Malaysia is the only country in Southeast Asia that has two of its own large car brands. While other Asian markets are dominated by Japanese car manufacturers, dominance of the Malaysian market is shared by national manufacturers Proton and Perodua Malaysia. Up until 2018, both manufacturers have been struggling with decreasing sales figures due to a lack of functionality in their cars. However, in 2019, the Malaysian automotive manufacturers managed to increase their market share and ended the year on the first and second rank among the bestselling car brands in the country. The manufacturers’ success is due to the successes of their flagship models. For example, the Proton X70 was responsible for almost one third of the company’s sales volume.
For many decades, Malaysia's automobile policy was characterized by protectionist measures aimed at promoting the two manufacturers Proton and Perodua until they were internationally competitive. Not entirely voluntary, the government is now focusing on an opening and liberalization of the automotive industry. Therefore, the import duties for automotive parts have steadily decreased in recent years. AS of 2018, the import duty for CKD-vehicle (completely knocked down) amounts to ten percent of the value if the country of origin is not an ASEAN member. For ASEAN members the import duties do not apply anymore.