DRB-Hicom will begin assembly of Volkswagen cars in November 2011 at its plant in Pekan, Malaysia, according to International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed.

The two companies signed a licensing agreement in December 2010 involving joint investments of around MYR1bn, 70% of which will come from DRB-Hicom and 30% from Volkswagen.

The first model to be assembled will be the VW Passat 1.8L, with other models expected to follow later on. It is understood that an eventual annual output of 40,000-50,000 cars is being targeted and local content will be increased progressively.