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Proton Suprima S

The Proton Suprima S, codenamed P3-22A is a five-door compact hatchback engineered by Malaysian automobile manufacturer Proton. It was released on 17 August 2013 and is based on Proton's next generation P2 platform. The Suprima S complements the Proton Prevé saloonand has been designed with larger emphasis on international markets.
The name Suprima has its roots in the English word, Supreme. The S suffix stands for Sports.
Manufacturer
Proton
Also called
Proton P3-22A
Production
Mid 2013 – present
Model years
2013 – present
Assembly
Tanjung Malim, Perak, Malaysia
Class
Compact car / C-segment
Body style
5-door hatchback
Layout
Front-engine, front-wheel drive
Platform
Proton P2
Engine
1.6L CamPro Turbo I4
Transmission
7-speed CVT manumatic
Wheelbase
2,650 mm (104.3 in)
Length
4,436 mm (174.6 in)
Width
1,786 mm (70.3 in)
Height
1,524 mm (60.0 in)
Curb weight
1,375–1,395 kg (3,030–3,080 lb)
Related
Proton Prevé
Designer(s)
Italdesign Giugiaro S.p.A
Azlan Othman

History

Pre-launch

Proton P3-22A prototype with camouflage taping
The Proton P3-22A has been in development alongside its sister car, the Proton Prevé, then code named Proton P3-21A since 2009. The first spyshot of a P3-22A prototype, taken on 14 December 2012 received high publicity from local online media. Although heavily masked, the prototype revealed that the majority of exterior panels and features with the exception of the area to the rear of the C-pillar have been carried over from the Prevé. 8 days later, another different prototype was sighted, revealing larger seven-spoke alloy rims, compared to the 16-inch ten-spoke alloy rims of the Prevé. Multiple P3-22A prototypes have since been spotted on Malaysian highways, all of which wore masking or camouflage tape. On the 4th of July, more spyshots went viral online and clearly showcased new features not offered in its sedan counterpart such as front parking sensors, additional interior speakers and a new dark blue paint colour option. The most revealing of all spyshots were taken on 30 July 2013 during the P3-22A's television commercial (TVC) shooting in the heart of Kuala Lumpur. In addition to the fully redesigned rear and aforementioned features, the photos clearly displayed a revised honeycomb front grille and foglight housings, brighter LED DRLs and a reverse camera. A couple of days later, a trailer was caught transporting several P3-22A production units, hinting at an imminent August 2013 launch.
On 14 August 2013, a spyshot of a P3-22A test drive unit confirmed the final product name, Proton Suprima S along with its tagline, Fully-loaded with built-in value. Proton had previously filedProton Suprima for trademark status under the Intellectual Property Corporation of Malaysia (MyIPO) in January 2013. Proton Suprima was initially speculated to be the product name of theProton Perdana Replacement Model, the company's upcoming D-segment luxury saloon. The full brochure of the Proton Suprima S was leaked online on 15 August 2013, approximately 2 days before its scheduled launch.

Post-launch

The Proton Suprima S was finally unveiled on 17 August 2013 at two locations in Kuala Lumpur, the first being the VIP launch at the Matrade Exhibition & Convention Centre which was endorsed by the founder of Proton, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, and the second being the public launch at Pavilion KL. The VIP launch was covered in an exclusive live stream on YouTube by the popular Malaysian automotive news portal, paultan.org.
The Suprima S shares a large majority of its body panels and parts with the Prevé saloon, its sister car which launched approximately 16 months prior, on 16 April 2012. The Suprima comes in a choice of five colours and two trim variants, the Executive and Premium trims respectively. Both variants are powered by Proton's 1.6L CamPro Turbo engine, paired to a seven-speed ProTronic CVT, Proton's version of a manumatic transmission. All Suprimas come standard with 6 SRS airbags, an Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist (BA), Traction Control (TCS) and Electronic Stability Control (ESC). Also standard is the Proton Infotainment System, an advanced Android OS-powered 7" LCDtouchscreen GPS head unit with DVD, Bluetooth, USB, iPod & 4G WiFi compatibility. The Premium trim is equipped with exclusive kit such as Anthracite-shade leather seats, two tweeter speakers, front parking sensors, a reverse camera and brighter LED daytime running lamps (DRLs) in addition to features previously offered in the Prevé's Premium trim, namely the steering-mounted paddle shifters, automatic headlights and wipers, climate control, cruise control and push-start engine ignition. The Suprima S is priced between RM76,338 and RM79,988 respectively.
The Proton Suprima S has a confirmed November or December 2013 launch in Australia, in addition to a planned Q4 2013/Q1 2014 launch in the United Kingdom, Thailand, Brunei,Indonesia, Turkey and South Africa. Due to the market circumstances, Malaysia will not be the lead market of the Suprima, as Proton only targets sales of just 750 units per month here. The Suprima has thus been primed for export where the majority of its sales will be derived from. Furthermore, a six-speed manual transmission variant and a performance oriented edition of the Suprima S have been confirmed by Proton's Deputy CEO.

