I test drove the new Porsche Panamera recently. My other experience driving the Panamera was last year during the Media Driving Academy ((MDA) hosted by Porsche Asia-Pacific at Sepang International Circuit. That model I drove was the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid and of course, it was fun, accelerating like there’s no tomorrow at the Sepang International Circuit.
The one I test drove is the second generation of the Porsche Panamera. According to the press release, the new Porsche Panamera, is a sports car and luxury saloon in one. Its engines and transmission were re-engineered, the chassis perfected, the display and operating concept interpreted for the future with multitouch controls, and its design embodies core brand values even more.
Okay, I have to say I like the multitouch controls though it took me a while to figure out what’s what. But after, it’s pretty convenient and user friendly for both the driver and passenger.
First let me share with your some of the specs of the new Porsche Panamera.
Concept. Four-door sports car. The four-seat Gran Turismo concept combines the performance of a high-performance sports car with the comfort of a luxury saloon. The tailgate, folding rear seat backrests and up to 1,304 litres of luggage volume make the Panamera the most versatile model in its class. Yes, I actually put two medium size luggages with ease. I didn’t expect that it could fit.
Design and Body. New evolutionary stage of the Panamera concept. Expressively designed – with extended, dynamic proportions, flared shoulders, athletic anks and a much faster roof line. This “ flyline” which is typical of Porsche cars creates a stylistic link to the 911 design icon. Body in aluminium/steel hybrid construction: door panels, bonnet, boot lid, wings, side panels and roof all consist of aluminium.
Powertrain. A V6 Petrol engine with a displacement of 2.9 litres, delivering 243 kW (330 hp). New Porsche dual-clutch transmission (PDK) with eight speeds and all-wheel drive for all models.
Chassis. Broad spread between performance and comfort sets standards in the luxury segment. New features include rear axle steering, three-chamber air suspension, the electromechanical roll stabilisation system Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control Sport (PDCC Sport) with Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus (PTV Plus) as well as networking of all chassis systems via 4D Chassis Control.
Electrics and Electronics. New Porsche Advanced Cockpit and state-of-the-art connectivity. Black panel surfaces and interactive displays combine the visuality and intuitive operation of smartphones with the practical aspects of controlling an automobile. New LED Matrix headlights and new assistance systems such as InnoDrive and Night Vision Assist (optional). This one is a clear winner. I totally agree that it’s quite intuitive.
Other features. Standard: 19-inch (4S and 4S Diesel) and 20-inch wheels (Turbo), LED head- lights and LED headlights including Porsche Dynamic Light System (Turbo), LED rear lights, rain sensor, automatic boot lid, Porsche Communication Management (PCM) with online navigation and Porsche Connect Plus (online services and app networking with smartphone), Bose 150-watt sound system, key- less engine starting system, part-leather seats (4S and 4S Diesel) or all-leather upholstery (Turbo).
The new Porsche Panamera, now available for test drive
Such a comfort feeling. Only thing is that I have to keep adjusting the seat to the front whenever I enter the Panamera.
How the interior looks at night
Driving down to Kuala Beliat was such a breeze in the Panamera
How I wish I could drive this for a lifetime
My thoughts. There’s something unique about the Porsche Panamera because if you look closely at the design flow of the latest Panamera, it does resembles that of the iconic Porsche 911. Speaking of 911, my favourite Porsche model is the 911 GT3. Now back to the Panamera. This is perhaps the most comfortable luxury segment saloon for both driver and passengers. Firstly it’s spacious.. Yes, very, very spacious for a space of four people. The interior itself are luxurious to say the least.
Let’s talk about the Porsche Rear Seat Entertainment. I like the fact that there is a 10-inch touchscreen located in the centre for the convenient of back seat passengers. The sound of the Rear Seat Entertainment is played back via the loudspeakers integrated into the touchscreens, the vehicle’s sound system. rear passengers can access the radio. The screens can also be used to display vehicle data and the current navigation route with related supplemental information. It is even possible to input destinations for the PCM’s navigation system via the Porsche Rear Seat Entertainment system. The functional range is also signicantly extended by giving rear passengers access to all products available at the Google® Play Store. The Porsche Rear Seat Entertainment system can be controlled by touchscreens or alternatively from the PCM.
