The Malaysian Automotive Association (MAA) has revealed production and sales figures for the month of December 2016, with the latter experiencing a significant jump compared to November 2016.

Total sales amounted to 64,822 units, of which 57,593 units were passenger vehicles while the remaining 7,229 units were commercial vehicles. This represented an increase of 32.1% or 15,737 units from the month of November 2016. Even so, December 2016 compared to December 2015 saw a sales decline of 7% or 4,549 units, with 61,102 passenger vehicles and 8,269 commercial vehicles sold.

The association attributed this spike to the various year-end and festive promotions offered by car brands in the country, where buyers were likely enticed by the attractive discounts available to them.

As for year-to-date (YTD) sales and overall total industry volume (TIV), 2016 was dismal compared to 2015, with the market experiencing a decline of 13% or 86,553 units to 580,124 units from 666,677 units.

According to the association, the decline in TIV comes after six consecutive years of growth, and represents the first time the TIV falls below the 600,000 mark since 2009. In January, the association projected TIV for 2016 to be around 650,000 units, but later revised its figure to 580,000 units in July.

In 2016, Perodua secured its highest-ever market share among carmakers, with 207,100 units sold in the year. Mercedes-Benz and BMW also had record years, with the Three Pointed Star selling 9% more cars this year from 2015 with 11,779 units, while BMW recorded its highest ever growth of 16%, selling 10,906 units of BMW, Mini and BMW Motorrad vehicles in the country.

For January 2017, the association expects sales volume for the month to be lower than December 2016 because of a shorter working month due to the Chinese New Year holidays, and buyers concluding their purchases in December 2016 itself to take advantage of the offers by car companies.

In terms of production, December 2016 saw an increase of 6% or 2,545 units compared to the same month last year. Passenger vehicle production for the final month of 2016 stood at 45,293 units, while 2,542 commercial vehicles were produced. However, YTD production saw an 11% reduction or 69,411 units compared to 2015, likely the result of lacklustre sales figures.