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Monday, September 25, 2006

Proton ups quality, ready to compete

Proton Holdings Bhd’s efforts to enhance the quality of its cars will enable it to compete on a level-playing field in two years, managing director Syed Zainal Abidin Syed Mohamed Tahir said.

“Two years is a reasonable timeframe for us to compete on a level-playing field. There has been more enforcement on quality and we have been consolidating our vendor network,” he said.

Proton’s Quality Enhancement Campaign is into its fifth month and several issues that plagued earlier models like the Waja and Gen2, has been resolved on later models like the Savvy and Satria Neo, he said.

He was updating the media on the qualities improvement initiatives at Proton’s centre of excellence in Shah Alam.

Based on a comparison of warranty claims within a similar period, he said quality concerns for both the Savvy and Satria Neo were at a minimal 0.5%.

“Like any other car manufacturer, there are weaknesses within our system which need to and are now being addressed on a continuous basis,” he said.

Syed Zainal said Proton would not sacrifice quality to meet launch dates for new models and would postpone the launch date of the two new models to be introduced mid-2007 if quality is not up to standards.

He said Proton is trying to change its poor brand perception that has dogged the national carmaker after the Waja and Gen2 were introduced to the market.

“It takes a long time to change the general mindset. We are addressing all complaints until we get to a level of satisfaction. But we aren’t at that level yet,” Syed Zainal said.

He said there would be a recall on the Savvy and Satria Neo if there were to be errors in the design.

On its sports car subsidiary, Lotus, Syed Zainal said Proton is committed to turn around the company through product optimisation, efficiency in manufacturing and right sizing.

As for Proton’s study conducted with PSA Peugeot Citroen, he said the two companies would examine the possibility of PSA taking an equity stake in Proton.

However, he added that it was still too early to determine if such a deal would take place. On Sept 8, Syed Zainal said the government, who is the major shareholder in Proton, had the final say on the possibility of a foreign party taking up a stake in Proton.


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What is the main factor for you to buy a Proton Car?
Low price and no other choice due to budget
Good resale value
Low maintenance cost
Ride & Handling is good
Reliable parts, chasis and engine
Good Styling exterior & Interior
Patriotism (I support Made in Malaysia Products)
Follow others (Follow Majorities should be the best choice)