According to DRB-Hicom managing director Datuk Syed Faisal Akbar, the planned introduction of the locally-assembled (CKD) Proton X70 is currently on schedule, and will take place this year. When it is launched, the CKD version of the X70 will replace fully-imported (CBU) units that are currently still on sale.

“The upgrading works and preparation of Proton’s plant in Tanjung Malim to support local assembly of the X70 is going as planned and almost completed. Following that, test assembly of the vehicle will commence as well as fine tuning the processes to ensure quality is at its best. Similarly, all vendors involved are being prepared for this purpose,” said Syed Faisal.

On the matter of the amount of local content that will be used for the X70 CKD, no percentages have been revealed for now. “However, features such as the GKUI infotainment system will be updated and revised for local users,” he added. As an example, the maps used for the navigation function in CBU cars is based on a Baidu version developed in China.

When asked if DRB-Hicom is continuing to invest in Proton after Geely became the national carmaker’s strategic partner, Syed Faisal explained that all investments into Proton together with Geely is done in two ways.

The first is based on the percentage of shareholdings and interest, which involves both companies – DRB-Hicom (50.1%) and Geely (49.9%). The second way, being the main method of investing, is through bank loans. In other words, both stakeholders are directly involved in investing in Proton.

This post is adapted from an article posted on our sister site paultan.org/BM.

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