Car buyer’s digest: Best cars in Malaysia for students

Car buyer’s digest: Best cars in Malaysia for students

A car buyer’s journey in Malaysia can begin as early as 17, the legally permitted driving license and driving age in the country. Like adults, students and young professionals also require a car to help them with their daily commute and save them from all the discomfort of travelling via public transport.

Apart from the practical and utility reasons, owning a car is a dream many have, however with so many options available, it is almost impossible to make a quick decision.

The first thing a buyer needs to decide is the car segment he/she is interested in, followed by deciding a price bracket and then looking for available models. In case a model is decided upon, there still remains the task of finalizing the variant option.

Sounds a little too much? Well, for a fact it is a tedious task and more so when the purchase is for a young urban buyer. For such consumers who are out there on a hunt for their first car (most probably), we suggest a few pointers -

  • Do not go for a very expensive car; keep the limit under 100k
  • Go for segments like hatchback, crossover rather than sedan and SUV
  • List out your requirements and look for a car that fulfils them

Let’s now get into the best car options for students in Malaysia -

Perodua Axia

Perodua Axia

Price: RM 23,367 to RM 41,427

Variants: 1.0 E (MT), 1.0 G (AT), 1.0 GXtra (AT), 1.0 Style (AT), 1.0 SE (AT), and 1.0 AV (AT)

2019 Perodua Axia engine

Engine: Powering all the Axia variants is a 998cc DOHC, 12V, Electronic Fuel Injection, with a VVT-i mill making a maximum power of 67 hp at 6,000 rpm along with peak torque of 91 Nm at 4,400 rpm. The transmission options include - a 5-speed manual and 6-speed automatic unit

2019 Perodua Axia Style


Features: Chrome front grille, glossy front & rear skirtings, two-tone side skirtings, projector headlights, front fog lamps, electric side mirrors with turn signals. Chrome ORVM, 14-inch alloys, rear wiper, rear defogger, and LED rear combination lamps.

kabin axia DASH

The cabin gets an illuminated meter combination, a multi-media system with navigation, USB, Bluetooth, HDMI, multi-info display, smart entry & push start/stop button, electric power steering, multi-function steering, reverse sensors, reverse camera, and front corner sensors.

Axia safety

Safety: Dual SRS airbags, ABS with EBD, Advanced Safety Assist 2.0, Vehicle Stability Control & Traction Control, immobilizer & panic button, seat belt reminder, key reminder, headlight reminder, and solar & security window film.

Perodua Myvi

Perodua Myvi exterior

Price: RM 45,700 - RM 58,800

Variant: 1.3 G (CVT) w/out PSDA, 1.3 G (CVT), 1.5 X (CVT), 1.5 H (CVT), and 1.5 AV (CVT)

Perodua Myvi engine

Engine: The Myvi is offered in two engine options - a 1.3-litre DOHC with Dual VVT-i making 94 hp at 6,000 rpm and 121 Nm of torque at 4,000. Both the engines are paired to a CVT gearbox.

Perodua Myvi rear

Features: LED headlights with auto on-off, DRLs, front & side skirting, spoiler, two-tone rear bumper, electric, retractable, & auto-fold LED ORVMs, speed-linked intermittent front wipers, TFT meter combination, leather with red finishing seat upholstery, and driver seat with height adjuster.

Myvi cabin

The cabin comes equipped with a smart entry & push start/stop button, a built-in toll reader, a multimedia system with USB, Bluetooth, Smart Link & HDMI, multi-function steering with voice recognition, and power windows.

Perodua Myvi ASA

Safety: The car’s safety features include six airbags, ABS with EBD, Vehicle Stability Control, Traction Control, Emergency Stop Signal, and Hill Start Assist. Also, part of the specs sheet is Perodua Smart Driver Assist with pre-collision warning, pre-collision braking, pedal misoperation control, and front departure alert.

Perodua Ativa

2021 Perodua Ativa

Price: RM 61,500 to RM 71,200

Variant: 1.0T X (CVT), 1.0T H (CVT), and 1.0T AV (CVT)
Engine: Powering the Ativa is a 998cc turbo engine generating maximum power of 97 hp at 6,000 rpm along with a peak torque of 140 Nm from 2,400 to 4,000 rpm. The drive is sent to the wheels via a CVT unit.

2021 Perodua Ativa DIMENSIONS

Feature: Electric & manual retractable ORVMs with LED indicators, LED headlamps with follow-me-home function, LED rear lamps, and LED front fog lamps.

2021 Perodua Ativa seats

The cabin comes equipped with a 7TFT multi-info display, leather seats, smart entry & push start/stop button, 9-inch LCD touchscreen with Bluetooth, MP3, Android Auto & voice recognition, and 4 USB ports.

2021 Perodua Ativa rear

Safety: Dual SRS airbags, ABS with EBD & BA, Vehicle Stability Control, Traction Control, Emergency stop signal, Hill Hold Assist, and ISOFIX. Also part of the kit is Perodua’s Advanced Safety Assist suite of driver assistance features.