Now the driving experience. It’s not just spacious but the new Panamera packs a power. It’s stable during roundabouts and corners even at higher speed. The transition between the gears in the Panamera’s eight-speed gearbox seemed seamless and smooth.
I took it for a spin from Bandar to Kuala Belait and I can assure if you for those who commutes from those points, you will eventually love driving back and forth. It is just simply comfortable and it’s a breeze, driving in the Panamera. Just have to be mindful to check your speedometer that you might exceed the speed limit because you won’t even feel how fast the Panamera can go.
For those interested in the new Porsche Panamera, there are many options to choose from such as optional Night Vision Assist and Innodrive. You can also opt for other models in the Panamera such as the Panamera Turbo or the Panamera 4S. You can contact Porsche Centre Brunei, QAF Eurokars Sdn Bhd if you’re interested for a test drive of the new Porsche Panamera.
Such a spacious booth for a Panamera. I could fit two medium sized luggages.
The Porsche Rear Seat Entertainment
Just look at that space
I love driving in sports mode but it does eat up petrol quicker than usual
Sound system powered by Bose
Pg Shamhary Pg Dato Paduka Hj Mustapha, Brunei Shell Marketing Company’s Managing Director, giving out donation to the underprivileged students in Temburong District recently.
The smiles of the students’ faces 🙂
During the month of Ramadhan and Syawal, Brunei Shell Marketing Company Sdn Bhd (BSM) and its staff held a donation drive in efforts to put smiles on some 50 selected underprivileged primary school students in Temburong District.
Today, BSM handed over the donations contributed by BSM as well as its management and staff. The contribution included necessities such as school and daily supplies. Present to handover the donations were BSM Managing Director, Pg Shamhary Pg Dato Paduka Hj Mustapha and members of the leadership team.
BSM also took the opportunity to celebrate Aidilftri with the students and their family as well as its stakeholders and business partners. This has been a tradition by BSM since 2014 and these events were made possible by the commitment and partnership between BSM and the Department of School (Cluster 1) under the Ministry of Education as well as Temburong District Office and the Rataie Village Council Consultative under the Ministry of Home Affairs.
The event took place at Mukim Bukok Community Hall in Kampong Rataie, Temburong recently.
The 1.4 Audi A4 Black Edition is available for test drive
Yesterday I had the privilege to have a short test drive of the sportier look of the Audi A4 Sedan Black Edition. Yes, yes. The colour of the Audi that I test drove was in blue but the Black Edition was referring to the new Black styling package where the front radiator grille, the side sill trims, side air inlet and front spoiler and also the sporty rear spoiler are in gloss black finish. It does look slicker in the gloss black finish and matches the royal blue colour of the Audi A4 sedan. Though it’s not an S Line version but you will enjoy the S Line exterior finishing touch to give the 1.4 Audi A4 a sportier feel.
The Audi A4 that I test drove is the 1.4 litre spec. The features inside have been upgraded where you will appreciate the inlays has a piano black finish to give a classier feel. The base features for the A4 already includes such premium equipment such as Drive Select, Virtual Cockpit digital display and Navigation plus with additional Side Assist blind spot detector.
The 1.4 Audi A4 comes with 18” exclusive Audi Sport cast aluminium wheels in 10-y-spoke design in gloss black.
The price is quite reasonable if you ask me. The driving experience, though a short one, is still a great one (Wish I could spend more time with it to get the full experience). Despite being a 1.4 litre engine, the horsepower is 150hp and you can feel the difference when you step on the accelerator.
Do test drive the 1.4 Audi A4 Black Edition and get the feel of it.
A quick test drive on the 1.4 Audi A4 Black Edition but I craved for more
It does look sportier with the gloss black finish on the grille
The sporty rear spoiler is also in gloss black
This is the previous base model of the Audi A4 Sedan. You can tell the difference in the grille and such.
Now the quattro (high spec) version of the Audi A4 Black Edition
This look similar to the 1.4 Audi A4 Black Edition. Just that this is the high spec edition, the quattro Audi A4
If you want much power hungry version of the Black Edition, then you can go for the 45 TFSI Audi A4 Black Edition (quattro). This is the higher spec with a horsepower of 252hp, enhancing the driving experience even more. Unfortunately, no drive test edition for this one.
