The new car is rumoured to be a replacement for the hot-selling Myvi, priced at around RM40,000 currently. There is even speculation that it could have a bigger engine than the existing 1.3-litre Myvi.
Perodua managing director Datuk Aminar Rashid Salleh said a stronger yen would hurt carmakers that buy components from Japan while new features that improve old models could also be a factor that affects a car's price.
"We are in a segment where it is price-sensitive. We take all of this into consideration but we still like to make our products affordable to the common people," he told reporters after having lunch with the media in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.
Perodua maintained its top position for the fifth consecutive year in 2010 with all-time record sales of 188,600 units.
The five-year-old Perodua Myvi remained the nation's top-selling car model.
Car sales have been brisk in recent years as interest rates have stayed low while manufacturers and distributors have been busy with new launches.
The Malaysian Automotive Association (MAA) expects industry sales to grow 2.1 per cent to a new record of 618,000 units in 2011.
Perodua aims to keep its market share this year. It grabbed 31.2 per cent of the market in 2010.
It hopes to sell 195,000 cars this year, mostly through the Myvi, Alza, Viva and the new model.
Aminar Rashid also said Perodua was consulted by the government about earlier liberalisation of the auto sector. The company gave its views but he did not elaborate.
Perodua is also investing some RM250 million in a new plant that will produce electronic automotive transmission (EAT). This will be located at its existing manufacturing facilities in Rawang, Selangor.
Currently, Perodua vehicles' EAT system is imported from Japan. The system is used in two Perodua models - the Alza and the Myvi.