PROTON has launched the 2019 Saga during an event held at the Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre (MITEC) and officiated by YB Dato’ Darell Leiking, Minister of International Trade and Industry (MITI). Also present at the event were Dato’ Mohammad Zainal Shaari, Chairman of DRB-HICOM, Dato’ Sri Syed Faisal Albar, Chairman of PROTON, Dr. Li Chunrong, CEO of PROTON, Dato’ Radzaif Mohamed, Deputy CEO of PROTON and Dato’ Madani Sahari, CEO of Malaysia Automotive, Robotics and IoT Institute (MARii).
The updated version of PROTON’s iconic and best-selling model has received styling revisions, a brand new four-speed automatic gearbox and first-in-class smart features. The company also identified three unique selling points (USP) that when combined, form its model tagline of “An Intelligent Proposition”. The three USPs are Supreme Style, Smart Savings and Superb Stability.
Superbly stable with uncompromised safety
Safety equipment consists of Antilock Brakes (ABS) with Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist (BA) for all three variants together with twin front airbags, rear parking sensors and ISOFIX mountings with top tethers. The Premium variant adds Hill Hold Assist, front parking sensors, a reverse camera and Electronic Stability Control (ESC) with a Traction Control System (TCS), becoming the only car priced below RM40,000 to be fitted with ESC and TCS.
Mechanically, the biggest change is the fitment of a new four-speed automatic in place of the CVT previously used. PROTON’s engineers then concentrated on improving braking performance, Noise, Vibration and Harshness (NVH) levels and the ride and handling balance while adding a class-leading level of safety equipment.
The brakes are now the same as those fitted to the bigger Proton Iriz and Persona while the use of a new four-speed automatic gearbox affords drivers better manual control of the gears during driving.
Supremely styled inside and out
The story of the Proton Saga is synonymous with that of PROTON, stretching back 34 years and three full model changes. The 2019 Saga has been given styling updates that pays homage to its roots but also brings it in line with the rest of the Proton range.
Externally, the 2019 Saga receives a new and more aggressively styled front bumper with integrated daytime running lamps. The grille also features the infinite weave pattern that was introduced on the Proton X70 and can also be found on the 2019 Iriz and Persona. An equally aggressive rear bumper matches the tone set by the front and the styling at the back is complemented by a new integrated spoiler and the PROTON script located on the boot lid. A set of 15-inc alloy wheels featuring a new design adds the finishing touch on the premium variant.
Inside, the most noticeable change is the floating 7-inch touchscreen monitor found on the premium model. Used to control the infotainment system, it has Bluetooth connectivity, 16GB of internal storage and smartphone connectivity for Android phones. Other changes include new seat upholstery, a new centre panel, new meter combination display with Eco Drive Assist and up to 3 USB ports.
Convenience features new to the 2019 Saga include a remote trunk release, a sun visor with a ticket holder and mirror, LED map lamps and new assist grips to match the new headlining material.
Packages deliver extra value to Saga buyers
There are three standard Extra Value packages beginning with the service package that offers free labour services three times or for one year. Next is the interest rate package with financing rates as low as 2.98% per annum. Finally, the 2019 Saga also gets an insurance package that offers a number of benefits to customers who insure their new purchase with PROTON’s panel on insurers.
Combined with the price reduction and the value of the new features introduced in each variant, the 2019 Saga 1.3L Premium delivers RM3,747 worth of additional benefits compared to its predecessor. The 2019 Saga 1.3L Standard gets RM2,043 of additional benefits while the 2019 Saga 1.3L Standard MT has RM2,291 worth of additional benefits for those who buy it.
The Standard manual transmission variant is priced at RM32,800 while the standard automatic transmission variant is priced at RM35,800. Topping the range with a price tag of RM 39,800 is the Premium variant.