Design

Exterior

The Proton Suprima S lends largely and improves upon the design cues first seen on its sister car, the Proton Prevé which launched 16 months prior, on 16 April 2012. Apart from the fully redesigned rear, the Suprima is almost identical to the Prevé in terms of its exterior design, bar the new diamond-cut seven-spoke alloy rims (17" and 16" on the Premium and Executive trims respectively), revised Proton Wings front grille, front air intake and foglight inserts. The Suprima was designed with more emphasis on sportiness in an effort to appeal to a younger audience.
Proton had previously collaborated with Italy-based Italdesign Giugiaro S.p.A for the styling and likeness of the Prevé, which ultimately trickled down into the Suprima as well. The Prevé and to an extent, the Suprima was developed by an international consortium consisting of experts from Malaysia, Italy, France, Germany and South Korea. Additionally, several components of the car are also sourced from Japan, South Korea, Australia and Europe.
The Suprima is the second Malaysian-made car to be factory-fitted with LED position lamps and the first to be offered with true LED daytime running lamps (DRL). The LED lights built into the projector headlights on the Suprima Executive trim are identical to those of the Prevé, whereas those on the Suprima Premium variant are true LED daytime running lights and are of a higher standard. The LED DRLs improve the visual appeal of the Suprima, but more importantly help in improving road safety by increasing the conspicuity of the car during daylight conditions. There are no regulations in Malaysia regarding DRL usage, but they are compulsory for all passenger cars marketed in European Union member states as of 7 February 2011 under the EU Directive 2008/89/EC. The Suprima also features a rear fog lamp mounted centrally on the rear diffuser, bringing the car up to ECE R38 compliance. Rear fog lamps are not normally offered in South East Asian made and marketed cars, but they are mandatory equipment in most European and East Asian made and marketed vehicles. Additionally, the rear lights on the Suprima feature built-in LED guide lights, another first for Proton. The side view mirrors which sport built-in LED turn signal lights have remained physically unchanged over the Prevé's. However, both mirrors now fold and unfold automatically in the Premium trim, whereas in the Executive line, manual user input is required, though both mirrors are still fully electric in nature.

Interior

The driver's perspective in the Proton Suprima S
The Proton Infotainment System offered in the Proton Suprima S
The interior of the Suprima has remained largely unchanged when compared to the Prevé's. Nonetheless, several improvements were made which contributed to an overall increase in the Suprima's visual and ergonomic appeal. The new Proton Infotainment System, equipped standard in all Suprimas is an advanced Android OS-powered 7" LCD touchscreen head unit which doubles as a GPS/SatNav system, DVD player and in-car web browser. The system also hasBluetooth, USB, iPod and WiFi compatibility. However, the user can only browse the internet, access YouTube, watch DVDs and play Android-based games when the handbrake is engaged, as a safety precaution. Audio output is channelled to four speakers in the Executive trim, but the Premium trim offers an additional two A-pillar mounted tweeters, bringing the grand total up to six speakers. The whole system is connected to the internet over a LTE network under an agreement between Proton and the Malaysian ISP, Yes 4G. A WiFi dongle provided with the Suprima is used to set up a Wireless Local Area Network (WLAN) within the car itself, thus offering on-the-go broadband with coverage in all major Malaysian cities and towns as well as across the Malaysian Expressway System, with download speeds of up to 20Mbit/s. However, the broadband services may cease if the car is driven into areas without Yes 4G coverage, or into neighbouring Singapore or Thailand. Nonetheless, Proton has made up for this with the ability to divert or bridge an internet connection using a smartphone or another portable hotspot instead. Furthermore, the built-in GPS system does not require an internet connection to function, as it operates independently over Telekom Malaysia's Lokatoo service. The Suprima is the third Proton car to offer internet based services, the first being a limited edition of the Proton Inspira, and the second being its sister car, the Prevé.
The Premium variant of the Suprima comes with exclusive interior kit not offered in the Executive trim, in particular the Anthracite-shade leather seats, front parking sensors and a built-in reverse camera. It also receives several features previously offered in the Prevé's Premium trim, namely the steering-mounted paddle shifters, automatic headlights and wipers, climate control, cruise control and push-start engine ignition.