The pedals and footrest are made of stainless steel. The seats themselves are sporty and in leather. The rims are slightly bigger, 19” exclusive Audi Sport 5-arm-rotor matte titanium look. Let’s not forget, the driver and passenger will enjoy the Bang & Olufsen 3D sound system too.
All Audis in Brunei come with 5-year or 150.000km (whichever comes first) Extended Warranty. Do visit Audi Showroom in Kiarong to find out more. Follow them on @audibrunei on instagram and Facebook too.
Check out the 19” rims complemented by brake callipers in red
In the high spec, you will enjoy the leather finish on the seats
You will get use to the new numbering system by Audi. The 45 stands for a 2.0 litre engine.
In the high spec, you will also enjoy the high quality speakers from Bang & Olufsen
Her Royal Highness Princess Hajah Masna, Ambassador-at-Large at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs accompanied by H.E. Ms. Wanthanee Viputwongsakul, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Thailand to Brunei Darussalam with other diplomatic corps at the grand opening of the Thailand Grand Fair at the 23rd Consumer Fair held at the International Convention Centre
Her Royal Highness looked on the hand made design on the umbrella
The Royal Thai Embassy organised the ceremony of the “35th Anniversary of Thailand―Brunei Diplomatic Relations Grand Fair” at Bilik Sepakat 2 and 3 yesterday. On this special occasion, Her Royal Highness Princess Hajah Masna, Ambassador-at-Large at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs graced the Opening ceremony of the Fair as part of the 23rd Consumer Fair.
The Embassy’s annual Thailand Grand Fair is celebrating its 11th edition this year and also coincides with the 35th Anniversary of the Establishment of Diplomatic Relations between Thailand and Brunei Darussalam.
Visitors can expect around 30 booths selling fresh and ready-to-eat food such as fresh spring rolls, Miang Kham and Som Tam (papaya salad), dried food, snacks and delicacies such as mango and durian sticky rice as well as dried, fresh and seasonal fruits.
Visitors can also find at the Fair,Thai silk and cotton clothing, handbags, handicrafts, jewelries and herbal products. So do visit the Thailand Grand Fair at the Consumer Fair which ends this Sunday.
Her Royal Highness receiving a Thai delicacy from one of the vendors at the Thai Grand Fair
Photo opportunity with the guest of honour
Her Royal Highness visited Chatramue booth
BIBD today realised the aspirations of Mohd Arraafi bin Rumzan and Lee Ye Kiat, when they brought home BND25,000 each as part of the third (3rd) quarterly draw for the BIBD Aspirasi Rewards Program.
Ten monthly winners also brought home BND2,500 each as part of the seventh (7 th) monthly draw. The winners were chosen from customers who had subscribed to Aspirasi, with a minimum holding period of 90 days. Since Aspirasi was launched on 1st September 2018, BIBD has awarded a total of 64 winners with total cash prizes amounting to BND250,000.
Prizes were handed over earlier today by the Guest of Honour, Dr Awang Abdul Nasir bin Haji Abdul Rani, Dean of the Faculty of Economics and Islamic Finance, UNISSA in his capacity as a member of the BIBD Shariah Advisory Body. The current BIBD Aspirasi Rewards Program will come to an end with the grand draw of BND250,000 scheduled in September 2019.
To be eligible for the grand draw, customers must subscribe to BIBD Aspirasi for a minimum of 90 days prior to the draw, therefore BIBD advises those who have not yet subscribed to do so before the cut-off date of June 30th 2019. In order to bring even more chances to realise your aspirations, BIBD will soon announce the sequel to Aspirasi in the next few months, which promises to be an exciting and rewarding campaign which will appeal to all walks of life.
Lee Ye Kiat was in awe winning BND 25,000 during the draw today
Mohd Arraafi bin Rumzan, another BND 25,000, was unsure what to do with the monies just yet. Congratulations.
