Proton and government now undergoing research and development for green car technology which consists of reev, ev and proton hybrid car. Government now testing all the proton hybrid cars in putrajaya and give some feedback to proton for improvement on the hybrid performance, efficiency and reliability. A few charging station for plug in hybrid ev reev also located in putrajaya.
The government is ready to allocate RM120 million next year to Proton to undertake research and development for the development of a hybrid model before it can be commercialised mid-2014. International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said the allocation to develop a hybrid model was justified and relevant as the automotive industry was moving towards this positive direction. “The government allocated RM100 million this year for Proton to develop a hybrid and electric model and will consider an allocation of RM120 million next year for research and development. “All this depends on Budget 2013 which will be tabled by the Prime Minister tomorrow and on Proton meeting its key performance index target,” he said when replying to a supplementary question from Salleh Kalbi (Barisan Nasional-Silam). Salleh asked if the government was planning on a fixed allocation for research and development for the development of a hybrid or electric model. Mustapa said the automotive industry was vital to the nation as it provided employment to about 250,000 people. As such, it was justified for the government to set aside a fixed allocation, just like the United States and Japan, which has done so to develop hybrid models. Earlier, to a question from Azmin Ali (PKR-Gombak), Mustapa said Proton would spend RM500 million on green technology vehicle research and development. Azmin asked about Proton’s rationale in investing, via Frazer-Nash Research (FNR), to develop electric or hybrid vehicles and its implication and return on investments. Mustapa said Proton aimed for reasonable returns once electric vehicles and range extended electric vehicles are commercialised in two years.
“The automotive industry is undergoing challenging times with the need to reduce dependence on fossil fuel and carbon emission reduction to preserve the environment. Therefore, the need for automotive companies to explore green technology,” he said. He also said like many other car manufacturers, Proton was focused on moving towards producing environmentally friendly cars. “Proton has an equal chance. Competition in the automotive industry does not only evolve around product and design but also intellectual rights and green technology. Proton is currently collaborating with UK-based FNR which is known for its capability in developing its own intellectual patent in alternative and green technology. Mustapa said discussions with other automotive companies ended in a deadlock because of problems such as intellectual rights and high royalty. He said before Proton entered into research and development with FNR, Proton had no prior expertise in green technology vehicles. “After four years of collaboration with FNR, Proton now has 40 professionals and 30 semi-professionals in the field. The Proton Exora REEV was announced “The Most Energy Efficient Multi-Purpose Car-Prototype” at Britain’s Royal Automobile Club 2011 Future Car Challenge in November last year.