2018 was the fifth consecutive year that Mercedes-Benz set a record in Malaysia, with 13,079 vehicles bearing the 3-pointed Star delivered to customers nationwide. This was a 9% growth in sales volume over 2017’s number and with an estimated 2.4% market share (pending the release of official date from the Malaysian Automotive Association), the achievement cements Mercedes-Benz as the luxury lifestyle brand in Malaysia.
Presenting the results, Mercedes-Benz Malaysia (MBM) President & CEO, Dr. Claus Weidner said: “2018 was another successful year in the 15 year-long extraordinary journey for Mercedes-Benz Malaysia and the Mercedes-Benz brand. Our efforts to invigorate the brand experience for our increasingly diverse fans have been fruitful and we are happy to retain our position as the number one luxury lifestyle brand. Our great combination of Best Products, Best Service and Best Customer Experience continues to drive the brand’s success and we assure our customers and fans that this will continue to be our focus.”
“Offering a seamless customer experience to our valued customers is a core value that we uphold and we believe this is important to ensure sustainability of the business. The mantra has always been about ‘Putting the customer at the centre of our activities,’ he added.
Commenting on the 2018 performance, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at MBM, Mark Raine said: “We are extremely proud of our history-making performance for 2018. We delivered 13,079 Mercedes-Benz Cars to customers, further cementing our position as the leading premium brand in Malaysia. Our fresh-faced product portfolio with the locally-assembled Mercedes-AMG C 43 and GLC 43, and all-new Mercedes-Benz A-Class has succeeded in keeping our fans excited about the brand. Furthermore, we gave the market a taste of the future with the EQ Concept this year. We intend to keep the momentum going with more exciting events and products in 2019.”
During 2018, 20 new models or variants were launched in Malaysia and as in previous years, the locally-produced sedans (C-Class, E-Class and S-Class) accounted for the biggest share of 60% (7,910 units). Following closely were the SUVs with 2,613 units sold, a large number being the locally-produced GLC 200 and GLC 250. As for the compact range, a total of 1,875 were units sold while the 662 Dream Cars were delivered. The volume of Dream Cars exceeded expectations and represented a 77% growth for the brand shapers.
Additionally, MBM showcased the brand’s innovative edge with the EQ Concept (pictured below) making its first appearance in Southeast Asia in Kuala Lumpur. With electrification rapidly moving to the mainstream of the auto industry, MBM’s introduction of the EQ brand is a prelude to future electromobility.
While the success of the brand in Malaysia is due to many factors and initiatives, a large contributor has been MBM’s emphasis on upholding Best Customer Experience. This is particularly important as the volume of Mercedes-Benz vehicles grows and the high levels of customer satisfaction must be maintained and even enhanced.
Mercedes-Benz as a brand has invested over RM1 billion in the Malaysian market since 2003 (when the company’s subsidiary was established as DaimlerChrysler Malaysia) and MBM’s production plant in Pekan, Pahang demonstrates its long-term position and consistent commitment to the country’s economy.
MBM’s long-term commitment is also demonstrated through the Mercedes-Benz Malaysia Training Academy which has been developing the skills of Malaysia’s youth and create meaningful job opportunities in the automotive industry. 2018 saw an additional 26 apprentices graduating, bringing the total to 853 globally-certified local apprentices who have passed through its doors since the establishment of the training programme.
The stellar performance in Malaysia made it one of the few markets in the Asia Pacific region to have delivered more passenger cars than ever before in a single year. The region recorded the strongest growth in Mercedes-Benz vehicles, contributing to 2018 being the most successful year (in terms of sales) for the German brand with approximately 2.3 million vehicles sold worldwide.