Sunday, July 24, 2011

5 Used Cars to Avoid (and 5 Better Alternatives)

This is the article extract from Yahoo Autos which this may relevant to US market only, but it is interesting to have a read on it.

Even though auto manufacturers have greatly boosted quality and reliability, buying a used car can still be a process fraught with anxiety. In addition to worrying about the honesty of the seller, you also want to be sure to avoid vehicles with poor reliability records.

To help with that, MoneyWatch looked at owner surveys to see which cars look like trouble, focusing on five separate categories. We focused on 2008 models — the year ranked in the latest dependability study from J.D. Power and Associates. Buying a 3-year-old used car also lets you shop after the biggest new-car depreciation already has taken place: Because used car prices have risen so sharply this year, 1- and 2-year-old used models can make worse financial sense than buying new.

To make our list of used-car rejects, a model had to get the minimum two out of five in the J.D. Power “circle ratings” for dependability. It also had to be ranked below average as a used car by Consumer Reports in its annual April car issue and online car rankings.

Here are our recommendations for used cars to avoid — plus some better ideas in the same categories. Volkswagen and Chrysler Group, which also makes Dodge and Jeep, both have two entries on our avoidance list.

Small Car: Volkswagen Beetle

The Beetle’s cute looks and all-around appeal don’t save it from being on the least reliable list. Owners of the 2008 model told Consumer Reports that they had trouble with the climate control system and power equipment, both of which can lead to expensive repairs. The convertible model is selling for $19,350 on dealer’s lots according to the Kelley Blue Book web site.

.Alternative: Hyundai Elantra. Hyundai has had a remarkably strong sales year for new cars this year. But even in 2008, the company was making quality cars backed by its 10-year, 100,000 mile powertrain warranty. The Elantra got the maximum five circles in the J.D. Power reliability ratings and is ranked an above-average used car by Consumer Reports, where survey respondents reported no major problems. This model Elantra is selling for $12,435.

Midsize Car: Volkswagen Passat

Volkswagen strikes out again. Despite being praised by reviewers when new, the Passat gets the minimum J.D. Power two circles and a below-average rating from Consumer Reports. Readers there report problems with the fuel, electrical and climate systems and the power equipment.

The 2008 Passat is selling at dealers for $18,515, according to

.Alternative: Ford Fusion. Ford’s first real contender in years against mid-size leaders Toyota Camry and Honda Accord, the Fusion won the reliability award in this year’s J.D. Power survey. Consumer Reports gives it a top Much Above Average used car rating. Readers there reported no major problems with their 2008 Fusions. Dealers are offering the Fusion for $17,365, according to

Midsize SUV: GMC Acadia

Though its quality has improved in recent models, the 2008 Acadia is a repeat loser in this category. With the minimum two circles in the J.D. Power survey, it gets a worse than average used car ranking from Consumer Reports. Readers there reported problems with the suspension and audio system. The Acadia SLE model is selling for about $25,000 at dealerships, according to

.Alternative: Toyota 4 Runner. This 2008 Toyota stalwart won the J.D. Power reliability award and is rated much better than average as a used car in the Consumer Reports ratings, where readers reported no serious problems. Reviewers praise its capability both on the highway and off-road. The 2008 4Runner SR5 version is selling at about $27,730.

Large SUV: Ford Expedition

Even if you need large-capacity hauling and can ignore the lame mileage numbers (the Expedition is rated at 12 mpg in city driving, 18 highway), look elsewhere. The big boy of the Ford SUV line (whose model names all start with the letter ‘E’) gets the minimum two circles from J.D. Power and a worse-than-average Consumer Reports rating, where readers report problems with the transmission and the audio system.

The used 2008 Expedition sells for $23,530 in the XLT version, according to

.Alternative: Toyota Sequoia. In a category with no clear winner, the Toyota entry again looks like the best bet. It gets four out of five circles in the J.D. Power rating and an above-average rating from Consumer Reports. Reviewers praise its roomy seating and comfortable ride for long highway trips. The 2008 Sequoia SR5 version is selling at $31,265 at dealerships

Minivan: Chrysler Town & Country

Chrysler originated the minivan and in most years has sold more than other companies. But sometime around 2008, manufacturing quality began to lag.

