It was exactly two years ago to this date when we reported that there will be one million Perodua Myvis on the road by the end of 2017. That major production milestone is now just around the corner, expected to happen this month, half a year ahead of schedule. One million Myvis will make it “the most produced Malaysian vehicle in history,” according to Perodua.

The Perodua Myvi was launched here in May 2005 and was Malaysia’s best selling car until the end of 2014. Interestingly, the Myvi (My Vehicle, Malaysian Vehicle), a reworked Daihatsu Sirion, was supposed to be a “niche” model in what was then a sedan dominated Malaysian market – the great response that cut across demographics caught Perodua by surprise. The rest, as they say, is history.

The second-generation D54T Myvi received the baton in mid-2011, while the facelifted second-gen made its debut in January 2015. Perodua still sells few thousand Myvis a month today, and it’s one of the carmaker’s four core models alongside the Axia, Bezza and Alza – 13,900 units from January to April 2017 ain’t that shabby.

All but a fraction of the one million units Myvis are in Malaysia. 35,400 units of the five-door hatch have been exported since 2006, and of that total, 31,000 have gone to Indonesia as the Daihatsu Sirion since 2007. The balance have been exported to seven countries – Sri Lanka, Mauritius, Brunei, Singapore, the United Kingdom, Fiji and Nepal – as the Perodua Myvi.

Top row (L-R): 2008 first-gen facelift, 2011 second-gen Standard
Bottom row (L-R): 2011 second-gen Extreme, 2015 second-gen facelift Advance

“We are happy yet humbled by the trust given by Malaysians to our brand and we will continue to offer our best in terms of value and services to all Malaysians,” said Perodua CEO and president Datuk Aminar Rashid Salleh.

It’s not perfect, but the Myvi has struck a distinct chord with the Malaysian car buying public by offering decent performance and generous amounts of space at an affordable price. Just like how a generation of drivers once lived and learned in their family Proton Saga, the Myvi is serving that role today.

When asked on the secret of the Myvi’s success, Perodua Sales MD Datuk Dr Zahari Husin said that this is a car that appeals to all regardless of age, gender and race. He’s right, just look around you. I’d like to think of it as the Volkswagen Beetle in a Malaysian context, the people’s car. There’s a third-generation Myvi just around the corner, so we won’t be betting against the nameplate finding another million homes.

Congratulations mate, may you live long and prosper!

GALLERY: Perodua Myvi through the years