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Over the last week I was lucky enough to spend some time in Bali, Indonesia, so I thought I would share with you my impressions and a little photo album, as a lot has happened since my last stay there in April. If then the new generations Toyota Avanza and Daihatsu Xenia were just starting to point their bonnets, this time they have well and truly taken ownership of Balinese streets…
Given how tourist-friendly and ‘taxi oriented’ Bali is, I would say the car landscape is even more skewed towards MPVs than the rest of the country, and the Toyota Avanza/Xenia/Kijang Innova trio could easily hold over 50% of the Balinese new car market, vs. 30% in the whole of Indonesia so far in 2012… It won’t be long until the new generation Avanza-Xenia will outnumber the old one which has been on sale for nearly a decade, a fantastic achievement indeed.
If Suzuki is planning to replace the hugely successful APV – Balinese streets are still filled with it – with the Ertiga, as 2012 sales figures would seem to indicate, it definitely still has some way to go. I did see a couple of Ertigas each day but it is surely not a flood yet. Suzuki also seem to gradually be losing its pick-up crown, with less Suzuki Carry pick-ups and more Daihatsu Gran Max roaming the streets delivering ice-cream to tourists craving it.
Having the opportunity to stay a little longer in the country I was able to get a better feel of the evolution of the Indonesian car market over the years, looking at the distribution of cars as a whole. Apart from the obvious successful generations of Toyota Kijang/Innova which was created specifically for Indonesia, there is a distinct heritage of Mitsubishi Colt – the Commercial Vehicle, not the hatchback – both as a van and pick-up.
Launch an MPV in Indonesia and it will succeed, even the… Mazda Biante! Seen one of these before?
I also noticed a very respectable number of Nissan Juke around, while the Nissan Evalia and new gen Honda CR-V are both starting to be visible. All-in-all, if this booming market is currently totally dominated by Japanese brands (92% of sales so far in 2012!), it is because they have understood clearly what format works in Indonesia: MPV MPV MPV of all sizes. Cue the Suzuki Estilo, Honda Freed, Nissan Elgrand, Toyota Alphard, Mazda 8 and Biante.
Yes I am talking to you Chinese carmakers… I only saw one lonely Geely Panda during the whole time I was there. Seems like a dream market for the entire Wuling range doesn’t it? On a different note, when is Renault launching the Dacia Lodgy in Indonesia? It should be there already… and the Dokker, or the Logan Pick-up. Plus a no-frills version of the Modus – there may be a light at the end of the tunnel for Renault’s unloved child…
Previous month: Indonesia November 2012: Toyota Avanza breaks record