Friday, March 11, 2016

Highlights of 2015 for Honda Malaysia from the media gathering event

2015 was a record year for Honda in Malaysia when Honda Malaysia achieved a total sales volume of 94,902 cars sold, way above the 85,000 target they set at the beginning of last year. This figure represents a 14.2% of the market share (based on a total number of 666,674 cars sold in 2015). It was an amazing 22% growth based on year on year achievement. 

This spectacular achievement was additionally capped by Honda Malaysia achieving the status of being the best selling non-national model in the Malaysian market (non-national means excluding Proton and Perodua). The month of December 2015 was also another record for Honda Malaysia where total sales exceeded 10,000 units for the first time, hitting 10,741 cars sold. 

Honda Malaysia credits the success to four models : CR-V, HR-V, City and Jazz. The City and Jazz together contributed 58% of the total sales, both being market leaders in their segments (B-segment sedan and hatchback). No doubt the HR-V would have contributed more had it been launched earlier in the year.

Honda Malaysia also expanded their East Malaysia presence significantly in 2015, which saw sales grew 36% from the previous year.

For 2016, it is estimated that the total market size will shrink due to the adverse economic situation in the country with a market size estimated to drop by 4 to 5% down to 630k to 640k units. However, Honda Malaysia still set themselves an ambitious target to continue to grow their sales, setting the 2016 target at 90,000 units. 

For 2016, Honda Malaysia plans two new CKD (locally assembled) models, one an FMC and the other an MMC. The FMC is widely known to be the new 10G Civic which has just been launched in Thailand and will be making its way around ASEAN thereon. The MMC is widely expected to be for the Accord. 

Part of the strategy for achieving the ambitious 90,000 sales target will be Honda Malaysia's continued expansion plans for the East Malaysian market, in addition to the opening of more dealership, service centers, and body & paint shops.

More info on the Honda Malaysia battery product update

The latest Honda Malaysia "product update" (recall) involving the over 90,000 vehicles have received much attention. At the annual Honda Malaysia media gathering event that was held earlier today, I took the opportunity to seek more details on this recall.

The product update/recall involves the identification of a batch of batteries installed into new Honda vehicles which was found to be 'below spec'. The said batteries supposedly have shortened lifespan and will fail to retain charge after less than the expected 1 to 1.5 years of usage (i.e. the batteries could fail in less than 1 year) or, the specified warranty period of the battery. So the recall seeks to replace those batteries which are still within the specified warranty period but which are still working, with a new one. 

I.e. with this recall, Honda Malaysia wishes to avoid their customers facing the inconvenience of their battery dying prematurely. Yes, when the battery dies prematurely within the warranty period, the owner can still get it replaced for free. But all car owners knows well the inconvenience (to say the least) of having the battery die. In this case, Honda Malaysia replaces the battery with a new one even if it is still working and hopes to avoid affected customers facing the inconvenience.

Honda Malaysia stresses that the recall only involves the battery. There is no damage caused by the battery. Furthermore, not all batteries from the batch will definitely fail but likelihood is high. So Honda Malaysia decided to replace the batteries which are under warranty even if they are still working fine.

One item which is unusual is that the recall involves some vehicles which goes as far back as 2003. That is 13 years ago. While there are isolated cases where batteries lasts well past the expected 1 to 1.5 years of warranty period, it would be extremely rare indeed for a battery to last 13 years. In any case, the warranty period of the original battery supplied with a 2003 car would have been long expired by now. For this situation, Honda Malaysia explains that it is related to those cars where the owners continued to have it serviced at authorized Honda service centers and where they have replaced the battery with a new unit bought from the service center. For such cases, where the battery is still within the warranty period, Honda will replace the battery.

So the recall doesn't necessarily involved 94,000 cars only possibly up to 94,000 cars. In fact, the cars that are affected is expected to be way below 94.000. This is also one recall where if an owner decides not to have it done, there will be no damage to the car except that the battery could fail within its warranty period in which case it would have been replaced for free as well. The recall just allows batteries which are still good and within warranty to be replaced as a 'preemptive' measure.

For those whose Honda falls within the period of manufacture given by Honda, they can check if their car is covered under the recall by one of four methods : 
  • wait to see if they receive the notification letter from Honda Malaysia
  • contact either Honda Malaysia hotline (1-800-88-2020) 
  • or any authorized Honda service center, 
  • visit the Honda Malaysia website at to check online.

Monday, March 7, 2016


7 March 2016 – Honda Malaysia today announced that it is taking another proactive measure to ensure customer safety by changing the battery in 93,929 units of Honda vehicles.

This product update involves the replacement of the 12V battery for the City (2003 - 2014 YM & 2016 YM), Jazz (2009 YM, 2012 & 2013 YM, 2015 & 2016 YM), Civic (2010, 2012 & 2013 YM), Insight (2011 - 2013 YM), CR-Z (2012 - 2013 YM), Freed (2010 – 2012 YM) and CR-V (2013 YM). 

Honda Malaysia assures customers that safety and offering the best product performance are the company’s priority.

Honda Malaysia ensures that other current selling models are not affected.

There have been no injuries or crashes related to this issue reported in Malaysia.

All affected customers will be informed via notification letters, which will include details of the product update. Customers who receive the letter are advised to send their vehicles to the nearest authorized Honda dealer for inspection.
Should a replacement be required, the replacement of the battery will be carried once the parts are ready and all parts and labour charges related to this product update will be borne by Honda Malaysia.

Honda owners can also check their vehicle’s product update status by calling Honda’s Toll Free number 1-800-88-2020 or log on to, or visit any Honda authorized dealers.