Malaysians like riding tall, and have proven so with their money. From a total of 508,911 vehicles sold in Malaysia last year, SUVs and 4x4s comprised 136,497 units in 2021, which represented a 43% gain over the 95,477 units from the segment sold in 2020, according to the numbers released by the Malaysian Automotive Association.
By comparison, normal passenger cars saw a drop in volume by nearly one-fifth, or 19.7% to 282,155 units last year, down from 351,198 units sold in 2020. This is from the 2021 total of 452,663 passenger vehicles, itself a drop of 5.9% from the 480,971 passenger vehicles sold in 2020.
In fact, the SUV and 4X4 segment was the only one among passenger vehicles to chart a gain in sales this year. Sales of window vans dropped 11.8% to 901 units last year from 1,021 units in 2020, while multi-purpose vehicles (MPVs) recorded a drop of 0.5% to 33,110 units last year from 33,275 units sold in 2020.
The Proton X50 staked its claim as the national carmaker’s best-selling SUV and also the most popular SUV in the country, with 28,774 units sold as of the first week of the year and thus placing it in the brand’s line-up second only to the Proton Saga sedan.
Staying on the SUV subject, the Proton X70 recorded sales of 16,375 units, making it the top-selling C-segment SUV in the country last year. Proton sold 45,149 SUVs in 2021, accounting for nearly 40% of its 114,708 units sold last year in Malaysia and abroad.
While Perodua typically maintains its lead on the sales charts and has unsurprisingly done so again for 2021, it was beaten to the top step in the SUV stakes as the Ativa, launched in March, recorded 26,847 sales to the X50’s aforementioned 28,774 units. Meanwhile, sales of the Aruz contributed 15,313 units last year. From Perodua’s 2021 tally of 190,291 vehicles, the Ativa and Aruz made up 22% of the brand’s sales.
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