PETALING JAYA: Used cars are in increasing demand following a delay in deliveries of new vehicles due to the global shortage of semiconductor chips, an essential component for consumer electronics.

While used car sales in September rebounded by more than 90% from the same month last year, used car dealers have also said they are running out of some popular models.

Malaysia Federation of Auto and Credit Companies Chairman Datuk Tony Khor said despite the boom in business, the used car market now has fewer cars to sell due to the reduced number of cars being traded.

“Southeast Asia supplies 27% of the semiconductor chips in the world and Malaysia produces 13%.

“The annual production of cars worldwide is around 90 million units and this shortage caused by foreclosures in many countries has affected automakers and impacted new car sales around the world, including including in Malaysia.

“Used cars are in demand now because of this situation. Some of the popular Malaysian favorite models are in low stock, ”he said yesterday.

Khor said used car dealers saw strong activity from January to May, with sales increasing by more than 10% from the same period last year.

“In June, activity fell 85% year-on-year due to the nationwide lockdown imposed following high daily cases of Covid-19.

“Then business was down 75% in July year-on-year,” he said, adding that the sharp drop was due to the fact that Puspakom, the computerized vehicle inspection company, was closed during the lockdown, affecting the transfer of ownership of the car.

“In August, our business recovered by 70% as more economic sectors were allowed to open and the number of people vaccinated increased,” he said.

Khor noted that there are some 10 million active drivers in the country, and the number is increasing every year with first-time buyers, half of whom have switched to used cars.

He said used Perodua Myvi and Axia, Proton Saga and several other models from domestic automakers were the most sought after, adding that mid-range models came from Toyota, Honda and Nissan.

Malaysian Automotive Association president Datuk Aishah Ahmad said the increase in used car sales since last year was due to the pandemic, as people chose not to use public transport.

She said some have opted for cheaper used cars because they don’t want to face the crowds when taking the bus or train.

“Used car buyers are generally from the lower income bracket as well as people looking for a spare car for family members,” she added.

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