Saturday, January 17, 2009

Proton MPV... launching soon?

The launch of the eagerly awaited Proton MPV has been postponed a month from its original March target launch date to April 2009, announced Proton managing director Datuk Syed Zainal Abidin Syed Mohamed Tahir without elaborating on the reasons why the launch was delayed. He also added that the first Proton MPVs for the export market will be shipped off in July 2009, three months after the Malaysian launch.

As far as the other projects are concerned, they’re still on track so far. There are CKD partnerships in China (Youngman) and Iran, while talks on CKD partnerships are underway in India, Egypt and Jordan. It’s still a mystery at this point who Proton’s Indian partner will be, though there was a rumour a few months ago about this partner being Argentum Motors.

Apparently there is also a project to develop a new fuel efficient engine (to replace the Campro?) that will bear fruit in 2 years. Let’s hope this is a small displacement low pressure turbo engine with strong low end torque for a relaxed city drive. Other things to look forward to include a facelift for the Proton Satria Neo, which has already been spotted on road tests.

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