2 April 2020, Thursday | 11:25pm

'Proton may not face supply shortage'



SUBANG Jaya: Proton Holdings Bhd, which partially sources parts and components from China, has seen a minimal impact from the coronavirus outbreak.

Proton deputy chief executive officer Datuk Radzaif Mohamed said it may not face any supply shortage of components and parts if the closure of major manufacturing plants in China continued.

“Now you see some of the factories in China have begun to open up again. We do have vendors in China, like many other automotive original equipment manufacturers (OEMs).

“This time i think we are quite ok, but we are still monitoring the situation,” Radzaif told reporters at the launch of 2020 Proton X70 here today.

He said Proton had come out with a strategy to localise its vendors. 

“We have quite a number of vendors from China, especially for the X70 model. The whole design (of the SUV) is from China but we are doing localisation.

“We are replacing those from our Chinese vendors with local supply. For now, we have sufficient stocks to meet our requirements for the X70,” he added.

Proton unveiled the X70 CKD (completely knocked down) version with five main upgrades.

They are, among others, related to the power train, which boasts a refined 1.8-litre turbocharged direct injection (TGDi) petrol engine and a new dual wet clutch.

The SUV now comes with a new seven-speed dual-clutch transmission (7-DCT) to replace the six-speed automatic transmission of the outgoing complete built-up (CBU) model.

Three other upgrades are a power tailgate with foot sensor, front ventilated seats and rear reclining seats.

Proton chairman Datuk Seri Syed Faisal Albar said the X70 was a significant accomplishment for the national carmaker as it not only represented the first model off the new line, but also had matched and exceeded the quality standards of the model it launched 14 months ago.

Syed Faisal added that the SUV was especially important from a manufacturing perspective as it showed that Proton can build vehicles with global quality. 

”This represents a big step forward for us because it shows we are more than capable of delivering valuable product propositions of a global standard,” he said.

The variants are priced largely similarly to before, with the Standard 2WD model retailing at RM94,800, the Executive 2WD model at RM106,800 and the Premium 2WD model at RM119,800. 

The sole all-wheel drive version, the Executive AWD, has been dropped.

The 2020 X70 also heralds the introduction of the range-topping Premium X, priced at RM122,800.




Source: News Straits Times

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