A Straightforward Impression on the 2019 Perodua Axia Line-up

This is the second facelift for the Perodua Axia. It was launched in September 2014, facelifted in 2017, and facelifted again in 2019. With two facelifts, 5 years of production, and basically being a Toyota Agya/Daihatsu Ayla, it is safe to assume that the Axia is a good-working and easy-to-maintain little box on wheels.

When first launched in, the Axia didn’t have Variable Valve Timing (VVT) on all of its models, and that kind of sucks because Perodua used to brag about having DVVT. Unfortunately, the 1KR-DE2 did not have VVT. Keep this in mind if you’re looking for second-hand Axias.

In 2017, we got a facelift, which most importantly, introduced a new variation of the engine, the 1KR-VE. Fortunately, the 1KR-VE does have VVT. They haven’t changed this in the 2019 model so all is good. The 1KR-VE is here to stay because it works.

Key changes in 2017:

  1. 1KR-VE (with VVT)
  2. ABS on ‘G’ variant and above
  3. Boot handle introduced (see pics)
  4. New radio unit

Boot handle introduced in 2017 still in 2019 facelift (left).  2014 version (right). Pictures from paultan.org

Old radio from 204 (top), New radio from 2017-present (bottom)

So, what’s up with the 2019 version?

  1. The engine hasn’t changed (a good thing since it means they didn’t screw up with the 1KR-VE)
  2. Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) is now available for ‘GXtra’ variant and above
  3. New ‘Style’ variant introduced, which is really kind of pointless. 
  4. 5-speed manual transmission is now only available for the 'E' variant 

So that’s really it.

Which one would I buy?

GXtra. Because of ABS and VSC at a pretty low price for a car.


Is the ‘Style’ variant really pointless?

Yes. The roof rack doesn’t work, the 1.0L 3-cylinder now has to turn 15” wheels, you don’t get a full-sized spare wheel, it only has a 1.5cm increase in ride-height, has worse fuel economy, and it is not an SUV.


Anything else?

Since this is a 3-cylinder, there is a little bit more vibration than a 4-cylinder would have. But then again, even the Mini 5-door, BMW 1-series, and Ford Fiesta Ecoboost also have 3-cylinder engines. And in my experience, the Fiesta had the least engine vibration. Vibration in the BMW 3-cylinder is still quite apparent.

Good luck with your next purchase, and don’t be an ass on the road.

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