National carmaker Proton kicked off 2023 with a bang, with 11,681 sales recorded (domestic and export) in the month of January. The figure translates to a 162.3% year-on-year increase compared to 2022, and represents the best start it had since 2013.
The sales figure also represents an estimated market share of 22.9% for the month (total industry volume estimated at 51,000 units, 22.8% increase), an improvement of over 12% year-on-year, and over 3% better than its market share figure of 19.6% for the whole of 22.8%. Proton says the sales performance helped it retain second place in the sales table.
Leading Proton’s sales performance was the Proton Saga once again, with 4,788 units sold across January. This was followed by the Proton X50 with 2,992 units, making it the best-selling SUV in the nation. The X70 meanwhile claims second place in the C-SUV segment sales charts with 933 units delivered.
The Proton Persona’s sales figures have also bounced back now that chip supplies have mostly stabilised, with 2,039 units sold in January, taking the top spot for B-segment sedans in Malaysia. As for its hatchback counterpart, the Proton Iriz sold 597 units in the first month of 2023, representing a slight increase over its performance in December 2022, and a 111% year-on-year growth.
Rounding off the sales charts is the Proton Exora, with 332 units sold last month to retain its lead in the C-segment MPV rankings.
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“Proton has enjoyed a good start to 2023 and while the growth over January 2022 is exaggerated by the poor opening month number last year, it should not be overlooked this is our best January since 2013. We expect this trend to continue for the first quarter of the year as we must fulfil outstanding orders exempt from SST by 31 March,” said Proton Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Roslan Abdullah.
“Looking ahead to the rest of 2023, while the market outlook is for TIV to recede from the record numbers last year, Proton remains optimistic of a fifth consecutive year of growth. With new facilities due to come online at our plant in Tanjung Malim, continued expansion of our dealer network, investments in the EV charging infrastructure as well as the addition of new conventional and EV models to our range, we are confident of being able to end the year with a positive result,” he added.
Proton is expected to unveil the highly-awaited X90 SUV in the second quarter of 2023, which will be offered with a mild-hybrid powertrain for the first time in the company’s history. The Smart #1, distributed by the company’s EV arm PRO-NET, will also make its debut in Malaysia this year.
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