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Saturday, February 28, 2009

Longtermer #2: Volume 8: Honda Civic 2.0IVTEC

Longtermer #2: Volume 8: Honda Civic 2.0IVTEC FD2

This month is the 8th update of Longtermer #2, Honda Civic 2.0iVTEC FD2. Nothing much to update except it had been scratched/dented twice almost the same spot. See photo:

Year of manufactured: 2008 (Duh!)
Current Value: RM113,000
Purchase price: RM126,000 (less NCB)
Mileage when bought: 0008km

Mileage last month: 11525km.

Mileage NOW: 13033km
Average mileage per month: 1862km
Fuel consumption: 33L worth of petrol good for 400km (12.1km/L) mix driving of 70% city, 30% highway. Highest: 550km on 38.333L of petrol (full tank). 70:30 highway and City => 14.3km/L. An increase over last month. BUT: This figures only can be achieved under the hands of my 60 years old dad (120km/h averaged highway speed and "unknown speed" average city drive).

Interesting observation: 33L worth of petrol only good for 360km (10.9km/l) when I drove the car. Why? It's because of my "Heavy-footed" nature. BUT I tend to kickdown and woke up the i-VTEC a bit too often especially during traffic light start. Note: It's 70:30 city and highway driving. Maybe partially that is the reason.


1) None for this month

Here's an interesting observation. The spotlight is bright but "YELLOW". HID only for Low beam and "amber" for side lights.

Here's a parting shot before I sign off...

AN ORIGINAL JEFF LIM Production. That's all folks, thanks for reading...

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Malaysian Road tax structure

The following table illustrates the vehicle road tax structure for the Peninsular Malaysia for vehicles that runs on petrol AS AT 28 December 2007:

Engine Capacity (cc)
< 1,000 RM20
1001 - 1200 RM55
1201 - 1400 RM70
1401 - 1600 RM90
1601 - 1800 RM200.40 to RM280
1801 - 2000 RM280.50 to RM380
2001 - 2500 RM381 to RM880
2501 - 3000 RM882.50 to RM2130
3001 - 5000 RM2134.50 to RM11130

The following table illustrates the road tax structure for the Peninsular Malaysia for vehicles that runs on diesel as at 28 December 2007:

Engine Capacity (cc)
< 1,000 RM20
1001 - 1200 RM130
1201 - 1400 RM140
1401 - 1600 RM180
1601 - 1800 RM400.80 to RM560
1801 - 2000 RM561.10 to RM780
2001 - 2500 RM782.20 to RM1880
2501 - 3000 RM1886 to RM4880
3001 - 5000 RM4890.80 to RM26480

(Question: Can anyone answer, Is there any further reduction in Road tax prices for Diesel vehicles?)

That's all folks, thanks for having the time and patience to read this...

Of double and triple parkers...

The picture above shows irresponsible parent/s DOUBLE OR TRIPLE PARKED waiting to pick up their Kids from School. The School name is no other than "SRJK(C) Damansara". The location of the school alone is PHARKED UP. The TOWN PLANNER need a SHOT in HIS/HER HEAD for locating a School along a busy MAIN ROAD and right after a traffic light (Riana Green on the right). (adding salt to the wounds, the 2 lanes each side become 1 lane due to double parkers, WORSE, it merged into 1 lane right after the school).

Below, another shot of Double parkers.

Below, picture of "TRIPLE PARKERS".

ALSO, there's this 1-car-park-2-parking-lots, often occurs in "L-parking".

I'd like to raise up / suggest the following to curb this problems, especially rampant in 1) Taipan USJ, 2) Damansara Uptown, 3) SS2, PJ. 4) Subang Jaya near Taylor's college etc... HOW TO CURB these ISSUES?

0) Issue summons. This idea is OUT. Currently implemented by MBPJ and MPSJ. The offenders have the cheek to NOT TO PAY summons as their reason: NOT BY POLICE, pay not pay still can renew ROAD TAX. OR "TOO LAZY". Don't you know that MBPJ gave 50% discount to those paid within 2 weeks. Eg. RM30 for expired tickets => RM15.

