Proton has just announced its monthly sales figures for the month of November with a grand total of 11,411 vehicles sold.
Out of the total, the best-seller was the Saga with 4,279 units, followed by the Proton X70 with 2,157 units sold. The next best-selling Proton for November was the Persona with 1,942 units, followed by the new X50 with 1,756 units. As for the Exora and Iriz, Proton sold 629 units and 637 units each respectively.
Among all the models mentioned above, only the Proton X70 and the Proton Exora were the best-sellers in their respective segments. Having received more than 27,000 bookings since its launch, the Proton X50 is second only to the Perodua Aruz in as far as the B-segment SUV category is concerned, but if you want to argue that the Aruz is a seven-seater, then the X50 can be considered as the segment best-seller for the month of November.
Compared to October 2020, Proton’s monthly sales did see a slight drop but on the bright side, the X50 seems to have gained some traction, and the numbers can only be expected to rise in the near future.
Although Proton admitted that deliveries of the Proton X50 have not ramped up to maximum capacity, the company is positive that it will finish the year strong as Malaysian car sales are continuing to outperform market projections from earlier in the year, thanks to the Penjana incentive by the government.
PROTON CONTINUES SALES GROWTH IN NOVEMBER
Subang Jaya, 1 December 2020 – As 2020 draws to a close, sales of Proton cars continue its growth trajectory towards a strong year end finish. 11,411 units (domestic and export) were sold in November, a growth rate of 18% over the same month in 2019, contributing to a total sales figure of 96,410 units in 2020. The latter figure is an overall increase of 7.5% and is equivalent to an estimated market share of 20.1%.
While sales for other Proton models for the month were slightly down compared to October, deliveries of the all new Proton X50 began to gather momentum. 1,756 units were delivered, making it the best-selling B-segment (five-seat) SUV in Malaysia and when combined with 2,157 units of the Proton X70, it makes PROTON the sales leader for SUVs overall.
Strong year end numbers lead to cautious optimism for 2021
“Malaysian car sales are continuing to outperform market projections from earlier in the year as we estimate Total-
Industry-Volume (TIV) to be more than 56,000 units for a third consecutive month. A lot of this can be accounted
for by traditional end-of-year deals offered by car brands, but this year we can include PENJANA incentives and the launch of popular new models such as the Proton X50 as volume growth drivers.
“For PROTON specifically, we are continuing to focus on product quality and customer service to deliver a premium product and brand experience. Admittedly, deliveries of the Proton X50 have not ramped up to maximum capacity, but we are being deliberate in our approach to ensure our customers get the best product that meets their expectations, Still, we target to increase our volume each month to shorten waiting times so we urge everyone to please remain patient,” said Roslan Abdullah, Chief Executive Officer, Proton Edar.
Export sales exceed 2019 total despite Coronavirus restrictions
One of PROTON’s main pillars for the future is the growth of export sales as the company seeks a larger footprint outside of Malaysia. 2020 was supposed to be another year of steady growth in this area but these plans were affected by the global Corona virus pandemic.
Still, by the end of November, the number of Proton vehicles exported to other countries had already exceeded the total from the year before.
“Export sales will continue to be one of PROTON’s main pillars heading into 2021 and beyond. With our domestic market performance having stabilised and undergoing steady growth, renewed emphasis has to be placed on making Proton a regional and global automotive brand.
As a national car company, we represent Malaysia on the global stage and when we grow our export volume, our own local vendor community stands to gain as well. We will have more announcements about overseas market activities in the months and years to come,” added Roslan Abdullah.
Proton today announced that current X70 owners will be able to upgrade their dust and pollen filter to the newly introduced Proton Intelligent Air Purification System (PIAPS) N95 Cabin Filter for just RM79 excluding labour charges.
Beginning 13th May 2020, owners who are interested in replacing their filters can make service appointments by contacting any Proton service outlet. A service campaign is also scheduled to run from 18 May – 18 August 2020 where a 15% discount on the price of the filter will be offered to all Proton X70 owners.
The announcement is in line with the introduction of the PIAPS system which will be offered as standard on every new unit of the 2020 Proton X70 from now onwards.
