7-seaters under RM100k launching in 2022, Alza, Avanza, BR-V, Xpander
Jason · Jul 13, 2021 11:18 AM
The 7-seater, B-segment marketplace has evolved greatly. From serving up just utilitarian, functional vehicles, now there's style, features, and technology. I'd go as far to say that most won't mind being seen in one.
If you're looking for a family friendly 7-seater car in 2021 that's below RM 100,000, you're practically spoilt for choice in this segment. However, some models like the Toyota Avanza, Honda BR-V and Perodua Alza are getting a bit long in the tooth. The good news is, there will be new blood.
Let's take a look at some of the incoming all-new models that the 7-seater, B-segment marketplace has to offer.
By now, you'd have read all about the Honda N7X concept (the BR-V's successor) that we covered here and here. The current Honda BR-V has been a rather popular model on our shores and the all-new model looks set to continue in that form.
What the Honda BR-V brings to the segment is peerless interior packaging, robust mechanicals and a traditional SUV profile, if you aren't of the MPV persuasion. In fact, it's fairly safe to say that it's the most SUV-like among its 7-seater rivals.
Moving forward, it appears that the all-new BR-V will not see much changes in the powertrain department, as detailed here previously. That means the current 1.5-litre, 4-cylinder engine (120 PS, 145 Nm) and CVT combo will soldier on.
What is more interesting would be the introduction of Honda Sensing in the all-new BR-V. In a scoop we shared previously, it was revealed that Indonesian specification for the all-new Honda BR-V appears to include Honda Sensing.
We don't see a reason why Malaysian-spec models won't receive this as well. Pricing wise, it should not be too far off the current retail pricing range of RM 86,726 to RM 93,420 (SST discounts applied, valid till 31-December 2021).
For its entire model lifespan, the Toyota Avanza was a utilitarian, robust, dependable workhorse. It made no apologies for it too. Things are about to change with the all-new model, with the adoption of the Daihatsu New Global Architecture (DNGA) platform.
The biggest changes surrounding the all-new Avanza would be the departure of the archaic 4-speed automatic transmission, and rear-wheel drive - something that matters little to Malaysian buyers (RWD is better suited to Indonesian buyers in rural areas with poorer road conditions).
Moving forward, the all-new Avanza could be powered by the existing 1.5-litre, 4-cylinder engine (105 PS, 136 Nm) but with a new CVT-type transmission. A hybrid powertrain, or the 1KR-VE 1.0-litre, turbocharged 3-cylinder from the Perodua Ativa have been mooted as well.
More to that, Toyota Safety Sense (TSS) is confirmed for the all-new Avanza as well. If our Malaysian-spec model gets features such as AEB, ACC and LKA, the all-new Avanza will be equipped to counter the all-new BR-V's spec-list.
With the DNGA platform, we do expect the all-new Toyota Avanza to have much-improved road manners and comfort levels. At the moment, prices of the current Avanza range from RM 77,963 to RM84,848 (SST discounts applied, valid till 31-December 2021).
That's right, the all-new 2022 Perodua Alza will share the same DNGA platform as the 2022 Toyota Avanza. Therefore, don't be surprised to see a repeat of the Toyota Rush/Perodua Aruz situation again.
Powertrain-wise, it could well share the Avanza's 1.5-litre engine (105 PS, 136 Nm) and CVT transmission combo, or better still, the 1KR-VE 1.0-litre, turbocharged 3-cylinder (98 PS, 140 Nm) unit pulling duty in the Perodua Ativa.
Like the 2022 Toyota Avanza, the all-new Alza is set to ditch the archaic 4-speed automatic for the more efficient CVT transmission. Nobody ever complained about the current Alza's 3SZ-VE 1.5-litre, 4-cylinder (104 PS, 136 Nm), but new is always better, right?
In terms of technology, ADAS will most likely feature prominently, like its current Perodua siblings. In any case, the ADAS technology will be shared across the DNGA platform, just in different names (Toyota Safety Sense, Perodua Smart Drive Assist etc).
Whatever it is, the current Perodua Alza is in dire need of a successor. The sooner the 2022 Perodua Alza arrives, the better.
It does feel like the Mitsubishi Xpander hasn't been with us long in the Malaysian market, but actually, it is more than halfway through its lifecycle (the one we get locally is already facelifted).
Mitsubishi has outlined its plans and have confirmed that the all-new 2023 Xpander will indeed feature a hybrid powertrain. This is in line with the marque's ambitions to have electrified vehicles account for half of its global sale by 2030.
No details of the new hybrid powertrain that will propel the 2023 Xpander Hybrid as yet, but it is likely that it will be sold alongside a regular Xpander with the current 1.5-litre, 4-cylinder engine (105 PS, 141 Nm) and 4-speed automatic, as indicated by Mitsubishi's product strategy presentation to investors.
No mention of whether ADAS will feature in the all-new Xpander (the current one doesn't have any ADAS functions), but we'd be very surprised if the 2023 replacement model doesn't come with it.
With just one variant, the current Mitsubishi Xpander retails for RM 92,263 (SST discounts applied, valid till 31-December 2021). We don't expect the all-new Xpander to deviate much from this pricing.
As for the hybrid model, introduction in the Malaysian market is not certain yet but very likely. However, it's really hard to gauge how the hybrid model will be priced, given our Government's incoherent tax policies for such vehicles.
As you can probably tell, the 7-seater B-segment marketplace is still an ultra-competitive one. It is definitely a good thing, as such intense competition will drive brands to constantly improve, innovate and bring more value to the buyers.
Who would have thought that ADAS technology would make its way into this segment of cars, five years ago? Exactly, nobody. As such, the 7-seaters in this segment will only continue improving, in every possible manner. In the meantime, happy shopping!
Jason's foremost passion is all things automotive, where he spent his formative working years as a Product Planner and Trainer. An Advanced Driving Instructor by training and an all-round enthusiast, Jason loves going into intricate details about driving dynamics. Will drive anything with 4 wheels and a steering.