This Chrysler van got the minimum two circles from J.D. Power and a much-worse-than-average used-car rating from Consumer Reports. Readers there reported problems with the suspension, brakes, climate system and power equipment. The 2008 Town & Country LX version is selling at about $16,000 from dealerships.

.Alternative: Toyota Sienna. As it did last year, the Sienna wins the reliability award for minivans from J.D. Power, and it gets a better-than-average rating from Consumer Reports. Reviewers praise its comfort and seating; it holds up to eight people. The Sienna CE version is selling for an average $20,130, according to

Despite Toyota’s recent recall problems and lagging sales this year, its dominance of numerous categories in three-year-old used cars is a reminder of what a strong record of reliability it has achieved. Domestic companies certainly should not count out Toyota as a strong competitor.

Source :

Friday, July 22, 2011

Mazda BP-ZE Engine Gasket

In Malaysia market, Mazda BP-ZE engine can be found in model such as Mazda Lantis 1.8, Mazda TX3 1.8 DOHC, and Ford Lynx 1.8 which some may call 323 Laser 1.8 DOHC.

Let see what other country calling with this range of engine,

Mazda BP series of engine

The 1.8 L (1,839 cc) BP is a dual-overhead variant of the B8. It was first found in the 1989 Mazda Familia and American-market 1990 Mazda Protege LX. This engine was dubbed BP-ZE and featured a forged crankshaft, piston oil squirters, a structural aluminum oil pan with cooling fins, a 7,000 rpm redline, and the Variable Inertia Charging System (VICS). This particular variant can be found in the following vehicles:

1989-1994 Mazda Familia GT (European & Australian Market)
1989-1994 Ford Laser TX3 (Australian Market)
1990-1994 Mazda Protege LX (with VICS)
1995-1998 Mazda Protege ES (Australian Market: 1994-1998 323 Protege SE)
1990 Mazda Infini
1990-1991 and 1993 Mazda Protege GT (Canadian Market)
1990-1993 Mazda 323 (European Market)
1991-1996 Ford Escort GT and LX-E
1991-1996 Mercury Tracer LTS
1995-1997 Kia Sephia RS, LS, GS
1994-1998 Mazda Familia (Japanese Market)
1994-1997 Mazda MX-5/Miata (did not have VICS until 1999)
There is also a non-performance version that is most easily recognized by its black stamped-steel oil pan. It also features a cast crankshaft, no oil squirters, a plastic oil pickup tube and less aggressive camshafts. It is found in the 1995-1998 Mazda Protege ES.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Suzuki K6A Engine Gasket

In my earlier post, I did mention on the K6A engine that is install on Japan Suzuki Alto (Please note that the Malaysia Suzuki Alto which is assemble from India Suzuki factory is in difference engine), as it seem like this engine is mainly for Japan domestic market requirement only, I'm not really expect to find such an engine in Malaysia.

Than I found a post in a local auto forum, that one guy had swap this 2003 Suzuki Alto K6A engine to 1993 Suzuki Alto, which it originaly carry F6A engine.

And also some fact of K6A engine driven Suzuki Cappuccino.

The Suzuki Cappuccino is a small 2-door, 2-seater demountable hardtop roadster produced by Suzuki Motor Corporation. The vehicle was designed to meet Kei car specifications for lower tax and insurance in Japan. Weighing just 725 kg (1,598 lb), the Cappuccino is powered by a turbocharged, three-cylinder, 657cc DOHC engine (just under the 660cc maximum displacement allowed for a Kei car). Its dimensions also conformed to Kei car regulations on length and width, being 3,295 mm (129.7 in) long and 1,395 mm (54.9 in) wide.

Front-rear weight distribution is claimed to be 50/50% when both seats are occupied. Layout is front mid-engined and rear-wheel drive. The hood, roof, roll bar and lower front guard panels are aluminium.

Three removable roof panels mean that the car can be used as a closed coupé; T-top; targa; or, on retraction of the rear window and roll bar, a full convertible. Roof panels stow in the trunk (though it must be said that they will occupy 90 percent of the already modest space), and the rear window/rollcage assembly retracts into the body behind the seats. Unlike many convertibles of the time, the rear window is glass and wraparound, with demisting elements.

