At today’s Malaysia Autoshow 2023 media day, Chery officiated its partnership with Inokom for CKD local assembly at the latter’s 200-acre facility in Kulim. The first two Chery models that will roll out of the Kedah plant are the Omoda 5 and Tiggo 8 Pro SUVs.
“We are very excited to be partnering with Inokom. With nearly three decades of experience in assembling vehicles of many world-renowned brands, Inokom is an ideal partner for Chery in our mission to take root in Malaysia and provide Malaysian consumers with high-technology and high-quality vehicles that are ahead of the curve in terms of design,” said Chery Malaysia country director Leo Chen.
Chen also announced that Malaysia will be the Chinese carmaker’s production hub in ASEAN, despite the fact that it also has local assembly in Indonesia. Products from Kulim will be exported to countries such as Thailand, Singapore, Brunei, Vietnam and as far as Australia. All of the above-mentioned countries are right-hand drive markets, except Vietnam.
Chery’s Malaysia chief also revealed the company’s plans to set up an R&D centre for right-hand drive products, which will encompass regional testing, training and parts distribution. The initial models to be assembled in Malaysia will be ICE-powered, but local manufacturing of plug-in hybrids and full EVs are on the cards.
“As we have done successfully in many other markets, Chery is determined to localise its operations in Malaysia as far as possible. We believe this will bring us closer to Malaysian consumers to fully understand their needs and wants, not to mention contribute economically to the nation through technology transfer as well as the creation of jobs and strategic opportunities,” Chen said.
“We are also accelerating all other aspects of our localisation strategy, including recruiting top Malaysian talents in areas such as product, sales, after-sales, branding and marketing, and of course through our dealership network – we target to launch with no fewer than 30 dealers covering all major cities nationwide,” he added.
We’ve covered Chery’s return to Malaysia extensively and you can click on these links to learn more about the boldly-styled Omoda 5 1.5T B-segment SUV and the larger and more upmarket Tiggo 8 Pro 2.0T seven-seater SUV. Both will be officially launched in end-June or early-July. Also, the Omoda 5 EV will arrive by year end, while PHEVs are set to reach our shores early next year.
GALLERY: Chery Omoda 5 in Malaysia
GALLERY: Chery Tiggo 8 Pro in Malaysia