Driven Web Series returns for another instalment, powered by Petronas. For the first episode of 2019, we’re talking SUVs, and this trio is sure to pique your interest, especially since it involves the newly launched Proton X70, the popular Honda CR-V and the capable Subaru XV.
The national carmaker’s first SUV has been the talk of the town ever since it went on sale back in December 2018. With prices starting from RM99,800, there are four variants of the X70 to pick from, all powered by a 1.8 litre turbocharged engine. This particular unit is the top-of-the-range Premium 2WD that goes for RM123,800, which packs a rather impressive amount of safety equipment.
Of course, the X70 will have to compete against a big name in the SUV segment, the CR-V. Honda’s offering is not only the market leader but is widely regarded as the benchmark for C-segment SUVs in Malaysia. Lest we forget, the CR-V also managed to edge out the Mazda CX-5 and Peugeot 3008 in a previous episode, which you can watch below – this explains the CX-5’s absence against the X70, which many commenters have asked about.
Well, the CR-V is back again, and the range-topping 1.5TC Premium 2WD variant makes it the costliest model in this line-up, retailing at RM163,191. Like its Proton counterpart, a turbocharged engine powers the CR-V as well, albeit a smaller-capacity one at 1.5 litres, and its Honda Sensing suite comes feature packed.
Of course, the issue of pricing is something that car buyers are very sensitive about, and with a RM40k gap between the Honda and Proton, we thought we’d bring in something priced a little closer to the X70.
Enter our final entrant, the Subaru XV, which in 2.0i-P guise, is priced at RM126,788, making it a legitimate alternative to the X70. The XV is a smaller car compared to others in this line-up, and it also has a significantly different skillset.
For starters, there’s a 2.0 litre naturally-aspirated boxer engine instead of a turbo in-line four, and while the Proton and Honda are front-wheel drive, the Subaru packs the brand’s well-known Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive system.