2008 Nissan Frontier Navara Single Cab

In Thailand, Nissan have been successful in attracting a large portion of pick-up truck buyers to its Navara. The Navara has many qualities that make it worth considering. For a start it is the largest truck in the one-ton class and, although rated to carry the ton, it can easily carry heavier loads thanks to its size, strong chassis and powerful engine.

The Navara was also the first to market with a 6-speed transmission, and is still alone on that front, while the 5-speed auto is up there with Ford and Mazda offerings. Next is the engine line up. Nissan offer two 2.5 litre engines in the Navara, a 144 hp unit for the two-wheel-drive models, and a class leading 174 hp unit powering the four-wheel-drive models.

Navara Single Cab

Mazda BT-50 Biodiesel Test - Results are in

Mazda have completed their BT-50 bio-diesel B2 and B5 test and have posted a press release which declares the success of the test. I have included the full press release below, but I would like to point out a few things that had me wondering.

Mazda BT-50 image

Tata Xenon Will Officially Launch at 2008 Bangkok Motor Show

The last time I wrote about the Tata Xenon I said the next time would be less speculative. Well, some details are more solid now so here is the latest on the Tata Xenon in Thailand.

Tata Xenon Front Image

First, the launch at the 29th Bangkok International Motor Show in March is confirmed. Visitors to the Motor Show, which runs from 28th March to 6th April, can expect to see Tata's new one-ton challenger in the metal. And the metal is perhaps of more interest that usual. But we'll get to that later...

2008 Honda Accord Test Drive Review - Poem

Test drive reports are really not all that useful. I would never buy a car simply because I read a review from someone who thought the car was great. Yet sometimes it is useful to read other opinions to help us form our own thoughts more completely, and make well rounded decisions.

In the past I'd avoided testing cars, but since I'm currently looking around for a car myself, I might as well present some of my opinions here, as they might be of some help. But to make this one a little more interesting (or even less useful) I would like to present it in the form of a poem.

2008 Honda Accord

Mostly New 2008 Toyota Corolla Altis Finally Here! - Test Drive Report

TMT (Toyota Motors Thailand) has finally launched the new 2008 Altis in Thailand. The car was officially launched on 30/1/08, with launch "parties" going on at virtually every Toyota dealership. Today I test drove the car and would like to share my views with you. So, here it is:

Thai Actor Speeds and Brags About It - Krish Suwannaphab

This has to be one of the craziest articles I've seen in The Nation in some time. What I am surprised at is that there isn't even a single hint throughout the piece that there is anything wrong with this Thai actor's idea of priorities.

Toyota Corolla American Details - Dual VVT-i

Just a quick update. It seems that we might be getting the same 1.8 litre engine as the US Corolla, and it might be Dual VVT-i After all?

I previously wrote about the Corolla Altis engine issue and at the time I thought that we were not getting Dual VVT-i units. This was an assumption based on some data in a Toyota presentation pack at a Toyota Dealer in Bangkok.

Now there is some new information which makes everything clearer, the launch detailed specifications of the US model Corolla.

Mazda BT-50 Biodiesel Test

Mazda are currently touring Thailand in a couple of BT-50 pickup trucks. They are going to complete a trip of over 10,000 km to show that the BT-50 can run on the new B2 and B5 fuels with no adverse affects. I'll be interested in seeing the results of this test, even though I think 10,000 km is probably not enough to convince anybody that there are no adverse effects of the fuel. Further, this fuel is 98% and 95% regular diesel anyway.

Mazda BT-50 Image

I'd be particularly interested in the fuel consumption figures for the trip. Also, this test will also be equivalent to a Ford Ranger test, since they share the same power units. I would love for this to be a B100 test though, but that will come.

New Honda Jazz Due Soon

A few months ago Honda showrooms had CR-V, Jazz, Civic and City cars on display, and the notable absence of Accords at that time looked like a clear indication that the space was waiting to be filled with the all-new Accord.

Well, that proved to be accurate, and a few weeks after I noticed the lack of Accords, the new ones popped in. Well, right now there are less and less Honda showrooms that feature the Jazz, which leads me to believe that we are probably getting very close to the launch of the new 2008 Jazz.

E20 is Here, E85 Soon! Biodiesel too!

On 1 January this year E20 was officially made available, and a Ford Focus was the first vehicle to fill up on the latest step on the way to lowering Thailand's reliance on oil. Following the Thai Government reducing the tax on new cars capable of using E20 by 5%, there has been a wave of manufacturers announcing compliance with E20, allowing them to reduce the cost of these vehicles.

The thinking is that this will stimulate growth in the industry this year, after the disappointing drop in 2007. And this might well work. E20 is a big news item at the moment, and they hype is being seized on by manufacturers to promote their vehicles. But what about the consumer? Is E20 really good for us? Yes and ........

More Altis Details Leaking Out - E20 Confirmed

"All New Toyota Altis" time again! The E20 compatibility is confirmed, as are the engine sizes. As we previously understood, we will see the same displacements of 1.6 and 1.8 litre in the new Altis, although the power ratings have not been confirmed, but it is most likely that they will not be the Dual VVT-i units that they're getting elsewhere.

2008 Corolla Altis Image

However, the good news is that both engines will be E20 compatible and even if this won't amount to the Altis being substantially cheaper than the outgoing model, it should allow Toyota to be very competitive in the market, since all competition apart from Chevrolet have also confirmed E20 capable versions so the pricing is down across the segment in Thailand........

Suzuki to build plant in Rayong - Production of Eco Car to Start 2010!

Suzuki Motor Corporation was one of the companies to submit an application to participate in the Thai Eco Car project, and now they are moving forward and have plans to build a plant in Rayong Province.

Production at the plant is expected to start in 2010.

Suzuki Cervo Image

Suzuki will invest USD 90 million in order to establish a manufacturing company in Thailand, and a further USD 287 million in the construction of the plant. The plant will create 1200 jobs.

10th Generation Toyota Altis Supports E20

The 2008 Toyota Corolla Altis is going to land in showrooms any day now. Although details are still not officially released, there are some banners on display outside some Toyota dealers. One of these showed the "E20" logo next to the Altis, so I assume that means that the new Altis will be E20 compatible, and this should translate into a reduction in price compared to the outgoing model.

Apart from that, it will obviously lead to cheaper running costs give then lower price of E20 fuel.

More details on the new Altis soon!

What is the "Point" of this? - Cars All Stitched Together!

Usually, I try not to post up articles that don't have anything to do with Thailand, but this one is just too interesting to pass up. This story on CarScoop about a line of cars that have been stitched together, and even into the road, is very weird. Although it's hard to imagine how this was done, the question I would ask is: What is the point of this?

Cars Stitched Together

"The People's Car" - Tata Nano is Real!

How about this for an amazing feat of stingy design and cost cutting measures? Tata seem to have done it, and after 4 years of head scratching the Indian giant has come up with a car that costs around US$2,500. That is less than THB 75,000!!

The Nano is designed to allow Indian families to move up to four wheels, and whatever you might say about the safety or comfort levels of the Nano, when considered next to a motorbike, this thing is a big improvement. For a start it probably won't go very fast with its tiny 623 cc two cylinder engine.

Tata Nano Image

Tata Motors are billing the Nano as a "People's Car".......

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