I love our French cars, so much that I have written about them many times.
I even asked and then shared with many Citroen lovers out there on a forum posting, which I believe was the highest in terms of page view.
We got our first Citroen or French car in 2009, before our dear Inez came to this world. We learn from our previous parenthood experience that we needed some space in the car, when we have a baby. The need to pack day use cloths, stroller, easy snacks etc when you have a baby. More so, we had a helper with us that time. So a car with 5 seats would not fit. We test driven Mitsubishi, Hyundai, Toyota, before landed on Citroen.
Of course the advantage of dealing with Brookland Motors, the sole distributor of Citroen in Malaysia before NAZA took over was good, when the sales manager would answer the call and sent his sales advisor with the car to our house. Instead of us heading to Jalan Chan Sow Lin to test drive the Grand C4 Picasso.
We brought the car to OUG, went through some seriously bad bumpy roads, then onto Bukit Jalil, before driving back to Puchong. We tried about 20km or so on our first experience with Citroen. The experience was amazing. More so, when twins were also in the car, commenting, “We like the seats at the back, Ariel can sit at the last row by himself,” Elijah said.
Before we decided on the car, we went to Chan Sow Lin again, this time to negotiate with the sales manager and advisor for the best deal possible. We did not get what we asked for, but we received some smaller good deals, which we still thank the sales advisor and sales manager whenever we happened to meet them.
We decided on the colour which according to Brookland Motors that time, need to wait for a while. Like more than 3 months or so. We told Brookland Motors, “Hey no hurry.”
When we made our decision to purchase anything, normally we do not rush. Waited a month for the iPhone X to arrive. Waited about 1 month plus for DS5 to arrive.
Waited 9 months for Inez to arrive. Waited 7 months plus for twins 🙂
I used enjoy working with a French technical manager at Brookland Motors before he left to pursue real estate instead. Maybe French has huge market about properties here.
Then NAZA Euro took over.
Well, you can read about many things I said about NAZA Euro, which resulted me to be pissed with them for a while, especially when the service team needed to keep the Peugeot for more than 1.5 months, because they simply could not find what was wrong with the car.
So NAZA Euro later passed a lot of the after sales support to the outsourced service partners.
Lucky us, one of them, reliable one is in Puchong, in fact quite a walking distant from where we are.
Let’s talk about DS5.
I remember my sister in law from Norway would got into our MyVi, and said, “Sam, the car I am in now, is like a taxi, you could see it everywhere. I am not sure I could walk back to the same car, if I do not memorise the car number,”
She was right. We traded in MyVi for our first French car.
We would be proud to say that wherever we drove to with our French car, we could be sure no one will mistaken that as their car. I remember once we used a valet service once and the driver actually asked me to park it myself, since he was not sure how to handle the gear shifting.
Whenever I visit the twins school, the school teachers, staff would speak to me about the DS5. Asking me about the origin, the aerodynamic design and as well as the maintenance costs. Often we are asked about resale value.
We once visited a German auto centre for an invited event, which we drove their brand of cars, was sheer joy to drive them, also they put me and Retna inside their smallest sport cars to draw some donuts on the roads. It was fun.
When the sales advisors and managers saw our DS5, they said, “Very very cold car la, this brand, very hard to sell, no one wants to buy la,”
Well, we are not selling.
We once saw the dealer who bought our Citroen Grand C4 Picasso, marketed the car as, ‘Indian lady doctor, low mileage, safe driver, good condition’. Well, con job.
I have written to CEO and COO of the NAZA Euro asking them to put in the list of interested buyer of the DS7, guess what, the request was ignored. The DS7 was launched in Malaysia late last year, and I was not invited nor informed.
Before we got the Citroen Grand C4 Picasso, I went on the forum to ask around for advices. Well, guess what. Not much advice gathered, in fact almost zero. Other than complaints and discouragement.
What could have been the best approach other than we experienced the car ourselves? So, we became the expert of the French car brands. Disclaimer 1, we are not expert in technical. Disclaimer 2, NAZA does not do anything to make me want to write this nor say anything nice about the cars they distribute in Malaysia, mainly Citroen, DS and Peugeot. Cause till now, I find them, seriously do not know how to operate a car business, neither marketing the French car brands here.