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The freshly launched made-for-Singapore turbocharged Toyota Harrier is put to the test against strong segment rivals, the Mazda CX-5 and the Volkswagen Tiguan.

18 Sep 2017

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If there's anything more competitive than the Singapore education system, it's probably the sport utility vehicle segment, where manufacturers are pumping out models to fill every nook and cranny in sight.

As far as mid-sized ones go, the latest to join the already expansive list of choices here is the new made-for-Singapore turbocharged Toyota Harrier.

The Harrier, which is perceived by many as a more atas Toyota, is an already established namesake here and this new turbocharged variant promises to offer more performance and higher levels of desirability.

The exclusive-for-Singapore turbocharged Toyota Harrier joins the ever increasingly crowded mid-sized utility vehicle market

To find out just how well it ranks amongst its peers, we pit a 2.0 Premium-trimmed Harrier against the equally new Mazda CX-5 2.5 Super Luxury and the more expensive, second generation Volkswagen Tiguan 2.0 TSI DSG R-line.

On that premium front

While all three are good-looking cars in our eyes, the Harrier - as the most affordable car here at $155,988 (as of 15th August) - does look the least impressive.

That could be attributed to two things in our opinion; its odd plasticky front grille and the fact that the car is commonplace on our roads. However, it's a safe design that's slightly more upmarket for the brand, which many Toyota loyalists will appreciate.

The Tiguan may not be as hawkish as its rivals, but its striking proportions and powerful presence make it the most majestic

The CX-5 on the other hand has a cleaner, but sportier design that oozes seduction, aggression and elegance. In the Japanese market today, Mazda is killing the game with its fantastic 'KODO: Soul of Motion' design language and the CX-5 is the latest example of that.

The Tiguan, in R-line trim, is distinctive and masculine thanks to its well-defined shoulder lines. The best way to describe its sheet metal is as if a BMW X5 had an unholy mating with the Volkswagen Golf R, resulting in a car that looks expensive and has tons of road presence. 

But to be fair, it is also the priciest car in this comparison with an asking price of $195,400 (as of 11th August).

Quite the same story on the inside

The Harrier's cabin, when compared to Toyota models before, has a plusher and more comfortable vibe thanks to its all-black, soft-touch interior panels and button-less centre console.

Although the Harrier may not have as posh a cabin as its rivals, it's undoubtably a very comfortable place to be in

However, jumping over from the CX-5 and Tiguan cabins, you immediately begin to feel a noticeable difference, in the sense that the faux leather, which clads the Harrier's cabin, is tacky and has an unattractive shine to it. The poorer quality of the Harrier's switchgear is apparent, too.

That said, credit has to be given for how comfortable and quiet the Harrier is to ride in, with very little road and wind noise trespassing.

Despite costing just $2,812 more than the Harrier, the CX-5's cabin quality is a few notches higher in terms of materials used and overall build. In fact, take away the Mazda badging on the steering wheel and you might be misled to believe you're in a European-made car.

Mazda's infotainment systems have come a long way and this latest generation in the CX-5 is stylish and very user-friendly

Design is modern and minimalistic, too, with a touchscreen infotainment system that's as highly intuitive as the Tiguan's. In comparison, the Harrier's less user-friendly unit will take some getting used to.
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Car Information

spacer
Promotion
There's a promotion for Mazda CX-5

Price

: $178,800

Engine Type

:

4-cylinder 16-valve DOHC SkyActiv

Engine Cap

:

2488cc

Horsepower

:

143kW (192 bhp) / 6000 rpm

Torque

:

257 Nm / 3250 rpm

Transmission

:

6-speed (A)

Acceleration (0-100 km/h)

:

8.9sec

Top Speed

:

196km/h

Fuel consumption

:

13.8 km/L

spacer
Promotion
There's a promotion for Toyota Harrier

Price

: $156,988

Engine Type

:

4-cylinder in-line 16-valve Dual VVT-iw, Twin-scroll turbocharged

Engine Cap

:

1998cc

Horsepower

:

169kW (227 bhp) / 5600 rpm

Torque

:

350 Nm / 1650 rpm

Transmission

:

6-speed (A) Super ECT

Acceleration (0-100 km/h)

:

-

Top Speed

:

180km/h

Fuel consumption

:

13.1 km/L

spacer

Price

: $196,400

Engine Type

:

4-cylinder in-line 16-valve Turbocharged

Engine Cap

:

1984cc

Horsepower

:

162kW (217 bhp) / 6200 rpm

Torque

:

350 Nm / 4400 rpm

Transmission

:

7-speed (A) DSG

Acceleration (0-100 km/h)

:

6.5sec

Top Speed

:

220km/h

Fuel consumption

:

12.5 km/L

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