A survey conducted by used car e-commerce platform Carsome in October 2020 found that 58% of Malaysians intend to buy a car within one to six months, far ahead of our neighbours in Indonesia (36%) and Thailand (37%). Following last year’s lockdown (MCO), Malaysians also expressed increased discomfort in using public transport and ride-hailing services.
As expected, Covid-19 worries caused the usage of public transport and ride-hailing services to fall dramatically among those surveyed. Before last year’s MCO implementation, 37% said they “never” used public transport and e-hailing services. But during the Recovery MCO (RMCO), that number had jumped to 68%.
Before the MCO, 19% said they were “not comfortable” with using public transport or ride-sharing services. During the RMCO, that sentiment had risen to 50%. That being said, we’re not sure why ride-hailing services were lumped in together with public transport in the survey – they’re very, very different animals, and we’re almost certain that Grab would take some issue with the methodology of the survey.
Nonetheless, the demand for private vehicles – especially used cars – is quite real and has been borne out by data. And naturally, Carsome has taken notice.
“With the global shortage of car parts such as electronic chips, coupled with the disruption in car assembly and manufacturing plants locally, we expect short-to-medium term shortage of new car supplies, or delayed new car deliveries. As such, the used car industry is a good position for growth as there is no waiting time for car delivery,” said Carsome co-founder and Group CEO Eric Cheng.
Also good news for Carsome – the survey found that the popularity of used car e-commerce platforms surged by 55% after the lockdown (MCO) in Malaysia. Has Covid-19 really changed the way we think about car ownership and mobility, and how we buy cars? We’ll just have to see.