KUALA LUMPUR: More Nissan models are expected to be launched this year despite a slowdown in the automotive sector.
"In the pipeline are a B-segment sedan, a few interesting CBU models, and the much anticipated pilot programme of the all-electric Nissan LEAF," said Edaran Tan Chong Motor Sdn Bhd executive director Datuk Dr Ang Bon Beng.
The Nissan distributor is confident its sales volume could exceed industry growth as it gears up to introduce models in segments which it is unrepresented.
According to a Malaysian Automotive Association forecast, total industry volume is expected to grow 2.5% to hit 615,000 units this year.
|Members of the media were treated to organic dishes at the luncheon on Tuesday. Dr Ang is seated third from right.
"We will also continue to explore new business opportunities beyond Malaysia as part of Tan Chong Group’s regional expansion plan," said Dr Ang at a media appreciation luncheon at a hotel here on Tuesday.
Edaran Tan Chong Motor started 2012 with the launch of the C22 Vanette replacement model called the NV200 and the Navara Single Cab. Both are targeted for commercial use.
Dr Ang said he expected the local market would only pick up in the second half of the year. At present, the environment would remain tough for Edaran Tan Chong Motor as it tackles supply interruptions caused by the 2011 Thai floods.
Sales could also be hampered by stringent loan conditions for hire purchase as well as cautious consumer sentiments amid the global economic outlook.
|Chinese cultural music provided the backdrop entertainment during the meal.
“The automotive sector went through a roller-coaster ride last year due to unforeseen natural disasters in Japan and Thailand. Many auto players were affected and Nissan was not spared. Nevertheless, we achieved some great results despite the challenging landscape,” said Dr Ang.
Nissan’s total sales volume was close to 31,000 units in 2011. In addition, Nissan was ranked second in the “2011 Malaysia Sales Satisfaction Index (SSI) Study”.
The Grand Livina continues to be the best selling non-national MPV, capturing a 40.4% market share while the Urvan with a 43.7% market share remains as the best selling diesel window van. Meanwhile, the Sylphy was the best selling 2.0L model in the non-national C-segment with a 10.1% market share.