First day at the Kuala Lumpur International Motor Show!

Kuala Lumpur International Motor Show or KLIMS in short is a motor show in Malaysia which is famous for being the least well-known motor show in the entire world, so if you have never heard of it, I won’t blame you. Even so, KLIMS is still a motor show which has a few worthy cars to talk about and BenAutobahn has been there to tell you all about it. Taking place at the Putra World Trade Center (PWTC), the KLIMS is the country’s second motor show with the previous one taking place 4 years ago. Four years is a long wait but I can say that many improvement have been made in this motor show after all these years especially the car selections on display.

When you first step into Hall one, you will be greeted by a Perodua Bezza concept car and if you have never heard of Perodua, I once again won’t blame you. Malaysia have two car company which is Proton and Perodua, and to save time all I can describe about these two companies is that they both make terribly-made cars and yet not really that cheap, is just the ridiculous tax applied on import cars made them seemed cheap. So anything good about any of those companies you may wonder? Well, Proton is a major stockholder of Lotus company which makes great handling sportcars and therefore Proton cars do handles a bit better than some rivals, but the decent handling still can’t hide the fact that their cars are badly put together. As for Perodua, their cars are all small and therefore light and fuel efficient, thats all.

Perodua only makes small cars and therefore this Bezza concept is very not Perodua for being much larger from the cars they make. Perodua said this car is compact yet maximizes interior space and is suitable in the city as well as for longer journeys. The design of the Bezza concept was influenced heavily by the Toyota Prius especially the body shape and rear lights. Nothing much special after that besides those sliding rear doors. Next!

Well after that it is full of Protons and I shall skip all of the production cars and straight to Proton’s concept cars. First up is the Proton Tuah concept which previews the next generation Proton Persona, still just a clay model fitted with fancy lights, no interior can be found and I believe is just a design concept. Next up is more interesting, the Proton EMAS concept. Stands for ‘Eco Mobility Advance Solution’, emas also means gold in the local language. This concept car is first seen in the Geneva Motor Show this year and is now finally in its home ground.

The Proton section is also shared with Lotus for obvious reason and Lotus have done something good here by bringing in their latest concept cars and new models for display. First is the Lotus CityCar Concept,which is basically an EMAS concept with only two doors and more aggresive styling. The Lotus Evora S is also here on display, the 3.5 liter V6 engine from the normal Evora is supercharged to create this S version. Still a new model, the Evora S is only on sale in the UK for the moment so I am lucky to be able to see this car.

The highlight of this motor show is definitely the Lotus Esprit concept car which was first shown at the Paris Motor Show just two months ago. On sale in 2013, the new Esprit is going to be powered by a mid-mounted 5.0-liter pressure charged V8 and will be priced at around £110,000. Yes Malaysia is the second country to get to see the new Esprit but for some reason, the new Elan, Eterne, Elise, and Elite from the Paris Motor Show is not here on display which is very disappointing for me.

Visitors are also able to see the Proton Satria Neo S2000 rally car which is the very car that Scottish man Alister McRae drove and won many rally stages like the one in China.

In case you didn’t know, Alister McRae is the younger brother of the legendary World Rally Champion Colin McRae. Lucky for me, Alister McRae was there just beside the rally car being interviewed and I immediately asked him for a picture when the interview was over.

As you can see from the picture, hardly anybody recognized him except for a few car nut like me which is a shame I must say.

Yup, that’s me on the right looking cool but in fact I am so excited to be able to have a picture with him and felt a little nervous standing so close beside him.

Ok up to the next hall, the next hall is mostly dominated by Kia. No concept cars here but Kia have shown many latest models in their lineup which are some only on sale in the States outside Korea for example the all-new Kia Optima and Cadenza. Other Kia models which includes the new Sorento and Forte Koup are also on display. Connected with Kia’s booth is Peugeot’s and still no concepts but the Peugeot LeMans race car was there on display.

Enter the following hall and you will be greeted with many exotics which is displayed by a large company NAZA which sell premium cars in Malaysia, it is also one of the sponsors of the Lotus F1 Team and the NAZA logo can be seen on the F1 car. The list of cars shown includes the Ferrari 458 Italia and California, Aston Martin DBS, Lamborghini Murcielago SV, Maserati GranCabrio and Quattroporte GTS, Rolls-Royce Ghost, and the Porsche Panamera.

Famous car tuner Brabus was there as well showing off their Brabus tuned Mercedes C-class, Smart ForTwo, and E-Class which is called the Brabus B63S.

I know what you thinking. Why still no concept cars? Well the next hall will awswer that. From here you can see Hyundai’s booth and they brought in the ix-metro concept which looks great in the metal. The new Avante which is shown here first time outside Korea joined the car list as well alongside with the face-lifted Santa Fe, Sonata, and Tuscon.

Mitsubishi did not let us down either with the presence of the Mitsubishi PX-MiEV concept and the i-MiEV Sport Air concept.

The second last hall is huge and is equally shared with Toyota, Honda, and Lexus. Toyota showed us their FT-HS hybrid concept car and also the lightweight 1/X concept car, while Lexus only brought in their production and  hybrid cars which includes the LS600h, RX450h and IS 250. Honda have no concept cars on display but showed two production cars that are not on sale in Malaysia for example the CR-Z hybrid and Civic Type-R Euro, while the Honda Insight was launched here at KLIMS.

The final hall will be taken over by Nissan and Chevrolet and no more concept cars from here onwards but many latest Nissan models are revealed first time here in this country for example the new Nissan Elgrand, Juke, 370Z Roadster, X-Trail, and the new March (also known as Micra). Chevrolet only showed a few cars like the Cruze but ends its booth with a nice Chevrolet Camaro Bumblebee edition. After that, all you see in front of you is a big door labeled Exit, is already the end of the motor show.

So what do I think about Malaysia’s second motor show? KLIMS is definitely no match for those big auto shows from Geneva, Los Angeles, or Paris and only comparable to those from Thailand and other smaller auto shows but it is a big improvement from the first, but that is not saying much. As a motor show, KLIMS is almost rubbish, showing old concept cars and with so little car companies participating. But if they called this a car exhibition, it is a great one, many new production cars are launched here and those old concept cars would just be a great addition to the exhibition. Thanks for reading this post and don’t forget to subscribe to BenAutobahn to get updated to all the latest news in the world of cars. Once again this is Benjamin from BenAutobahn wishing you in advance a happy and merry Christmas. Cheers!

Check out the huge gallery below to see more pictures from KLIMS and of course the beautiful models from the show!