1) Introduce "Wheel Clamping".
2) Tow their car/s away.
3) For 1-car-park-2-parking lots: Paste an A4 paper to the front windscreen. Use as much glue as possible. Or, Scratch their car if he/she's a REPEAT Offenders - ie. worked there, everyday can see their car double parked there. (NOT ADVISABLE, DO AT YOUR OWN RISK).

End of my ramblings... Thanks for reading this. A 100% ORIGINAL OTOREVIEW'S (JEFF LIM'S) piece of work.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Longtermer 1: Update 8: Ford Telstar i4 Ghia

In this blog entry, I am updating my Ford Telstar i4 Ghia. This is the 8th update. I'd like to say that this is a respected car, I got a thumbs up from a Black Mercedes E-class driver (Latest model) just by parking beside his car and alighted from my car at the same time as his. He asked whether is my TELSTAR a V6, I said not a V6... Apparently he loved the "Evergreen" design...

Used this Telstar to sent my "small" Dog, Xiao Pai to "Pet Hospital" 10km away from my house. Glad my dog enjoyed the ride, In addition to looking at the window, it managed to stand in the middle facing the Air-cond vent.

Here's a useful feature, door courtesy light (picture below). Why is it useful?
Saved me many times from stepping on my Dog's time-bomb (POO).

Without further ado, let's proceed to Logbook:

Year of manufactured: December 1998 (registered January 1999)
Purchase price: RM42,000 (Aug 2005)
Current value: RM16,000 (As at January 2009)
Depreciation per year (averaged): RM6,500
Mileage last month: 140500km.

Mileage now: 141277km

Fuel consumption improved... The 1st 3 quarter the fuel gauge still went down very fast. Remaining ¼ it moves S-L-O-W-L-Y. Last month I topped 280km +/- (ie. 6.3km/l) when the “low fuel” light 1st appear. Now, full tank of 44.444L good for 340km (ie. 7.8km/l or 24 cents/km). 1/2 highway, 1/2 city. If HEAVY FOOTED and 80% city driving, still good for 310km => 7.2km/l or 26 cents/km.

How? By cleaning the Fuel injector, especially the Throttle body. Last cleaned 2006.
As a result, my 0-100km/h improved from 12 seconds to 11.2 seconds.

After the fuel injector cleaning, the Telstar became more responsive (better acceleration), quieter and smoother.

Expenses (this month)
1) Spark plugs, Tuning and Alignment + Camber.

ALSO Changed lower arm bush assembly, rubber mounting, ALL Front bushings (original FORD parts). => RM430 poorer (See Photo below), inclusive of Fuel Injector cleaning.

I am happy as all my Telstar's problems have been sorted out.

Before I go: here’s a parting shot:

Engine photo. After fitting the "HOTSHOTS" spark plugs cable.


Article: Hard lessons prepare Proton for downturn

23 Feb 2009: SOURCE:

Corporate: Hard lessons prepare Proton for downturn
by Siow Chen Ming

As car sales declined towards the end of last year, Proton Holdings Bhd's results for the last quarter of 2008 (3QFY2009 ending March 31) are likely to look bad when they are released at the end of this month.

Still, it would be wrong to predict that the national carmaker would end up in the same dire state as the big Japanese or US car manufacturers, which have reported heavy losses and are downsizing their operations globally.

The situation is not as bad for Proton, sources close to the company say.
"Proton was in a much worse situation a few years ago. At the time, its models were obsolete and could barely sell, and the company had barely enough cash to develop new models," says a source.

Now, despite the poor external environment, Proton is deemed to be on a stronger footing as a car company, having bitten the bullet and spent the necessary capital expenditure (capex) on important projects over the last few years.

For instance, the national carmaker has invested in two core models — the Saga and the Persona. These models were launched over the last two years and have been selling well. The company has also wrapped up the development of its MPV, another mass-market model to be launched in April. The MPV cost Proton slightly over RM450 million in terms of R&D and tooling.

Learning some hard lessons from those years, Proton has streamlined its operations and supply chain and become more focused on its strategy, which is geared towards smart partnerships rather than going it alone.

