Daniel Liew

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First 5,000 KM with Toyota Vios

Cars are tricky beasts because, the decision to own one is often not one of economics as public transportation is limited, in Kuala Lumpur at least. Earlier this year I got myself an upgrade from my 10-year old Kelisa to the new Vios. The compact car was a gift from my parents for me to maneuver my way through university days, which I then continue using in my working life.

So what do the fuel consumption of the new Vios look like? While I’ve tried searching for the fuel economy for the model, the effort has led to much disappointment. Okay, except for this guy who blog about his car services cost.

My 4-month old car has just passed the 5,000 km mark!

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The main reasons I opted for the Vios are its reliability, maintenance and resale value. Few of my friends who own a Toyota tell me that I can never go wrong with a Toyota.

Okay, the fuel consumption part! Generally each fuel-up to full tank allows me to drive 355 – 430 km, depending on the traffic and road condition. Generally over the past four months, the fuel efficiency ranges from 7.60 l/100km to 8.56 l/100km. The high fuel consumption is because the car is due for its service. I’m using mineral oil at the moment, planning to change to synthetic oil the next round.

Vios5000km-mark

Vios5000km-table

On average, each fuel-up cost me around RM67.00 with 32.0 litre of petrol and the distance I get is around 400km. This work out as fuel efficiency of 8.0 l/100km or 12.5 km/l. For every 100 km I travel, the cost of fuel is RM 2.10 x 8 litre = RM 16.10. As comparison, the new Honda City has a fuel efficiency of up to 17.5 km/l (I hope some Honda City driver can verify this claim).

What about the service cost? So far I’ve spent a total of RM172.38 for the 1,000km and 5,000km service. On top of free labour chargers and exclusion of the 6% service tax, Toyota offers free car wash for the first two service. The service was fast, took only less than 1.5 hours.

My only qualm with the Vios is the roof sound proofing, every time it rains it sounded like I am sitting under a roof made of zinc. I’ve filed a complain with Toyota Service Centre and they promise me the sound insulation parts will arrive in two to three months time. My service advisor told me it’s a known problem and the replacement is at no cost to the customers.

Vios5000km-service

I’m in the midst of compiling the estimated service cost I obtained from Toyota for own budgetary and will post them up soon.

What do you think of the fuel consumption of the new Toyota Vios? Feel free to leave your comment.

An evening stroll at KLCC Park

I work in the city but live in the suburb, mainly because I prefer the greener pasture to the urban jungle. Though I love the convenience of the city but the sky soaring property prices is a set back. The city where I work lacks public parks, there are only a few parks within the city centre, namely – KLCC park (20 hectare), Bukit Nanas forest reserve (10.5 hectare), Perdana Botanical Garden (91.6 hectare), and Titiwangsa park (46 hectare). For comparison, Sydney’s Royal Botanic Gardens has an area of 30 hectare while New York’s Central Park has an area of 341 hectare and sits smack in the middle of Manhattan!

Few days ago I had to send my newly bought jacket to Ruth’s Alteration in Suria KLCC. Most of the alteration shops I went to did not want to accept my request to shorten the jacket from the shoulder. Damn working buttons preventing alteration to be done on the sleeves. I am giving Ruth’s a try, hopefully the alteration at the shoulder will be perfect.

Then I took a walk at the park.

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The Petronas Twin Towers with its sheer amount of steel and glass facade gives it a masculinity look while the its surrounding KLCC park with lush tropical greenery is more feminine. The design complements one another.

Took this shot with my phone. The water reflection of the twin towers on the lake. It’s an illusion.

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The surrounding buildings and the sunset reflected on the lake.

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Taking an evening stroll, alone, is a great way for me to release stressful thoughts plagued over the course of the day. When I’m done strolling I just sit on a park bench watching the day goes by.

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And that’s an evening well spent.

MH17 Crashed in Ukraine

18 July 2014 – Woke up to a tragic news this morning. Flight MH17 carrying 280 passengers and 15 crews en-route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur was shot down and crashed at eastern Ukraine. I am totally lost for words and shocked. Our nation has not even recovered from the mystery lost of MH370 on 8 March 2014. #PrayForMH17

My condolences to the family members of the passengers and crews. May they rest in peace.

