The internet rumour mill has gone into overdrive this week, with Proton said to have locked in the name of its first SUV, calling it the Proton Knight.
The name was previously used on a limited edition run of the Proton Saga small sedan, and is completely different to the naming structure that Proton was asking people to vote for.
A couple of months ago, we told you about the public vote that Proton was holding to name is new SUV, with four possible names having been selected.
- Proton X7
- Proton PX7
- Proton X70
- Proton X700
However, the vote which was held online also included room for the public’s suggestions. And if Knight was a name that was overwhelmingly popular, it’s possible that Proton has changed its mind on how it will badge the new SUV.
Here’s what we know so far
Proton has said that it will launch its first SUV in October 2018, with company executives already stating that the Knight will be a “fantastic” SUV.
It will be based on the Geely Boyue, and while pricing hasn’t been locked in for the new SUV, based on its equipment list and the competitors it’s going up against, we’re expecting it to start from around RM80,000.
The engineering to adapt the Boyue from left and drive to right hand drive has been completed, as you can see in the below video where the voice command functions are being tested. It understands accents as well, so there has been plenty of work done behind the scenes.
There’s an eight-inch infotainment screen, running Apple CarPlay, and it also displays the reverse camera and 360-degree surround image. There are three 12 volt outlets as well as USB inputs. And, as we find out in the video, there’s a sunroof, though that may be on higher specced models only.
Under the bonnet of the new Proton SUV will be a 1.8-litre turbocharged petrol four-cylinder producing 181bhp and 285Nm. The transmission is a six-speed dual-clutch gearbox (made by DSI), running to either the front wheels only, or (optionally) all four wheels.
Adaptive cruise control and visual and audible warning signals for if you break the speed limit are also included.
“Boyue is currently priced around RM68,500 (110,000 yuan) in China, while competitors such as the Honda CR-V and Mazda CX-5 are sold at over RM100,000. But its (the rebadged Boyue’s) features, affordable price and attractive design would be a game changer to the SUV market,” said The Malaysian Reserve.
We’ll bring you more news once the Proton SUV is launched officially later this year.