The cars Malaysians are expecting in the second half of 2021 – Iriz Active, City Hatchback and more!
CY Foong · Jun 26, 2021 11:00 AM
We’re halfway through 2021 and though it felt like time has been moving quickly to some, others might think that the first half of the year felt like the entirety of 2020 (albeit worse, perhaps?).
Despite the persistent lockdowns, the first half of 2021 did at least gave a us a few model launches, from the Toyota Corolla Cross to the all-new Isuzu D-Max. Still, we have 6 more months to go before 2020 2.0 2021 ends.
Besides the City Hatchback, the Odyssey facelift which was launched in Singapore and Indonesia early this year is also expected to arrive in 2021. Rest assured, there are still some stocks available even if the MPV’s time in Japan is up.
Though the Kona facelift was launched in April, one engine variant is notably missing from the line-up and that would be the turbocharged 1.6-litre. Now, we know that the more powerful unit will be offered on the upcoming N-Line variant.
Producing 168 PS/265 Nm and paired to a 7-speed dual-clutch transmission, the Kona N-Line is confirmed to arrive in Malaysia soon as evident from the teaser posted by Hyundai-Sime Darby Motors (HSDM).
The other SUV that HSDM could launch in 2021 is the massive Hyundai Palisade which is currently available in Indonesia and Singapore. Based on what we reported before, the massive SUV will be powered by a naturally-aspirated 3.8-litre V6 engine that produces 291 PS/355 Nm.
Developed in collaboration with Isuzu instead of Ford, the all-new and improved Mazda BT-50 was supposed to be launched in Q1 2021. Clearly, that doesn’t seem to be the case but according to a recent RHB investment report, the pick-up is due to arrive this year.
The same report also mentioned the arrival of the updated Mazda CX-3. Though it isn’t a full model change, let alone a facelift, Mazda’s smallest crossover will be getting a second update this year in the form of a wireless charger. The first update, introduced in March, saw the CX-3 adding ADAS as well as Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity.
The E-Class facelift’s Malaysian launch has been long anticipated ever since it was spotted on a trailer late last year. Since then, the W213 facelift has been launched in a few countries around the region including Thailand and Vietnam.
Elsewhere, Mercedes-Benz Malaysia had also stated its aim to “expand its CKD footprint to localize additional models in the compact car and SUV segment this year.” Though no specific models were revealed, we can expect these models to be the A-Class Sedan as well as the GLA and GLE SUVs as the GLC is already a CKD model.
Hang on, what about the Peugeot 508? Well, though it has been spotted around the country (usually with a Citroen DS3 Crossback tagging along), that model might have only been used for testing purposes seeing that it's a left-hand-drive unit and bore Peugeot's internal plates.
On the other hand, the Peugeot 2008 is very likely Malaysia-bound. It will be competing against the Hyundai Kona and Honda HR-V in the B-segment SUV market. We can expect the local 2008 to be powered by a turbocharged 1.2-litre 3-pot petrol engine (155 PS/240 Nm), paired to a 6-speed automatic transmission.
Proton – 2021 Iriz facelift / Iriz Active / Persona facelift / X70 SE
After all the buzz with the Proton X50 last year, 2021 will be a little quieter for the Malaysian tiger. The Iriz and Persona facelifts are expected to arrive this year along with the crossover variant of the Iriz which will be called the Iriz Active.
Another Proton model that would be receiving slightly less fanfare is the X70 SE. Aside from receiving a cool Ocean Blue paintjob, 19-inch wheels taken from the Geely Boyue Pro, and black Nappa leather seats, the powertrain is expected to remain unchanged.
With the desirable S-badge making its return to Malaysia via Naza Eastern Motors, we can't wait to see what models will be launched here. However, it appears that following the Swift Sport, the next Suzuki model that will be appearing here is the Jimny.
The latest Jimny has become a worldwide hit with prices for used models being more expensive than brand-new ones. Still, the Jimny is beloved by all simply because of how chunky and simple it looks.
Simplicity aside, don't expect prices for the Jimny to be affordable unlike the last two generations. Recond dealers are asking at least RM 160k, so Naza's official price could fall in the same pricey ballpark.
Based on a corporate presentation to its shareholders, UMW Holdings Berhad had outlined two Toyota models that will be launched in the fourth quarter of 2021, traditionally anytime between October and December.
It is speculated that the sedan model could be the Toyota Camry facelift which sports minor changes outside but major changes inside. This will see the ex-unkermobile receiving a more modern floating-style infotainment display above the air-vents.
The second model which is stated as a GR model might be the Toyota GR 86. Unlike the GR Yaris, this won’t be a limited production model but don’t expect it to be cheap either. Nevertheless, this will satiate those that call themselves a true-blue auto enthusiast.
Ever since photos of a Golf GTI Mk8 were spotted undisguised last year with a sticker stating it to be assembled locally, things have been quite exciting for prospective GTI buyers. Still, things have been rather quiet since and we aren’t sure whether the regular Golf TSI will be assembled in Malaysia too.
At least we know the Arteon facelift is expected to arrive very soon. Volkswagen Passenger Cars Malaysia (VPCM) has opened bookings for the upcoming locally-assembled Arteon R-Line 4Motion with prices estimated to range between RM 245,000 and RM 255,000.
However, we also spotted something interesting in the Arteon’s bookings announcement. Though it is not confirmed, we can’t help to anticipate the arrival of the Volkswagen T-Roc in Malaysia. The subcompact crossover will be a great rival to the Proton X50 and the Honda HR-V but then again, it might never make it.
Others – 2021 Chery Tiggo 5x / GAC Trumpchi GS3 Power / GWM / Haval / Ora / MG
Now, for the leftovers and these Chinese brands sparked some excitement pre-MCO 3.0 with them being spotted (with camouflage and without) all over Malaysia. However, with the way things are going and how quiet it is from their representatives, we might not see their launches this year.
Though MG Thailand's managing director hinted that the brand could arrive in Malaysia in 2021, there has been nothing noteworthy since. Even MG Berjaya, the brand's supposed local distributor is fairly quiet throughout 2021.
Another brand that could not make an appearance this year would be GWM, Haval, and Ora. In spite of the flurry of spyshots that we covered a few months ago, the only thing we heard from since was silence.
Now before you get excited at the amazing array of models that are expected to arrive in Malaysia, bear in mind that most of these are merely predictions and speculations. That being said, which ones are you excited for their arrival here?