Mazda Biante-1

The 2013 Mazda Biante was officially launched by Bermaz today, making its debut alongside the facelifted CX-9 SUV at the ongoing ‘Mazda Motorshow’ at 1Utama. The eight-seater MPV – a direct competitor to the Nissan Serena C26 S-Hybrid – arrives here two months after its Indonesian debut.

The Biante, which is a fully-imported CBU unit from Japan, is powered by a SkyActiv-G 2.0 litre mill. The normally-aspirated lump has 149 hp at 6,000 rpm and 190 Nm at 4,100 rpm for output numbers, and is mated to a SkyActiv-Drive six-speed automatic transmission.

The Biante has been around since 2008, and was originally meant only for the Japanese domestic market. Now that it’s here, we’re getting the facelifted version, with the high-roof offering dressed with a new front bumper and grille, bringing it in line with the rest of the Mazda family look. The exterior rework also brings about new rear LED combination lamps.

Mazda Biante-14

In terms of standard equipment, the 1,664 kg vehicle comes with dual-powered sliding rear doors with an anti-pinch feature, an i-Stop idling stop system, keyless entry/ignition (with a turn knob starter switch), front/rear parking sensors, paddle shifters and a four-speaker audio system.

Also on, front fog lamps, fully-automatic air-conditioning with second/third row AC vents and a Nanoe Ion generator. As for safety kit, there’s stability and traction control, four-wheel ABS, EBD, Isofix points on the second row seats as well as dual airbags, and the Biante rides on 16-inch alloys wrapped with 205/60 rubbers.

Plenty of configurations in terms of seating arrangement in the 4.71 metre-long people mover, of course, including a ‘Living Mode’ layout, where sliding the second and third-row seats to their rearmost position offers the second-row passengers ‘limousine-like room’, as the company puts it.

Four exterior colours are available for the Biante – Aluminium Metallic, Radiant Ebony Mica, Jet Black Mica and Crystal White Pearl Mica. As for pricing, the Biante SkyActiv-G 2.0 goes for RM145,719, on-the-road without insurance, which is much lower than that earlier seen in ads on oto.my.

If the cloth seats aren’t to your taste or feel, there’s always the option to dress them up in leather for an additional RM4,800.

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