Making its grand debut at the Definitive Agreement signing between Proton and Geely is the Geely Boyue, albeit in left-hand drive form. What you’re seeing is the mass market version of Geely’s most popular model, which will be the basis for Proton’s next big project.
Proton and new Foreign Strategic Partner (FSP) Geely have confirmed that the Boyue will be the first Proton model to be conceived as a result of this partnership. Presently, both Proton and Perodua have not a single SUV on sale – the latter since the days of the Kembara/Nautica.
The Geely Boyue is a midsize SUV, taking on the likes of Mazda CX-5 and Honda CR-V. In China, it’s offered with a 2.4-litre naturally aspirated four-cylinder engine producing 162 hp and 210 Nm of torque. It can also be had with a 1.8-litre turbocharged four-cylinder making no less than 163 hp and 250 Nm of torque. Two transmissions – six-speed manual or six-speed dual clutch auto – can be had. For now, no details as to which we will be receiving.
In its highest trim, the Boyue gets keyless entry with push-start button, full LCD instrument cluster, leather wrapped seats, adaptive cruise control, 8-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay, Eco and Sport drive modes, hill descent control, dual-zone automatic climate control and electronic handbrake.
In China alone, Geely sold a grand total of 109,000 units of the Boyue in the whole of 2016, but the numbers have surged to 103,000 units this year alone, between January and May. Since all Geely models are left-hand drive, the new partnership will see Proton become the right-hand drive hub for the Chinese giant in the ASEAN region.
Interesting times lie ahead, for sure.