Last weekend the nice folks from Proton invited AF to cover the MMS race in Sepang. During the event, news from the grapevine revealed that Proton will launch another new variant of the Satria Neo. This time it will be a bare basic version of the Satria Neo, but rest assured, it will not carry the SV badge just as the Saga did.
What we know is this variant consists of the 1st generation 1.6 Campro engine (Non CPS), manual gearbox and steel wheels are among the things we heard. Think of it as the RS/RC specs of a typical JDM sports car and still road legal and you get the picture here. The reason behind this is to allow tuners and enthusiasts to modify the car according to their individual desires (and budget as well), and perhaps as an affordable entry car to participate in grassroots motorsports from touring car, gymkhana, rallying and so on.
No indicative price was given but our rough estimation should be around RM40,000-60,000 range depending on the goodies given. It is also unsure whether creature comfort features like air con, usually taken out on typical RS/RC specs will be taken out as well.
In fact this is not the first time Proton has done this as a few years ago there was a ’20 units only’ limited edition of Satria Neos prepared by Tengku Djan and the guys from Race Rally Research (R3). Known as the Satria Neo R3 Clubsport (CS) S1, the car which was originally developed for a one make series, featured a tuned up 1.6 Campro engine, full rollcage, bucket seats, racing suspension and was able to lap the Sepang fulltrack in sub 3 minute times.
On that basis it is logical that the new bare basic Satria Neo is released under the R3 brand although we are not sure if this is going to be a limited run. Despite being launched back in 2006 and after a few upgrades, the Satria Neo has not been given an official midlife facelift and has been around for almost 7 years, which hints for a replacement soon. Meanwhile this bare basic Satria Neo should be launched sometime this December so look out for this one in the coming future.