Proton Saga (third generation)

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Proton Saga
Third generation
(BT, Mk4)
2016 Proton Saga (BT, Mk4) Premium 4-door sedan (01) (30333943901).jpg
Overview
ManufacturerProton
Also calledProton P2-13A
ProductionSeptember 2016–present
AssemblyMalaysia: Shah Alam (PONSB)
DesignerAzlan Othman
Body and chassis
ClassSubcompact car (A)
Body style4-door saloon
LayoutFront-engine, front-wheel drive
Powertrain
Engine1.3 L VVT S4PE DOHC I4
Transmission5-speed manual
CVT automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase2,465 mm (97.0 in)
Length4,331 mm (170.5 in)
Width1,689 mm (66.5 in)
Height1,491 mm (58.7 in)
Kerb weight1,035–1,075 kg (2,282–2,370 lb)
Chronology
PredecessorProton Saga
(second generation)

The third generation Proton Saga, codenamed P2-13A is an A-segment saloon engineered by Malaysian automobile manufacturer Proton. It was launched on 28 September 2016 as the successor to the second generation Proton Saga.

The third generation Saga is based on the outgoing Saga FLX platform, and is powered by the Iriz's 1.3-litre VVT engine. Proton has completely re-engineered the exterior design of the new Saga. Its interior has been revamped and refined with an emphasis on NVH reduction.

The third generation Saga is positioned as Proton's entry-level sedan, below the larger B-segment Persona. Safety standards have been improved with the introduction of electronic stability control (ESC) and a 20% stronger body structure. ASEAN NCAP has awarded a 4-star safety rating for the new Saga.

History[edit]

Post-launch[edit]

The third generation Proton Saga.

The third generation Proton Saga was officially launched on 28 September 2016 at Setia City Convention Centre in Shah Alam, Malaysia.[1][2] The launch event was covered in an exclusive live broadcast by paultan.org, and was endorsed by Khairy Jamaluddin on behalf of the Ministry of Youth and Sports.[3]

The third generation Saga is the latest Proton model to use an existing nameplate, and directly replaces the second generation Saga which was produced from early 2008 to late 2016. The new Saga launched approximately one month after the new Persona, its larger and more sophisticated sibling.

The third generation Saga is based on Saga FLX platform, its predecessor but the exterior and interior design has been completely re-engineered.[4] The new Saga is powered by the Iriz's 1.3-litre VVT engine and CVT combination, both of which have been further refined for improved fuel efficiency, reduced NVH and a smoother driving experience.[5]

At launch, four variants of the new Saga were made available, namely the Standard MT, Standard CVT, Executive CVT and Premium CVT.[1] The various trim levels differ mainly in terms of kit, cosmetic enhancements and safety features, but are otherwise mechanically identical.

Twin airbags are standard across the range, but ABS is not available on the entry-level Standard, and ESC is reserved for the range-topping Premium.[6] ASEAN NCAP has awarded a four-star rating for all variants of the new Saga.[7] Prices range from RM36,800 to RM45,800 respectively.[1]

As of 17 October 2016, Proton has received 6,000 bookings for the new Saga, of which 1,000 have been delivered.[8] Proton is targeting sales of 5,000 units a month.

Proton has announced plans to export the third generation Saga to right-hand drive ASEAN markets, as well as Chile.[1][9] Production for export markets will commence in early 2017.

