Proton hari ini memilih nama Proton Exora untuk model pertama kenderaan pelbagai gunanya (MPV) yang boleh ditempah mulai Sabtu ini. Nama itu dipilih 251,763 nama hasil pertandingan membabitkan penyertaan orang ramai yang dilancarkan pembuat kereta nasional itu.
PETALING JAYA, Feb 17 (Bernama) -- Proton Holdings Bhd plans a monthly production of 3,000 to 3,500 units of its first multi-purpose vehicle (MPV) named Exora beginning next month."We have already started the preliminary production and full production will start next month leading to launch in April," said managing director Datuk Syed Zainal Abidin Syed Mohamed Tahir after the official announcement of the MPV name here today.
He said total investment in the MPV was RM450 million, including RM60 million to RM70 million allocated to modify the plant in Shah Alam as development of the model started from zero and it will be the first Malaysian designed MPV.Asked why the MPV is being produced at the Shah Alam plant and not in Tanjung Malim, Syed Zainal Abidin said: "We are trying to optimise by putting minimum investment and modification to our medium volume factory in Shah Alam."Given the expenditure today, the company took the opportunity to make the decision to build in Shah Alam," he said.
Powered by 1.6-litre CamPro engine, the new Exora will open for booking from Feb 21 at all 293 Proton Edar and EON sales offices nationwide. It is priced at below RM80,000 and the booking fee is set at RM1,000.The Exora is based on the name of the Ixora flower.Syed Zainal Abidin said delivery of the MPV will be in April for those who book this Saturday.
Asked on the response for the new Exora, Proton Holdings' chairman Datuk Mohd Nadzmi Mohd Salleh said: "Even though the country is hit by the global financial crisis, the response for national cars is still very good."He said having a second car was the local trend as "the Malaysian family is quite big and this vehicle is a requirement in the market".Being designed for family, the model will be affordable, spacious and comfortable, he added.
On Proton's plan to export the new Exora, Mohd Nadzmi said the company will start exporting the new MPV to Thailand and Indonesia in July but initially the model will be for domestic market.He said Proton is excited with the opportunity as MPV was a new segment for the company and 60 percent of the Indonesian market is under the MPV segment.Asked why the name of the new MPV is not Malaysian flavour, Mohd Nadzmi said: "As we progress in time, the car industry is a global industry. We cannot be to nationalistic in terms of our outlook."For long-term survival, Proton has to look overseas because the local market is too small, he said.