MALAYSIAN Automotive Association (MAA) is confident that total industry sales volume will grow to 640,000 vehicles this year.
The industry’s sales had grown 4.6 per cent to hit an all-time high of 627,753 vehicles last year.
“We are confident that sales will increase. The first two months of the year saw an increase of 18 per cent,” MAA president Datuk Aishah Ahmad said after its annual general meeting here yesterday.
Aishah said it is extremely challenging to reduce car prices, especially those that are imported.
“We cannot just reduce the prices of vehicles. There is a whole spectrum that needs to be looked into,” she added.
Aishah said if the government were to reduce the prices of motor vehicles, there would be a negative impact on second hand car sales.
She noted that at present, excise duties for imported vehicles are between 65 per cent and 105 per cent while sales tax stands at 10 per cent.
There were no changes to the MAA council members during the AGM.
Meanwhile, Bernama reported that MAA wants the government to consider a longer period for the Feed-in Tariff (FiT) for hybrid cars from the maximum two years.
Aishah said MAA will write to the government soon seeking an extension.
The current two-year FiT period lapses at end of the year.
“We always ask for a longer term of around five years to enable us to draw up future plans for the automotive industry.”
Under the current FiT, hybrid car sales have shown positive growth as the import duty had been reduced to zero per cent, she added.
Under 2013 Budget, the government gave full exemption for import duty and excise tax for hybrid and electric cars below 2,000cc until December 31 2013.
“This concession has given a huge boost to hybrid car sales in Malaysia,” she said.
Last year, hybrid car sales soared 84 per cent to 15,355 units from 8,334 units in 2011.
Hybrid car sales come from four carmakers, namely Toyota (5,653 units), Lexus (979 units), Honda (8,712 units) and Porsche (11 units).