Perodua D55L render

It’s official. Perodua has announced that its much-anticipated ‘D55L’ SUV is now open for booking, at the same time releasing first details on the Daihatsu Rocky-based model. Known by its internal codename so far, the SUV’s real name is still under wraps (some are saying it’s Perodua Ativa), but we now know that the D55L will be available in three variants – X, H, AV – at prices estimated between RM62,500 and RM73,400, on-the-road without insurance, with sales tax exemption.

UPDATE 1: The D55L’s name is out as the Perodua Ativa, along with more details and specs here

UPDATE 2: We’ve driven the new Perodua Ativa! Read our first impressions review here.

As expected, the D55L is priced higher than the Myvi, which tops out at RM52,697. Prices overlap that of the Aruz (RM68,526 to RM73,226), which is much larger, but also a lot less sophisticated. The Aruz is a budget seven-seater ladder frame MPV with SUV styling, while the D55L is a compact B-segment SUV underpinned by the latest Daihatsu New Global Architecture (DNGA) platform. They’re not using the term, but the D55L is clearly Perodua’s flagship, showcasing the best of what the market leader has to offer.

If you’re surprised by the price, wait till you hear about the features offered. Over the past few years, Perodua has been pushing the safety envelope, breaking new ground with the Myvi’s Advanced Safety Assist (ASA) in 2017. The Aruz of 2019 had ASA 2.0, which widened the operation range of pre-collision features and later found its way into the Axia and Bezza, P2’s entry models.

Perodua D55L render

Now, say hello to “ASA 3.0”, which includes features you probably would not have expected from a Perodua. The latest ASA is standard across the D55L range (previous models had it only in the top variants), which means that Pre-collision Warning (PCW), Pre-collision Braking (PCB or AEB), Front Departure Alert (FDA) and Pedal Misoperation Control (PMC) are for all variants. P2 says that the AEB operates at higher speeds than the current 2.0 version and is now capable of detecting two-wheeled vehicles (pedestrians were added in 2.0).

New for ASA 3.0 (not yet an official name, but we’re calling it this for simplicity) is Lane Departure Warning and Prevention, which is standard for all variants. The top AV spec’s ASA adds on Lane Keep Control, Blind Spot Monitor, Rear Cross Traffic Alert and Adaptive Cruise Control! All these Level 2 autonomous driving kit are unprecedented at this price point, and we’re expecting no less than five ASEAN NCAP stars.

“True to our aim to continually bring more and more advanced technology to the masses, the Perodua D55L AV is Malaysia’s most affordable Level 2 Autonomous vehicle, bringing state-of-the-art safety and convenience to a wider audience. SUVs remain very much in demand, and the D55L is our trendiest offering in this regard. Its compactness, contemporary style and modern features make it the perfect companion for day-to-day urban lifestyles,” said Perodua president and CEO Datuk Zainal Abidin Ahmad.

ASA 3.0 isn’t the only thing that’s new to the brand. The D55L is also Perodua’s first vehicle with a turbocharged engine, and the first P2 model to adopt a CVT in place of the default four-speed torque converter automatic. Perodua says that the Turbo-CVT combo yields class-leading rated fuel efficiency of 18.9 km/l.

No further elaboration on the powertrain other than “downsized forced-induction” and CVT, but in Japan, the Daihatsu Rocky and Toyota Raize twins are powered by a 1KR-VET 1.0 litre (996 cc) turbocharged three-cylinder engine with 98 PS at 6,000 rpm and 140 Nm of torque from 2,400 to 4,000 rpm. If the engine code sounds familiar, it is essentially the turbocharged version of the 1KR-VE used in the Axia and Bezza. The DOHC VVT unit has auto start-stop, which P2 calls Eco Idle.

The third-generation Myvi raised the equipment bar for Perodua – and affordable cars in Malaysia – by many metres in 2017 (still unmatched by Proton today), and the D55L is doing the same in 2021.

There are plenty of new-to-brand (and price segment) toys here – the D55L will have LED headlamps as standard across the range, while H and AV variants add on Adaptive Driving Beam (‘cuts out’ oncoming vehicles when high beam is on instead of dipping HB completely), a seven-inch multi-info display (digital instrument panel) and a nine-inch touchscreen infotainment system with voice recognition.

That’s all that Perodua is officially sharing for now, the key features of the D55L SUV. As for the rest of the kit list, the SUV – being the first model under the Perodua Smart Build blueprint and a “breakthrough model” for Perodua in the areas of style, safety, technology, equipment and value – should build on the Myvi’s equipment – things like keyless entry/push start and six airbags are expected.

As for colours, the X and H variants can be had in Glittering Silver, Granite Grey and Cobalt Blue, with the mid-spec H also available in Pearl Diamond White and Pearl Delima Red. AV buyers have the choice of Glittering Silver, Granite Grey, Pearl Diamond White and Pearl Delima Red, plus two-tone (black roof and A pillars) options for the two pearl colours (red and white). The two pearl hues and Cobalt Blue are new-to-P2 colours. Expect a small premium for the pearl colours, and another one for the black roof. A five-year/150,000 km warranty is part of the package.

Click to enlarge

Perodua is sure to have GearUp accessories for the D55L at launch or down the line, but you can check out what Daihatsu and Modellista (their first non-Toyota/Lexus project) have in the bodykit game – pics are below.

There has been much chatter on how the D55L compares against the recently-launched Proton X50, although it’s not really an apple-to-apple contest. The Perodua is a smaller SUV (335 mm shorter, 105 mm narrower, 75 mm shorter wheelbase, see the size comparison table above), it has a smaller engine (1.0L vs 1.5L, both are turbo triples) and is more affordable than the X50, which is priced from RM79,200 to RM103,300.

At around RM6k more, the entry-level X50 Standard has engine capacity and body size on its side, but is otherwise trounced by the D55L AV in safety and equipment.

Perodua’s SUV is expected to be launched early next month, and its name will be officially announced then. What do you think of the D55L’s package so far?

2021 Perodua D55L X – est RM62,500
Standard kit

  • Advanced Safety Assist (ASA) “3.0”
  • Pre-collision Warning (PCW, now with two-wheeled vehicle detection)
  • Pre-collision Braking (PCB or AEB, now with two-wheeled vehicle detection)
  • Front Departure Alert (FDA)
  • Pedal Misoperation Control (PMC)
  • Lane Departure Warning and Prevention
  • LED headlamps
  • Glittering Silver, Granite Grey and Cobalt Blue colour options

2021 Perodua D55L H – est between RM62,500 and RM73,400
Adds on

  • Adaptive Driving Beam (auto high beam that ‘cuts out’ oncoming vehicles)
  • 7.0-inch multi-info display (digital meter panel)
  • 9.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system with voice recognition
  • Pearl Diamond White and Pearl Delima Red colour options

2021 Perodua D55L AV – est RM73,400
Adds on

  • Lane Keep Control
  • Blind Spot Monitor
  • Rear Cross Traffic Alert
  • Adaptive Cruise Control
  • Two-tone (black roof) option for Pearl Diamond White and Pearl Delima Red

GALLERY: JDM Daihatsu Rocky

GALLERY: Daihatsu Rocky Sporty Style at TAS 2020

GALLERY: Daihatsu Rocky Modellista kit

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