Barring a few creature comforts and safety additions, all Persona variants share the same 109 PS, 150 Nm 1.6-litre naturally-aspirated engine.
It's front-wheel wheel drive, and only the Standard variant gets a manual transmission option. Every other trim gets a CVT.
Q: What are the differences between trims?
Specs below the Executive trim get 2 speakers, urethane steering wheel and fabric seats. Pay slightly more and you get 4 speakers, semi-leather seat material and a reverse camera.
That said, the extra price of admission will not net you Apple CarPlay and Android Auto however.
In terms of safety, all variants get ISOFIX fittings, anti-lock braking system (ABS), electronic brake force distribution (EBD), brake assist (BA), electronic stability control (ESC), traction control (TC) and hill-hold assist (HHA) as standard.
Q: What kind of fuel economy can I expect?
During our review drives, we managed to eke out an average fuel consumption figure of 8.5-litres/100 km. Depending on conditions and driving styles, you can expect to drive around approximately 450km-500km on a full 40-litre tank.
Taking the past month's average price of RM 1.68 for RON 95, it would set you back around RM 58.80 to fill it up from close to empty.
Q: What about maintenance?
After the first oil change at 1,000 km, the Persona needs a service every 10,000 km or 6 months. Servicing the manual version is slightly cheaper than the automatic.
Meanwhile, here are the figures for keeping it on the road over a five-year period. If you need a breakdown, check out this article!
Q: I aim to start a family and also lug my work stuff around. Is it big enough?
Absolutely - the Persona is meant to be a family car anyway. It seats five and has a sizeable 510-litre boot.
That means it sits right in the middle of the Toyota Vios (506 litres) and Honda City (536 litres) in terms of boot space.
Bear in mind though that only the Executive and Premium variants gets the 60:40 split-folding rear seats, which are useful for hauling longer stuff.
Q: Last question...what else should I know?
Proton is good in the ride and handling department and it shows here - the Persona handles and is rather comfortable. The driving, on the other hand feels a bit jerky due to the unrefined Punch CVT.
This is where the Proton Saga excels. It's drives smoother (4-speed AT rather than a Punch CVT) and is a more comfortable car for daily driving.
Other than that, just be careful with the beige part of the two-tone interior. It stains easily, and it could be a little hard to clean.
With humble beginnings collecting diecast models and spending hours virtually tuning dream cars on the computer, his love of cars has delightfully transformed into a career. Sanjay enjoys how the same passion for cars transcends boundaries and brings people together.