The PIAPS system combines the benefits of an N95 Cabin Filter and the Air Purifier System to offer a comprehensive method to improve in-cabin air quality.
The new N95 Cabin Filter is capable of removing 95% of particles larger than 0.3 microns and also removes 98% of PM2.5 dust particulates. It is therefore an effective barrier against smoke particulates, dust, bacteria and other pollutants and functions in both fresh and recirculation modes for the air-conditioning system.
The existing Air Purifier System fitted to all Proton X70s will also remain. It uses a High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter that removes 99.97% of particles larger than 0.3 microns while its activated carbon removes odours, formaldehyde and adsorbs and purifies smoke particulates.
Additionally, the ioniser discharges negative ions to cleanse the air. By combining the Air Purifier System with the N95 Cabin Filter, the PROTON Intelligent Air Purification System (P-IAPS) acts as a barrier against contaminated air making its way into the cabin, offering a high level of protection against airborne pollutants for a cleaner and healthier environment.
“Proton is constantly looking at ways to improve our offerings. The introduction of the N95 Cabin Filter is particularly relevant in today’s global environment and by improving the quality of air in the cabin, we hope to deliver a comfortable contaminant-free experience to our customers. For now, P-IAPS will only be offered on the Proton X70 but our designers and engineers are working to fit the N95 cabin filter in our other models too,” said Dr Li Chunrong, CEO of Proton.
Proton has announced that they will be restarting operations from today onwards after receiving all necessary approvals form the relevant authorities.
This applies to all its’ different corporate business units. Some showrooms and service centres will also open today, but some of these outlets are subject to approval from state government and local authorities.
But that’s not all. Our national carmaker has also announced on its official website that the X70 SUV will be offered with N95 cabin filter system as standard very soon.
The announcement follows Geely’s development of the G-Clean Intelligent Air Purification System (IAPS) which automatically filter out harmful particulates in the cabin, back in February.
How the IAPS system works is that it has an active carbon chemical filter which absorbs harmful gases, and filters out bad odour and harmful pollutants from entering the cabin.
The system also comes with a negative ion generator which sterilises and deodorises the air in the car, and gets rid of viruses, bacteria, fungi and mould in the air.
So, yes, the X70 is going to be getting some kick-ass air filtration system – that’s for sure. But details like when exactly, and if there will be a change in price, and what not, remains unknown for now.
After much anticipation, Proton has finally launched the locally assembled X70 SUV, with a few subtle yet important changes.
2020 Proton X70 Standard 2WD – RM94,800
2020 Proton X70 Executive 2WD – RM106,800
2020 Proton X70 Premium 2WD – RM119,800
2020 Proton X70 Premium X 2WD – RM122,800
Despite all the hype, there are only a few things that you need to know about the new X70 which is now being assembled in Proton’s plant in Tanjung Malim.
New 7-Speed Dual Clutch Gearbox
The most important technological enhancement is the introduction of a seven-speed Dual Clutch Transmission (7-DCT) in place of the six-speed Automatic Transmission (6AT) previously used.
With the new gearbox, Proton claims that fuel consumption has improved by 13% to 7.6L/100km, gear changes have become smoother and quicker, and that torque has increased by 5% to 300Nm, resulting in a quicker 0 – 100km/h sprint time (9.5 seconds).
Further enhancing the practicality of the 2020 Proton X70 is the inclusion of a powered tailgate, which is available from the Executive variant. The feature is height adjustable allowing for hassle free access to the boot compartment and is supplemented by a foot sensor for the top-two specification levels. Regardless of variant, the split folding rear seat back now has a recline function to adjust the rake of the rear seats and boost passenger comfort.
Premium and Premium X variants now receive ventilated front seats that allow cool air to circulate to the driver and front seat passenger.
No More AWD Executive Variant
Similar to its predecessor, the 2020 Proton X70 is offered in four distinct variants though the line-up has been altered. The Standard variant still kicks off the range followed by the Executive. The AWD Executive has been dropped so the next variant is the Premium with the all-new Premium X topping the range.
