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Ho Wah Genting’s EV venture viable for niche market

Ho Wah Genting’s EV venture viable for niche market

25 Mar 2021

Ho WahGenting Bhd’s (HWG) venture into electric vehicles (EVs) is viewed as viable for a niche market as the lack of charging stations and limited local demand for EVs hinder any company to go full force into the segment at present.

An automotive analyst said HWG’s new product may fit into a small-scaled EV market, such as motorcycles and small electric cars, rather than full-sized EVs like the sedans produced by Tesla Inc.

“It looks like the company is getting into a niche market. Small-scale EVs are viable for short distances. Our EV infrastructure is still developing and the use of EVs is practical in major cities,” the analyst, who preferred anonymity, told The Malaysian Reserve.

The analyst said although hotels and shopping malls have started to provide charging facilities, the number remains limited.

The analyst also said HWG would need to offer incentives when launching the EVs to attract customers to go electric.

Citing Nissan Malaysia as an example, the analyst said the automaker has come up with a rental programme that allows Nissan Leaf owners to use other Nissan models for long-distance travelling needs.

He said a package reduces buyers’ range anxiety when driving EVs.

Last month, HWG announced the incorporation of a new wholly-owned subsidiary, HWGB EV Sdn Bhd, to engage in the business as dealers in the distribution or selling of assembled electric motor vehicles or motor vehicles of all descriptions.

The group also inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Seiyong Motor Co Ltd to be one of the first to manufacture, assemble and distribute the Seiyong series of EVs in Malaysia.

“HWG’s expansion into the EV industry is part of the company’s strategic plan to seek an alternative revenue source. We firmly believe the EV industry is a fast-growing industry in Malaysia with a lot of untapped potentials,” HWG CEO Datuk Aaron Lim said in a statement.

HWG via HWGB EV entered into an MoU with Xiamen Chief Electric Vehicle Co Ltd to establish a basis of cooperation and collaboration between the HWGB EV and Xiamen Chief for manufacturing, assembling and distributing EVs in Malaysia.

Xiamen Chief is principally engaged in the production, design and development of EVs and spare parts for electric tour buses, electric golf buggy cars and others, and leasing of self-produced products.

HWG said it will introduce Seiyong motor’s first pure EV, the Seiyong S1, into Malaysia.

First launched in December 2019, the Seiyong S1, dubbed as the “Little Bee” is a smart EV that is capable of reaching 302km in one charge. The car has been described as both time- and cost-efficient in recharging its power as it requires only 40 minutes to reach full capacity.

The company said the Seiyong S1 is priced reasonably between 70,000 yuan to 90,000 yuan or approximately RM44,256-RM56,900.

It said the vehicle meets the needs of people in both urban and suburban areas to commute to work and for leisure activities, such as shopping for daily necessities and outskirt travel.

Source: The Malaysian Reserve

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