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Indonesia December 2012: It’s an Avanza-Xenia-invasion…

Daihatsu Xenia

* See the entire article by clicking on the title! *

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…

One new gen Avanza after the other, a common sight already in Bali.

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.

Suzuki APV

Suzuki Ertiga

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.

Toyota Kijang Pick-up: perfect for Balinese police.

1974 Mitsubishi Colt Pick-up

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.

Why not introduce the Modus in Indonesia (as a Nissan) to give it a much-needed second wind?

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

Previous year: Indonesia Full Year 2011: Toyota Avanza still #1 in record market

Toyota Innova – and a rather incredible flower arrangement… How do they do this?

Apparently the Daihatsu Gran Max Luxio has water-surfing powers…

Concentrate on the road, don’t look at the Honda Freed lurking past…

1986 Mitsubishi T120 SS. Load those Bintang beers in!

Nissan Elgrand

Is this a Toyota Avanza hiding in the back?

The Toyota Vios still has the quasi-monopoly of the ‘Bali Taksi’ sedans fleet…

Look at this picture closely, because in a few months time there will only be new generations Avanza and Xenia instead…

Suzuki Estilo

This Post Has 8 Comments
  1. @matgasnier

    Thanks for your punctual response Matt. 😀

    I guess you are right. The majority of Proton showrooms are located in Java after all… Nonetheless, your information is much appreciated.

  2. Brilliant feature article as always, thanks Matt !

    I’m a little curious to know whether you’ve seen any Proton Exora MPVs during your holiday in Bali. The car is supposedly stealing a significant number of sales from the dominant Avanza/ Xenia duo.

    1. Hi Aero,

      Thank you – glad you like it!
      No I haven’t seen any Proton Exora during my stay… so it may be that the car is more successful in other islands or in Jakarta?

  3. @matgasnier
    Yeah, Renault is totally absent from Indonesia and it’s start from scratch if Dacia would be introduce there. I think a whole range of Dacia vehicles would be introduce in Indonesia. As Nissan boss said before, they will not introduce commercial version of the Nissan Evalia.

    So, there is high possibility that the Logan small pickup would come in to challenge Gran Max and Carry/Mega Carry dominance. Practically, Nissan is hunger for sales, unfortunately their Juke, March, Evalia have not been big sellers. Don’t be surprise if Duster would come in to slot below the X-Trail. 🙂 The alliance of 5 brands (Nissan, Renault, Dacia, Datsun, Lada) is going to rock the car market in years to come!

  4. Superb pictures you got up there Matt! 🙂 You are right! It’s MPV 3x in Indonesia. Bali has been an increasing market for auto sales since tourism has boasted income tremendously for the locals.

    I think the Lodgy would be launch as a Nissan MPV, possibly replacing Grand Livina. That’s speculation. Other than that, to replace the Livina X-Gear, the Sandero Stepway would come in, not sure 1st or 2nd gen would be used and the engine used. The hatchback Sandero would be a vehicle to come in above the 1.2L Nissan March. 🙂


    1. Thanks Eddy!
      And very interesting angle to launch the Lodgy as a Nissan. It makes a lot of sense given Renault is totally absent from Indonesia. They have done a similar thing in Mexico where they launched the Renault Symbol as the Nissan Platina and the Dacia Logan and the Nissan Aprio, and in South Africa where the Logan pick-up is sold as the Nissan NP200…

  5. HNY Matt! Hope BSCB will become even more THE reference in its automotive segment.

    At to your “On a different note, when is Renault launching the Dacia Lodgy in Indonesia? It should be there already… and the Dokker” remark:

    After Brazil, Russia and India Indonesia will certainly be a priority for Renault / Dacia. Curious when they will enter that market.

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