Proton is claiming sales of 10,611 units in May, which would put it second in the sales league for the second month running, between perennial leader Perodua and top non-national brand Honda. The May total is also the highest monthly sales figure since July 2015, the company says.

May’s 10,611 units was an increase of 51.3% over April, and it helped push overall sales growth for the first five months of the year to over 70%, compared to the same period in 2018. Proton estimates its market share for the month to be 17.2%, the highest point since January 2016.

Leading the line is the Proton X70. According to Proton, it delivered 2,439 units of the SUV in May, and total X70 sales for the first five months of the year is 13,572 units. Include units delivered in late 2018 and you’ll have nearly 15,000 units on Malaysian roads. Proton claims that the X70 is the best selling SUV in the country so far this year.

Elsewhere, the 2019 Proton Iriz and Persona facelifts had their first full month of sales. The sedan did 2,972 units while the hatchback managed 940 units, which is the highest monthly figure for over two years. With nearly 4,000 units, the refreshed duo contributed 36% of total May sales. Proton says that it has over 10,000 bookings to be fulfilled over the coming months.

Rather surprisingly, Saga sales breached the 3,000 unit mark for the second month in a row. With 3,610 units sold in May, year-to-date sales for the model have grown 41% year-on-year. The entry-level sedan is in line for “a major update in the second half of the year,” says Proton. The most recent launch by Proton was last month’s 2019 Exora RC reveal.

“With a 70% increase in sales volume thus far in 2019, Proton is reaping some early rewards for its investment in products, people and sales outlets. The company is hopeful of finishing second overall in total sales for a second consecutive month when overall industry sales figures are revealed by the Malaysian Automotive Association, and we are confident of being able to maintain our strong sales performance for the rest of the year,” said Proton CEO Dr Li Chunrong.

“Proton’s strategy for the remainder of the year is to continue to grow our sales by introducing improvements to our current model range and improving our brand experience by opening more 3S/4S outlets as these efforts have obtained positive feedback from our customers. These efforts will help ensure Proton’s brand image is improved as we continue to redefine our brand values in preparation for the introduction of yet more models that are jointly developed with Geely in the future,” Li added.