Design[edit]

The new third generation Saga continues to utilise the second generation Saga platform, which underpinned the previous BLM, FL and FLX models between 2008 and 2016.[10] The second generation Saga is in turn based on an extended Proton Savvy platform, dating back to 2005. The model or platform code 'BT', which Proton has assigned to the third generation Saga is similarly used for all second generation Saga variants, in addition to the Savvy. Nonetheless, in the latest 2016 platform revision, Proton has extended both front and rear overhangs and re-engineered the entire body structure to warrant a generational leap.[11] The interior has also been revamped, with a focus on increased refinement as well as tactile or perceived quality.[11]

The third generation Saga was developed at a cost of RM150 million.[10] Proton aims to break-even in 3 years with a monthly sales target of 5,000 units.[10] The company has kept development costs relatively low by recycling as much as 60% of parts and components from the outgoing Saga, and by borrowing some equipment from other Proton models.[11] Proton has announced that an all-new, fourth generation Saga will launch in 2021, as the company intends to maintain a shorter 5-year product cycle with their best-selling Saga nameplate.[11]

Exterior[edit]

The exterior of the third generation Saga is all-new.

The third generation Proton Saga measures 4,331 mm long, 1,689 mm wide and 1,491 mm tall.[5] The wheelbase length at 2,465 mm has remained unchanged since the Saga BLM, but both front and rear overhangs have been extended by 44mm and 30mm respectively. The boot volume is rated at 420 litres, 7 litres larger than the outgoing model.[5] The third generation Saga is approximately 74mm longer, 9mm wider and 11mm shorter than the Saga BLM and 53mm longer, 9mm wider and 29mm shorter than the Saga FL and Saga FLX family.

Despite the fact that the third generation Saga is all-round larger than its second generation siblings, it is marketed as an A-segment or A+-segment sedan. In contrast, the second generation Saga was classified as a B-segment model throughout its life cycle. The disparity in size and classification is the result of Proton's revised marketing strategy which aims to prevent product overlapping and sales cannibalisation.[12] The Saga has ceded the B-segment sedan bracket to the new Proton Persona, and would no longer offer a 1.6-litre engine option. Nonetheless, the Saga will continue on sale as Proton's most affordable sedan, a distinction which it has held for over 31 years.

The third generation Saga shares its platform with the outgoing generation, but its 'top hat' or body in white (BIW) is all-new as the result of extensive re-engineering during its development process.[4] With the exception of the wing mirror housings, all other exterior body panels are new and unique to the third generation Saga. The new Saga has a sleeker external profile, and its drag coefficient has been reduced to 0.33 Cd.[5] Proton's three new 2016 sedans, namely the Perdana, Persona and Saga were all designed concurrently, resulting in a strong family resemblance.[4] The new Saga features halogen reflector headlamps like its predecessors, but its rear lamps have reverted to more conventional bulb-based lighting as opposed to LEDs, to cut costs and pricing.[1] However, all new Saga variants get a rear fog light as standard and Proton lettering inserts for both front and rear lamps.[13] The new Saga is also the third model to feature Proton's new sculptured, three-dimensional badge.

The various cosmetic enhancements in the new Saga are preset according to their respective trim levels. The door handles are matte black on the Standard variants, but are painted in the body colour in the Executive and Premium lines.[6] The wing mirror housings are also matte in the Standard, but are body coloured in the Executive and Premium. The wing mirrors do not incorporate a power-folding feature, but are nonetheless power-adjustable in the Executive and Premium.[6] The B-pillars are body colour coded in the Standard, but are blacked out in the Executive and Premium. The rear garnish is matte black in the Standard, body coloured in the Executive, and chrome plated in the Premium.[6] A rear bootlid lip spoiler is only fitted on the Executive and Premium lines.

The Standard is equipped with 13-inch steel rims and hubcaps carried over from the second generation Saga.[6] Both Executive and Premium variants feature new alloy wheels. Proton has fitted their 14-inch 'snowflake' Y-spoke rims on the Executive, and 15-inch 'turbine' split-spoke rims on the Premium.[6] Front fog lights are only available on the Executive and Premium lines.[6] The new Saga is produced in six colours, namely Fire Red, Cotton White, Topaz Blue, Sterling Silver, Midnight Black, and Metal Grey.[2]

Interior[edit]

