It’s that time of the year again for lists, and with that, we take a look at what Malaysians have been searching for via Google in 2016. Every year, the search engine compiles these searches and comes up with an annual ‘Zeitgeist’ for Malaysia, with a number of trending categories to be found.

Donald Trump and the US elections topped the People and News categories, and Pokemon GO featured strongly as a recurring topic in a number of areas (Searches, How to, Games), but as usual, our interest lies with Car Models.

As before, a note about trending. This doesn’t actually mean “most searched for,” but rather about items that saw the largest increase in the amount of searches over the past year. As such, trending lists are likely to be dominated by newly-launched cars or cars that have suddenly generated high interest. Here’s the Top 10 for 2016:

  1. Perodua Bezza
  2. Proton Persona
  3. Proton Saga
  4. Honda Civic
  5. Proton Perdana
  6. Nissan Note Nismo
  7. Toyota Sienta
  8. Toyota C-HR
  9. Proton Ertiga
  10. Audi A4

This was the year of the big two national carmakers making a big go of it with model introductions, with Perodua launching one and Proton, four. All five are in the top 10, with the Perodua Bezza topping the list. Of Proton’s quartet, no surprise to see the Persona and Saga – as well as the Perdana – right up there in the mix.

The slew of national car models meant that the new FC Honda Civic, which would undoubtedly have placed high any other time, had to settle for fourth. Likewise to a degree, the Toyota C-HR, but it and the Sienta proved popular enough.

The surprise in the top 10 is the Nissan Note Nismo – it’s not exactly a new car, and it isn’t available here, but that didn’t stop a renewed interest in it, with the search surge enough to propel it to sixth in the 2016 list. Finally, the Audi A4 rounds off the 2016 list, helped by the much-awaited arrival of the B9.