Stories you can't miss

It's always delicate whenever a manufacturer turns to its archive for inspiration, but if the Renault 5 Prototype is anything to go by, we could be staring at the next hit from the French carmaker.

Details are sketchy at the moment, but the fully-electric Renault 5 will account for one of the 14 new models Renault plans to launch by 2025, of which seven of would be battery electric vehicles, as outlined in the company's Renaulution business plan.

CEO Luca de Meo has promised that the reincarnation of the iconic and lovable hatchback from the 70s and 80s would be 'affordable' as the Renault strives to achieve a 30% EV sales ratio by 2025. Bring it on! #renault5 #prototype
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Mercedes-Benz is expected to unveil the fully-electric equivalent to the S-Class limousine, the EQS, within the first half of 2021, and they have just given us the first glance of its futuristic dashboard, aptly named the MBUX Hyperscreen.

Aside from the 'turbine' AC vents, the Hyperscreen is all glass, it measures 141cm in width and features at least three different OLED panels, draped over by a sheet of glass that's curved during its moulding process.

Mercedes refers to the interface as 'zero layer' in that the user isn't required to scroll through layers of menu to get the intended setting or information. To make the experience more tactile (since there aren't any other physical fixtures on the Hyperscreen apart from the vents), 12 actuators are embedded under touchscreen to provide haptic feedback during interaction.

To reduce reflections, the cover plate has two layers of coating while the glass itself is made out of scratch-resistant aluminium silicate. The MBUX Hyperscreen is driven by eight CPU cores and comes with 24GB of RAM. Suffice to say, a dedicated microfibre cloth should made standard as well.
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The BMW 530i M-Sport Dark Shadow Edition is a sign that the facelift model (or LCI in BMW-speak) of the 5-Series is just around the corner, but if you've been an admirer of the sweet-driving G30 saloon, this is worthy of scrutiny.

Limited to 36 units, the 530i M-Sport Dark Shadow Edition is available in Carbon Black only (of course), it sports a high-gloss black kidney grille, Shadow Line exterior trim and 20-inch M Performance style 669 alloy wheels (standard items being 19ins), all for an extra of RM10,000, instead of RM37,000 if you fitted those parts separately.

The locally assembled 530i M-Sport Dark Shadow Edition was announced with an MSRP of RM392,800, which is a RM10,000 premium on the sales tax-included price of RM382,800. Now that the Malaysian government has extended the SST exemption for new car purchases till June 2021, expect the price of the Dark Shadow Edition to be revised downwards, most likely to around the RM382K mark, inclusive of a 5-year service package. #BMW #G30 #530idarkshadowedition
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Conceived as a limited run ‘homologation special’ so that the Toyota World Rally Championship team could go racing in a bespoke body shell, how the new Toyota GR Yaris came about is a compelling story all on its own – an undertaking unheard of among cost-driven manufacturers of today.

That the GR Yaris-based rally car was planned to compete for just one WRC season (2021) before the sport switches to hybrid power in 2022 is even more astonishing, it makes you wonder whether rallying in WRC was a cover to justify building this bespoke all-wheel drive hot hatch in the first place.

Of course, Toyota could not have foreseen the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and made the decision to race on in the 2021 season with its current 2020 Yaris WRC car (which powered Sebastien Ogier to his seventh drivers’ crown, mind you), instead of the new GR Yaris rally car which was being developed.

Should you get one? There are many capable hot hatches for RM300K, if you are comparing the GR Yaris to say a Golf R, Megane RS, even a Civic Type R, and finding it hard to rationalise some of the things it can’t do, then the Toyota isn’t for you. The GR Yaris is one of a kind, a collector’s item and a shoo-in modern classic.

While “less than 200 cars” may not sound like many to go around, it remains to be seen if there are as many single-minded enthusiasts in Malaysia with RM300K to drop on small hot hatch with three pedals (yes, you’ll need to know how to operate that). Early reviews of the GR Yaris have all been nothing short of glowing, and since Toyota is no longer under the obligation to build a certain number of GR Yaris-es for homologation purposes, maybe they shouldn’t stop at 25,000. #Toyota #GRYaris #UMW
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The ownership of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team now includes a new major partner in INEOS, with the shareholding to be represented in equal parts between the British chemical giant, Daimler AG and current team principal Toto Wolff. 