In case you’re wondering how to distinguish between the outgoing X70 and the latest one, just look at the Proton logo on the front grille. The new X70 gets the circular emblem with the Harimau inside, replacing the old tiger in the “shield”.
That’s it. Besides these enhancements, things remain pretty much the same as before.
Powering all variants is the same 1.8-litre turbocharged petrol engine which makes 184 PS and 300 Nm of torque.
Safety & Driver Assistance
All variants are equipped with six SRS airbags, rear seat ISOFIX mounts with top tether anchorage, Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist (BA), Auto Brake Hold, Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Traction Control System (TCS), Hill Hold Assist (HHA), Hill Descent Control (HDC) and Emergency Stop Signal (ESS).
As with the previous model, a 360 Camera is offered on Executive, Premium and Premium X variants but the Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) and Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) suite is only fitted to the latter two.
Consisting of active and cognitive safety systems including Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB), Forward Collision Warning (FCW), Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), Lane Departure Warning (LDW), Blind Spot Information System (BLIS), Door Opening Warning System (DOW) and Intelligent High Beam Control (IHBC), the ADAS suite provides an additional layer of safety helps reduce the risk of accidents.
The current Proton X70 is selling faster than they cane ship them here from China and soon the local assembly will start and we will see sales continue to rise as Malaysians fall back in love with Proton. meanwhile, Proton partner, Geely has just launched the facelift version in China and its called PRO. This latest version was fully unveiled to the public at a design seminar in Hangzhou this week and will be equipped with an updated version of the GKUI.
A week prior, at the launch of the GKUI19 Geely Smart Ecosystem and China’s first independently developed dedicated vehicle chipset, the E01, the Bo Yue PRO was announced to be Geely’s first model to receive the new hardware. The addition of the GKUI19 and E01 chipset has essentially put a “super brain” into the Bo Yue SUV. To match its enhanced intelligence, comprehensive improvements to the original Bo Yue SUV have been made including power and design.
The intelligence upgrade has put the Bo Yue PRO one step closer towards being a true mobile terminal envisioned in Geely’s mobility ecosystem, in which vehicles become a third living space for its passengers rather than just a mere tool of transportation. With the GKUI19 empowered by its dedicated E01 chipset, the Bo Yue PRO transforms into a mobile entertainment system, a control hub for smart devices at home or in the office, a mobile phone, and a mobility service provider.
Speaking at the design seminar, head of Geely Design China, Guy Burgoyne said “We had to go even further than the original class-leading Bo Yue, which was known for the “three G’s”. Good to use, Good performance, and Good intelligence. The Bo Yue PRO has evolved in all dimensions, conveying greater confidence with an ever evolving design language. This new model is an upgrade in all aspects, confidently redefining the segment for a lifestyle inspired premium SUV.”
The Bo Yue PRO comes with either a 1.8TD turbo direct injection engine matched to a 7 speed wet dual clutch transmission or a 1.5TD turbo direct injection engine matched to an Aisin 6-speed automatic transmission. Both powertrain combinations meet the stringent China National 6B emission standards. The 1.8TD has been recalibrated from the previous version used in the original Bo Yue to offer a maximum power of 135kW and max torque of 300 N•m, an increase of 15 N•m. The 7DCT transmission has an efficiency of 97%, helping reduce fuel consumption by 1L per 100km over the original Bo Yue. The 1.5TD engine was jointly developed by Geely and Volvo, offering a maximum power of 130kW and max torque of 255 N•m. The Aisin 6-speed automatic transmission is widely used in high-end models featuring fast shift response and reduced fuel consumption.
The Bo Yue PRO upgrade in technology is matched with a more mature design combining modern Chinese aesthetics with a technology orientated approach. The Bo Yue Pro’s front fascia was given a more aggressive look with a raised hood and a more pronounced grill. Geely’s iconic Expanding Cosmos grille has grown larger, more pronounced, and impactful. The Expanding Cosmos grille is flanked by accentuated deep-set intelligent LED headlamps. The signature “Leaping Cat” design influence seen in the original Bo Yue stance and proportion now holds its head higher, prouder, more confident. Deep functioning air intakes stretches across the exaggerated horizontal width, enhancing the SUV aerodynamic performance.
