Malaysian new-vehicle sales slid 16.8% in April to 33,679 units from year-ago’s 40,482.

The Malaysian Automotive Assn. cites a lack of consumer confidence, difficulty in obtaining vehicle loans and poor resale value of used vehicles as reasons for the poor performance. It was the 15th month in a row that Malaysian new-car sales have fallen.

April sales were comprised of 30,205 passenger vehicles and 3,474 commercial vehicles.

The passenger-vehicle segment includes passenger cars, 4-wheel-drive vehicles, SUVs, window vans and multipurpose vehicles.

Year-to-date deliveries, which include 125,841 passenger vehicles, are down 16.0% to 138,629 units from like-2006’s 164,434.

April vehicle production fell 26.0% to 33,829 units, leaving year-to-date output down 33.0% to 125,952.

The MAA says it expects May sales to be helped by the launch of the Perodua Viva. The industry also is hoping a pay boost for civil servants will help lift demand for new cars.

The Proton Edar Dealers Assn. says 93.0% of its dealer members lost money in the first quarter due to falling Proton Holdings Bhd car sales, noting 136 of its dealers are selling 10 to 15 cars per month – well short of the 40 vehicles per month needed to be profitable.