The new business arrangement puts to bed the rumours of an exit from the sport by Mercedes-Benz, and that Wolff may be bumped upstairs to take on other responsibilities. All of that wont be happening, though Daimler AGs stake in the team has been slashed significantly from the previous level of 60%.

The continuation of Wolff as team principal and CEO of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team for at least three more years would not have been welcomed by other teams hoping to spot a chink in the armour of team which has swept the last seven Formula 1 constructors and drivers crowns. #MercedesAMGPetronas #F1

The ownership of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team now includes a new major partner in INEOS, with the shareholding to be represented in equal parts between the British chemical giant, Daimler AG and current team principal Toto Wolff.

The new business arrangement puts to bed the rumours of an exit from the sport by Mercedes-Benz, and that Wolff may be 'bumped upstairs' to take on other responsibilities. All of that won't be happening, though Daimler AG's stake in the team has been slashed significantly from the previous level of 60%.

The continuation of Wolff as team principal and CEO of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team for at least three more years would not have been welcomed by other teams hoping to spot a chink in the armour of team which has swept the last seven Formula 1 constructors and drivers crowns. #MercedesAMGPetronas #f1
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It’s interesting how premium German carmakers end up with similar model line ups relative to each other. Take for example the compact SUV segment; BMW offers the pragmatic X1 alongside a trendier X2, Audi does the same with the Q3 and Q3 Sportback, while Mercedes-Benz presents its case with the GLB and GLA, the latter launched recently in Malaysia in second generation guise.

While prices for the two available variants, the GLA 200 (RM244,199) and GLA 250 (RM285,336), have seen a hike compared to their predecessors, they do come with more amenities and standard safety features, on top of the revised dimensions which have improved cabin spaciousness notably despite being shorter in overall length.

But it’s when you compare the price of the GLA 250 against a 192hp/280Nm BMW X2 sDrive 20i M Sport at RM328,800 and the 180hp/320Nm Audi Q3 Sportback 2.0 TSFI quattro at RM301,738, the Mercedes-Benz crossover, with 224hp/350Nm and superior performance on paper (0-100km/h in 6.9 seconds), is simply more car for the money against its direct competitors. #TheNewGLA #AllKindsOfStrength
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Toyota will cap the year with the unveiling of multiple new models this evening. You can catch it live at 7.30pm on either:

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/ToyotaMalaysia
YouTube https://youtu.be/W14qA0O7G1A

We think its going to be GReat 😉
#TheWaitIsOver #Drive #AllAboutTheDrive #ToyotaMY

Toyota will cap the year with the unveiling of multiple new models this evening. You can catch it live at 7.30pm on either:

Facebook Toyota Malaysia
YouTube youtu.be/W14qA0O7G1A

We think it's going to be GReat 😉
#TheWaitIsOver #Drive #AllAboutTheDrive #ToyotaMY
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Before we say good riddance to 2020, Mercedes-Benz Malaysia has one final card to deal, and that is to launch the all-new, second-generation GLA. With the larger, seven-seat GLB targeted at customers with pragmatic needs, the new GLA is able to let its hair down and look pretty. Watch the Mercedes-Benz GLAs live digital premiere from 11.00am today at: https://www.facebook.com/MercedesBenzMalaysia/.
#TheNewGLA #AllKindsOfStrength

Before we say good riddance to 2020, Mercedes-Benz Malaysia has one final card to deal, and that is to launch the all-new, second-generation GLA. With the larger, seven-seat GLB targeted at customers with pragmatic needs, the new GLA is able to let its hair down and look pretty. Watch the Mercedes-Benz GLA's live digital premiere from 11.00am today at: Mercedes-Benz Malaysia.
#TheNewGLA #AllKindsOfStrength
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