Upon its release in March 1982, Asia enjoyed massive commercial success, reaching #1 in the US and spending nine weeks at the top of the Billboard album chart. According to both Billboard and Cash Box, it was the #1 album in the United States for the year 1982.Asia was certified 4x-platinum in the US by the RIAA on 10 February 1995.
In the band's native UK, Asia did not perform as well as in the US, peaking only at #11. At the same time, it spent a total of 38 weeks in the UK Albums Chart. The record received a gold status in Britain on 18 October 1982. "Heat of the Moment" climbed to No. 46.
Asia's total worldwide sales are estimated at over ten million copies.
Robert Christgau panned the album and gave it a rating of "C–". In his Consumer Guide Review the critic stated that "rare that a big new group is bad enough to sink your teeth into any more" and called Asia "pompous – schlock in the grand manner". On the other side, Tom Demalon of Allmusic, in a four-and-a-half-star review, praised the album saying that "there's no denying the epic grandeur of the music, which provided some much-needed muscle to radio at the time, and did so with style".