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The Mercury Cars Guide : May 23rd 2009
Saturday, May 23, 2009 PAUL GOVER Wall will land in the second half of the year, to be followed by Geely and others. But Proton is moving now to establish a price point. S No-one from the Malaysian maker is talking exact details, but Proton is planning to easily undercut the $13,990 Korean price fighters and is aiming for something in the $12,000 range. It will do the job with a new model based on the baby Savvy, but price fighting will become the key for Proton when it re-positions the whole brand for 2010. Proton boss John Startari con- firms the generalpushbut will not be drawn yet on the details. ‘‘We’re not talking about the price until closer to the date,’’ says Star- tari. ‘‘We’re working towards January next year. ‘‘It won’t beat the Chinese but we believe that for the Proton brand to move forward we need to offer value for money and re-invigorate the brand.’’ He says the new cheapie is the key but admits Proton must do better on price to ever make solid numbers in Australia. The brand has a carpark of around 25,000 but has yet to reach critical mass, either with customers or deal- ers. ‘‘We’re re-specifying all our cars— that’s Gen.2, Satria and Persona. ‘‘That will happen at the same time,’’ Startari says. ‘‘For us, timing is everything and wereally needthe range to start atan aggressive price and then have value across the spectrum. ‘‘By aligning a lower-priced value CHEAPAND CHEERFUL: The Proton Savvy. Price fighters slug it out leader we can meet all demands below $20,000.’’ The new starter car is basically a Savvy sedan but with an engine which grows from the current 1.2 in the Savvy hatch toa 1.6-litre Campro. It will have a new name and will not be called Saga, the badge used in Malaysia. ‘‘It’s an all-new car. ‘‘On the price side of things, the recommended retail price will be plus on-road costs, but the advertised price will be driveaway—just as we do now with the Savvy hatch at $13,990 driveaway,’’ he says. Startari will not talk about the cost of the price push, or the level of financial support from Malaysia, but admits there is a big budget. 'It will be the biggest spend on marketing in the last seven years. The initial lanch budget in 1998 and 1999, when we moved away from Incape and became a factory opera- tion, was the only one that is bigger,' Startari says. He makes no apology for the early announcement of the new focus and says it’s not just about undercutting Koreancars or gettinganearly break on the Chinese. ‘‘We are in a dealer recruitment process and we need to start talking about the future of the brand and products to get the dealersweneed to take the brand forward. ‘‘We need to recruit the best dealer network available, but we are not going to expand at all cost. ‘‘It will be a matter of signing dealers who are committed and eager to build the brand.’’ END OF FINANCIAL YEAR SALE! SALE WANT TO DRIVE AWAY TODAY? JUST ASK. New 2009 Impreza R AWD $25,968 Drive away Includes registration, stamp duty & dealer delivery. FEATURES • Symmetrical AWD • Horizontally Opposed Boxer Engine • ABS/EBD • VDC Stability Control • 5 Star NCAP Safety Rating • Power Everything • 3yr Unlimited Km Warranty • CD Player • Cruise Control • Front, side and curtain airbags • Alloy Wheels • Manual Transmission $79* Per Week Mercedes-Benz CLC 200K Coupe $54,495 Drive away PERFORMANCE AUTOMOBILES CNR. ARGYLE & BURNETT STREETS www.performanceautomobiles.com.au 50% INVESTMENT ALLOWANCE Your business may be eligible for the federal government’s proposed investment allowance. Once passed into law, eligible businesses can claim a 50% tax credit on certain motor vehicle purchases made before 30th June 2009. Talk with your tax advisor before purcahse tosee if your business is eligible. Drive away Volvo C30 S $33,477 USED CAR Fiat Punto 1.4 Dynamic Manual $18,990 Drive away 01 Honda Civic 5 doorhatch, red (Reg EV2024) 08 FordFiesta LX Manual, silver, 7,000kms (Reg A96EG) 03Impreza Auto, only49,000kms, silver (Reg EU0161) 06 FordFocus LS Manual, black, 40,000kms (RegFO1616) 05 Subaru GXImpreza Manual, leather, sunroof (Reg FF036) 05 Hyundai Tucson Auto, V6 Engine (Reg FO8444) 04 Territory AWD Auto, blue (Stock# 91552) 07Subaru Impreza RV Auto, 7 seater, green (RegFL0235) 07Mazda 6 Hatch 7,000kms, white (Reg FO6139) 05 Subaru Outback Auto, premium pack (Reg FE4224) $13,990 $14,990 $17,990 $17,990 $19,990 $19,990 $22,990 $24,990 $26,990 $27,990 * Finance offer only available to approved business customers. Repayments based on a commercial hire purchase. $25,968 drive away retail price, equivalent to $79 per week over 60 months, 20% deposit ($5194), 30% balloon ($7791), total amount payable $28,463.73 Offer ends 29/05/2009. All applications for credit are subject to normal credit approval criteria. Terms and conditions are available on application. Fees and charges apply. All other offers are valid until Monday 25th May 2009. New A/H: Adrian Millington 0438 062 259 Pre-Owned A/H: Mike Nebbs 0417 089 631 6210 7000 UPER cheap Chinese cars are under attack before they even reach Australia. The first vehicles from Great is everything. and we really need the range to start at an aggressive price and then have value across the spectrum ‘ Proton boss John Startari ’ For us, timing Classifieds 62 300 400 • carsguide.com.au CARSguide —3
May 16th 2009
May 30th 2009