Proton X50

Proton X50

Price: RM 79,200 - RM 93,200

Variants: 1.5T Standard, 1.5T Executive, 1.5T Premium, and 1.5 T GDI Flagship

Proton X50 engine

Engine: Powering the X50 is a 1477cc 3-cylinder in-line, 12V DOHC, turbo engine making max power of 150 PD at 5,500 rpm along with a peak torque of 226 Nm from 1,500 to 4,000 rpm. Sending drive to the wheels is a 7-speed dual-clutch transmission with manual mode.

X50 exterior

Feature: The car comes with LED projector headlamps, LED DRLs, auto headlamps, LED front fog lamps, auto rain sensing front wipers, cruise control with speed limiter, LED meter combination, drive mode selection, auto-dimming rearview mirror, intelligent entry with push start button, remote engine start, panoramic sunroof, 6-way adjustable driver seat, auto air-conditioning, N95 cabin filter, and rear AC vents.

Proton X50 interior

The connectivity is taken care of by a 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system, and voice command.

Proton X50 rear

Safety: 6 airbags, ABS with EBD with BA, auto brake hold, electronic stability control, traction control system, hill hold assist, hill descent control, autonomous emergency braking, forward collision warning, adaptive cruise control with stop & go, lane keep assist, lane departure warning, and blind spot intelligent system.

Proton Iriz

Perodua Iriz

Price: RM 40,300 - RM 54,000

Variant: 1.3 Standard, 1.6 Executive CVT, and 1.6 Active CVT

Engine: Depending on the variant the Iriz is offered in two of the following engine options - 95 PS/120 Nm making 1332 cc 4-cylinder in-line, 16 valve DOHC, VVT unit and a bigger 1597 cc 4-cylinder in-line, 16 valve DOHC, VVT mill churning 109 PS and 150 Nm. Both the powertrains come coupled with a continuous variable transmission system.

2019 Proton Iriz Top

Features: Part of the Iriz hatch specs sheet is a LED headlamp, LED DRLs, auto headlamps with follow me home feature, dual-tone alloys, electric with auto fold ORVMS, rear wiper, remote trunk release, steering with audio & hands-free telephone, TFT multi-info display, intelligent entry with push start button, air-con with N95 cabin filter, and sport pedals.

2019 Proton Iriz Dash

Making it attractive for young drivers is the 9-inch touchscreen head unit, voice command, online navigation, online music streaming, online weather forecast, smartphone connectivity, Bluetooth, 4G & Wi-Fi, and USB ports.

2019 Proton Iriz safety

Safety: Taking care of the passengers and driving at all times is the car’s bunch of active and passive functions, including - 6 SRS airbags, ABS with EBD & BA, Electronic Brake Distribution, Traction Control System, Hill Hold Assist, reverse camera, and front & rear parking sensors.

Honda City Hatchback

Honda City hatch

Price: RM 78,600 - RM 109,800

Variant: 1.5 S, 1.5 E, 1.5 V, 1.5 V Sensing, 1.5 e: HEV RS

Engine: Powering the City Hatchback is a 1,498 cc 4-cylinder, 16 Valve, DOHC i-VTEC generating maximum power of 121 PS at 6,600 rpm along with a peak torque of 145 Nm at 4,300 rpm. The transmission option side gets continuous variable transmission and electric continuous variable transmission (e-CVT).


Feature: LED auto headlight, DRLs, front fog light, LED rear lights, remote engine start, smart entry with push start button, cruise control, ECON button, 7-inch TFT instrument panel, single auto air-con system, ULTRA seat, leather steering wheel with audio control, an 8-inch display audio system with Apple CarPlay & Android Auto support, 2 USB port, hands-free telephone, and Bluetooth.


Safety: The hatchback gets SRS airbags, driver & assistant seatbelt reminder, rear seatbelt reminder, ISOFIX, auto door lock, vehicle stability control, ABS with EBD & BA, Auto Brake Hold, Hill Start Assist, emergency stop signal, reverse sensors, reverse camera.

Giving extra care and assistance to the driver is the Honda Sensing suite of advanced safety tech including Lane Departure Warning, Road Departure Mitigation, Lane Keep Assist System, Forward Collision Warning, Collision Mitigation Braking System, Auto High Beam, and Adaptive Cruise Control.

Toyota Yaris

Toyota Yaris

Price: RM 73,800 - RM 87,600

Variant: 1.5J, 1.5E, and 1.5G

Engine: All three Yaris variants are powered by 1.5-litre four-cylinder engine with Dual VVT-i making max power of 107 PS at 6,000 rpm and 140 Nm of torque at 4,200 rpm. A CVT with seven-speed Shiftmatic mode sends drive to the front wheels.


Features: LED headlamps with follow-me-home function, LED DRLs, fog lamps, 16-inch alloys, Optitron meter with multi-Information display, auto air-conditioning, and electrochromic rearview mirror.

Toyota Yaris GR Sport

Safety: The mid-spec E and range-topping G variants of the Yaris benefit from the Toyota Safety Sense suite of features including pre-collision system (PCS), lane departure alert (LDA), blind spot monitor (BSM) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) as well as a 3D panoramic view monitor (PVM).

A few other options -

Cars in Malaysia under RM100k

While not so popular among the young lads, the customers can also have a look at some of the more sophisticated and bigger options like the Proton X70, Honda City, Toyota Vios, Nissan Almera, and Mitsubishi Xpander.

Also Read: Here are the top 5 SUVs to consider right now

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