Expert Review - Perodua Ativa D55L (2021-Present)
19 May 2022
Perodua's most advanced and refined model to date has an efficient powertrain, funky boxy styling in and out and all the safety you can ask for. Not quite perfect, but the Ativa is a lot of car for the money, and a good car as well.
P2's first turbo engine gives the Ativa good pace, and the CVT makes the most of what's available. The effortlessness in getting up to urban cruising and highway speed is very un-Perodua - that digital speedo is deceiving. You won't really need the PWR button and Tiptronic function.
Ride & Handling
We're not expecting hot hatch fun, and the Ativa has competent handling and good grip from the overspecced Bridgestones. High speed ride is OK, but it can do with better damping for the bumps and ruts of the daily urban battle. Rear end hops over speed bumps and lands loudly too.
If you're coming from a Myvi G3, never mind the Axia/Bezza, the Ativa's rolling refinement will feel like a Rolls. A stable cruiser with no wind issues, and touring tyres help tame road noise. More cushioning in the low speed ride would be great.
There's nothing more one can ask for at the RM70k mark. ASA 3.0 + LDW is standard across the board, and the AV goes semi-autonomous with lane keep and adaptive cruise. Not only do you get Matrix LED-style headlamps, it's well-calibrated to go max at every opportunity.
The Ativa straddles A/B segments; thus, cabin space isn't great, although the boot (two-tier floor) is decent. Even the Myvi has a bigger interior. Still workable as a family car though, and perfectly sized as a personal tool - tall but small footprint and square-edged (easy to park).
The Ativa is probably one of the best value cars in the Malaysian market. The RM60k base variant looks really cheap, but it gets the same turbo-CVT combo and ASA. The AV has even better bang for buck when you consider what it gets over the mid-spec H for RM5k more.