKYACTIV powertrain family. Like some other Japanese carmakers, Mazda believes that a multi-solution approach is more suitable in the quest to reducing emissions to address climate change. Not all countries will be able to switch to electric vehicles at the same pace and some may still require combustion engines or hybrids, at least.

It has therefore not given up further development on combustion engines, pushing to the limits of the envelope to achieve lower emissions and better performance. It has now revealed an all-new e-SKYACTIV-D diesel engine which will be added to the Mazda CX-60 line-up in 2023.

Super-clean diesel engine
The new diesel engine is a Mazda first – a 3.3-litre unit that features Distribution-Controlled Partially Premixed Compression Ignition (DCPCI) Technology. This highly innovative advanced combustion technology makes the new e-SKYACTIV-D one of the cleanest diesel engines in the world, achieving a thermal efficiency of over 40%.

Developed using the ‘right sizing’ concept which optimises displacement to improve both fuel and power efficiency, the 3283 cc longitudinally installed commonrail electric direct injection 6-cylinder engine will have two power output levels: 200 ps and 254 ps. Depending on the model variant, there will be either 2-wheel drive or all-wheel drive.

Uses 48V hybrid boost system
The engine uses a new 48V Mazda M Hybrid Boost system to combine high output with excellent fuel economy. Together with the DCPCI technology, engine efficiency, emissions and fuel economy are improved. These contribute significantly to greater driving range, better performance and yet lower fuel consumption and low emissions.

6-cylinder engines are inherently smooth due to their ‘perfect balance’, which will contribute to drive enjoyment. The engine’s high torque delivery gives strong pulling power, even with a 2,500-kg trailer. Though it has a larger displacement and more cylinder, the e-SKYACTIV-D’s lightweight construction makes it weigh not more than the 2.2-litre Mazda SKYACTIV-D 4-cylinder turbodiesel engine used in the CX-5.

More new powertrains coming
In total, Mazda is launching 5 new electrified products in the next 3 years that feature its multi-solution platform architecture. These will include an in-line straight-six 3-litre e-SKYACTIV petrol engine and an e-Skyactiv PHEV. For the European market, the launch of the new CX-60 will take Mazda further forward in its fleet’s emission reduction to become entirely carbon-neutral by 2050. After 2025, the company will launch its brand new SKYACTIV EV Scalable Architecture which will allow Mazda to efficiently build electric cars of all sizes using one common platform.

Mazda to use SKYACTIV-D engine with next-generation biofuel in endurance racing

Proton Tg. Malim engine facility assembles new-generation engines

Proton Tanjong Malim engine plant 2022

Proton has long had its own engine factory, with the first one having been opened in the Glenmarie industrial estate of Selangor in the 1990s. Over the years, this factory has provided millions of engines for various Proton models and continues to do so.

Now, with the new generation of engines in the carmaker’s latest models, it is time to have a new facility to assemble the 1.5-litre TGDI (Turbo Gasoline Direct Injection) JLH-3G15TD 3-cylinder engine used in the X50 and X70 models. This is the first time the engine is being assembled outside China at is one of the most advanced automotive engine assembly lines in the country at the Proton Tanjung Malim manufacturing complex in Perak.

Proton Tanjong Malim engine plant 2022

Proton Tanjong Malim engine plant 2022

Located within the Engine and Powertrain facility, the assembly line covers an area of 18,000 sq. metres and has a current maximum capacity of 180,000 engines when running on three shifts. The new facility is also part of the RM1.8 billion Proton is making to upgrade its facilities at Tanjung Malim, also known as Proton City.

Award-winning engine
The award-winning JLH-3G15TD engine is used not only by Proton but also by other brands in the diverse Geely Group. When the many other models are included, over 750,000 vehicles sold globally are now powered by this engine.

Proton Tanjong Malim engine plant 2022

The engine, the result of a project which started about 10 years ago, follows industry trends of downsizing to gain better fuel efficiency and also reduce undesirable exhaust emissions. While downsizing the displacement on its own has meant lower power output, this is not the case with the JLH-3G15TD. In fact, in spite of its smaller displacement and one cylinder less, its output is actually comparable to much bigger engines with 130 kW and 255 Nm.

This has been possible with advanced technologies, 4 valves per cylinder, dual variable valve timing, optimised thermal and lubrication systems, a low inertia turbocharger, and homogenised 200-bar direct fuel injection system. It is also capable of meeting Euro 6 requirements.

Proton Tanjong Malim engine plant 2022

Proton Tanjong Malim engine plant 2022

Localisation of parts
As a Malaysian carmaker, Proton has always prioritised localisation and where possible, it has sourced parts from Malaysian suppliers, although in the era of globalisation, there are also some suppliers from other countries in the region. For this new engine, there are currently 72 parts supplied by 19 Malaysian and 4 ASEAN vendors.

The company is also using the new assembly line to advance its human capital development goals, with 202 workers directly employed to work there. With an average age of just 24 years, they represent the next generation of skilled automotive manpower for the nation.

Proton Tanjong Malim engine plant 2022

“Proton’s new engine assembly line showcases the company keeping its promises to its stakeholders. When the agreement was made to partner with Geely in 2017, one of our commitments was to invest in Malaysia’s automotive industry both financially and through the introduction of new high technology components. The new assembly line does this while also giving PROTON an avenue to attract and develop young talents who will help drive the automotive industry and the company into the future,” said Roslan Abdullah, Deputy CEO of Proton.

A closer look at the facility
Featuring 88 stations consisting of 17 automatic, 15 semi-automatic and 56 manual stations, the high-tech assembly line was built using an IR 4.0 ethos applying a high level of automation to boost productivity. A climate-controlled clean environment with an anti-static station to allow for the discharge of static electricity protects the electronic components used, while the assembly line utilises a conveyor system. This is not only smoother but is also cleaner, more durable and less costly to operate than one that uses a chain.

Proton Tanjong Malim engine plant 2022

All workers on the assembly line have undergone extensive training with Geely as well as the suppliers of the machines used. The equipment comes from well known suppliers such as ABB, COMAU, FEV China, FEV India, WiBeda and Hangxin.

The Internet of Things (IOT) technology is deployed in the form of intensive data capture and analytical tools to ensure that the quality meets the standards required and are maintained. Additionally, 207 Error Mistake Proofing (EMP) controls and 34 intelligent high-resolution cameras have been installed on the line to prevent process and assembly defects and reduce downtime with 100% real-time defect detection capabilities.

Proton Tanjong Malim engine plant 2022

“Quality is the main priority at our new engine assembly line. We know we need to show Malaysians that Proton is capable of building reliable high-quality products, so we have left nothing to chance. Aside from the quality monitoring measures deployed on the assembly line, we also work closely with our counterparts at Geely to trouble shoot issues and share best practices in our efforts to produce a world-class engine,” added Encik Roslan Abdullah.

Proton constructing additional stamping facility at Tanjung Malim factory

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