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The Penang state government has decided on the Toyota Camry 2.5V as its official car, according to The Sun. The Toyota D-segment sedan leads its class in terms of sales, and the 2.5V is the range topping variant in the local Camry range.

UPDATE: Story updated with more details.

The black Camrys will replace the Pakatan Rakyat-led state government’s present fleet of Mercedes-Benz and Proton Perdana cars serving the chief minister, executive councillors, state legislative assembly speakers and ex-officio members.

A total of 15 units of the Camry will be purchased at a cost of RM1.705 million. This translates to RM113,666 per unit, which is similar to the Langkawi tax-free price of the Camry 2.5V, on-the-road without insurance. Sales tax and excise exemption for official cars was allowed for by a 1994 treasury circular.

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The PR state goverment said the decision to replace the old fleet was due to the high costs in maintaining them – all the cars are more than 15 years old. “The cost of maintaining all 21 official state cars was RM370,400 in 2011, RM383,000 last year and for this year, up until now, RM301,238,” state exco member Chow Kon Yeow told the press.

It was pointed out that the oldest official car still in service is a 21-year-old Mercedes Benz 200E, used by the current State Housing, Arts and Culture Committee chairman Jagdeep Singh. The W140 S320 used by current Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng and his predecessor, Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon, is 18 years old.

Earlier this month, it was confirmed that the Proton Perdana Executive and Proton Inspira in the federal government vehicle fleet will be replaced by the Honda Accord. Click here to read more on that.

Click here to read our review of the current XV50 Toyota Camry 2.5V, which has been recently updated with the inclusion of Vehicle Stability Control (VSC).

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