Sunday, August 19, 2012

And what about the CR-V ?

As Honda fans will know by now, the U.S. has already gotten the new 4G CR-V for some months now. The CR-V has just set sales records for seven consecutive months in the U.S. This 4G CR-V has also been launched in the JDM and in fact recently there is even news about a JDM variant with the CVT/MMT transmission. So then, what about for the rest of Asia/ASEAN ?

Once again, this is my personal opinion but I have good reasons to believe that the 4G CR-V will only be launched in ASEAN towards the end of this year or early next year. The delay has been due in part to the nasty flooding in Thailand last year, where the HRT facility in Thailand where the Asia/ASEAN models are developed, have been quite badly affected. So if you are looking to get a CR-V, either you have to settle for the current model, or have to wait another half a year or more for the new one. 

More photos of the new 9G Accord

We (TOV) have published another two photos of the 9G Accord, this time the USDM-only Accord Coupe. The photos were contributed by one of our readers. View the photos at our news and rumours article at

In the meantime, it seems that there was an unscheduled 'reveal' of the 9G Accord before what is claimed to be the 'official' date for photos of it to be released. This reveal was caught by the US Car and Driver magazine at the Ohio Balloon festival, the link is at The photo above was taken from this page. Details of this is buried in our news and rumours article above in one of the readers comment/feedback thread at

Again, our ASEAN version Accord will be similar to this USDM one but with some minor changes in details, usually the front grille, internal trims, and also engine and transmission choice. Currently, I have reasons to believe that this 9G Accord will be launched in ASEAN in the first half of next year.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

TOV Accord Scoop !!

We (TOV) have just published photos of an undisguised new Accord taken by a TOV reader from Canada. Included in part of the three shots is a shot of the interior, which we strongly believe to be the only interior shot of the new Accord currently in the world. For the original TOV exclusive photos, go to our 'News and Rumours' article at

Latest news for ASEAN : I now have reasons to believe that the new Accord will debut in ASEAN next year, possibly the 2nd half.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Honda Hybrid reviews

I just finished a back-to-back weekends test of the new 9G Honda Civic Hybrid and the face-lifted MMC Insight. I will be taking the Jazz Hybrid for review very soon. Once done, I will have completed my cycle of reviews for all the hybrid models sold by Honda Malaysia; CR-Z, Civic, Insight, and Jazz.

Of the four models, as expected the CR-Z was the most fun to drive. Sold as a 'hot hatch' by Honda Malaysia, it is actually quite a competent car despite the theoretical limitations of its rear torsion beam suspension. The only thing really lacking is its engine which runs out of breath much too early. I really, honestly, enjoyed driving the CR-Z when I had it for review.

But as an overall package, I have to say the new Civic Hybrid is the most balanced overall. The new generation IMA engine, which is now 300cc larger for the Civic Hybrid, plus the new Lithium Ion battery endows the HCH with a great driveability. Low end torque is good enough to push me mildly against the seat when going WOT. And it was so confident at higher speeds that it is often going at 110-120kph while I thought it was going at 80-90kph only. The brakes for once are also very good. Its only drawback was the overall looks especially the rear half, plus a very small boot-space for the standard of a Honda. I also developed an understanding on the perspective of negative comments made by the media and some owners regarding the interior quality, the overall performance, and the ride quality of the HCH. All these I hope to cover in the review proper.

Hope to get some articles published over the Hari Raya long weekend.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

New Accord

We (TOV) have just published official PR photos of the new USDM Accord, known as '2013 Accord' in the U.S. For asian Honda fans, do pay close attention as this version will be roughly what we ourselves will be getting when it comes time for us to get the new Accord. Do not expect this until earliest possible end of next year (2013) though, perhaps possibly even as far away as 2014. 

For the U.S., AHM has already more or less committed that the new Accord will debut Honda's new generation of engine line-up which they calls the 'Earth Dream' engines. This is a line-up of engines that have been specifically developed to offer new advances in emissions control and in fuel economy. Honda's IMA hybrid set is also set to feature prominently in this line-up. Also included in the line-up will be a new generation CVT gearbox which, from what I have heard from some Honda engineers, will offer significantly better efficiency that any automatic gearboxes Honda currently offers, with drive-train losses well below 20%. 

For the official AHM press release, click on the link below. However, do keep in mind that this is the USDM version but also that our asian version will be heavily based on it. 

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Honda Jazz price in Malaysia goes below RM100k

Honda Malaysia just launched a new variant of the Honda Jazz for Malaysia, the 'Jazz S' with a selling price of just below RM100k. This is a move much needed to restore the competitiveness and popularity of the Jazz here in Malaysia. The previous 1G Jazz was a huge seller here. It was a superb overall package with a good engine, incredible utility and huge interior space. Recently when I had the new 9G Civic Hybrid for review, passengers who was in the rear actually commented that they thought the rear interior of the 1G Jazz was slightly more spacious than even the 9G Civic, a thought probably heavily influenced by the generous headroom in the Jazz.