Jenny Malai Ali interviewing the guests earlier today
Even though receiving a consolation, he was pretty hyped up and cheerful. A very sporting person 😀
BIBD’s Head of Retail Banking, Hjh Nurul Akmar binti Hj Mohd Jaafar said “It gives us great joy to be able to play a part in realising the aspirations of our customers. The objective of this program was to instill a ‘wants can wait’ mindset and to encourage a culture of financial discipline, and based on the overwhelming response to Aspirasi so far, Alhamdulillah, we hope that we have achieved this objective. Insya Allah, we hope to run this campaign again, so we will keep everyone posted.”
BIBD Aspirasi, another one of its first introduced to the nation – has made the discipline of savings easier, more accessible and more convenient for its customers as subscriptions and redemptions can be made directly through the BIBD Mobile Application. This has helped customers create a savings discipline that BIBD hopes will become a habit, and will elevate the nation’s savings culture to a level that will be able to help them sustain their needs at every stage of their lives.
The VIPs during the launch of the 23rd Consumer Fair at the International Convention Centre
Yang Berhormat Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Kerna Dato Seri Setia (Dr.) Haji Awang Abu Bakar bin Haji Apong, Minister of Home Affairs graced the 23rd Consumer Fair
The Guest of Honour paid a visit to Cuckoo Pavilion
Meet the sleek PRIME X2. An outdoor water filter built for outdoor filtration, that is built with superior elasticity and high filtration effectiveness. From your laundry to your garden, enjoy purified water in all that you do at home with an outdoor filter unlike any other in Brunei. Do check it out at Consumer Fair.
One of the entrances for Consumer Fair
Guest of Honour visiting Dare booth in promoting Bruneian Made products
Toy Warehouse Sale
A popular spot even on the first day
Guest of Honour at BIBD Pavilion
Hello Katherine. Her company has been a strong supporter of CF
Kurapak launching his new product while Hitesh gave it a thumbs up. Check out Kurapak’s Latte at the food zone area of Consumer Fair
Taiwan booth at Consumer Fair
One of the reasons why this area is not being used for Consumer Fair because of the Yayasan event taking place today.
Both coffee vendors complementing each other
Malaysian vendors making their presence at Consumer Fair
CF King, distributor for Asus, participating in this year’s Consumer Fair
Toy Story 4. Surprisingly entertaining from start to finish. Why I say this is because this is the fourth edition of Toy Story saga and I was wondering how Pixar still got the ability to match the ever consistent trilogy of Toy Story. Hence, expectations were quite high. My oh my, it was simply beautiful and heart warming. Come to think of it, Pixar didnt’ need to do the fourth installment but they pulled off another magic. It was totally refreshing and new lovable characters (and funny too). It had a good closure and I hope that’s the finale of the Toy Story saga. So which is your favourite Toy Story series? I would say I love Toy Story 4 the most. Verdict: 8.5/10
Men in Black International. Come to think of it, this has the same fate as Toy Story as this is the fourth movie in the MIB saga. Now this one, I kinda questioned a bit. Is it really necessary to make another MIB movie since the last two were considered mediocre at best and bombed at the box office. Guess what? MIBI bombed terribly in the box office, only raking in a mere $30 million on its opening weekend, which is considered low in today’s era. The movie itself stunk and I tried my best to enjoy it. It was flat through out and my interest level waned from the first five minutes. Not even the star power of Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson can save this movie. A movie they could have done without. Verdict: 5/10
Dark Phoenix. Why are sequels currently not as entertaining with the exception of Toy Story 4. I have yet to catch Secret Life of Pets 2 and Child’s Play (2019) but I also don’t have high expectations. I came to watch Dark Phoenix, an X-Men Series with low expectations. The funny thing was the movie performed below my low expectations. How bad is that? All my peers who watched it gave it a thumbs down except for Del Goh who rated it a 7/10 (we had a long argument about the score lol). But yea, it’s no rocket science that Dark Phoenix even scored a low 23% on Rotten Tomatoes and only raking it USD 60 million AFTER THREE WEEKS. Now that’s a scary figure. I can’t believe I had to endure this crap. The consolation was that Dark Phoenix fared better than Halle Berry’s Catwoman. Verdict: 4/10
Audi R8 LMS #4 (Audi Sport Team Phoenix), Pierre Kaffer/Frank Stippler/Dries Vanthoor/Frédéric Vervisch. Image by Ferdi Kräling Motorsport-Bild GmbH.
