“An Extreme Machine That Gives You Extreme Enjoyment.”
If that isn’t a Reality Distortion Field ala Steve Jobs kind of statement, I don’t know what is. Since the very first local-assembled-with-85-percent-Jap-parts Proton Saga rolled off the assembly lines in 1985, our beloved national carmaker Proton, has indeed enjoyed the longest-lasting product line in the history of automotive engineering. Proton Saga. 1985. Now, still Proton Saga. 2007. 22 years. That’s a national record.
Can you spell ‘oh no’?
And so, the live-wire Saga is given another shot of adrenaline, and Malaysians yet again, get recycled, expired garbage shoved down our throats. So ok, it comes in a modern metallic tangerine colour. And ok, it costs just RM26,999 (eat that Perodua Kancil!) which translates to about RM250 per month installment, affordable no doubt, but heck, it’s 22 bloody years old. It’s scrap metal.
Isn’t it a wonder that Proton has recorded a third consecutive quarterly loss? Losing 285 million big ones isn’t funny. And having revenue reduced by half to RM3.65 billion is a huge warning sign for worse things to come. And we’re worried about national pride? If there is any pride left, we’d love to see Proton survive, grow and make us proud. But it doesn’t need to do it alone. Let the Volkswagen group come in, folks. Or GM. Or Peugeot. The ‘we’ve done it’ people who could just save Proton’s precarious future.
Let’s not celebrate Malaysia’s 50th Birthday with yesterday’s technology. Sentimental reasons aside (the Saga being the first ever Proton model), why not move forward with a Gen.2, Waja, Neo, Savvy Merdeka editions instead?
RM26,999, tho. Worth a thought, innit?
Header image: Paultan