Did you know that Japanese cars take 3 of the top 5 spots in car sales for Malaysia? Its popularity is hardly surprising – Japanese cars are known for their quality, value for money, and reliability. Of course, there are many, many great Japanese automotive brands out there like Honda, Toyota, Nissan, Mazda, but let’s break it down and see the top 5 Japanese car models that grabbed the hearts of Malaysians, based on the 2021 Car Industry Analysis.
First up is the practical and reliable Toyota Yaris, a car that comes in both hatchback and sedan variants starting at RM73.8k. Whichever you choose, you will get a nimble car with a 5.1-metre minimum turning radius which is best for commutes into the city. A touchscreen display is also available for the G and E variants, making the infotainment system easier to navigate and control. All in all, it’s a fuss-free, small automatic hatchback that’s versatile for the family, so even if grandma were to take the wheels, she’ll be fine. The drawback? Toyota claims the car uses about 3.5 litres per 100km but users have found that it guzzles from 7 litres per 100km instead.
The Toyota Hilux is the only pickup on this list starting from as low as RM1,059 a month on myTukar. And we can see why it’s been a popular ride with Malaysians. Its sleek and 4×4 capability lets you conquer off-road terrain in style – perfect for all your adventurous weekend getaways, But make no mistake – it’s still no Range Rover for sure. At the end of the day, it’s still a pick up truck, and a pretty good one at that. It can tow 3,500kg and the payload is over a tonne. Plus, its sturdy frame and fuel efficiency makes this beast a pretty reliable one. It’s not the best car for the city, as navigating tight corners with a 6.4-metre turning radius can be a little tricky. But if you know exactly how your car will serve your needs, then this nifty drive does the job perfectly.
The Honda HR-V is popular due to the increasing demand of SUVs and Crossovers all around the world. Starting at RM114.8k, the HR-V is no small vehicle, with a 335l boot space and comfortable seating for 5. The size does mean it has a 5.7m turning radius, so driving in the city may require some skill. Even so, it does not guzzle as much fuel as the Hilux, at 4ℓ per 100km for the hybrid and 6.5 litres per 100km for the E and V spec.
The Toyota Vios is a popular sedan in Malaysia for several reasons. First of all, it’s known to be pretty affordable at RM77k for the 1.5J (AT) and RM90k for the 1.5G (AT). The main differences in the 2 models are in the features, with the 1.5G (AT) fitted with perforated leather seats and a touchscreen infotainment system. We like that the Vios comes with a roomy 506-litre boot, which makes it great as a family car. Its compact size and 5.1-metre minimum turning radius is also a plus point. The car is easy to handle even in tight spaces – great for tight Malaysian roads. Most importantly, we like that the Vios is pretty fuel efficient, consuming just 5.8 litres per 100km.
Honda City is a practical, simple yet spacious, car. With prices starting at RM77k for the City 1.5L S to RM108.8k for the 1.5L RS, you can choose from a range of options depending on specification and price. Whichever model you choose, you will get a push start car with electric power steering, a 519-litre boot. Let’s not forget the 5-metre minimum turn radius which makes the Honda City the nimblest car on this list!
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