Commentary Lifestyle

The X70 and why it is Proton’s most advance to date

Proton X70 Premium, cinnamon-brown

Proton X70 Premium, cinnamon-brown

Ahirul Ahirudin
Written by Ahirul Ahirudin

January 24, 2019

BY now many Malaysians are probably aware of the X70 being touted as the national car manufacturer’s most advanced model to date but the question is “What does that actually mean for us lay drivers?

A fortnight ago I wrote on how the X70 drives and some of its features. This time the focus is on its advanced driver assistance system (Adas) and a 360-degree camera for enhanced safety.

As for creature comforts and convenience, in-built air ionizer and over-the-air update are definitely a rare sight, considering that the X70 is still cheaper than the Honda HR-V, which is one segment below.

Adas is found only on the Premium X70 variant while the 360-degree camera can be found in the executive model and up.

Safety

In Langkawi yesterday, Proton demonstrated to the media how Adas works and gave us more time to experience just how useful the camera is.

Adas is basically an additional safety suit. Under it, there is autonomous emergency braking (AEB), front collision warning, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, blind spot monitor and intelligent high beam control.

Starting with what I think is the most useful safety feature here is the AEB, enabling the car to brake by itself should the system detect an imminent impact and if the driver fails to brake on time. It’s worth noting that it works only at a speed of 30 km/h or below, basically at your typical traffic jam speed.

I experienced this once while test driving the car. It was unintentional as it should be and I am happy to report that it works exactly as advertised, though I would not recommend you to rely on the system solely for braking. It’s only there to save you just in case you fail to react.

Front collision warning meanwhile, calculates the distance, speed difference and driver’s brake patterns and will give out a subtle warning (audio and visual) if it detects an imminent collision when the speed is above 30 km/h.

As for the adaptive cruise control, this is a feature you will find useful especially if your daily commutes involves a lot of highway. It is an enhanced cruise control where you can set the speed of the cruise and the system will try to maintain at that speed.

However, should the car in front of you brake, your car will brake too and that applies even when somebody suddenly enters your lane, the car will slow down by itself. You can choose how close to the front vehicle you want to be with 3 distance level.

Lane departure warning and bind spot monitor, both of which are part of a warning system to keep you alert by telling you if you are steering away from your lane or if there is a vehicle/object in your blind spot.

My personal favourite is the camera which makes the car feel fancier as it is useful. The X70 comes with multiple cameras to produce a 360-angle view around the car and also an aerial view That’s how cool it is.

Proton X70 360-degree camera

Proton X70 360-degree camera

Combine that with multiple sensors at the front and at the back of the car, parking a car this big has never been easier.

Convenience

Starting with the in-built air purifier, this functions as an air cleaner where it eliminates odours, bacteria and harmful gases. Theoretically, you could fart without being detected. Jokes aside, this could possibly negate the need for external air purifier or even a “after-smoke” air freshener.

However, I still think that the voice-command function is a bit gimmicky where it can control your music or air-conditioning well but still struggle to detect names of our Malaysian roads and building for navigational purposes. Fortunately, we can just input the command manually for better accuracy.

Lastly, is the over-the-air update. This means that should you encounter problems with the infotainment system or if Proton suddenly rolls out new improvement updates, you don’t need to visit a service centre to keep the infotainment system up to date.

For updates, it is automatic. For problems, just give Proton a call and they can troubleshoot and fix your problems remotely. Perhaps Proton is not kidding when they say this car possesses a level of intelligence that inspires.

Perodua also has its own version of Adas for the Myvi. Judging by how our local carmakers are stepping up their game in safety features, I hope for future models and facelifts, all carmakers will follow suit. This can only mean good things for consumers.

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Ahirul Ahirudin

Ahirul Ahirudin