PETALING JAYA: The Malaysian Automotive Institute (MAI) expects Proton Holdings Bhd and Perusahaan Otomobil Kedua Sdn Bhd (Perodua) to continue improving their market shares against foreign rivals next year.
The Government-backed institute, however, said that it was reviewing its car sales forecast for 2015 for release next month, after it took into account the impact of falling oil prices, the weaker ringgit against the US dollar and the implementation of the goods and services tax (GST).
“Based on the new models and the variant planning of the national car companies and the potential attractiveness of these models and variants, we forecast that the combined market share of Proton and Perodua will achieve 52% of the domestic total industry volume (TIV),” MAI chief executive officer Mohamad Madani Sahari said in a statement yesterday.
The institute had in September projected Malaysia’s car industry to achieve a TIV of 700,000 units in 2015, compared with the expected 670,000 units this year.
That forecast, however, did not take into account the sharp decrease in the price of crude oil in the international market, as well as currency movements.
“We are currently re-running our TIV forecast modelling, taking into consideration the numbers for the last quarter of 2014 and other economic factors,” Madani said, adding that MAI would release its new industry projection for 2015 next month.
Madani said he also expected the green car, or energy efficient vehicle (EEV), segment to continue growing next year amid falling crude oil prices.
“It is not just about fuel prices, but also about the technologies that EEV brings with it. These technologies enhance comfort, safety and security. Furthermore, EEV also means lower fuel consumption. Regardless of the fuel price fluctuation, consumers driving an EEV will always win in terms of lower cost of ownership,” he explained.
On whether the GST would have a negative impact on car purchases, Madani said: “Some consumers will wait and see, while others will not. I think this is a natural process. It’s a free market and the consumers have every right to choose what they want.”
He had earlier noted that the implementation of the GST in April next year would result in a marginal decrease in car prices.
“This situation is being closely monitored by the original equipment manufacturers and they will normally adjust their marketing plan accordingly,” Madani said.
Meanwhile, Madani stressed that the liberalisation of the local automotive industry as outlined under the National Automotive Policy 2014 would enhance the overall competitiveness of the industry, although it could pose some challenges to national car sales.
“A competitive industry provides a conducive platform for every industry player to enhance their capabilities and become stronger,” he said.