Based on a new agreement Volkswagen AG signed with DRB Hicom for local vehicle assembly in the presence of Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, VW Passat models are to be assembled in Malaysia from the end of 2011. This is the start of Volkswagen Group’s plan to expand its activities in Southeast Asia ASEAN under its Strategy 2018 growth program.
DRB Hicom has the largest automotive production network in Malaysia and builds passenger cars and commercial vehicles at its plants in Pekan and Melaka. They also have a large network of dealers in the country.
It is planned to build further Volkswagen models for the Malaysian market on the basis of a local full scale production in a second expansion phase from the end of 2012. This CKD assembly will have an initial annual capacity of several thousand vehicles and will be successively increased. The Volkswagen Group signed a memorandum of understating to investigate local vehicle production with the Malaysian partner DRB Hicom back in August 2010.
“Developing the market potential of the ASEAN region is of major significance for the Volkswagen Group’s long-term growth strategy,” Christian Klingler, Member of the Board of Management of Volkswagen AG with responsibility for Sales and Marketing, commented in Kuala Lumpur. He added that the Malaysian automobile market in particular, where more than 570,000 vehicles were sold in 2010, played an important role in the Group’s strategic planning. “We will be using existing structures and capacities at the DRB Hicom plant in Pekan to systematically extend our presence in the Malaysian market of the future,” Klingler continued.