The world’s automotive industry affects society as a whole. It employs millions of people directly, tens of millions indirectly. Its products have changed the society, bringing unimaginable levels of mobility, changed the way people live and work, and have even been able to easily connect with others who are far away. The automotive industry can play a role in helping to develop the mobility of such countries and can be achieved at the social costs acceptable to the state, preparing to learn the necessary lessons and make necessary investments from those who have gone through this route.
The socio-cultural factors that influence the development and growth of the automotive industry include population growth rates, education levels, lifestyles, safety issues and cultural differences. Besides that, society’s habits and tastes are changing. People are more aware of the importance of the environment and becoming ‘green consumers’. The trend of social factors will affect the demand for the company’s products and the way the company operates. Therefore, companies may change various management strategies to accommodate these social trends.
Changing social trends such as preference can also have a direct impact on the brand’s business. Nowadays, environmental protection and electric vehicles are becoming more and more popular. Their sales have grown rapidly over the past few years. Some automotive companies are planning to start mass production of electric vehicles by 2020. The growth of the automotive industry depends on customer preferences, and most of them need to purchase cars for families. They consider the available space, safety, and price of the car.
The population of ASEAN region are more than 500 million people. Malaysia, which located in a strategic place in ASEAN region provide good opportunities for the worldwide automotive manufacturers. Malaysia’s active working-age population is expected to grow by 1.6 percent in the next decade, one of the highest in the region. With a literacy rate of 95 percent, widely spoken English and an ever-increasing number of higher education graduates, Malaysia offers a significant pool of talent for potential investors in automotive industry (Handley, 2017). As such, Malaysia is also increasingly being chosen by newcomers to Asia as their ASEAN hub.
By 2018, Malaysia has a population of 32 million which could provide a large sum of markets. The population of Malaysia is growing at a steady rate, which is an important factor affecting the automotive industry. Since the public transportation system has not developed as well as other economically developed countries, the country’s car ownership is quite high at a ratio of 1:5. This shows that citizens are considering vehicles as important things in their lives. In addition, Malaysians are more willing to loyal to their national products such as choose to buy domestic vehicles as a sign of patriotism.
In Malaysia’s market economy, consumption is the main indicator of social stratification. A smartphone, fashion clothing and gold jewellery can all indicate a high rank in Malaysian social order. Given the mobility of Malaysian society, the brand of a person’s vehicle marks a class position that even exceeds home ownership. Anyone who drives a nice vehicle is considered wealthy. Consumers feel better when driving a nice or new car, if make them feel better about themselves (Kim, 2007). Therefore, each family will have at least one of transportation and consider motor vehicles is necessary to participate in contemporary Malaysian social life.