KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 27): Perusahaan Otomobil Nasional Sdn Bhd (Proton) has rolled off the production lines in Karachi, which is operated by its partner Al-Haj Automotive, the exclusive distributor of Proton models in Pakistan.
The first model to roll off the production line at the Al-Haj Automotive assembly plant is the Saga, which will then be followed by the X70 with a potential roll-out time of December 2021.
Proton, in a statement, said the Proton Saga, which started rolling off production lines in the country on Oct 13, was presented during a ceremony graced by President of Pakistan Dr Arif Alvi.
The Saga is the first Proton model to be assembled by Al-Haj Automotive at its new green field production plant in Karachi that was built at a cost of US$20 million.
Speaking during the ceremony, the president of Pakistan said with an initial annual capacity of 25,000 units, the potential sales volume of the Pakistan market makes it a critical part of Proton's plan to grow exports in the future.
Hilal Khan Alfridi, chief executive officer of Al-Haj Automotive, said: "The successful assembly of the Proton Saga in Pakistan is the culmination of the hard work and untiring efforts of Proton, the entire Al-Haj team, its suppliers, and vendors."
Meanwhile, Proton said Proton X70 will be the second model assembled in Pakistan as final shipment of the final batch of 154 CBU units of the Proton X70 was sent to the country on Oct 17.
Launched in December 2020, it said the The C-segment SUV grabbed headlines in Pakistan, thanks to its combination of design, technology, and safety.
Prior to local assembly starting, the final batch of 154 units of the Proton X70 was shipped to Pakistan on Oct 17, bringing the total number of CBU units exported to the country to 602.
Meanwhile, Proton Edar chief executive officer Roslan Abdullah said: "Al-Haj has received 2,500 orders for the Saga and over 2,000 orders for the X70, so we want to thank our customers for their belief in our products, as well as their patience and understanding during the delivery delays.
"We can finally work to catch up to market demand now that the final shipment of CBU units is on its way and local assembly for the Saga has begun, with the X70 expected to roll off the manufacturing line before the end of the year," he said.