It was originally equipped with the F6A engine: later models were fitted with a K6A engine which was lighter and had chain-driven, rather than belt-driven camshafts and more torque. Both are DOHC 12-valve, inline 3-cylinder engines that were turbocharged and intercooled. Power output was a claimed 63 hp (47 kW; 64 PS) @ 6500 rpm to fit under the maximum power allowed for Kei cars.

The Cappuccino featured 4-wheel disc brakes and rear wheel drive. Later versions in Japan had an early production iteration of speed-sensing electric power-assisted steering and aluminium double wishbone suspension. Production began in 1991 and ceased in 1997. The Cappuccino's closest competitor of the time were the Autozam AZ-1, Honda Beat and the Daihatsu Leeza Spyder. (The Autozam AZ-1, Honda Beat and Suzuki Cappuccino were together called the Sporty K-Car's ABC.)

Friday, July 8, 2011


Not in my product range, but sourcing for customer as an extra services is what we had been done, I'm not really know about tractor like Cummins 4BT, so just copy some fact from wikipedia as below.

The Cummins B Series is a family of straight-four and straight-6 diesel truck and industrial piston engines manufactured by Cummins. The B Series is known for displacing "one liter per cylinder" because of the popular 3.9 litres (238.0 cu in) straight-four and 5.9 litres (360.0 cu in) straight-six. A 3.3 litres (201.4 cu in) straight-four is also available. The B Series is widely used in many segments, including pickup trucks (the Dodge Ram), buses, military vehicles, construction equipment, and marine. Some of the construction and marine applications have actually featured two B series Cummins engines.

The engine was originally designed by Cummins and Case Corporation for commercial truck applications, and appeared in a light-duty truck, the Dodge Ram, in 1989. This was not the first engine to appear in Dodges as a Diesel option. Mid-1970s D models offered the rare, underpowered, Mitsubishi non-turbo diesel.

Every Cummins powered Dodge Pickup (since initial production in 1989) has come equipped with a turbocharger. It uses a gear-drive camshaft for extra reliability. Also specified is a deep-skirt engine block and extremely strong connecting rods. A Holset turbocharger is used. The original B Series was updated with 24 valves and an electronic engine management system to become the ISB in 1998.

The 3.9L/4BT Cummins is an engine in the same family as the 5.9 litres (360.0 cu in) Cummins turbodiesels. The 3.9L/4B is an inline four cylinder turbodiesel that was popular for many step van applications, including bread vans and other commercial vehicles. This engine is also used in various industrial, construction and agricultural applications. With a cylinder bore of 4.02 inches (102.1 mm) and a piston stroke of 4.72 inches (119.9 mm), the engine had a wet weight of 745 pounds (338 kg). In recent years it produced 130 horsepower (97 kW; 132 PS) and 355 pound-feet (481 N·m) of torque. The 4BT today is also popular as a conversion engine among many light-duty pickup trucks that were originally equipped with gasoline engines. This is due to its high fuel efficiency while producing power comparable to the original light-duty gasoline engine. The 4BT engines have the same pistons, connecting rods, valvetrain components, and injectors as their 6BT counterparts.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Mitsubishi MIVEC engine moon seal

Mitsubishi MIVEC engine which in 4G92, 4G93 or 6A13 may found the moon seal which have 2 of them attached together, anyone can comment the difference of using the 2 moon seal which is attached together or using just the 2 moon seal separately?


Normally in an engine gasket set, we normally stress on Cylinder Head Gasket, Rocker Cover Gasket, Intake and Exhaust Manifold Gasket and Valve Seal, some will extend to Plug Seal and Valve Cover Seal.

Anyway with the newer generation of engine, you may see the need of include some of the O-ring into the gasket set, like Timing Chain O-ring, fuel injector O-ring, throttle body O-ring, oil filter bracket O-ring and etc.

Since Perodua Myvi 1.3 is currently one of the most popular vehicle in Malaysia, and the engine is similar for those Toyota Avanza, Kembara DVVT, and some modification engine to K3-VET turbo, just show a photo with some O-ring in this type of engine in this post.