Proton continues to absorb SST for its models

By AFIQ AZIZ / Pic By ISMAIL CHE RUS

NATIONAL carmaker Proton Holdings Bhd plans to maintain its current pricing policy and promotion strategy of absorbing the Sales and Services Tax (SST) for its models.

Proton Edar Sdn Bhd CEO Abdul Rashid Musa (picture) said such a strategy helps the company to preserve its current above 10% market share of the total industry volume (TIV).

“Proton is continuing its zero-SST pricing policy for all current models to make it easier for customers to own a Proton (car),” he said in a statement yesterday. Currently, consumers are subjected to 10% SST for car purchases.

According to the statement, Proton sold 4,820 cars last month — making up an estimated 10.2% market share of TIV. However, the sales were 5.4% lower than the 5,093 units sold in October.

The company has been absorbing the SST portion taxed by the government since Sept 1.

In June, the government abolished the Goods and Services Tax which allowed Proton and other car brands to enjoy more sales during the tax holiday period.

Following the move, Proton’s sales volume grew 18.5% to 9,501 cars in August compared to the previous month — led by its Saga and Persona models.

Meanwhile, Abdul Rashid said Proton’s first SUV, the X70, is expected to be launched on Dec 12, 2018.

In October, Proton said the SUV bookings exceeded 10,000 units following its launch of online reservations, a month after the company unveiled the X70.

“The wait for Proton X70 fans is almost over as the company will be launching its newest model on Dec 12 at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre.

“The high-technology features and safety-focused engineering of the SUV have been proven by its five-star Asean NCAP (New Car Assessment Programme) rating, being awarded the highest score recorded for its market segment, as well as being granted an Energy Efficient Vehicle status by the Ministry of International Trade and Industry,” Abdul Rashid said.

Prior to this, The Malaysian Reserve reported that about 10,000 units of the model would be imported as a “bridging volume” before the product could be assembled at Proton’s Tanjung Malim plant in Perak next year.

The SUV is the first jointly developed model between Proton and its partner, Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co Ltd.