From the rear quarter, the Bo Yue PRO’s design clean and logical featuring Geely’s distinctive chrome strip that stretches towards the outer edges into the rear lamps. The three-dimensional Chinese fan inspired twisting rear lamps perfectly represent the combination of technology and culture.
After listening to consumer feedback from across our global markets, Geely has moved to lower the load height of the rear tailgate, giving more space to users and allowing for easier loading and unloading of personal items.
The interior of the Bo Yue PRO has been made more spacious with a harmonious and elegant design. Air vents stretch from both sides of the instrument panel and push into the doors, enhancing the perceived transverse space. Fluid interlacing layers fold and twist to help enhance visual depth throughout the cabin. The most eye-catching feature is the two HD central infotainment panel and full LCD instrument panel which seamlessly integrate into the high tech dashboard with ambient lighting that emulate wood grain textures.
The new Bo Yue PRO is a comprehensive upgrade in terms of design, intelligence, and power, opening the door to the 5G “Internet of Everything” era. The model represents Geely Auto’s determination to be the leader of intelligent connected vehicles. The model will be fully launched later in the quarter. Pre-sale booking for the Bo Yue PRO has opened in the Chinese market.
PROTON announced today it has received over 10,000 bookings for the Proton X70 SUV during the official launch of Ming Heng Motor Sdn Bhd, a new 4S dealer in Setapak. The Company also confirmed that it exceeded its 3S/4S outlet submission approval target of 109 and that more applications to open such outlets were still being received.
PROTON’s highly anticipated first SUV, the Proton X70, was made available for prelaunch bookings from 8 September. Interested parties were invited to place a deposit at a PROTON outlet but since 17 October, they have also been able to use an online booking platform, allowing bookings to be made from anywhere with an Internet connection.
To date the response from Malaysians has been very encouraging as total bookings now total over 10,000 units of which nearly 2,000 were made online, thus confirming the Company made the correct decision to develop and launch the platform.
In an effort to provide support in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, Proton today handed over eight units of the Proton X70 to the Ministry of Health (MOH) to be used in Sabah.
It is said that the vehicles will be used to assist in the Ministry of Health’s logistics and surveillance efforts in the ongoing COVID-19 fight. The handover was done at Fook Loi Corporation’s Proton 4S outlet in Kota Kinabalu.
The eight units of Proton X70 that were loaned to the Ministry of Health in Sabah is in addition to the 50 units of the Proton X70 that were given in March during the beginning stages of the pandemic.
“The Covid-19 pandemic is probably one of the most challenging times we have faced as a nation. As a Malaysian brand, Proton feels that it is our duty to step up, and we have been supporting the government’s efforts from the outset. Logistics in Sabah is far more challenging than in the peninsular. This next batch of X70s will act as ferry vehicles for doctors, nurses and MOH officials as and when needed. We hope our contribution will help to ease the logistical needs of medical frontliners in Sabah,” said Roslan Abdullah, Chief Executive Officer of Proton Edar.
Other than providing vehicles, Proton also produced 60,000 units of face shields in April at their Shah Alam factory.
These face shields were distributed to government hospitals in the country, as well as other frontliners such as members of the police and armed forces.
PROTON CONTINUES EFFORTS TO SUPPORT MEDICAL FRONTLINERS
Kota Kinabalu, 3 December 2020 – National car maker PROTON today handed over eight units of the Proton X70 to the Ministry of Health (MOH) for use in Sabah. The vehicles will be used to assist in the Ministry’s logistics and surveillance efforts in the ongoing COVID-19 fight. The handover was done at Fook Loi Corporation’s Proton 4S outlet in Kota Kinabalu.
Throughout the year, PROTON has been actively supporting MOH in various ways to help in the fight against COVID-19. The loan of the eight cars to MOH Sabah is in addition to the 50 units of the Proton X70 loaned to the Ministry at the onset of the pandemic in March.
