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New Car Launches For 2018 – Mainstream Brands

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New Car Launches For 2018 – Mainstream Brands

Seeing that 2017 has been a rather quiet period for some car companies, let’s take a look at what new cars we can expect in 2018

Perodua SUV / New Alza 

The launch of the all-new Daihatsu Terios in Indonesia certainly sparks interest. Rumours of the Perodua SUV fitted with a 1.5-litre engine that is expected to be based on this new Terios have been picking pace too, with some sources mentioning a launch from Perodua as soon as Q2 2018.

With the new Myvi setting precedence of having local styling and engineering, we can expect the Perodua SUV to have its own identity rather than a rebadged Terios. 

Could this Perodua SUV also be the model that appeals to both customer segments, replacing the aging Alza’s 7-seat capacity with rugged good looks of an SUV? The Honda BR-V is certainly proving that is the right formula to success. 

While the new Myvi comes fitted with the Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) in the highest AV grade, we do not foresee this feature being offer in the Bezza so soon, perhaps in its facelift improvement window in 2019.

Proton SUV and Proton MPV  

Proton and Geely have already confirmed the introduction of Proton’s first SUV, which is heavily based on the Geely Boyue, to be slated for late 2018. The rumour mill is also picking is the news of introduction of an all-new Proton MPV to replace the aging Exora, which will also be based from products within the Geely range.

The candidate for this new Proton MPV appears to be Geely VF11 which feature a much more stylish glasshouse with ‘floating’ roofline and more angled windscreen for a sportier, dynamic look as opposed to the utility friendly Proton Exora. 

Honda Accord 

Honda’s all-new Accord breaks the mold in a number of ways, seeing that it is the first Accord to ever offer turbocharged engines. Yes, Honda is offering two turbocharged engines in the all-new Accord.

Honda’s all-new Accord breaks the mold in a number of ways, seeing that it is the first Accord to ever offer turbocharged engines. Yes, Honda is offering two turbocharged engines in the all-new Accord.

The first is a 1.5-litre VTEC Turbo that does 192 hp and 260 Nm, while the second is a 2.0-litre VTEC Turbo that does 252 hp and 370 Nm. The smaller capacity engine is paired to a CVT-type automatic, while the more powerful 2.0-litre engine is hooked up to a 10-speed automatic. For the North American market, both engines can also be paired to a six-speed manual transmission.

Honda Sensing is also available on the all-new Accord, similar to the new CR-V, which incorporates Collision Mitigation Braking System™ (CMBS™), Lane Departure Warning, Road Departure Mitigation, Adaptive Cruise Control with Low-Speed Follow and new Traffic Sign Recognition.

Honda HR-V Hybrid 

The Honda HR-V Hybrid is likely going to be Honda Malaysia’s third hybrid model in their lineup, after the City Hybrid and Jazz Hybrid.

Similar to its siblings, the Honda HR-V Hybrid is expected to feature a 1.5-litre Sport Hybrid i-DCD powertrain paired to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.

We've recently sampled the Vezel Hybrid in Japan and found it to be a really competent compact SUV.

We could expect Honda Malaysia to introduce the new HR-V Hybrid alongside the facelifted HR-V some time this year.

Toyota C-HR and Toyota Harrier Turbo 

After previewing the Malaysia-bound specifications of Toyota C-HR and Toyota Harrier Turbo at the MAI Autoshow, Toyota is expected to deliver the hotly anticipated Thailand-made C-HR to their customers in later part of Q1 to early Q2 2018. Similarly, the Harrier Turbo imported from Japan will soon be on our roads from March 2018.

Toyota Rush 

Continuing theme of SUVs (and imported models), we can expect Toyota to introduce the all-new Indonesian-made Toyota Rush in early Q2, with the model already being previewed at its home market in November 2017. Firmed details such as a 1.5-litre engine, 7-seats and modern interior from the Indonesia market should be retained for Malaysian market.

Toyota Camry 

Moving to the sedan models, the highlight for Toyota will be their all-new Camry. It is being built on the all-new Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) with strong emphasis on driving experience, while the exterior design will not be much different from the current standard USA and Japan model.

Engine choices for our region remain unconfirmed, but expect the all-new 2.5-litre petrol hybrid to be offered here to maximize the benefits of EEV policies along with the current 2.0-litre VVT-iW engine with 6-speed transmission for the lower grades. Being a flagship model for Toyota sedan, we could also see the fitment of Toyota’s advance driving assist called Toyota Safety Sense P to counter the rivals who are already offering this safety suite. 

Toyota Vios 

The current Toyota Vios which did not include cosmetic updates during its Dual-VVTi and CVT powertrain upgrade, could see an all-new design late in 2018 based on the new Yaris Ativ. Already launched in neighboring countries which import the new Vios from Thailand, the later introduction into Malaysia takes into account of the local assembly transition which involves various vendors and suppliers. 

Toyota Yaris 

According to sources familiar with the matter, Toyota Yaris hatchback might be reintroduced into the Malaysian market. Seeing that the consumer still have appetite for Honda Jazz, Mazda 2 and Peugeot 208, Toyota is considering to launch the Thailand-sourced Yaris in late 2018.

