- PROTON announces the start of production for its compact crossover – the Proton X50
- Investment in production of the Proton X50 further expands Geely Group’s global manufacturing footprint
- Proton X50 is a follow-up to Malaysia’s best-selling SUV, the Proton X70
2020 Sept 15, Tanjung Malim, Malaysia. Geely (Zhejiang Geely Holding) invested subsidiary, PROTON Holdings Berhad (“PROTON”), revealed its next car model, the Proton X50 compact crossover, at a ceremony that saw the first vehicle roll off the production line at its main factory in Tanjung Malim, Malaysia. The factory recently underwent an upgrade worth 1.2 billion Malaysian Ringgit (approx. USD 290 million) for the production of vehicles based on Geely Group technologies, such as the Proton X50 and the previously released Proton X70 SUV.
The new factory extension began producing the Proton X70 SUV in December 2019 and has a highly flexible production process that allows it to produce both the X70 SUV and X50 compact crossover. This is further testament to Geely’s expanding global manufacturing footprint that also saw similar investments into the production of other group brands, including Volvo, Lotus and LEVC.
The Proton X50, based on the Geely Bin Yue (Geely Cool Ray in global markets), is built on Geely’s BMA (B-segment Modular Architecture) platform. It utilises Geely Holding’s full portfolio of technologies that were jointly developed with Volvo at Geely Holding’s jointly operated R&D Centre in Europe, CEVT. These shared technologies will further help PROTON with its brand rejuvenation as the brand continues to grow based on its technology offerings in Malaysia and the wider Southeast Asian region.
Public perception towards the brand has been shifting since the successful launch of the Proton X70 in December 2018. In 2019, PROTON had a year-on-year growth of 55.7% over 2018, reaching a five year high of 100,821 units.
In the first eight months of 2020, PROTON has already recorded sales of 61,672 units, with sales in the month of August at an 8-year high. These numbers have been reached despite restrictions on people’s movements put in place to control and prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Malaysia.
Since its partnership with Geely, which began in 2017, PROTON has carried out comprehensive upgrades to its dealer network, enabling better customer service that eventually led to higher customer satisfaction and an increasingly positive brand image. Sales and quality aside, the partnership between Geely and PROTON has encouraged cross-culture interaction and joint training, empowering employees from both organisations to acquire new skills and enhance their capabilities.
PROTON will begin taking orders for the Proton X50 from September 16, 2020, onwards.