“The Covid-19 pandemic is probably one of the most challenging times we have faced as a nation. As a Malaysian brand, PROTON feels that it is our duty to step up, and we have been supporting the government’s efforts from the outset. Logistics in Sabah is far more challenging than in the peninsular. This next batch of X70s will act as ferry vehicles for doctors, nurses and MOH officials as and when needed. We hope our contribution will help to ease the logistical needs of medical frontliners in Sabah,” said Roslan Abdullah, Chief Executive Officer of Proton Edar.
PROTON gave the Proton X70, its first ever SUV, its public debut during the media day of the 2018 Kuala Lumpur International Motor Show (KLIMS). Held at the Malaysian International Trade & Exhibition Centre (MITEC) in Kuala Lumpur the show officially opens its doors to the public from 23 November to 2 December and all visitors are invited to get a closer look at the Proton X70 when visiting the Company’s booth.
Although this won’t be the first time the Proton X70 is shown to the public, all previous instances were closed-door preview events for invited guests only. Therefore, this will be the first time it will be displayed in a public environment like KLIMS and for many visitors, this will be their first opportunity to take a closer look at both the inside and outside of PROTON’s newest model.
Aside from having five units on display, PROTON have also prepared special areas to give visitors a unique hands-on experience of the technology and equipment fitted to its newest model. For instance, a full scale half-cut model has been prepared to show critical areas where the body has been reinforced to make it safer in an accident. Display panels housing the touchscreen from the interior of the Proton X70 have also been prepared to demonstrate its usability and allow visitors to try the voice command system.
To add more excitement to its product display, PROTON will give KLIMS visitors a chance to experience the advanced driver assist systems offered on the Proton X70 without having to go for a test drive. A Virtual Reality (VR) area will simulate how systems like the Electronic Stability Program (ESP), Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) with Forward Collision Warning (FCW), Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), Lane Departure Warning (LDW) and Blind Spot Information System (BLIS) work in real life, giving a preview of the sensations a driver will feel when they are activated.
The long wait for an up close and personal look at PROTON’s highly anticipated SUV finally came to an end as the Company unveiled their newest model to the Malaysian media during a static preview held at the Proton Styling Studio. Showcasing the first co-developed vehicle by Geely and PROTON, the exclusive event also saw the attendance of Dr Li Chunrong, Chief Executive Officer PROTON, Dato’ Radzaif Mohamed, Deputy Chief Executive Officer PROTON, and all senior management members of PROTON who addressed queries about the new addition to the Company’s product line up.
The purposeful lines of the SUV were penned by a team led by the Executive Vice President of Design at Geely, British designer Peter Horbury. A renowned car designer with 40 years of experience, Peter was formerly the Vice President of design at Volvo Car Corporation and is widely credited with leading the Swedish brand away from boxy saloons to the modern sculpted vehicles they sell today.
Presenting the design of the SUV to the assembled media though was Malaysian Azlan Othman, who is PROTON’s Head of Design. During his presentation, Azlan explained the silhouette was sculpted with explosive energetic lines inspired by a muscular and agile feline form. More specifically, the shape was drawn from the family of big cats, especially the Malayan Tiger, which is why it conveys a sense of explosive forward momentum.
The link to the majestic animal is further strengthened by the headlamps, featuring daytime running lights (DRL) that create a distinctive pair of ‘eyes’ making the SUV recognisable in any driving environment. While there are few changes to the external lines to differentiate the Proton SUV from its Geely counterpart, Azlan and his team still managed to infuse some uniquely Malaysian touches in the design.
This is most evident in the grille, which features a shape inspired by a bow to deliver an identifiable presence that also captures a sense of agility, speed and lightness. Proudly displayed in the middle of the distinctive grille is a large PROTON badge, framed by three black horizontal bars. Closer inspection reveal the bars have distinctive repeating patterns inspired by Malaysian craftsmanship and our rich natural heritage.
“We embraced the unique elements Malaysia has to offer and infused them into our design celebrating the uniqueness and richness of our environment, traditions and heritage. Reflecting on the early craftsmanship, we have developed and evolved the art of traditional wood carving into a design arrangement that we call Infinite Weave,” explained Azlan.
Step inside the SUV and drivers are greeted by luxurious materials such as Nappa leather, brushed aluminium accents and a touchscreen interface that create a marriage of luxury, craftsmanship and technology.