With these smart partnerships, the capex requirement for the company is expected to be less demanding and more flexible, depending on the economic situation and the affordability of its models.

For instance, although the national carmaker allocates about RM500 million a year to product development and R&D, the spending could be managed more flexibly, depending on the company's cash flow position and the needs or priorities at the time concerned, a source says. Proton had about RM1.2 billion net cash as at Sept 30, 2008.

The most important thing is that management has become more practical. Rather than developing the Waja replacement model from scratch, Proton signed up with Mitsubishi Motors Corp of Japan to "rebadge" the Mitsubishi Lancer as Waja, which will be launched next year.

"Instead of spending RM500 million on R&D alone, Proton is expected to spend only about RM300 million, including re-engineering the Lancer and investing in the production line," says a source.

He adds that Proton is looking to price the 1.8-litre Waja-Lancer from less than RM75,000 to RM80,000. This will throw a strong challenge to the likes of Toyota Vios or Honda City, which are selling for more than RM75,000 despite their smaller engine capacity of 1.5 litres.

"At that kind of pricing, the Waja-Lancer will be a hit, as people know that it is based on the coveted Lancer," says the source.

Whether or not the car market gets worse next year, the Waja-Lancer will be an important product for Proton in 2010. Since it is a rebadged model, the development cost is low and the margin better. Furthermore, demand in the medium-high sedan segment is relatively stable.

With the Waja-Lancer, the new MPV and the existing Saga and Persona, Proton will have four strong models — with most of the investment cost already accounted for (except for the Waja-Lancer) — with which to sail through the current difficult period.

Proton aims to produce 3,500 to 4,000 MPVs a month. As it is the group's first MPV, management expects it to generate more sales for the group by taking market share from its competitors rather than cannibalising the sales of existing Proton models.
The Malaysian car market is expected to fall about 20% this year, according to Synovate Motoresearch, but observers believe the impact could be less on Proton as buyers may choose to down-trade or seek better value in their purchases.

But even if sales do go down, says a source, Proton has no plans to downsize its operations or lay off any of its 10,730 employees, barring ongoing cost-cutting measures.

"The production staff are now working on a single shift. Should orders for the MPV spike, like they did for the Saga last year, Proton could double the shift on the MPV production line. If sales are slow, the company will resort to cutting production by, say, one day every two weeks and so on," says an official.

Going by its arrangement for the Waja-Lancer, the difference between being a national carmaker and a car assembler might blur for Proton in the near future.
Says an observer, "If you understand the Perodua business model, then you can see Proton becoming a little bit like Perodua. Although Perodua is called the second national car project, it is essentially rebadging or re-engineering Daihatsu or Toyota models."

Although Proton's management may prefer not to call the Waja replacement a rebadging of the Lancer, the fact is that the national carmaker is going into the "car assembly" business in a big way, through a collaboration with Mitsubishi.

The deal is not much different from those of other local automotive assemblers and franchise holders, such as UMW Holdings Bhd (for Toyota models) and Tan Chong Motor Holdings Bhd (Nissan).

The only difference is that Proton will try to add more value to a rebadged model by modifying the body panel design and tuning the suspension and driving dynamics of the car using its Lotus expertise.

Rather than developing the entire vehicle in-house, the assembly or rebadging of certain medium-high segment models for the home market — where the margin is better — will free up resources for Proton to focus on developing models for its core medium and lower segments.

At the end of the day, whether Proton can survive as a standalone car manufacturer becomes an irrelevant question. If it can still develop new models with a budget of about RM500 million, recover the investment, generate cash flow and, at the same time, make a profit from rebadging or assembling vehicles, then its business should be viable. To thrive would be the more difficult part.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine day...

Another year, it's valentine’s day again, how I celebrate my Valentine day?

11am to 4pm: Working in Show house, NEW 2 1/2 storey terrace in Bandar Metro Puchong (I'm a Real Estate agent by profession).

4pm to 5pm: Eating McD in Tesco Puchong with my colleague (a girl... Ahem!)

