CarPoint Australia has a preview article on the new Proton Satria Neo, but that’s not important. What’s interesting is something in the article regarding the upcoming Perdana Replacement Model, said to be based on the Australian-built Mitsubishi 380.
CarPoint quotes it’s sources saying up to 15,000 Mitsubishi 380 cars could find it’s way to Malaysia if a viable four-cylinder engine can be engineered into the Mitsubishi 380. With a curb weight of 1,625kg as compared to the current Proton Perdana V6‘s 1,300kg it would require at least a 2.4 litre engine to lug it around so it will not feel sluggy. Of course, 2.0 litre engine would be sufficient, but it would not be as nice a drive as the current Perdana. The current Perdana has a Mitsubishi 6A12 2.0 litre DOHC V6 engine that makes 147hp at 6,750rpm and 179Nm of torque at 4,000rpm.
If you take a look at the current Mitsubishi Galant which shares many underpinings with the Mitsubishi 380, you will find that it has a 2.4 litre 4-cylinder engine with MIVEC variable valve timing that could be suitable for the new Perdana Replacement Model.
The 2.4 litre 4G69 makes 160hp at 5,500rpm and has a maximum torque of 212Nm at 4,000rpm. One downside is it looks like there are only 4-speed automatic gearbox options for all the possible engines, while the other cars in the Perdana range are moving up to 5-speed transmissions. Tentative launch date is April 2007.
I will continue monitoring industry sources for updates on the Perdana Replacement Model, so stay tuned!