Friday, November 18, 2011

Driving to Cameron Highland in the Alza

Driving to Cameron Highland in the Alza

I recently drove my Alza up to Cameron Highland. My Journey there is from Jawi Toll – Tapah via North South highway, Tapah – Cameron Highland using the old road & Cameron Highland to Simpang Pulai using the new road, Ipoh back to Jawi Toll using the Highway at Night driving in rain.

Alza Fuel Consumption during the Drive

Average Fuel Consumption Meter (AFCM)was reading 7.2 lt /100km, when started from Jawi Toll on the North South Express way,I zero the trip meter but not the AFCM as I wanted to do a Manual calculation check as well

By the time I reach Cangkat Jering (77km in to my journey) the AFCM was at 6.1lt / 100km, just b4 the up climb, during the climb at the Tunnel it rose to 6.2, It then drop to 5.7lt/100 km when I exit Tapah toll (177km).

On the Old Road up Cameron Highland, from Tapah the AFCM steady rose to the maximum of 6.6km / 100km at Cameron Highland Kea Farm / Hotel Equatorial/ the High Point at 250km on the trip meter.

Going Down was via the Cameron Highland – Simpang Pulai Road. By the time I reach Simpang Pulai the AFCM was reading 6.1lt / 100km at 323km on the Trip Meter, I reach Ipoh using the old road with 6.2lt/100km, had dinner, drove to Jelapang entered the Highway and ended my Journey at Jawi toll with 6.0lt with a total 461km driven. I immediately Refill (RM62/ 32.6lt) and calculate manually div against 529km (from my last refill) which give me a reading of 6.17lt/100km, a slight error of 0.17lt/100km

For information I was driving around 80km – 100 km on the Highway, 60km on the Normal Roads in general as close to the optimum speed as possible.

Comment on the Car (Alza)

My Alza handed well, especially coming down the Cangkat Jering Tunnel – Ipoh, I put the AT on 3rd gear and coasted down without touching the accelerator at all, speed was below the 80kmph. The Stock tyre also gripped well, going around the corners up and down the Cameron Road, at least at the speed I was going at. However it got noisy when going around corners in the not so well maintain Tapah – Cameron road. What I miss most in the Alza for this trip would be a Cruise Control option.

Comment on the Old Tapah – Ringlet Road

This is the old road up to Cameron Highlands. Being familiar with its Narrow, with Sharp and Blind Bends, I feel that this road is much more interesting, in term of sights to see along the side of the road, especially the Lata Iskandar waterfall, orang asli villages. Most drivers are more cautious using this road.

Comment on the New Simpang Pulai Road

This newly built road, is wide, much straighter without blind corners, thus you will end up driving much faster, especially when coming down. A few of the corners on the road there were standing water (due to recent the rainy weather). It will be advice able for Drivers to Keep an eye on the Vehicle speed, when driving on this road especially when reaching the bends. This road is less interesting, as there are no villages along the road. This is the road to take when you are in a hurry.


It was a challenging drive, despite having driven up to Cameron Highlands numerous times (but that was 14 years ago), and that we travel not during the peak period, but enjoyable. I finally manage to squeeze in a major trip outstation, testing out my Alza on the Highway and a good uphill climb. I do not find the Alza lacking in handling nor the power available. It manage the steeper Tapah – Cameron Highland road without any problems, with power on the tap waiting to be delivered when needed, and I believe economical. (I have no figures for other vehicles going up and down Cameron Highland though.)

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