white_myvi_small.jpgPerodua has attributed their quick rise to success after only 13 years in business to a win-win alliance with it’s Japanese partner Daihatsu. Perodua Managing Director Syed Hafiz Syed Abu Bakar says “Picking the right partner and picking the right way to move forward together is the key.”

The key is Perodua’s manufacturing unit. Perodua has a subsidiary called Perodua Auto Corporation Sdn Bhd which handles the operations of Perodua Manufacturing Sdn Bhd (PMSB) and Perodua Engine Manufacturing Sdn Bhd (PEMSB). Daihatsu Motor Co Ltd and Mitsui & Co own 51% of Perodua Auto Corporation. This restructuring exercise was done back in 2001, and manufacturing operations are under joint-venture partner control.

This strong strategic alliance has resulted in a win-win situation, bringing Perodua closer towards it’s goal of becoming the king of compact cars in not only Malaysia but the region. It plans to ramp up production at it’s 2 billion ringgit Rawang plant by 25% in preparation for new models and increased export. In times of rising oil prices, compact cars are gaining popularity because of the perception that they are more fuel efficient, though this is not always the case.

Perodua’s manufacturing facilities have improved through the injection of Japanese DNA in the company, like the practice of the Toyota Production System (TPS) and “jishuken” which are self-improvement activities like study groups held together with vendors. It’s vendors are audited by it’s own QRE (quality resident engineers) team. Toyota’s association with Perodua has resulted in a positive halo effect in both reputation and manufacturing processes.

In line with it’s ambitions to be the best compact car manufacturer in the region, Perodua currently has no plans to produce a sedan model although there are such rumors being passed around, but there are plans for compact cars with larger engine capacities of up to 1.5 litre engines. Perodua’s largest compact car engine capacity is currently 1.3 litres, found in the Perodua Myvi and the Perodua Kembara. The Perodua Myvi and Kembara would definitely benefit from a 1.5 litre engine as the current 1.3 litre feels underpowered to me. The engine revs have to be kept higher for sufficient power and this in turn defeats the purpose of a smaller engine so it can be more fuel efficient.