The Saga continues!

lunch-catchup

I was out for lunch with Ringo when the discussion turned to cars. I drive a conventional automatic so there’s a distinctive effect it makes when it shifts gear. You can hear the loss of power when it up-shifts followed by a drop in the RPM before it revs up again. It’s the bane of most automatic cars.

proton saga flx cvt

There’s a new feature called CVT (Continuous Variable Transmission) which allows gear shifting without the classic loss of engine power in traditional auto cars. We headed to the nearest Proton Edar to check out their new Saga FLX. It uses a belt instead of fixed gears so you can have smooth step-less gear shifts. In a nutshell, that’s what CVT is about.

cheesie

It not just provides you with a smoother drive but gives you better fuel economy and reduces wear and tear on your engine.

CVT

I reckon it’s the best feature in the Saga FLX 1.3 CVT. I’m quite impressed by it. Here’s a graph showing how it works for people who likes things like that.

SAT

In addition to this new CVT technology, there’s also a switch labeled SAT beside the gear. The Saga FLX provides you with the best of both worlds – pressing the switch activates the simulation of a 6 speed Standard Automatic Transmission (complete with the stepped transmission).

I don’t know why you would want to use SAT when you have CVT but I guess it’s a nice feature to have. Car purists and those who like the conventional auto transmission shifting can switch back to it by activating SAT.

clarion

There’s also a Clarion audio system with USB, MP3 and auxiliary ports in the center console. It’s a good sound system and the Saga FLX 1.3 Executive model also has audio controls on the steering wheel. It’s not new, but still one of the best ideas for cars since sliced bread. Having the audio controls at the tips of your fingers allows you to keep your eyes on the road instead of fumbling around with the audio system.

driving saga

The Saga FLX has doors that opens wider too. It’s very convenient if you want to load stuff in your car. Proton Ride & Handling features provides you with a comfortable and safe drive with all the interior space you need for everything from a road trip to a short drive to the local hypermarket. There are cup holders for every passenger and as a veteran of road trips, I can tell you that this and the increased cabin space will make you enjoy your trip so much more. :)

The improved structural integrity, reverse sensors, side mirrors with LED indicators, ABS, EBD and dual SRS airbags rounds up all the safety features. Anyway, if you’ve been living in a cave, ABS stands for Anti-lock Braking System and just like what you’ll expect, it prevents the brakes from locking (and thus skidding your car out of control) when you have to make an emergency hard brake. EBD or Electronic Brake-force Distribution further enhances your safety by maximizing stopping power and stability by adjusting the force applied to the brakes on each wheel. It makes for a shorter stopping distance too!

elegant brown

I also called ahead to ask if they have the new Elegant Brown color for the Saga FLX coz I wanted to see what it looks like in real life. It’s a nice shade that earns it the “elegant” in “Elegant Brown” and there are a lot of style changes to the car too.

proton saga flx rear

Check out the new front headlights and rear combination lights! It has been spruced up to look modern and stylistic.

dash

The interior of the car looks great too – the dashboard is sweet and the center console is a color they call Tempest Grey. I don’t care what it’s called so long as it looks awesome. Heh.

saga flx cvt

Oh, and while we were there, one of the guys at Proton Edar commented that Ringo’s hair matches the color of the Saga FLX. She was standing beside one of the promotional banners at that time and I thought it was really funny. They’re a friendly bunch, the people at Proton Edar in SEA Park. :)

drive

The newly launched Proton Saga FLX 1.3L starts from RM 38,598 (RM 41,598 for the CVT version). There are lots of user-friendly compartments in the car so expect an abundance of storage space for all your sunglasses, tags and other stuff. You just can’t get a car with all these performance, safety and practical features at this price point. It’s affordable – truly a car for the people. The Saga FLX is perfect for an active urban (or rural for that matter) lifestyle. Take it for a spin at your nearest PROTON showroom or head over to www.epicsaga.com.my to understand more about the Saga FLX!

