It’s hard work, but someone’s got to do it. Photographer Sherman Sim and myself can say that with a straight face, although there’s high chance you won’t believe us after this post, which signs off our 2017 Gaikindo Indonesia International Auto Show (GIIAS) live coverage in regular fashion.

We both came home with sharp shoulder pain – his was from lugging heavy camera equipment, mine was from being in a desk typing position all day – but this was a good haul with plenty of fresh and interesting/relevant displays at ICE BSD. We are of course talking about the cars.

As is tradition, Daihatsu brought out some concept cars for an Indonesian motor show, but things were slightly different this time around. The compact car specialist and major player in ASEAN’s biggest market usually shows off tiny hatchbacks and MPVs, but the DN F-Sedan is a gorgeous four-door coupe of a sedan, perhaps in preparation for a day when taxes for sedans are reduced to MPV levels.

Less surprising was the DN Multisix, a large MPV that could preview something more posh than the Toyota Avanza/Daihatsu Sigra. Both sedan and MPV concepts share a family look and the designs are much cleaner than previous efforts, from what I can remember of ADM’s concept catalogue. Another tradition is JDM showcars, and we had dressed up versions of the Daihatsu Canbus and Thor this year.

The Mitsubishi Xpander was the most popular car with the paying public, hands down. MMC’s entry into the core Low MPV segment (Avanza, Honda Mobilio, Suzuki Ertiga) boasts bold, SUV-style design, and this seven-seater will also be exported to ASEAN next year, including Malaysia.

Honda launched the new FK8 Civic Type R for the local market, and Honda Malaysia joined the party by bringing a group of journalists to witness the event – our test drive in Germany, plus this, would surely mean that the FWD King of the Ring is coming soon to our shores. Toyota launched the Voxy MPV and Fortuner TRD Sportivo domestically, and showed off a wild Sienta Ezzy design experiment. The second-generation Mazda CX-5 was also launched at GIIAS, ahead of Malaysia.

We also showed you some fun Suzuki Ignis concepts (so much cooler than the newly-launched Suzuki Baleno), the Datsun Go Live concept and the Mercedes-Benz E350e plug-in hybrid that will be launching soon in Malaysia. The hardcore Mercedes-AMG GT R was also in town.

Lexus showcased its new flamboyant flagship, the fifth-gen Lexus LS in 500h form. Instead of being a dull alternative to the German establishment, the new LS is for those who want to make a statement. Its impressive tech fights the extravagant interior for headline billing, but for us, the latter wins thanks to door panels that look like dragon wings.

On the other end of the scale is the Wuling Confero, the first fruit of SAIC-GM’s Indonesian factory. The 7/8 seater is a Low MPV, but with pricing close to LCGC levels. Nothing new from Nissan, which brought a JDM Note e-Power range expander hybrid as tech showcase.

That’s the recap of the reason we were at GIIAS 2017. Do catch up and browse the hundreds of high-res images of the cars. But because petrol prices are up again this week, you might first want to be soothed by the sweet smiles of Jakarta’s cewek cantik. You’re welcome.