The interior of the third generation Saga has been revamped and updated in line with Proton's current design language and technical capabilities. Nonetheless, the mounting points for the dashboard, vents, seats and other key modules in the cabin remained largely unchanged as a result of the platform carryover.[11] The interior of the new Saga consists of all-new parts and components, as well as borrowed ones, with only minimal carryovers from the outgoing generation.[14] Proton had also invested considerably in solutions to reduce transmissions of noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) into the cabin, in an effort to create a more mature and refined Saga.[15]

The cabin of the third generation Saga incorporates several major changes and additions. All door cards and dashboard panels are new, and feature faux-stitching texture in some areas.[14] The centre console, air-con vents, glove box, seats, gear lever enclosure and instrument binnacle have also been redesigned.[5] The revised interior door handles have been moved slightly forwards and upwards.[14] Proton has also fitted a new single-DIN head unit on the Standard and Executive variants.[5] The central tunnel cover has been revised and all variants now feature twin USB charging ports behind the handbrake, along with a storage compartment to store the device that is being charged.[14] The push-button controls on the centre console are also new.

Several interior parts and components in the new Saga were borrowed from other Proton models in an effort to increase economies of scale and reduce costs and pricing. These include the steering wheel, CVT gear lever and driver's power window controls on all variants, as well as the Premium-exclusive double-DIN head unit and integrated rear view mirror display.[5] The notable carryovers from the second generation Saga include the air-con controls, handbrake lever and manual gear knob.[14] The driver's instrument cluster is largely unchanged, but the meter graphics have been updated, and the HUD now includes Proton's ECO Drive Assist system, an indicator which lights up in green when the car is being driven in an economical manner.[14]

At the back, legroom has improved slightly courtesy of the scalloped front seat back design.[5] The rear bench is less reclined than before, and can be fully folded in all variants for increased storage space. However, the rear bench does not split-fold, and the aperture is limited as a consequence of the old platform design.[5] Proton has also improved how the front and rear doors open and close, to increase tactile or perceived quality. The doors now require less effort to operate, and offer a more reassuring or 'solid' feel in comparison to older Proton models.[4]

All variants of the new Saga are fitted with all-round power windows and central locking.[6] Additionally, the steering wheel is tilt-adjustable, while the driver's seat can be adjusted for height. The interior of the new Saga is all-black with the exception of the roof padding, sun visors and pillar covers.[6] There are ten storage compartments, two cup holders and four bottle holders in total.[2]

Proton has specified fabric seat upholstery for all variants of the new Saga.[6] The seats have a mesh pattern in the Executive and a wavy design on the Premium, but are plain black in the Standard. The Executive model receives glossy grey accents on the outer air-con vents and steering wheel, while the Premium adds on more glossy grey finishing on the gear lever.[6]

Two different head units are offered in the new Saga. The Standard and Executive variants are equipped with a new single-DIN head unit, while the Premium model gets a larger double-DIN head unit paired to steering wheel audio switches.[6] Both head units have radio, Bluetooth, USB, AUX and CD/MP3 playback.[6] Audio is channelled to twin front and rear speakers in the Executive and Premium lines, and twin rear speakers in the Standard.[2] The Premium model is equipped with a reverse camera that is linked to a LCD display which is built into the rear view mirror.[6] Twin rear USB charging ports are standard on all variants.[6]

Safety[edit]

Safety features [N 1][6]
Variant Standard Executive Premium
Market Malaysia Malaysia Brunei Malaysia Brunei
ABS + EBD + BA
HHA + TCS + ESC
Airbags 2
(front)

Safety standards in the third generation Saga have improved considerably over its predecessors.[7] The new Saga is the first in its lineage to offer electronic stability control (ESC) in its home market. Its body structure has also been strengthened and torsional rigidity has increased by 20%.[7] Handling and steering response have both improved with an emphasis on safety and ride comfort.[5]

However, overall safety specifications in the new Saga are not up to par with its larger siblings, the Iriz and Persona. The disparity is due to the Saga's continued reliance on an older platform, as well as pricing considerations with regards to its market positioning as Proton's entry-level product.

