This morning saw Proton and Geely sign a Definitive Agreement that will see the Chinese company take up a significant stake in the Malaysian carmaker, and its Lotus subsidiary. The signing ceremony in Kuala Lumpur also saw the companies display what will be the first fruit of the collaboration, or at least the original form of it.

UPDATE: Full live gallery of the Geely Boyue added

We are of course talking about the Geely Boyue, which has been previously confirmed as the first new Proton model in the Geely era. The Boyue, already in production and on sale in China, will be Proton’s first-ever SUV. As Perodua does not have an SUV in its current line-up, Proton’s Boyue will also be the only SUV with a local badge in the market.

However, it is not yet clear what Proton’s right-hand drive version of the Boyue for the Malaysian market will be called, and if there will be local styling changes made to the SUV – the unit on display here is Chinese-market left-hand drive Geely Boyue.

Measuring 4.5 metres long (a new Honda CR-V is 4,584 mm), the Boyue is a five-seater SUV designed by former Volvo designer Peter Horbury, who heads Geely’s design studios located in Gothenburg, Shanghai, Barcelona and Los Angeles.

In China, it is offered with a range of engines which include a 2.4 litre naturally-aspirated four-cylinder (162 hp/210 Nm) and a 1.8 litre turbocharged unit (163 hp/250 Nm). Transmission options include a six-speed manual or dual-clutch automatic, depending on engine choice. The T-GDI engine powers the unit shown here.

In its domestic market, the Geely SUV also offers an impressive list of equipment like an eight-inch display screen, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto compatibility, and safety kit includes lane departure warning and adaptive cruise control (ACC), which allows the Boyue to match its highway cruising speed with the car in front of it.

Proton’s version will come with a permanent SIM card slot, WiFi and related services, plus voice recognition, it was announced at today’s event. Like what you see? We’ve rendered a “Proton Boyue” with the local brand’s styling cues, to give you an idea of what to expect.

When quizzed on timelines, Proton and Geely said that while they want this model in Malaysia as soon as possible, discussions are still needed on things such as whether or not to kick-off with CBU units, as well as the levels of localisation.

GALLERY: Geely Boyue in Malaysia

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