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New dealers to help boost Proton sales

Proton is looking to add 35 dealers to its franchised network ahead of new product launches in 2005 and 2006.

Open points include Edinburgh, Liverpool, Leeds, Oxford and the south coast.

The current network comprises of 73 dealerships, plus 22 specialist outlets for its Jumbuck pick-up, and 29 service-only sites.

“Proton must expand its dealer network in the UK to support the introduction of new products and our increased sales targets for 2005,” says Simon Park, Proton’s general manager of sales and marketing.

“This promises to be an exciting year for us, with the planned launch of two further products designed in collaboration with our sister company Group Lotus, and we must recruit strong dealers to support our current network.”

This year, Proton will introduce a 1.3-litre version of its GEN-2 five-door hatchback as well as a 1.6 GSX range-topper. The four-door Impian will be face-lifted and two new models introduced – a three-door supermini to replace the Satria and a five-door city car. The company hints at more new products in 2006.

Dealers will be required to sell the whole Proton range, including the Jumbuck. They will face “no unreasonable showroom demands” and “generous signage and start-up financial support”, says the company.

Last year, Proton sold 1,754 cars, 5.75% down on 2003.

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