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Proton Gen.2

Broadcast dates : 11th September 2005
17th September 2005


The Proton Group is particularly proud of its ownership of the Lotus brand, and makes much of Lotus input on the design of the new Gen.2

Previously the car, which has been sold in England for a number of years, was seen as a Malaysian interpretation of a Mitsubishi. With its own engine and completely new body, the Gen2 is now pure Proton.

The sharp-edged front is somewhat Mazda-esque, but the rest of the car has pretty much its own identity.

The fussiness of the steering wheel design is reminiscent of Japanese sporty offerings from the 1970s and Ď80s. The textures on the wheel are somewhat cheap-looking.

Yet the rest of the cabin has a clean, crisp look that is pleasing to the eye.

But, certain details let it down, such as the oddly-shaped handbrake which is too close to the gearlever.

The rear seat design is a bit odd. The seat base needs more thigh support to keep passengers from sliding forward.
But space is good, as is access to the luggage compartment in this classy hatchback design.

The basic chassis integrity and performance is good, although Proton seems a bit optimistic with some of its claims for the engine.

The coupe-like look of the Gen.2 is bound to find widespread appeal in our market.

Even more important, the car is dynamically competent, thanks no doubt to Lotus input. The only negative is the suspension damping control at the rear which gets a bit flustered on bumpy surfaces.

The car comes standard with ABS and Electronic Brake Force Distribution, and has disc brakes all round.

The Proton Gen.2 comes in two different trim levels - a GL and a GLX. Both these models are available either with a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission.

The GLX is distinguished by a tailgate spoiler, front fog-lamps and badging. Inside it has leather upholstery and a luggage safety net.

The new Malaysian engine is known as the Campro, which is a 16-valve twin overhead cam unit.

The engine produces 82 kiloWatts at 6000 rpm, and 142 Newton metres of torque.

At Reef altitude the engine is a little breathless low down in the rev range, and itís not class-leading in terms of torque. However, in its price bracket it offers good performance.

Proton Gen.2 GLX
  • Engine: Four-cylinder petrol, 1 597cc
  • Power: 82 kW @ 6 000 rpm
  • Torque 148 Nm @ 4 000 rpm
  • Transmission: Five-speed manual, front-wheel-drive
  • 0-100 km/h: 10,5 seconds (claimed)
  • Top speed: 190 km/h (claimed)
  • Fuel consumption: 10,0 litres/100 km (estimated)
  • Price: R149 995

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