At the press conference of the new Proton Iriz today, company chairman Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamed confirmed that Proton’s new B-segment hatchback meets Euro 4 emissions regulations with the current 1.3 and 1.6 litre VVT engines.

However, he said the company is looking to acquire new powertrains to meet stricter Euro 5 standards and higher (the European Union has already enforced Euro 6 standards for the approval of new vehicles at the beginning of this month) in other markets, and that may involve getting engines from other manufacturers.

“Meeting Euro 5 requires a new engine. We are working on getting a new engine, maybe not our own because it takes about five years to develop a new engine, and we cannot wait five years. We may have to source the engine from abroad so as to comply with Euro 5 standards.”

Dr Mahathir also said that the Iriz with the VVT engines can still be sold in markets where Euro 5 regulations are still current, but penalties may be incurred onto the company.

This announcement is intriguing to say the least – Proton currently has ties with Honda, and the former PM previously stated that the company was in talks with several Japanese companies regarding future collaborations. Prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, on the other hand, said that Proton has signed an agreement with Geely to expand the former’s market in China, adding that it may produce cars based on Geely models.