It was another solid 12 months for Perodua last year, with the national carmaker reporting that it sold 227,243 units in 2018, its best-ever yearly sales performance. This is a 10.9% – or 22,343 unit – increase over the 204,900 units it managed in 2017, the improvement in numbers brought about by the strong performance of the Myvi and the three-month tax holiday when GST became zero-rated.

The company is expecting 2019 to be an even better year, projecting a marginal 1.7% increase to 231,000 units, with the push continuing through the Myvi and the recently-introduced Aruz SUV.

“Perodua’s aim to boost its sales this year will not only strengthen the brand but offer some relief to the Malaysian car industry, which is forecast to grow very minimally this year,” said newly-appointed Perodua president and CEO Datuk Zainal Abidin Ahmad.

He added that the company has collected nearly 5,700 bookings for the Aruz since order-taking for the SUV began on January 3, a good jump from the 2,200 bookings reported on January 15 “Given that our sales target is 2,500 units monthly, the figure is very encouraging indeed,” he said.

In terms of specifics, it was no surprise that the Myvi was Perodua’s best-selling model last year, with 82,122 units registered out of 117,844 booked over the course of the year.

The automaker also revealed that from its November 2017 launch to date, the Myvi’s numbers have exceeded 91,500 registrations and 147,000 bookings. Meanwhile, the Axia, Bezza and Alza – which was given a facelift last year – contributed 70,821, 49,911 and 24,389 units to the 2018 total.

In terms of production, over 219,000 vehicles rolled out of the Perodua Manufacturing and Perodua Global Manufacturing plants last year, and the company says it is aiming to better that figure by 10.5%, to 242,000 vehicles, in 2019.

The carmaker is also expecting to increase its component purchases by 20% from RM5 billion last year to RM6 billion this year. This is in line with the demand expected in 2019 and will directly benefit local automotive suppliers.

After-sales also set new records last year, with an increase in service intakes being among these. In 2018, it accomplished 2.17 million intakes compared to 2.1 million the year before, making for a three percent increase.

The sales of parts and accessories also increased, with RM320.8 million managed in 2018, a 11% increase from the RM288.5 million registered the year before. Its body & paint and pre-owned vehicle businesses also saw growth.

“After-sales is just as important as sales to us, as it sustains us in this ever-competitive market. We want to improve in this area further as it is with customer care that we will be able to further strengthen our brand in this country,” Zainal added.