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36 thoughts on “The Saga continues!

  1. Man the first car I drove is my dad’s Saga when I was 17. Not this one the first one. It looks a lot better now. :-)

    • Yeah, there’s definately a HUGE improvement compared to the previous Saga in terms of looks. :)

      I’m more interested in the CVT technology though, it’s quite interesting.

      Smooths the A/T out so you don’t get the signature drop of speed, which is more apparent if you tend to accelerate hard. ;)

    • Haha! Well, that’s what the guy at the place said too.

      I didn’t catch it at first, was wondering what he was on about, before I saw the banner. :)

    • I can’t afford to buy a new car since I’m getting a new place this year. T_T

      There’s a lot of commitment in buying a new condo so I’ll just have to drive my old car. :)

  2. the CVT thing is cool, i drive a conventional auto too.. it’s bad during overtaking, coz the engine losses its power when you’re trying to accelerate :P

    • Yeah, I thought it was really cool too.

      I drive a conventional auto as well and the way I drive (which is not recommended, coz I tend to push the car) makes it obvious – that classic loss of power when you accelerate hard.

      Gotta love CVT! :)

  3. A. CVT is not new, Mitsubishi had it for a while now.

    B. I will never touch a Proton again, not even if you pay me. My brand new Proton died after 4 years and 1 month. The new part cost more than the car.

    C. Proton service department are bunch of dickheads and over charging rip off artist.

    D. I now drive a 4 year old Corolla which cost me next to nothing and it’s bloody nice.

    E. Fuck you Proton

    • Yeah, but CVT at this price point is pretty good. I’ve never seen CVT in RM 40,000+ cars.

      Sorry to hear about your bad experience, but then again car maintanence is generally quite expensive for most cars.

      I guess it’s differs for everyone, I know people who loves their Protons. It’s the first car for many people.

      I still think it’s pretty cool to have the technology at this price. :)

    • Who made the gear box? if it’s imported, dont buy it. because proton will not have the parts.

      >car maintanence is generally quite expensive for most cars.

      Dude, most cars, the parts do not cost more than the car.

      Actually I dont know any car where the parts cost more than the car.

      Why does a Proton gear box cost RM30,000? That is the official price rom a proton service centre.

      A four year old proton will not be worth 30,000.

      • Hmm…I’ve had 10k car repairs before (my own after a horrible accident) but I’m not sure how much parts for Proton costs.

        Interesting, that 30k bit, will ask about it. :)

      • I didnt belive it also, 30k for a gear box. Then I go to the proton car owner online forum. 30k is minimum, some people quoted 35k, WTF.

        My Proton now sits at the side of the road collecting dust.

        Was looking at the Toyota web site 113k for a new Corolla. Malaysia Boleh, right.

  4. I really feel like getting a new car but my old ones are still ok and I do not need to replace them – can save my money for other things. Well, if I should get a new one, it definitely will be a Proton. Right now, I’ve a 1st generation Proton Saga and a 1st generation Proton Wira. Loyal Proton supporter all the way. :)

    • Heh! Yeah, I know you’re a loyal Proton supporter!

      I’ve swung by your house a couple of times – one of my good friends is your neighbor, opposite where you live in Sibu. :)

  5. cvt isnt exactly a very new thing. alot of honda cars have already changed to this system. a system particularly favoured by japanese manufacturers.

    • Yup, it’s sure good to see CVT in a car priced at this point!

      It’s usually found in much more expensive models. :)

  6. What is new here? DAF have had the Variomatic (CVT) system for more than 50 years. Cars using CVT have been used by DAF on cars that I remember from at least 1970-1980. Volvo used it in their 400 series since late eighties.

    • Well, those are in cars which most people don’t have the means to drive. Not everyone can afford (or wants for that matter) a Volvo.

