Another record six months for Perodua, with the national carmaker announcing that it has sold a whopping 121,800 vehicles in the first half of 2019. That figure represents a four percent increase over the 117,100 vehicles that left dealer lots during the same period last year.

This means that against the total industry volume (TIV), which grew 2.4% to 296,800 units, the company managed to secure a 41.1% market share, up 0.7% from the year before. Perodua puts the strong performance down to the sustained healthy demand for all its models.

Evidence of this comes from president and chief executive officer Datuk Zainal Abidin Ahmad, who said that the company also recorded 190,765 bookings, an increase of more than three percent over the 184,949 orders it received in 2018. It’s no surprise, then, that Perodua is rising its full-year sales target by some 4,000 units to 235,000 units, which would make for yet another record year.

However, the company is being cautiously optimistic for the second half of the year, noting that the three-month period between the abolishment of the goods and services tax (GST) and the implementation of the sales and services tax (SST) had a big role to play in last year’s stellar performance.

“We should remember that last year there was a big incentive for consumers to buy cars with the tax holiday, which was announced after the outcome of the country’s 14th general election,” said Zainal, adding that the tax break was merely a one-off occurrence that consumers and automotive players took advantage of.

“With this in mind, we believe that the second half of the year will not be as healthy as what was recorded last year. The momentum of the first half is likely to [be reduced] in the second half,” he said. As such, Perodua expects the full-year TIV to remain at 600,000 units – even as it raises its own target.

On the bright side, Zainal was encouraged by measures introduced by the Central Bank of Malaysia (BNM) to promote spending. “There is good news in the market as the central bank has reduced the overnight policy rate, which will help promote consumer spending.”