Active[edit]

The third generation Saga is the latest Proton model to feature the company's new Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) program. VDC is an active safety net which includes an anti-lock braking system (ABS) with electronic brakeforce distribution (EBD) and brake assist (BA), hill-hold assist (HHA), traction control (TCS) and electronic stability control (ESC).

The sole purpose of the VDC program is to prevent or minimise the risks of a potential accident. Up to ten computer systems monitor all four wheels in addition to the driver's steering, throttle and braking input, in real time.[16] Should the VDC system detect a loss of traction, an audible alarm is sounded to inform the driver, whilst the ESC and TCS components automatically apply braking or acceleration pressure and reduce engine speed to prevent oversteer or understeer, ensuring that the driver remains in control. Should the driver apply the brakes in an emergency, the ABS component prevents the wheels from locking up, while EBD assigns appropriate brake force to each wheel and BA increases braking pressure to bring the car to a safe and complete stop. The HHA component prevents the car from rolling backwards whilst on a hill, should the brake pedal be released.

Nonetheless, the VDC program is not standard fit across the Saga range. The entry-level Saga Standard does not offer any VDC components.[6] The mid-range Saga Executive adds on ABS, EBD and BA. The range-topping Saga Premium is the only variant to receive ESC, TCS and HHA.[6]

The brakes in the new Saga consist of ventilated discs at the front but drums at the back.[2] Proton has equipped 175/70R13 Silverstone Synergy M3 tyres on the Standard variants, 185/60R14 Silverstone Kruizer1 NS800 tyres on the Executive, and 185/55R15 Silverstone Kruizer1 NS800 tyres on the Premium respectively.[6] The new Saga has a kerb weight of between 1,035 kg and 1,075 kg depending on the variant.[2]

The suspension setup in the third generation Saga, like the FLX previously, consists of MacPherson struts with stabiliser bars at the front and torsion beam axles at the rear.[2] However, Proton has fitted new springs and dampers, as well as a new strut bar in the engine bay for improved handling and control.[5] Proton has also lowered the steering ratio to 16:1 from 20:1 previously, and reduced the steering effort to 2.75 kgf from 3.0 kgf.[5] The steering rack angle is now steeper and allows for a tighter turning radius of 5.1 m compared to 5.3 m previously.[5]

The third generation Saga continues to utilise a hydraulic power steering system, which offers more engaging steering feedback at the expense of lighter steering effort.[2] Front parking sensors are standard on all Saga variants.[6] The two front sensors, located just below the headlamps, complement the twin sensors on the rear bumper.

Passive[edit]

The body structure of the third generation Saga is now 20% stronger.

The third generation Saga features a stronger body structure than its second generation predecessors. Torsional rigidity has been increased to 12,000 Nm/deg from 10,000 Nm/deg previously.[17] The new Saga is fitted with a number of ultra high strength steel (UHSS) components at critical sections throughout its body structure to reinforce and protect the passenger compartment in the event of a collision.[17] The front and rear crumple zones have both increased courtesy of longer front and rear overhangs. However, Proton's new hot press forming (HPF) technology and the Reinforced Safety Structure are not offered in the third generation Saga.[17]

In addition to the UHSS reinforced body structure, Proton has also equipped twin front airbags for all variants of the new Saga.[7] Other passive safety features include two ISOFIX child seat mounts with top tethers, head restraints and five three-point seat belts, with pre-tensioning for front passengers and an audible driver's seat belt reminder.[2]

ASEAN NCAP has awarded a 4-star rating for all variants of the new Saga.[18] It is a marked improvement from the previous 3-star rating in the outgoing Saga SV, which was tested in January 2013.[7] The third generation Saga received 13.33 points out of the maximum 16 for Adult Occupant Protection (AOP), and a 71% compliance rating in the Child Occupant Protection category (COP).[7] In comparison, the old Saga SV model scored 10.23 AOP points and 48% COP compliance respectively.[7] The new Saga's rating fell short of the full 5-stars by a slim 0.67 AOP points, but ASEAN NCAP has nonetheless commended Proton for their efforts on re-engineering their ageing Saga platform to meet more stringent safety standards.[18]

