Malaysian, they like to think they are the victims of mostly everything bad, and never put the light on how they are the one who are the prey. As likely as our neighbor in the other side of Tebrau Strait, Singapore, we do complaint, a lot.
One of the most complained is the car prices. We always says we are the one who really paid a lot in car in the region, while our Singaporean neighbors claims they are the one who paid more!
This contest will never found a conclusion, as the numbers of luxury cars roaming on both of these countries are multiplying like crazy!
So, the question is, do our cars really that expensive? I think it is a myth, a claim passed on generation to generation without checking the truth.
Let’s take a look at the cheapest cars in countries like Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, and the Philippines fared in prices.
First, Proton claimed to produce the cheapest sedan in the region in the form of value-engineered Saga FLX SV (stands for Super Value as opposed to Lamborghini’s Super Veloce) selling at MYR 33,500. Now, how about Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines? For consistency sake, let’s have a look of what are the cheapest sedan they could get. A quick tour of their most popular brand websites will do.
We will skip Singapore, well, for the obvious reason (on average, their cars are 3 times the price of ours).
In Thailand, the cheapest offering is the Honda Brio Amaze, retailing at THB517,000 (MYR 59,500), the hatchback form in starting at THB495,000 (MYR57,500). Now, this is not the sedan that you want in Malaysia, especially not in it’s pre-facelifted form. with it’s puny 1.2 litre engine producing just some horses farts, even Honda Malaysia didn’t think it is a good proposition to bring into our shores.
How about Toyota? Well, now they only got Vios in J specification as the lowest-priced sedan offering at THB599,000 (MYR68,984), which is only in manual form. Much like the Saga FLX SV, nothing much to expect from it. Compare that to our own Proton Prevé 1.6 Manual which retails at MYR59, 710, nearly a size bigger, and MYR10,000 cheaper and comes with complete safety package of 6 airbags and ESC. The Vios hatchback sister, the Yaris, starts at THB585,000 (MYR67,371).
In Indonesia, Toyota set the price of their entry level Vios at IDR291,900,000 (MYR82,776) for a Manual E Grade, while their cheapest hatchback, the sister to our very own Perodua Axia SE, the Agya is starting at IDR114.030.000 (MYR44,000)!
Meanwhile, Honda is offering the City E Grade Manual starting at IDR370,700,000 (MYR93,675). Brio is only offered in hatchback form named Satya, with the lack of powered window and sunvisors, and that even starts at IDR129,600,000 (MYR39,500).
In the isle of the Philippines, Honda do offer them the Brio Amaze, starting at a lower PHP620,000 (MYR55,300). However, this sedan is offered 1.3l engine, slightly bigger and 10 more horses than their Thailand brothers get. The hatchback starts at PHP609,000 (MYR53,500). Now, again, this is not the Honda you want, or Honda Malaysia wants to sell here in Malaysia, if they want to keep their premium image perceived by most Malaysian.
How about Toyota? Their Vios starts at PHP592000 (MYR52,000). Before you make any conclusion that it is cheaper than that in Thailand, this is not the same specification that they got there. Look at the engine displacement; 1.3 liter, producing only 85 horsepower, even the puny little 1.2 liter Brio Amaze in Thailand produced 5 more!! Can you imagine how it will perform on Malaysian fast-and-furious highways, more so uphill Genting and Cameron Highland? Some could even be overtaken by lorries up the Kinabalu Mountain roads, haha!
If you eager for a more powerful 1.5 engines they offer in Thailand and Malaysia, you must get one starting at PHP845,000 (MYR74,300) of Manual G Grade. But, take a look at the specifications first, hmmm, safety features, anyone?
So, there you go, Malaysians. Do you still think our cars are expensive? We could even get a full-on, safety-featured vehicle with ESC and 6 airbags at a low MYR59,500!
This is only a comparison of mere prices. Some other factors are not discussed as yet; higher minimum deposit of up to 50%, shorter hire-purchase tenure of 5 years, road and other taxes, servicing costs and higher fuel prices.
In Malaysia, we are still lucky, don’t you think so?