The Perodua Bezza was given a mild update last month, less than a year after it was launched in Malaysia. The latest 2017 Bezza comes with some aesthetic tweaks without a change in price.

Inside, the Premium X and Advance variants now get chrome platinum trim on the three air-con knobs (previously silver), while the Advance also gains new leather upholstery that does without the previous quilt pattern, which some might have found to be too fussy.

There’s just one exterior change, but it addresses what was perhaps the one complaint on the design – a rear “skirt” so short that it showed the underside of the car to all and sundry. Full upskirt view, if you drive a low-slung car.

For the product improvement (PI), the “tonggek” backside was given a deeper skirt (by 6cm) that better covers the underside of the sedan, Perodua’s first car with a boot. A diffuser-like cutout and a contrasting grey strip that runs across the width of the bumper breaks up the visual mass.

Besides a deeper bumper, the Bezza gets a simpler seat cover design and chrome on the AC knobs

The changes work as intended, but it also shows the company’s desire for continuous improvement, and the lack of complacency, which might seep into a a carmaker that has dominated the Malaysian market for over a decade now.

According to Perodua CEO and president Datuk Aminar Rashid Salleh, work on the update started just two months after the launch, and the speed of the rollout was unprecedented for the company. He singled his R&D department out for praise, pointing out that local R&D has been taking on increasing responsibility in Perodua models. For instance, while the basic platform of the Bezza is from Daihatsu, the upper body design and interior design are P2 in-house efforts.

Perodua Sales MD Datuk Dr Zahari Husin explained that previously, product improvement usually started one to 1.5 years after a product launch, and the Bezza PI is an example of the company now reacting to market feedback fast. It’s notable that they didn’t wait for the mid-life facelift.

GALLERY: 2017 Perodua Bezza Advance