Honda Malaysia Sdn Bhd marked a historical milestone in the local automotive industry with the launch of the CKD Honda Jazz Hybrid – the first hybrid car to be assembled in Malaysia.
This marks a step forward for hybrid technology in the local scene with Honda being one of the first carmakers to kickstart the trend here when it first launched the Insight in 2007. Since then, Honda has sold over 12,000 hybrid vehicles and aim to build upon that by assembling hybrid vehicles locally, starting with the Jazz Hybrid.
The Jazz Hybrid was previously shipped in from Japan and sold free of import and duty taxes which meant that even if the identical car was made here, prices would remain the same in theory.
However, the CKD car will consist of 10% locally made parts while the other parts, such as the crucial hybrid powertrain components are imported from Thailand and Japan. The car also loses four airbags, as it now only has two at the front for the driver and passenger respectively. As a result, Honda can afford to shave almost RM5,000 off the car’s selling price, with the CKD Jazz Hybrid now going for RM89,900.
For that price, the rest of the car remains pretty much the same, from its IMA hybrid system to its interior trim. The CKD Jazz Hybrid is assembled at Honda’s plant in Alor Gajah, Melaka, and should it do well in the market, it won’t be a surprise if Honda introduces more models to its production lines in the years to come. After all, we never know if the tax exemptions on hybrid vehicles will remain beyond 2013.