Elegant interior lines are accentuated by the interplay between dark and light surface treatments while a Malaysian touch is added by the same Infinite Weave pattern carried over to the interior via the speaker grilles and inserts backing the door handles as well as the iconic PROTON badge housed in the centre of the steering wheel.
PROTON also used the event to officially announce the name of its SUV. An online contest was held and Malaysians were asked to choose one of four proposed names – PX70, X7, X70 and X700. More than 89,800 total participants submitted entries, which resulted in the name X70 being selected.
“We can now reveal that PROTON’s SUV will be called the X70. This is the first time an alphanumeric naming system is used on a Proton model as our research shows it will make it easier for PROTON to sell the X70 in ASEAN and other international markets as there are no language barriers to overcome. The letter X is also synonymous with Crossover or SUV vehicles so using it makes it easy to identify the segment this Proton model is from while the number 70 denotes the size/class of the SUV and gives PROTON a logical system to add bigger or smaller models in the future,” said Abdul Rashid Musa, Chief Executive Officer of PROTON Edar.
It was also explained that the exclusive media preview session wasn’t a stand-alone event catering just to the media. A series of customer events spanning 7 Malaysian cities running from 19 September to 4 November would also be held to allow members of the public, the banking and insurance industry as well as potential corporate buyers to get a similarly close first look at the X70 before it is launched later in the year. “The preview sessions start on 19 September and our plan is to reach nearly 6,000 people. That is only a small portion of the potential buyers we are targeting but for those who are already convinced they want to buy our new SUV, PROTON will start taking bookings for the X70 on 8 September with a deposit of RM1,000 each,” added Rashid.
With Malaysia undergoing a strict lock down to lower Covid-19 infections, retail operations of automotive companies have been curtailed with showrooms required to remain shut.
Although this is expected to affect Total-Industry-Volume (TIV) for the next few months, Proton announced that it remains optimistic about sales, thanks to the recent performance of its international sales division.
Best export sales since March 2013
In May 2021, 669 units were delivered to overseas distributors, resulting in the company having its best export sales month since March 2013, a gap of 98 months.
Up to the end of May, the total Year-To-Date (YTD) volume is at 174% of the target set and only 6% behind what was achieved for the whole of 2020.
Proton’s growth in export sales has been powered by growing demand in several key markets, some new and some having sold Protons for decades. For example, Pakistan is a new market for the company but for the first five months of 2021, it was by far the best performer.
On the other hand, Brunei which started selling Proton vehicles in 1987, was the third biggest export market by volume this year and in May, importers PAD Motors had the best sales month in company history.
Not to be outdone Alpha Ezz El-Arab, the importer and distributor for Proton cars in Egypt, has already received 350 units this year, making it Proton’s second largest export market.
With sales also growing domestically, assembly of Proton models in its export markets is vital for the company to achieve its long-term goals. Following the commencement of local assembly for the Proton Saga in Kenya, the next market to assemble cars locally will be Pakistan.
“If everything goes to plan our partner in Pakistan, Al-Haj Automotive will begin assembly operations with the Proton Saga by the end of July or early August at its new plant in Karachi. The Proton X70 will be added to their production line later, and we have high hopes this development will spur sales growth in the South Asian region,” added Steven Xu.
While growing sales in export markets is a reassuring sign of wider acceptance of the Proton brand and its products, the key to achieving the company’s long-term goals remains sales growth in ASEAN.
The region is hotly contested with many global brands having invested in production facilities that supply local and export markets as well as competition from locally grown manufacturers.
Return to Thailand, Indonesia
Currently, Proton’s presence in ASEAN is limited to Brunei but the company has plans to return to the two biggest markets in the region, Thailand and Indonesia, in the very near future. “For Proton to be the third best-selling brand in ASEAN, we need to have a major presence in Thailand and Indonesia.”
As the biggest automotive markets in the region they offer enormous volume potential, but the level of competition is also very high. For both countries, we have been busy recruiting partners to build a network that ensures a viable business model and in the short term, our target is to return to Thailand in 2022,” said Steven Xu.