Malaysian auto giant Proton has finally launched its much-awaited 1300cc sedan named Saga in Pakistan .
The car launched virtually on Sunday is believed to be the competitor of the Honda City, Toyota Yaris and Changan Alsvin, already plying on the roads of the South Asian country.
This sedan is coming in three variants i.e., Standard MT (Manual Transmission), Standard AT (Auto Transmission), and Ace AT (Auto Transmission). The price of these three variants are:- Standard MT Rs. 1,975,000 , Standard AT Rs. 2, 125, 000 and Ace AT Rs. 2, 225,000,
Al-Haj Motors, the local partner of Proton, has also introduced the Limited Edition R3 Sports variant of the car. However, the company is offering only CBU units of this variant and will be available in a small number. This variant has been developed to celebrate Proton’s tribute to Proton’s motorsports division, as ‘R3’ stands for ‘Race, Rally, Research’. The price of SAGA R3 is: R3 (Limited Edition) MT Rs. 2, 175,000 and
R3 (Limited Edition) AT Rs. 2, 425,000.
In December last year, the company had launched its SUV crossover X70. The X70 is the same car which former Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Mohamad presented as a gift to Prime Minister Imran Khan in December 2019.
According to Engineering Development Board (EDB) officials, the Proton has received green-field status under the Auto Development Policy (ADP) 2016-21. New companies such as Proton, Kia, Hyundai, MG Motors, Sazgar and Changan will be paying lower duties compared to firms already operating in Pakistan such as Toyota, Honda and Suzuki.
The ADP 2016-21 policy ends in June 2021 and the models introduced by new companies, known as entrants in the industry, will be considered for duty relaxations for a complete five-year period. The entrants may introduce a new car after the ADP expires but the later they do this the smaller the window for duty relaxation. But government has yet to give more clarity on this.
As far as the specifications of Proton cars are concered, the first three variants will have 1299cc engines, which the company has downsized from the original size, especially for the Pakistani market. The engine produces 91hp and 120Nm torque. Furthermore, the automatic transmission would be 4-speed.
However, R3 would come with a 1332cc engine, producing 95hp and 120Nm torque.