Safety

Safety features
Trim Variant
Executive
Premium
Market
 Malaysia
Malaysia 
ABS with EBD
BA, TCS and ESC
Airbags
6
  • Australia / New Zealand - ANCAP - 5/5 stars
  • United Kingdom - MIRA - 5/5 stars
  • Malaysia - MyVAP - 5/5 stars
The Suprima S became the second Proton car after the Prevé to claim the full 5-star safety rating of the Australasian New Car Assessment Program(ANCAP) of Australia and New Zealand. The Suprima has not been officially crash tested by the ANCAP, but it has been thoroughly crash tested and assessed by the MIRA of the United Kingdom, an independent organisation which is recognised by the ANCAP. The Malaysian Vehicle Assessment Programme (MyVAP) of the Malaysian Institute of Road Safety (MIROS) had previously rated the Malaysian Domestic Market (MDM) Prevé five stars, but has yet to officially assess the Suprima. However, the Suprima offers curtain airbags on top of all the safety equipment previously offered in the MDM Prevé, effectively making the Suprima safer than its sister car and thus deserving of the five star rating as well.
Like the Prevé, the Suprima S has also been developed to house a maximum of 6 SRS airbags, an Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD)Brake Assist (BA)Traction Control (TCS) and Electronic Stability Control (ESC). However, unlike the Prevé, all Suprima units come standard with all of its engineered safety features in the Malaysian Domestic Market (MDM), whereas the MDM Prevé Premium trim is only offered with a maximum of 4 airbags with all electronic safety equipment, and the MDM Prevé Executive trim models are only fitted with 2 airbags without BA, TCS & ESC. Furthermore, the Suprima Premium variant offers front parking sensors, a reverse camera, Hill-Hold Assist, an Electronic Gear Shift Lock and brighter LED daytime running lights (DRL) which help contribute to an overall increase in safety standards.
Prior to the launch of the Suprima S and Prevé duo, Proton cars suffered from a poor safety reputation. The Proton Jumbuck infamously scored one star out of a potential five in its ANCAP test in 2009. Proton responded by raising safety standards significantly during the development of the Prevé and Suprima S. The REinforced Safety Structure (RESS) frame was developed specifically for the duo. Proton employs the use of Hot Press Forming (HPF), a process which was pioneered in Germany, during the Prevé's and Suprima's manufacturing stage. Twelve HPF components help in the reinforcement of the passenger compartment for improved occupant safety. The end result is an increased tensile strength and torsional body rigidity of 19,000 Nm/degree. The usage of HPF in the manufacturing process also helps in weight-saving, which translates into improved fuel efficiency, handling and performance. Proton is the only Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) in South East Asia to use Hot Press Forming in their manufacturing processes.
The Suprima S borrows most of its ride & handling attributes from the Prevé, which was tested in various weather and road conditions during its development phase such as ice & snow in Swedenas well as intense heat in Spain. The suspension system consists of MacPherson struts for the front and a multi-link with stabiliser bar for the rear. The suspension setup, which was a result of a retune on the Preve was wholly done in-house by the local Ride & Handling team, and was subsequently approved by Proton's British sister company, Lotus during a short joint-test with the vehicle testing team. Unlike the Prevé, the Suprima S displays a Lotus Ride & Handling badge on the bootlid, whereas in the former, no such badging is offered, but Proton Ride & Handling is nonetheless used in the Prevé's promotional media.

Powertrains

Manufacturer's claims
Engine
CamPro Turbo
Format
I4 DOHC 16V turbo
Total displacement (cc)
1,561
Bore x Stroke (mm x mm)
76.0 x 86.0
Maximum Output [hp(kW)/rpm]
138 (103) / 5,000
Maximum Torque (Nm/rpm)
205 / 2,000 ~ 4,000
Maximum Speed (km/h)
190 (CVT-MN)
Acceleration 0–100 km/h (sec)
9.9 (CVT-MN)
Fuel tank capacity (litres)
50
The Proton Suprima S is only offered with the 1.6 litre CamPro Turbo I4 petrol engine which has been indigenously designed by Proton andLotus. The CamPro Turbo was previously known as the CamPro CFE, in which CFE stood for Charged Fuel Efficiency. Proton opted to rename the engine in favour of clarity & conciseness. The CamPro Turbo incorporates a low-pressure intercooled turbocharger that delivers 138 horsepower (103 kW) at 5,000 rpm and 205 Nm of torque between 2,000 and 4,000 rpm. Proton claims the turbocharged 1.6 litre CamPro Turbo is equivalent to a naturally aspirated 2.0 litre engine, and it has also been designed to conform to Euro V emission standards. The CamPro Turbo in the Suprima is mated to the Belgian-made seven-speed Punch Powertrain VT3+ CVT, also known as ProTronic, Proton's version of a manumatic transmission. The VT3+ transmission has been refined and revised to offer a sportier and more spirited driving experience. The CamPro Turbo and VT3 CVT were first used in the 2011 Proton Exora Bold and 2012 Proton Prevé Premium respectively.

Reception

Malaysia

On 28 August 2013, the Proton Suprima S received its first comprehensive review from Hafriz Shah of the popular Malaysian automotive news portal, paultan.org. It was generally well-received, more so than its sister car, the Prevé which launched 16 months prior. Hafriz commended the looks, improved NVH properties and its value for money proposition. However, the author specifically singled out the refined VT3+ drivetrain as the Suprima's most improved-upon feature which, paired together with the already excellent ride & handling first seen in the Prevé, contributed to a sportier and more spirited driving experience, all without upsetting the balance between handling performance and driving comfort. Nonetheless, several aspects of the car were less well-received, including the slightly flawed head unit, disproportionate driving position, build quality and top-end refinement. In Hafriz's words, “Proton can now compete realistically without leaning too heavily on price advantage alone. It’s just up to you to believe that it can.” Daniel Wong from Live Life Drive echoed similar sentiments, but placed extra emphasis on the improved ride & handling and questionable quality control. In Daniel's words, “Engineering-wise, Proton should be proud of the Suprima S, it is a better car in most respects than the Prevé, I just wish they built them better.”

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Last updated on 6 September 2013 at 12:18.

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