      However, it’s great to see it in a car that everyone can afford. :)

  7. Nice ~

    I just notice they upgraded their FL to FLX for all the models . How about the 1.6 executive model ? But that only comes with white and auto . No manual :(

    • Hello Ian! :)

      Oh, you like driving manual cars? I used to have a manual car but I find that driving in the city (with all the jams, stop and start traffic) makes it very annoying.

      …so now I drive an automatic car. It’s more practical for me. :)

      • I prefer manuals as you can take control of the car . But when driving uphill / in jams it’s definitely better to drive an Auto .

        The big difference in Auto/Manual is for manual after you stop pressing the pedal the car will stop going but for auto you still get moving .

        I crashed once as I estimated wrongly the distances as it kept moving instead of slowing down .

        • Heh! Yeah, I know some people prefer driving manuals coz they like the experience of driving a car. :)

          Ya, I know what you mean about the pedal thing, I drive a manual when I go back to my hometown too, so the change can be quite disconcerting.

    • Hello Eiling! :D

      Yeah, it’s very affordable but I can’t buy a new car anytime soon with the cost of moving and so on. :)

  8. Read the Saga manual book Proton says ‘Life-time warranty for power window’.

    Why not offer the entire car itself Life-time warranty?

    Proton should give Life-time warranty plus Life-time Free Service (parts and labour). That’s how Proton treat the customer back after donkey years ripping us off giving crap quality cars at extortionate price.

    Not only that, the extortionate car price regime here means you’re being cheated twice. Eg.After paying the odds for the OTR car price which include the bloodsucking hidden car duties, it’s all factored inside your car loans repayment which ends up the entire price of the car till full repayment easily twice of the car price while lucky if your car residue/resale value retains 30 percent value.

    Got it? Unfair car duties itself being factored again in your car loans (double taxation). The fact that the banks now slowly discarding the discriminatory act of charging higher interest rates over national vs non-national still a piecemeal but nevertheless a good move for car buyers. It’s ridiculous for banks to practice it and justify it by profile up certain people as high risk of defaulting. Come one, what if a rich baron buys a Proton for his nanny would the bank simply charge lower interest rate? Now what if otherwise the nanny wanna buy a Toyota, then the bank revert the interest rate again lah.

    This whole car industry is full of madness and targeting wrong folks of people – those needs the car and those that treat car as toys. Necessity vs Luxury. But looks like govt punish the low-income folks more than they can charge the heaven for the rich that buy luxury cars.

    The average median of car ownership in Malaysia is sub RM50K market and it’s an insult to hardworking honest folks that their choice is limited except overpriced, crap quality cars with less or even zero car safety equipments as standard accesories let alone a fuel efficient engine.

    The car duties itself very rigid to using solely on engine capacity to determine duty rate. Crock of shit. The world standard now is charging car taxes based on CO2 emission (CO2 gram / km) and fuel efficiency (KM travelled per litre or KM/L). Here we’re charged on ancient engine technology like Proton while clean, efficient cars are unfairly made luxury.

    Look how govt charged the hybrid cars at zero duties simply based on their perceived efficiency. Well how about other small cars that is equally efficient, should they deserve better or low car duties to encourage people to buy it and conserve fuel consumption?

    All of these madness must be stopped and it starts from stop buying Proton that caused it all from day one. It affect the young generation as big fat portion of income wasted on cars alone when it should not and spend it wisely elsewhere eg.a house, condo.

    You and the rest of folks here must gang up to teach this fucking leech a lesson. When the buying stops, the cheating stops too!

    • Well, a lot of your comments are based on government and bank policies.

      It’s not a perfect system, granted, but they are doing some things right. Hybrid cars…going green is exempt from a lot of taxes, even in California. :)

  9. Proton saga is my first car and I am still driving it now after about 3 years. It’s working fine , dependable and the service centre is great! The only downfall is the engine makes a lot of noises..Overall, I am quite happy with my Saga!

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