Published on January 9th, 2022 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Will I Buy An Electric Car In The Next Year Or So?
Nope, as we still have a long way to go with educating Malaysians on public electric car charging and more.
We still see drivers of petrol powered cars parking in electric car charging bays and not being bothered by the CLEAR and DEFINED signage’s which means, they just do not care. It is the same with disable parking spots. Years on and we still have ‘jokers’ parking without a care.
Let us not forget the many inconsiderate drivers who continue to double park (like this Toyota Camry below) and walk away and do not care about the people they block.
Then there are dozens of electric car charging bays that are not maintained and even after social media posts, there is little done by the management in charge. The urgency is just not there.
Let us not forget the many government and state buildings who have ‘broken down’ charging bays that have been left idle (pictured above). Why? Well the people in high office drive petrol powered vehicles and they also see no reason to ‘push’ for these charging stations to be operational.
If a town councillor or mayor or district officer had an electric car as their official car (which is what should be rolling out when their current cars need to be changed) then there will be maintenance and also more EV charging bays.
Malaysia has been behind the rest of the region when it comes to the roll out incentives for the Electric Car segment and the infrastructure that is needed to support them. But will the removal of import Taxes and yearly road tax, as announced in the National Budget 2022, be enough to spur growth in the industry and encourage more Malaysians to buy?
Here below is a recent interview we did on BFM.my and you can download the podcast to get the full story.
1. In the latest budget, there was a big push towards Electric Vehicle adoption. In your opinion, why has this suddenly become a big thing here in Malaysia?
ANSWER: Well, the rest of the region, Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore and even Vietnam have already made commitments towards electric vehicles (EV), production of EV batteries and also assembly of electric vehicles with fixed incentives on their individual government websites.
So, Malaysia has to follow or be left out. Being last might not be all that bad.
2. EV and Hybrid cars have been pretty expensive in the past, but now with the tax incentives announced in the budget, and with government backing, are we expecting the prices to be reasonable for our market?
ANSWER: Well the cost to manufacture any EV, scooter, truck, car, SUV is all higher than its petrol or diesel powered version and this is because of economies of scale and new research and development cost.
So, even with zero import duties, the landed cost of any EV will higher over its petrol version. Take the Nissan Leaf and compare to any Nissan car?
Old Nissan Leaf price was RM188,000, new price ….. probably RM168,000 or so. It is still higher than any Nissan Car on sale right now.
3. Would you say that there are some people that would rather stick with a traditional vehicle rather than switching to electric? Why?
ANSWER: Yes, many. Well if their current petrol powered car is not giving them any headache and its running cost is low. Why change. Especially if you are middle and lower middle class and probably over 40 years with kids who still need a University education.
4. Are there local manufacturers working on Electric Vehicles here in Malaysia, can you name any?
ANSWER: Yes, and all very secretive right now. No firm commitment. Perodua not for another 2 years. Proton, needs to wait for its partner Geely to provide the technology.
5. Are we prepared for mass vehicle adoption?
ANSWER: Definitely not yet. At least another 2 years. Charging infrastructure and common sense education to other drivers not to park at a charging station needs to be done. (just look at this very recent picture of motorcycles parked at a charging point at a Petronas Station. The station owner cannot control this and its public mindset which will take some years)
6. In terms of infrastructure, how much work is involved in the switching process?
ANSWER: I am not an engineer. But from we have learnt over the past decade. It is a lot of investment with only long term returns and Malaysian businesses like and are used to fast returns on their investments.
7. GD Express Carrier Berhad (GDEX) have recently announced that they’ve launched an all-electric motorcycle into their fleet, what are your thoughts on this?
ANSWER: Great move and this is the direction being adopted for the past 4-5 years in Europe by courier companies using EV vans, bikes and small vehicles.
8. Do you see yourself buying an EV in the near future? Why/Why not?
ANSWER: Not for the next decade. Will wait, watch, enjoy the show and then when the dust has settled, I will buy a used Porsche Taycan with the hope that the replacement battery will be less than RM15,000.