2019 June 12. Tanjung Malim, Malaysia. China’s Minister of Industry and Information Technology, the Honourable Mr Miao Wei, arrived at PROTON’s Tanjung Malim plant today as part of a work visit to Malaysia. Accompanying him was YB Tuan Eddin Syazlee Shith, Malaysia’s Deputy Minister of Communications and Multimedia along with government officials from both countries.
The visit was hosted by Dato’ Seri Syed Faisal Albar, Chairman of PROTON together with Mr Li Shufu, Chairman of Zhejiang Geely Holding Group. Also present were Dato’ Mohammad Zainal Shaari, Chairman of DRB-HICOM, as well as Dr Li Chunrong, Chief Executive Officer of PROTON, Dato’ Radzaif Mohamed, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of PROTON and senior management members of PROTON.
During Mr Miao Wei’s visit, the Minister was briefed about PROTON’s current and future business activities before witnessing the signing of a joint venture agreement between Proton Edar Sdn Bhd, Altel Communications Sdn Bhd and ECarX (Hubei) Technology Co. Ltd, China.
Digital technology and connectivity to power the future of mobility
The new joint venture company will benefit PROTON in a multitude of ways, primarily in the area of digital technology and car connectivity systems. The use of these features, particularly in the area of car connectivity is now a global trend and is expected to be one of the key drivers for future automotive sales. It was this scenario that inspired PROTON to take the bold step of launching the Proton X70 equipped with the connectivity features as one of the main Unique Selling Propositions (USP).
As of today, following the successful launch of the Proton X70 in December 2018, the 2019 Proton Iriz, Persona and Exora have already joined the ranks of Proton models with connectivity features that offer a wide range of functional applications for car buyers.
“With the signing of today’s agreement, PROTON is taking the next step in its evolution to become an automotive brand offering global products. Collaborations such as this will allow us to gain a foothold in the rapidly progressing area of car connectivity solutions while also increasing the knowledge base of our R&D engineers. It also allows us to explore the possibility of expanding our connectivity solutions to PROTON’s export markets, particularly in neighbouring ASEAN countries. This will give PROTON a technological advantage as the automotive industry moves towards the next generation of mobility solutions,” said Dato’ Sri Syed Faisal Albar, Chairman of PROTON.
Local assembly trials in progress
As the commissioning of PROTON’s new RM1.2 billion assembly plant in Tanjung Malim draws near, production trial runs have begun for the Proton X70. Final trim, paint and assembly lines are still in the process of being fully completed but even at this early stage, it is possible for PROTON’s engineers and production workers to begin semi-automated test runs to gain experience in assembling the Company’s first SUV.
“PROTON aims to start the production of the X70 in Tanjung Malim in the second half of this year so we are working hard to ensure we hit the target. It will be a remarkable achievement as in less than two years since the signing of the agreement between DRB-HICOM and Geely, we have reached a significant milestone in our joint effort to return PROTON to its position of prominence,” added Dato’ Sri Syed Faisal Albar.