KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 3 — Proton Holdings Bhd delivered 5,964 units to customers in January 2021, down 29.9 per cent compared to January last year.
The company said the market share is estimated at 18.5 per cent, about 1.0 per cent lower than that of the same period last year.
“The overall figures though are a reflection of supply not being able to meet demand rather than a reduction in bookings,” it said in a statement.
Leading Proton’s sales in January was Proton Saga with 2,583 units delivered, making it the second most popular A-segment sedan in the country.
The Proton X70 and Proton X50 SUV twins continued to lead the C-segment SUV and B-segment SUV (five-seat) categories, though registered units were down to 892 and 1,082 units, respectively.
For the latter, a total of 4,809 units have been delivered since the official launch on Oct 27, 2020.
Proton Edar chief executive officer Roslan Abdullah said January was a difficult month for Malaysia’s automotive industry.
Hopes were high the momentum built at the end of 2020 would be carried forward, especially after the announcement of PENJANA incentives remaining in place until the end of June this year.
Unfortunately, the second movement control order (MCO) announcement put a damper on those hopes.
“Still, Proton, as well as the rest of the industry is in full support of all measures the government has in place to control the rate of infection.
“The safety of all Malaysians needs to remain as the main priority and companies need to pivot in order to achieve their goals in a changed market environment,” he said.
Roslan said while Proton’s order book remains healthy with orders carried over from the end of last year, the company is still working hard for supply to catch up to demand.
He said as an industry that depends on a global supply chain, automotive companies are acutely affected by delays to vendors that have a knock-on effect to their production lines.
‘Measures like the MCO have naturally affected the number of customers coming to showrooms, but we can receive bookings online helping to boost our sales.
“However, our supply lines have been disrupted over the last few months by the coronavirus, making it difficult to ensure a steady flow of parts needed to build our cars.
“It’s something all car manufacturers have been facing for the past year but we are hopeful that with the arrival of a vaccine things will stabilise by the middle of the year,” he said.
Despite the delays, Proton intends to pursue its product launch plans for 2021 as the company strives for more sales growth both domestically and abroad.
“For now, we will stick to our 2021 product launch schedule. We have an exciting series of improved products in the pipeline while the Proton X50 will now be able to establish its standing in the market by benefitting from a full year of sales,” he added.