September 23, 2011

DRIVEN: Perodua Myvi 1.5 Extreme !

Perodua had launched two variants of 1.5litre Myvi, which are SE and Extreme recently. It's a good move done by Perodua as many customers who own a 1.3litre Myvi feel that a larger engine would satisfy them more. I'm not saying the 1.3litre Myvi is underpower, but there's always need for speed, right?

The Myvi SE & Extreme, apart from the exterior cosmetic changes compared to the 1.3litre Myvi, the engine has also grown from 1.3litre to 1.5litre. About 12bhp more than what the 1.3litre engine can produce at 102bhp, which is now comparable to the power figure of a Toyota Vios.

The cabin welcomed me with calming glows from the dials and especially the Camry-inspired speedometer when the engine is started. When the gear level at D (automatic transmission), the engine sent some minor vibration to the cabin floor, that was when I doubt about the refinement of the Myvi. The leather-wrapped steering wheel was comfortable and there were additional buttons on the steering wheel!

With its larger capacity engine, the 1.5litre powerplant pulled the car smoothly and highway speed can be easily acheived with just a light force on the accelerator. I noticed the accelerator was a tad too light, where our right foot might accidentally apply too much force on it while accelerating. Engine noise was at a minimum, wind noise was not apparent and no rattling sound coming out from the cabin while going over undulations, a sign of good refinement which defied my claim earlier.

The suspension did a good job in making sure the occupants have a comfortable journey while in the car, albeit the setting was a little hard. Benefiting from the slightly firm setting of the suspension is the body roll, it was kept to a minimum and controlled when making a sharp turn. However, understeer might occur when taking the bends at high speed, but releasing the pedal slightly will solve the problem.

By the way, the leather seats of the Extreme were good in holding their occupants when things get rough, and the height adjustment for the driver seat does not help much in lowering the seating position.

Although the Perodua Myvi 1.5 Extreme is not a hot hatch like Suzuki Swift or Ford Fiesta, it's not bad at all! From what I had experienced, it was well-built and comfort was on par with some of its close competitors. It shall not be judged in terms of handling where it is created as a family car (or 2nd family car).

+ Nippy engine, well-built cabin.
- Pricey top-of-the-range, light accelerator.

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