Powertrain[edit]

Manufacturer's claims [2]
Engine 1.3 L VVT S4PE
Format I4 16V DOHC NA VVT
Total displacement (cc) 1,332
Bore x Stroke (mm x mm) 76.0 x 73.4
Maximum Output [hp(kW)/rpm] 94 (70) / 5,750
Maximum Torque (Nm/rpm) 120 / 4,000
Fuel tank capacity (litres) 30
Transmission 5MT CVT
Maximum Speed (km/h) 175 170
Acceleration 0–100 km/h (sec) 12.2 13.1

The third generation Saga is powered by Proton's 1.3-litre VVT S4PE engine, a naturally aspirated, four-cylinder, 16-valve DOHC petrol unit with variable valve timing.[2] The 1.3-litre VVT, the sole option in the new Saga, is capable of 94 hp at 5,750 rpm and 120 Nm at 4,000 rpm.[2] The new VVT engine is derived from the Proton Iriz, and replaces the old CamPro IAFM+ engine which powered the Saga FLX family.[5]

Although the new VVT engine outputs the same amount of power as the IAFM+ unit previously, it features a number of mechanical enhancements for reduced noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) and improved fuel efficiency.[5] In comparison to the old IAFM+, the new VVT engine has a new block, new pistons, new valves and a longer 10,000 km service interval. It also features variable valve timing in the cylinder head, making the third generation Saga the first in its lineage to offer VVT technology.[2] The engine now sits on a new three-mount configuration, as opposed to the four-mount arrangement in the outgoing Saga models as well as the Iriz.[5] The improved mounting configuration has considerably reduced transmissions of engine vibrations into the cabin.[5] Proton has also fitted a new strut bar in the engine bay, for improved driving dynamics.[5] The ECU has also been calibrated for a more linear throttle response.

All variants are powered by Proton's 94 hp, 1.3-litre VVT engine.

Like the Saga FLX family previously, the third generation Saga is paired to either a Getrag 5-speed manual or a Punch Powertrain VT2+ CVT.[2] However, Proton has enhanced the Punch CVT for a smoother drive, and in its latest iteration is claimed to be considerably more refined and responsive than the older CVT units in the Iriz and Saga FLX.[5] Acceleration has also improved, with the manual and CVT variants taking 12.2 and 13.1 seconds to reach 100 km/h from a standstill, both 0.8 and 1.4 seconds faster than the old Saga FLX.[5]

As a result of the various refinements made to the engine and transmission combination in the new Saga, Proton claims that fuel efficiency has improved by 10% to 5.4L/100 km with the manual, and by 11% to 5.6L/100 km with the CVT, both at a constant speed of 90 km/h.[5] The new Saga is the second Proton model to utilise the company's new ECO Drive Assist feature.[2] The system assesses the driver's throttle input, and a green indicator on the instrument cluster will light up when the car is being driven in an economical manner.[2]

The new Saga will not be offered with a larger 1.6-litre engine.[2] The decision was made in view of Proton's revised marketing strategy which aims to prevent product overlapping and sales cannibalisation.[12] The new Saga will only be sold with the 1.3-litre engine, and future Saga models will receive economy 1.0-litre and 1.2-litre engines instead.[19]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Legend

    Blue : Standard across all trim levels.
    Green : Available on selected trim level(s) only, full package.
    Yellow : Available on selected trim level(s) only, but is not the full package.
    Red : Not available on selected trim level(s), or is the no-frills package.

