New PROTON Model with Old Design Launched

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Aug 15 2007
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Sometimes thing will never change for the better if the cancer-cells never removed. Worst still when a national-status company couldn’t recognize the basic flaw in its designing methodology and production. Days before the country’s 50th Independence celebration, Proton Holdings Bhd (KLSE: PROTON, stock-code 5304) today launched the so-called new model, Proton Persona. But somehow I couldn’t find any reason to jump in joy, no matter how hard I try.

The latest addition to the PROTON family is the fifth model fully built by PROTON after the introduction of the Waja in 2000, the Gen.2 in 2004, the Savvy in 2005 and the Satria Neo in 2006. Designed to replace its 14-year-old Wira model, the sleek new 1,600-cc Persona sedan is suppose to bring back its status as the country’s leading car seller to local rival Perodua.
proton new model personaBut after looking at the new Persona, I’ve mistaken it as the 2004-Gen.2. I tried to relook again from front, back, side-views and interior but still I couldn’t find any justification to call this a NEW model. It’s more appropriate to be called Gen.2 little facelift. It’s not that Persona at all, does it?

Could the Proton management launched the model for the sake of launching it so that it can declares a “new” model has been successfully launched despite the fact it’s a duplicate of Gen.2 with minor changes? It’s fine to replace the aging Wira model but at least spend some valuable and productive time in designing a “real new model”. But I guess this is the best the design-team can come out with. Maybe the Proton can only survive with a foreign partner after all.

Anyway, the Persona is available in five variants – the 1.6 base-line automatic and manual; 1.6 medium-line, automatic and manual; and 1.6 high-line automatic only. The national car manufacturer’s latest offering is said to be the most competitively-priced model in the 1,600 cc category, with the price ranging from RM44,999 to RM55,800. However not all models come with the basic safety feature such as AirBag.

Am I optimistic that this new model will actually turn around the loss-making Proton ultimately? Not at all, as a matter of fact this only shows that Proton has reached the last mile and its time for it to tie-up with a foreign partner if it wishes to survive without any government bail-out. The local trial-and-error method has reached the end of the journey. FinanceTwitter will still stay away from the stock.

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just gen-2 with backside… that’s all…

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