Nissan Serena 

The C27 generation Nissan Serena was introduced in Japan back in August 2016, and the company has rolled out several variants of its family mover, including a Serena Nismo.

Edaran Tan Chong Motor (ETCM) is expected to introduce the new generation Serena in 2018, with the powertrain possibly carried over from the current C26 generation Serena.

Nissan Leaf 

If there’s one thing we particularly like about the all-new Nissan Leaf is the exterior design, as the new model dumps the quirky design of its predecessor, opting for a more contemporary design.

ETCM has confirmed that the all-new Leaf will be launched in Malaysia within the first half of 2018.

Nissan Kicks 

Initially slated for a 2017 debut, we understand that the new entry-level compact SUV from Nissan has been pushed to a possible 2018 debut.

When the Kicks arrive, we can expect the new compact SUV to compete with the champions of B-segment SUV, Honda HR-V and Mazda CX-3. Engineered on an extended Almera platform, costing/pricing can be ETCM’s triumph card and thus another potentially successful product from them.

Hyundai Kona 

Hyundai’s first ever entry to the compact SUV segment is no doubt a head turner, and that is in a good way, thanks to its striking exterior design.

When the Kona arrives here some time in the second half of 2018, we can expect to see two engine choices – a 1.6-litre T-GDI and a 2.0-litre MPI. Both Kona variants should be front-wheel drive only models.

Hyundai Santa Fe 

Pictured here is the current generation model.
Pictured here is the current generation model.

Perhaps the oldest model in their lineup, the Hyundai Santa Fe has been in its current form since 2012. Spyshots of the new Hyundai Santa Fe has emerged from South Korea, with some sites claiming that global debut will happen on February 2018.

 A Malaysian debut towards the end of 2018 is likely, though we might not be seeing the all-new Santa Fe until 2019.

Kia Picanto 

Naza Kia Malaysia teased the new generation Picanto a number of times in Malaysia, with the latest being at the 2017 Malaysian Autoshow. We have also seen spyshots and a teaser site for this entry Kia, thus, launch should be within this Quarter.

A 1.25-litre naturally-aspirated petrol engine can be expected, likely paired to a four-speed automatic, same as before. Additionally, the manual variant could be excluded for our market. 

Kia Cerato 

The Kia Novo concept previews the next generation Cerato.

The all-new Kia Cerato is set to be introduced at the 2018 Detroit Auto Show, bringing with it improved safety than ever before.

So features such as Forward Collision Warning and Lane Departure Warning can be expected in the all-new Cerato.

Similar to the all-new Hyundai Santa Fe, a debut towards the end of 2018 is possible.

Mazda CX-8 

Slotted between the CX-5 and CX-9, the Mazda CX-8 is a three-row SUV, though the model is available as a six- or seven-seater configuration.

Powered exclusively by a 2.2-litre SkyActiv-D turbodiesel for the Japanese market, when the model arrives here in 2018, expect the CX-8 to be fitted with a 2.5-litre SkyActiv-G engine instead.

Mitsubishi Xpander 

Mitsubishi’s first ever crossover MPV was introduced in Indonesia back in August 2017. According to a report by Reuters, the new Xpander will be exported from Indonesia starting February 2018, starting with Philippines. A Malaysia debut can be expected towards the second half of the year.

Power comes from a 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine that can be paired to a five-speed manual or a four-speed automatic.

Ford Ranger Raptor 

Photo of prototype from Ford Thailand website

One of the most anticipated pick-ups for the year will be the high-performance off-road Ford Ranger Raptor, which first broke cover in September 2017.

As of now, a register-of-interest page is only available at the Thailand website, but we can expect the Ranger Raptor to be launched here as the Ford Ranger range is one of the top selling pick-up models in Malaysia, plus contribute significant amount of revenue for local distributor Sime Darby Auto Connexion (SDAC).

Peugeot 508 and 5008 SUV 

With a facelift done in mid of 2015, it looks like we can expect the new 508 sedan to be launched in 2018. International spy shots of the new 508 indicate the sedan has substantially sleeker profile than its predecessor. Built on the new EMP2 platform, better performance all-around is expected from the weight reduction of the new platform and tweaked engine performance. 2018 is shaping up to be the year the D-segment models return, all-new and all-commanding. 

Continuing with the theme of flagship models, the new 7-seater 5008 SUV is also expected to be introduced. Initially planned for late 2017 launch, it looks like the 5008 SUV will likely make an appearance in early 2018 instead, with engine choices offered in petrol and diesel options.     

Subaru Forester 

After the launch of the Subaru XV on the all-new Subaru Global Platform, we can anticipate their next most popular model, the Forester to follow suit. Late 2018 would be a good timing for the company with all-wheel drive specialty.

The all-new Forester was earlier spied undergoing road tests here.

Volkswagen Golf 

After a strong showing of new models in 2017 with the Tiguan and Passat, the new product update pattern from Volkswagen highlights the Golf to be the next model bound for mid-life cycle improvements. We expect the imported Golf Mk 7.5 range - from the popular TSI to the Golf GTI to the range topping Golf R - to be available in Malaysia by second half of the year. News of the all-new Polo are less optimistic, with sources indicating it will not be in Malaysia so soon, perhaps 2019. 

Looking for Premium models? Check out the compilation for premium models new car launches 2018 here.

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