Proton Satria Cabriolet – The curious convertible

CY Foong · Jul 21, 2020 12:00 PM

Proton Satria Cabriolet – The curious convertible 01

Proton had auctioned off some of its concept prototypes and rally cars in an unprecedented move on its automotive history. Thankfully, some of them have been pulled out from the auction by Proton.

Proton Satria Cabriolet – The curious convertible 02

Shhh...it's all gonna be okay...

Some of these prototypes and university creations probably deserved the scrap but there were some which should be preserved. Apart from the PERTs and the Petronas E01-powered cars, the one that stood out in the list was a pair of Satria Cabriolets.

Proton Satria Cabriolet – The curious convertible 03

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While the United Kingdom was the prime export market for Protons in the West, our intrepid local tiger was also exported to other European countries, including France, Germany, and Turkey.

In 1997, Proton made its appearance at that year’s Frankfurt Motor Show and debuted the Satria Cabriolet to the world to garner some interests for production.

Proton Satria Cabriolet – The curious convertible 01

Photo credit: All Car Index

The purple-coloured Satria Cabrio was displayed with a beige interior, sported some very unique alloys and a right-hand drive configuration. This, despite Germany being a left-hand drive market and the Satria was sold there and other left-hand drive markets as the Proton 300 Series.

Proton Satria Cabriolet – The curious convertible 02

German-spec Proton 316 GLSi

Not much had been said about what is powering the topless Satria but according to a press release found via the UK Spec Proton Facebook page, it was jointly developed by Proton and an unnamed droptop specialist from California.

Proton Satria Cabriolet – The curious convertible 03

The Satria Cabrio looked very much production-ready. However, the project was scrapped completely due to the 1997 Asian Financial Crisis which also affected Malaysia. Poor sales in Europe also marked the departure of Proton as they exited most European markets by 2001.

Proton Satria Cabriolet – The curious convertible 04

Proton Satria Cabriolet – The curious convertible 05

Apparently, Proton made two examples; the original purple one which later had Proton’s tiger logo replacing the export diamond logo, and a gold one. Both were fitted with Satria GTi alloys and during the early 2000s, some were brought out for roadshows.

Proton Satria Cabriolet – The curious convertible 06

In a plot twist that could make Shyamalan proud, the purple Satria Cabrio had been withdrawn from the auction by Proton as well as a few other models. That means someone could have bought the gold Cabrio while Proton decided to preserve the purple one. Hopefully, we’ll get to see one of them back in its shining glory.

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CY Foong

Writer

Traded advertising for a career that fits his passion for cars. Enjoys spotting cars during his free time and has a soft spot for Japanese Kei cars but drives a thirsty manual sedan.

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