Published on July 9th, 2020 | by Subhash Nair0
VOTY 2020//Vehicle of the Year – Proton X70 (CKD)
When choosing just one vehicle to represent the best the industry had to offer to Malaysians in the last 12 months, many considerations come into play. At DSF.my, our VOTY award has gone to a whole slew of different vehicles, from budget 5-door hatchbacks to premium crossovers. Sometimes the winner is a local brand and sometimes it’s an international make. Whatever the case, we tend to look at the one model that shifted the market for the year. And for 2020, we can’t think of any other model than the locally-assembled X70 facelift model.
Compared to the fully-imported 2018 Proton X70, this 2020 model has 16 obvious changes, plus a few localisation (Battery and tyres, most easy to spot) and behind the scenes improvements that are a little tougher to pin down. Aesthetic changes include a new logo on grille, rim centre caps, a new engine cover, the new logo projected by puddle lamps, the new logo etched on the windscreen and windows. Equipment changes include a powered tailgate with kick-to-open function weight height memory set, new reclining rear seats, new 7-speed dual clutch automatic, a new drive-by-wire gear selector and Ventilated front seats.
With this CKD X70, Proton has managed to up the power, efficiency and equipment all while lowering prices and maintaining quality standards. What’s more, because it is locally-assembled, the X70 provides the automotive industry of Malaysia a big boost in terms of capability.
It’s an SUV that fights on at least 3 fronts, taking away sales from premium SUVs, mass market SUVs and just about everything else around its selling price. Even without its GKUI gimmicks, the car shines as one of the faster, refined products in its class.
Proton X70 1.8 TGDI Premium X 2WD Specifications
Engine: Inline-4, 16 Valve, DOHC
Capacity: 1799 cc
Gearbox: 7-speed DCT
Max power: 181 hp @ 5500 rpm
Max torque: 300Nm @ 1750 rpm
0-100km/h: 9.5 seconds
Top Speed: 195 km/h
About the VOTY Awards 2020
The Vehicle of the Year (VOTY) Awards is sponsored by Allianz Malaysia Berhad and is judged by Daniel Sherman Fernandez, Ross Hadi, Amirul Mukminin and Subhash Nair from Drive Safe and Fast (dsf.my) and GohedGostan.com.
The selection process is simple and clean. All cars launched in Malaysia within 13 months of our cutoff date are eligible for entry. We contact all car brands officially operating in Malaysia and ask them for test cars for each of our judges. There’s no participation fee, no tables to buy, no package deals — nothing. Any judge who drives an eligible car gets to vote for it. A simple majority is all it takes for a vehicle to win in a given category.
The categories are kept as consistent as possible from year-to-year with some modifications when a certain category is not adequately represented or is over-represented in that particular year. You can view the categories over the years by looking through our “VOTY” tab on the dsf.my page.
Our title sponsor Allianz recognises the integrity of our team and all players involved in deciding on winners and leaves all decisions to us regarding the winners. We hope our readers appreciate the efforts of all parties involved and provide us with feedback on how we can further improve on this.
This year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve had to postpone our VOTY awards presentation and have instead decided to stream it LIVE on facebook and youtube. This would make VOTY the first automotive awards show to be streamed live in ASEAN as far as we can tell.