Car sales in Malaysia are expected to rebound in 4Q19, backed by upcoming new launches and year-end sales campaigns
By S BIRRUNTHA / Pic By RAZAK GHAZALI & MUHD AMIN NAHARUL
THE Malaysian automotive industry has witnessed a plethora of new product launches in the last couple of months as the festive season approaches.
Almost every major carmaker from Audi to Mercedes-Benz and McLaren to Toyota is ready with new or facelifted variants, sports cars and SUVs, while others continue to line up new products.
However, Malaysia’s total industry volume year-to-date up to September is still slightly behind the corresponding period of 2018, the Malaysian Automotive Association reported in its monthly sales data.
Car sales are down by 2.63% or 11,864 units year-on-year, with 442,991 vehicles delivered in the first nine months of 2019 versus 454,971 units in the same period last year.
Yet, car sales in Malaysia are expected to rebound in the fourth quarter of 2019 (4Q19), backed by upcoming new launches and year-end sales campaigns.
The Malaysian Reserve previously reported that the final quarter would likely record the highest sales of the year, contributed by bumper sales derived from the usual year-end promotions offered by carmakers.
4Q19 should be the strongest period, fulfilling the forecast of 600,000 units for the full year as car manufacturers continue rolling out products in different segments with new and updated concepts to attract buyers.
If you missed it, here are the five most exciting launches from September to November 2019.
Toyota GR Supra
The new Toyota Supra — the first global model of Toyota Gazoo Racing’s GR sports car series — was unveiled to the local market in September 2019.
The GR Supra series returned to the global sports car market after production of the previous generation ceased in 2002.
According to UMW Toyota Motor Sdn Bhd, the flagship sports car is released in a single variant — the GR Supra GTS.
It boasts a three-litre turbocharged in-line six-cylinder engine that produces 250kW/340PS and a 500Nm peak torque.
The front-engine, rear-wheel-drive sports car accelerates to 100kph from a standstill in 4.3 seconds, tuned by an eight-speed electronic automatic transmission.
Prices start from RM568,000 on-the-road without insurance.
BMW X3 xDrive30i
The new BMW X3 xDrive30i is an SUV that was introduced with the M Sport package to further attract buyers.
It features 20-inch M light-alloy wheels in double-spoke style 699 M with mixed and run-flat tyres, the M Sport suspension, M Sport brake and M Aerodynamic body styling.
It’s powered by a four-cylinder TwinPower Turbo petrol engine, which has a maximum output of 252hp at 5,200rpm to 6,500rpm, and a peak torque of 350Nm at 1,450rpm to 4,800rpm.
Equipped with a 10.25-inch touchscreen navigation system professional, iDrive touch and a HiFi system with 12 speakers, the vehicle is dubbed a sports activity vehicle.
Its interior features an M Sport leather steering wheel, door sill finishers with M designation and M-specific pedals with Vernasca leather.
Priced at RM328,800, the locally-assembled BMW X3 with M Sport package is limited to only 120 units nationwide.
Mercedes AMG GT R & GT C
Launched in October 2019, the models are additions to the AMG GT family currently available in Malaysia, including the GT S and GT 63 S.
The GT R is the top range of the AMG GT line-up, with speeds from standstill to 100kph in just 3.6 seconds and can hit a top speed of 318kph.
The performance car is powered by a four-litre V8 bi-turbo engine that produces 585hp and a peak torque of 700Nm, via a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. Designed for racers, the track-oriented model is priced from RM1.7 million on-the-road without insurance.
The GT C model delivers the manufacturer’s rated zero to 100kph in 3.7 seconds that can reach a top speed of 316kph. Priced at RM1.6 million, the sports car is equipped with a four-litre V8 bi-turbo engine, exerting 557hp and 680Nm of torque from 1,900rpm to 5,750rpm.
The all-new Audi Q3 is the second generation of the Q3 family, built in Gyor, Hungary.
Its wheelbase has been increased by 77mm, forming the base of its 4,484mm long, 1,849mm wide and 1,585mm high (without a roof antenna) body proportions.
The contours of the SUV were inspired by Audi Quattro, which makes the vehicle look wider.
It’s powered by a 1.4-litre TFSI petrol engine which delivers 150hp via a six-speed S-tronic transmission as standard.
With a top speed of 207kph, the car completes the 0kph-100kph sprint in 8.9 seconds and has a combined fuel consumption of 7.2 litres per 100km.
The fully imported Audi Q3 has a recommended retail price of RM269,900.
Launched this month, the new GT was introduced in the market as an entry vehicle into the luxury and high-performance carmaker’s line-up.
It’s powered by a four-litre twin- turbocharged V8 engine that delivers 620PS and 630Nm of torque via a seven-speed transmission.
The 1,530kg carbon-fibre vehicle sprints to 100kph from a standstill in 3.2 seconds, zero to 200kph in nine seconds, with a top speed of 326kph.
According to McLaren Kuala Lumpur, it’s a “very high-performance” and detail-orientated car, given its high level of technology.
The model is priced from RM908,000 (before tax and options).
Along with the GT launch, the British sports car manufacturer has also officially opened its first 3S (sales, service and spare parts) centre in Malaysia, located in Glenmarie, Shah Alam.