We’re here at Proton’s Centre of Excellence along the KESAS for a simple ceremony, where Proton has just presented world number one badminton player Datuk Lee Chong Wei a Proton Inspira in recognition of his accomplishments in the sport. Lee was handed the mock key by Proton chairman, Datuk Seri Mohd Nadzmi, who is also the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) president.

Lee, who is known to own a Nissan GT-R, among other vehicles, will be using the Inspira 2.0P as his “official transport” to badminton events, so we hear. Of the four colours, Lee chose black. Proton Group MD Datuk Seri Syed Zainal joked that he had promised Lee a Proton for quite some time – so maybe LCW was holding out for the Inspira!

“Our contribution to badminton goes beyond brand building, but working together with BAM, it underlines our commitment to seeing badminton in Malaysia continue to excel for many future generations to come,” said Syed Zainal. Proton first supported the sport 16 years ago in 1995, when it was entrusted by the government to act as corporate custodian under the Sports Partnership Programme.

World No. 1 Lee is the reigning back-to-back All England champion. This year, he won his seventh consecutive Proton Malaysian Open title. He won a silver medal in the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.