Pictures pulled from Malaysian Insider.

Tour Trip to Canberra

Early summer in 2011. My parents and I planned a trip to Adelaide-Melbourne but an unforeseen circumstances had us dropped Adelaide. My lovely aunt and cousin Dilys suggested that since our stay was two weeks long, we should at least visit Australia’s largest city Sydney and her capital Canberra. Sounds brilliant!

Tour bus

The tour we joined consisted mostly of Chinese nationals, a few Hongkies and four Malaysians. I have to say they were pretty shocked when they knew I speak fluent Mandarin, Cantonese and English – that very proud moment to be a multi-lingual Malaysian.

Along the way to Canberra

The journey from Melbourne to Canberra took about 8 hours, the scenery along the journey were mainly dried grass with some patches of green visible. Passed by Albury, the common boundary of Victoria and New South Wales. We reached Canberra around 5 o’clock in the evening. Since it was summer, the days were longer than nights, which means more time to explore.

Canberra is a planned city, very much like Putrajaya. It is a very visual appealing experience to see how the city was planned in such a way that from the Parliament you can see the National War Memorial at the end of ANZAC Parade, vice versa. In Putrajaya, a similar concept was drawn – Prime Minister Office overlooking Putrajaya International Convention Centre and in between lies a long boulevard.

Inner Canberra Triangle

Lake Burley Griffin is a man-made lake. The two bridges crossing the lake form the Parliamentary Triangle – connecting the Parliament with the City and Defence Headquarters. Where as Putrajaya has a man-made lake and 9 bridge crossings!

Lake Burley Griffin

Lake Burley Griffin

Lake Burley Griffin

It was a fine evening, the lake provides a very scenic place for one to enjoy the breeze and evening sun.

People at the park

Strolling at the park

The Australian Parliament sitting on top of Capital Hill.

Capital Hill

I managed to capture a few pictures of the Malaysian High Commission as the bus maneuvered around its way to the city centre.

Malaysian High Commission

Malaysian High Commission

Canberra is a much smaller and relatively new city as compared to Melbourne. It’s peaceful here and has fewer places to hang out.

Canberra

Friday night

Bicycle

Also saw this restaurant serving Malaysian food called Rasa Sayang.

Rasa Sayang

Checked in at Rydges Eagle Hawk Resort.

Rydges

As soon as I dropped my luggage, I went out to the surrounding compound for a walk. Luck was on my side to see a few kangaroos in the wilderness.

Kangaroo

Ripe acorn on the ground and young acorns on the tree.

Acorn

Young acorns

Shrubs.

Shrubs

Will update on my visit to the Parliament and War Memorial soon.

Overnight train to Sapa

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Months ago, the idea of sleeping in a train was so foreign to me. The thought of sleeping in a moving carriage for 11 hours was worth it considering the beauty that Sapa has to offer. Sapa is located in Lao Cai (pronounced Lao Kai) province, some 350 km northwest of Hanoi. Bordering China’s Yunnan, the mountains dominates the region and is at the eastern extremity of the Himalayas. Sapa is some 1500m above sea level, there’s really no problem of having to adjust to the change of attitude as my body is able to handle the gentle ascend within that 11 hours in the train.

Most of the trains start from Hanoi station (Ga Hà Nội) in the evening from 8pm to 11pm and arrive at Lao Cai station early next morning. JF and I had initially booked our train ticket from the tourist information centre at the airport upon arrival. The cheapest ticket for a sleeping cabin is around USD40 – saved a few bucks for accommodation.

After spending a day sightseeing in the city, we decided to have our dinner at Quan An Ngon, a popular place among the locals and tourists.  The service and food was good, so as long as you speak simple English your order will be taken. We ordered a plate of spring roll (steamed and fried), morning glory and coffee.

Address: 18 Phan Boi Chau, Hoan Kiem, Ha Noi

The train station is just a walking distance from where we had dinner. It does not boast of modern design and facilities but an old yet practical station.

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