Malaysian new-vehicle sales in May jumped 25% to 47,931 units from year-ago, but an anticipated 41% fuel-price hike is expected to slow deliveries this month.

The May result was a 4.7% decline from the 50,279 new vehicles sold in April, as consumer confidence begins to wane in the face of rising inflation, the Malaysian Automotive Assn. says.

Passenger-car sales totaled 43,642 units, while commercial-vehicle deliveries tallied 4,289.

Meanwhile, Perusahaan Otomobil Kedua Bhd (Perodua) Managing Director Hafiz Bakar tells reporters that within 10 days of the June 5 fuel-price increase, the auto maker saw a 50% jump in showroom traffic.

Perodua manufactures compact, fuel-efficient vehicles.

Hafiz says between the last quarter of 2007 and this February, Perodua has received 5,000-6,000 bookings a month for its Viva model. This increased to 7,000-8,000 a month between March and May, he says.

“We should get a clearer picture on the full impact of the higher fuel price on Perodua compact cars in six months once everybody gets over the initial fuel shock,” Hafiz says, adding the auto maker expects Malaysian new-vehicle sales will rise 4.7% this year to 510,000 units.