5.30pm to 7pm: At Home
7.15pm to 8.15pm: Good Friend's baby full moon open house. Nice buffet from
CAFE 1920.

8.30pm to 11pm: "Bachelors Valentine day gathering..."

11.30pm - 12am: Sitting here in front of the computer TYPING THIS BLOG ENTRY...

Without further ado, here's a parting shot: A poem to "celebrate" it…

Valentine’s day ALONE...

I stand outside on this chilly night
Dreading the dawn of tomorrow
For with the morning will come my downfall
A romantic day only filled with boredom…

Wanting someone to be with
On this year’s Valentine’s Day
Someone to hold me and sing me a song
As we dance the night away

Someone to kiss me gently
Underneath the star filled sky
Her beautiful lips, so soft and pink
She’d be an all rounded girl

Yet I know that I’ll be spending Valentine’s alone
Maybe next year things will change
But for now my finger is crossed
For the right girl to celebrate with...

When next valentine cometh…

Sunday, February 01, 2009

LONGTERMERS #2, Volume 7: Honda Civic 2.0iVTEC

LONGTERMERS #2, Volume 7: Honda Civic 2.0iVTEC

For the month of January, the Civic made 1 trip to Klang, 2 rounds to KLIA and 2 rounds to LCCT, in addition to daily trips to work and back (by dad).

I tried the Paddle Shift on my trip to Klang. The "ROLLING START" at toll booth from 0-100 and beyond => Surprisingly FAST. That night (10pm), at the toll booth, there's slight G-force as I used the paddle shift from "2" to "3" to "4" and finally "5". Within a short distance (less than 15 seconds), the digital speedometer shows: 138km/h. I backed off and reduced the speed to 110km/h (speed limit) (cause there's 4 people on board including me). Tried the cruise control as well (set at 120km/h) nothing special.

Sent the Civic to Sumber Edaran Auto, Petaling Jaya for 10,000km "free" service.

Again, mineral oil's used. This makes me wonder, should I bring my own engine oil for them to change?

In this instance, "free service" it is NOT... I gotta pay RM58 for "recommended" Alignment and balancing, extra RM7 for "Removing nail in front left tyre" and FINALLY RM11 for Car wash and vacuum. Grand total: RM76.

Wonder what's with Honda Malaysia's 5,000km service interval? You know what? Did my research, Honda UK's Civic service interval (1.6 iVTEC Hatchback) is 12500 MILES NOT Kilometres, which is actually 20,000km. Also, Honda Australia's service interval's 10,000km.

My Civic seriously needs some soundproofing especially on the "Roof", Doors AND Floorpan. It's because during heavy rain, there's this sound "tok...tok...tok...tok..." (sounds like raining on zinc roof). Also, when driving past freshly tarred roads: kruck..kruck..kruck (non-stop) (when driving past the road)!!! Also, RRROOOOAAAARRRR... (Non stop) when driving at certain Highways. As for the doors, it's "HOLLOW".

I don't want to soundproof the bonnet and engine firewall because I want to hear the sound of I-VTEC (especially 4000rpm onwards).

Did some survey, guess I have to Buy the Soundproofing material and DIY myself as a trip to 3 accessories shops => $$$ installation costs (Especially KKLAU in Petaling Jaya, Dynamat costs RM1xxx for Roof, Door and Floorpan including installation. Will check with Honda Civic FD club members in Malaysia, is there any?

Here's some pictures:

Without further ado, let's proceed to the Logbook.

Year of manufactured: 2008 (Duh!)
Current Value: RM113,000
Purchase price: RM128,000
Mileage when bought: 0008km

Mileage last month: 9063km.
Mileage NOW: 11525km
Average mileage per month: 1921km
Fuel consumption: 33L worth of petrol good for 400km (12.1km/L) mix driving of 70% city, 30% highway. Highest: 520km on 38.333L of petrol (full tank) => 13.6km/L. An increase over last month.

1) 10,000km "free" service. But need to spent RM58 for Alignment and Balancing, Car wash (RM11). => RM69. Also RM7 extra to remove the "nail in front left tyre". Grand total: RM76.

Here's a parting shot of the Civic: