By RAHIMI YUNUS / Pic By TMR File
CARMAKERS sold 296,334 vehicles in the first half of 2019 (1H19), 2.3% higher or 6,735 units more compared to the same period last year, the Malaysian Automotive Association (MAA) said.
This was equivalent to 49.4% of MAA’s 2019 total industry volume (TIV) forecast of 600,000 units.
MAA president Datuk Aishah Ahmad (picture) said the increase in TIV is contributed by the passenger vehicle (PV) segment, which rose 3.8% or 9,952 units to 270,875 units than 260,923 units sold in 2018.
However, the commercial vehicle (CV) segment continues the downward trend by 11.2% or 3,217 units to 25,459 units compared to 28,676 units registered in 1H19.
“On a monthly basis, the sales volume for May 2019 was the highest recorded during the period under review. The TIV for May 2019 was 60,780 units, the only time the TIV had exceeded the 60,000 units mark during the period under review,” Aishah said at the 1H19 Market Review in Petaling Jaya yesterday.
Aishah said the strong demand in May was attributed to pre-Hari Raya promotions and various offers by industry players.
In the PV segment, higher volume was seen in sub segments of four-wheel drive or SUV, and window vans, while passenger cars and MPV have suffered decline. The SUV sub segment jumped 77.4% or 28,983 units to 66,447, mainly boosted by Proton Holdings Bhd’s X70 sales.
In the CV segment, negative growth rates are posted across the board, with prime mover and pick-up sub segments having taken the brunt.
The prime mover category dropped by 15% or 120 units to 682, while pick-up slid by 14.7% or 2,866 units to 16,565.
On hybrid vehicles, Aishah said the volume declined by 28.6% to 6,147 units from 8,613 units sold in 1H18 due to longer approval time pertaining to incentives.
On production front, total production volume increased by 1.5% to 285,028 units compared to 280,947 units a year ago.
For 2H19, Aishah said MAA maintains its original TIV forecast of 600,000 units for 2019.
She highlighted several factors that would determine the demand including the cut in Overnight Policy Rate to 3%, introduction of new models, stringent hire-purchase lending rules, and consumers and businesses spending sentiment.
Separately, Aishah said MAA is hopeful for the government to continue incentivise energy-efficient vehicles under the new National Automotive Policy (NAP) to allow industry players achieve cost competitiveness.
The NAP 2019 is expected to be announced by year-end.