The 47th running of the 24 Hours of Nürburgring was a thriller up until the last second: Following a turbulent final stage, the number 4 Audi R8 LMS won the battle with last year’s winning team from Porsche with a one-lap advantage. For Audi Sport Team Phoenix based at the Nürburgring, this marked the third victory with Audi and the fifth in the team’s 20-year history.
“Sincere congratulations to the whole squad,” said Chris Reinke, Head of Audi Sport customer racing. “We won with a unique combination of diverse factors this time. The field was not fully balanced and our rivals drove better lap times across long distances. But the impeccable and strong driving performance saved us from penalties. The new evolution of the Audi R8 LMS was running perfectly and Ernst Moser’s team once again showed that it’s top-class also in the international comparison.” The team from the Eifel had won its home round with Audi back in 2012 and 2014 and previously scored two other victories.
Dries Vanthoor, Pierre Kaffer, Frédéric Vervisch, Frank Stippler. Image by Ferdi Kräling Motorsport-Bild GmbH.
Audi R8 LMS #14 (Audi Sport Team Car Collection), Christopher Haase/Marcel Fässler/René Rast/Markus Winkelhock. Image by Ferdi Kräling Motorsport-Bild GmbH.
While three Audi R8 LMS cars were running within the group of the top ten for long stretches of the racing distance, car number 4 only took the lead for the first time on lap 142 when the Porsche that had been leading for a long time was handed a time penalty. At that time, a second Audi Sport Team had chances for victory as well – Audi Sport Team Land that was victorious for Audi at the Nürburgring in 2017. But two hours before the end of the race, the Audi R8 LMS from Wolfgang Land’s squad with drivers Christopher Haase/Kelvin van der Linde/Christopher Mies/René Rast retired after a puncture. Hence all hopes were pinned on the four Audi Sport drivers Pierre Kaffer/Frank Stippler/Dries Vanthoor/Frédéric Vervisch, who masterfully did their job. For the merely 21-year-old Belgian driver Dries Vanthoor, who drove the final stint, this marked the first Nürburgring victory, just like for Pierre Kaffer, who grew up in the Eifel. Frédéric Vervisch won the Nürburgring 24 Hours for the first time too. The Belgian was previously involved in the historic first 24-hour victory of the latest evolution of the Audi R8 LMS in Dubai in January. Frank Stippler, who hails from Cologne, won the iconic event as far back as in 2012 with Audi. In total, the GT3 race cars from Audi Sport customer racing have clinched as many as 13 overall victories in 24-hour races worldwide since 2009.
Audi Sport Team Car Collection with Christopher Haase/Marcel Fässler/René Rast/Markus Winkelhock lost a possible podium finish shortly before the end due to a time penalty and achieved fourth position. The privately fielded Audi R8 LMS from Phoenix Racing with Jeroen Bleekemolen/Vincent Kolb/Kim-Luis Schramm/Frank Stippler crossed the finish line in eighth place. Gentleman drivers Stefan Aust/Oliver Bender/Christian Bollrath/Jean-Louis Hertenstein claimed a remarkable 16th spot overall with Team Car Collection Motorsport.
Several Audi customer teams clinched additional trophies at the Nürburgring. Team Giti Tire Motorsport by RaceIng with Rahel Frey/Bernhard Henzel/Pavel Lefterov/Frank Schmickler in an Audi R8 LMS won the SP8 class ahead of the Audi R8 LMS GT4 from Team Giti Tire Motorsport by WS Racing with the Asian driver crew of Xiaole He/Fei Li/Yat Wong/Andy Yan. Team Bonk Motorsport scored second place in the SP 3T class in an Audi RS 3 LMS – the best TCR race car in this class. In 2017, the squad based in Münster had claimed two podium finishes with this model and another podium in 2018. Fourth position went to the Audi RS 3 LMS from Team Avia Sorg Rennsport. As a result, nine of the ten race cars from Audi Sport customer racing finished the event.