Tied to either a five-speed manual gearbox or a 'seven-speed' continuously variable transmission (CVT), the Suprima S claims a 0-100km/h best of 9.9 seconds and fuel consumption of 9.1 litres per 100 km according to Malaysian standards.
Weighing 1375kg in entry-level Executive specification and 1395kg in high-grade Premium trim, the hatch is 4436mm long, 1786mm wide and 1524mm tall – 54mm shorter, 31mm wider and 54mm taller than the current-generation Mazda 3. Its 2650mm-long wheelbase is also stretched 10mm more than the Mazda’s.
Up front the Suprima S shares much in common with the Preve, though gains a new black honeycomb grille, new plastic inserts and new fog light surrounds. LEDs feature in the daytime running lights and angular tail-lights. A tailgate-mounted spoiler joins a ‘Turbo’ badge and 17-inch wheels, with the Executive wearing 16-inch rims.
Completing the exterior look is a ‘Handling by Lotus’ badge – first seen on the Proton Satria GTi in 1999.
The Suprima S carries over the Preve’s basic interior layout but adds new materials and trims and Proton’s infotainment system comprising a seven-inch LCD screen, DVD player, satellite navigation and Bluetooth/USB/iPod connectivity. The system also allows for Wi-Fi connectivity from a mobile phone or portable hotspot and links to a four-speaker stereo in the Executive and a six-speaker unit in Premium guise.
Luggage capacity of 309 litres is expandable to 427L, but falls 81L short of the Preve’s 508L boot.
Steering wheel-mounted audio controls and rear parking sensors are standard on the base model, with front sensors, leather upholstery, paddle shifters, cruise control, auto headlights and wipers and a reversing camera included on the Premium.
Available in Atlantic Blue, Fire Red, Genetic Silver, Tranquillity Black and Solid White, the Proton Suprima S starts at RM76,688 ($25,400).
Proton Australia general manager of sales and marketing Billy Falconer told CarAdvice the brand will release full details of the Suprima S in the coming days but is aiming for pricing to be in the same vicinity as the Preve, which started off at $18,990 driveaway but was recently cut to $15,990 driveaway.
The Suprima S will be part of Proton's upcoming expansion in Australia, with the hatch due in November, following the arrival of the seven-seat Exora in September and turbocharged Preve GXR in October.