Awards and accolades[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Jonathan Lee (28 September 2016). "2016 Proton Saga 1.3L launched – RM37k to RM46k". Driven Communications. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q Chips Yap (28 September 2016). "The all-new Proton Saga Generation 3 is launched". motortrader.com.my. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  3. ^ Danny Tan (27 September 2016). "2016 Proton Saga – watch the launch live from 2:45pm onwards, exclusively on paultan.org". Driven Communications. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  4. ^ a b c d Jonathan Lee (28 September 2016). "VIDEO: 2016 Proton Saga 1.3L walk-around tour". Driven Communications. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u Gerard Lye (24 September 2016). "DRIVEN: 2016 Proton Saga first impressions review – meet the true challenger to the Perodua Bezza". Driven Communications. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t Mick Chan (29 September 2016). "GALLERY: New Proton Saga spec-by-spec comparison". Driven Communications. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g Gerard Lye (28 September 2016). "2016 Proton Saga four-star ASEAN NCAP body cutout". Driven Communications. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  8. ^ Gerard Lye (17 October 2016). "Proton Saga bookings reach 6,000 units, 1,000 delivered; Persona hits 15,000 units, 4,500 delivered". Driven Communications. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  9. ^ "Chile mulls using Proton Saga cars as taxis". themalaymailonline.com / Bernama. 11 September 2016. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  10. ^ a b c Danny Tan (28 September 2016). "2016 Proton Saga development cost RM150m – break-even in three years with 5k per month volume". Driven Communications. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  11. ^ a b c d e Chips Yap (24 September 2016). "First details and pics of the all-new Proton Saga + driving impressions". motortrader.com.my. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  12. ^ a b Gerard Lye (15 August 2016). "Proton Preve, Exora to get 1.6 Turbo engines only; CPS and IAFM+ replaced by VVT in new Persona, Saga". Driven Communications. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  13. ^ Gerard Lye (24 September 2016). "2016 Proton Saga details – 1.3 VVT, pricing between RM37k to RM46k; variant-by-variant specs detailed". Driven Communications. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  14. ^ a b c d e f A.O. (5 October 2016). "Proton Saga 2016 VS Saga FLX: 15 Perincian Interior Yang Perlu Anda Tahu" (in Malay). pandulaju.com.my. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  15. ^ Mick Chan (4 October 2016). "VIDEO: 2016 Proton Saga improved in NVH stakes". Driven Communications. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  16. ^ Muhammed Ahmad (23 August 2014). "Electrifying Proton". New Straits Times. Archived from the original on 5 September 2016. Retrieved 5 September 2016.
  17. ^ a b c Izwaashura Sadali (28 September 2016). "Proton Saga 2016 dengan penarafan 4-bintang dari ASEAN NCAP didedahkan keratan rentasnya" (in Malay). Driven Communications. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  18. ^ a b "PROTON SAGA (2016)". ASEAN NCAP. 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  19. ^ Jonathan Lee (18 January 2016). "Next Proton Saga to move to A-segment, may use 1.0L and 1.2L VVT 3-cylinder engines; 1.0L turbo possible". Driven Communications. Archived from the original on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  20. ^ "Asean NCAP awards for Proton, Perodua, Toyota". the Sun daily. 2018-11-26. Archived from the original on 2018-11-26.
  21. ^ "Proton wins value-for-money, most improved fuel efficiency awards". New Straits Times. 2018-11-27. Archived from the original on 2018-06-17.
  22. ^ "DSF.my and Allianz Malaysia Berhad Salute the best vehicles in Malaysia". DS&F. Archived from the original on 2018-11-27. Retrieved 2018-11-27.
  23. ^ "AURIZN AWARDS 2018". EVOMALAYSIA.COM. Archived from the original on 2018-11-27. Retrieved 2018-11-27.
  24. ^ "The people have spoken! Here are the Malaysian's most favourite car models as voted across all the categories". Carlist.my. Archived from the original on 2018-11-25. Retrieved 2018-11-25.

External links[edit]