It is a common misconception that Proton engineers are simply slapping a Proton badge onto Geely cars without contributing any engineering work.
The process of adapting a Geely car to meet Proton’s standards and local requirements involves extensive engineering and developmental work. As highlighted by the modifications made to the Proton X50 to comply with Malaysian and ASEAN NCAP standards, Proton engineers conduct thorough crash safety analysis and make key safety changes.
These include body reworking, footrest modifications, airbag adjustments, child safety improvements, and revisions to driving assistance features. These changes are not minor tweaks but significant alterations that require a deep understanding of automotive engineering, rigorous testing, and strict compliance to safety standards.
Here are 5 ways Proton modified the Proton X50 to make it safer:
They reworked an aspect of the body of the X50 to prevent tearing of the front floorboard during a frontal collision, which is not acceptable under ASEAN NCAP standards.
Engineers reinforced these areas with ultra-high-strength steel, effectively shifting the force of impact to other areas that do not pose a threat to occupant safety. As a result, 40% of the body, including the front, side, and back, was made using a combination of high-strength steel variants.
Driver’s Footrest Modification
The driver’s footrest, located next to the brake pedal, was modified due to concerns that the driver of a right-hand-drive X50 would be more vulnerable to foot injury in the event of a collision, as the engine is always oriented under the hood towards the right side of the vehicle.
The footrest was modified to ensure that the foot remains on the footrest, with limited slippage, during a collision.
Curtain Airbags Adjustment
The curtain airbags in the X50 were adjusted to provide additional cushioning to the head area during impact, primarily in side collisions.
This adjustment was necessary because the ASEAN NCAP protocol emphasises that the static deployment of curtain airbags should cover a range of body types for different potential drivers.
Child Occupant Protection (COP) Safety Modifications
In the area of child safety, the engineers lengthened the hook on the Isofix interface to make it easier to fit a child safety seat. Also, the angle of the anchor was readjusted to offer a more secure placement of the seat.
Driving Assistance Features Revisions
Some driving assistance features from the Binyue were carried over to the X50. However, the Speed Limit Information Function (SLIF), which recognises Chinese road signs and informs the driver of the current road’s speed limit, was excluded.
This decision was made to prevent the system from providing incorrect information to the X50’s control unit due to language, character, and signage differences.
GALLERY: Proton X50 ASEAN NCAP crash testing
* This article was originally published here
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