2016 Proton Perdana - Teased and previewed. An opinion.

And so, after unveiling their latest plan in order to make PROTON successful again, Chairman Tun Mahathir and CEO Dato' Abdul Harith showed us the new 2016 PROTON Perdana in top spec 2.4liter form. All of us who attended the press conference were forced to put away all forms of camera when they showed us the new car. Of course, they have already been teasing us with bits during the presentation - like the headlights above and in the presentation slide below. So there will be no full pics here but an writeup on what I think about the car after viewing it for the first time.

There are also other photographs floating around the internet for you to see. I am just going to tell you about what I think about the new 2016 PROTON Perdana after I got to view the whole car with my own eyes.

Whilst it is based on the previous Honda Accord platform like the government issued Proton Perdana you see on the roads today it has a totally new front with HID and built in DRL shown in the slide during the presentation by PROTON CEO Dato' Abdul Harith Abdullah. The front is curved and has s chrome strip with the PROTON logo (now more 3 dimensional that before) in the middle. The front PROTON winged grille and lower grille is also shaped like the Mercedes Benz AMG A45 front end for a lack of a better description. The lower grille isn't as large as the one on the Mercedes and the front it actually a semi circle if viewed from top. 

There are side vents on the front fender somewhat like the ones you see on a Jaguar XF or a BMW. 

The car is all new from the rear doors backward. There is a rear quarter window like the ones you have in the Audi A6 and the C-pillar slopes a lot more than the Accord. It is not unlike the Perdana shown in the recent Malay film Kapsul. But it does not have the fastback design and it more of a sedan. The basic light cluster and chrome strip is close to it but the new one looks like it belongs on a Lexus. Yes. There is more of a finished look to this Perdana  compared to the one shown in the film.

Anyway, the overall styling of the new Perdana is rather good. There is enough road presence and there is some coherence in the design. The front end is aggressive enough for one to get out of the way if a Perdana came up the rear of one's car on the highway. 

There are limits to the overall look as the car is based on a Honda chassis so the style of the car is dictated by the crossmember in front and the length of the wheelbase. Proton have lengthened it but about a hundred millimeters plus and it does look like a car with large overhangs front and rear. The prototype shown had the full bodykit and was sitting on 17inch wheels and tyres. 

You can only tell of its Honda origins if you were looking at it from the front or rear three quarter angle and focusing on the A pillar of the car. Aside from that it looks better than the current Proton Perdana / previous generation Honda Accord and it looks a bit more stylish than the current Accord. It is more elegant compared to the more muscular stance of the current Accord. At least there is enough differentiation here. 

The interior is very ...ehem...Honda-like. It now has a double infoscreen on the dashboard like the current generation Accord. . For the high specced 2.4liter that was displayed and one where I managed to sit in, the screen on top is for the GPS/Navigation and the one below for the radio and reverse camera. All the buttons feel like its from a Honda. The leather used in this prototype looks decent enough. All in all the interior feels durable like any Honda I know out there.

PROTON intends to sell the car somewhere in the region of RM100-150K obviously - Tun Dr Mahathir says PROTON have not really decided as yet. Even though there are no official prices yet they are taking bookings for the car in both 2.0liter and 2.4liter variants. I predict the 2.0liter to go at under the current entry level Accord (RM139K) or about RM120,000. And the 2.4 at the price of a fully loaded 2.0 Accord at RM149,000. Compare this to the 2.4 Accord and 2.5 Camry it would be a bargain. Those two sell at over RM170K.

Expect the Proton Perdana to be launched by March or early April 2016. PROTON expects to produce 600 units of the car per month to capture a slice of the D segment. The good news about this car is that PROTON is also allowed to export it overseas. With a Euro 5 engine, it could be the first of many.

Less of the fastback design and more normal sedan but with the rear quarter window and still somewhat of a sloping C pillar, but the design of the rear lights is pretty close to the prototype that was displayed. Just wait for the car to come out shortly for you to decide. I actually like it. 

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