1998 Proton Persona Coupe 1.8 16v DOHC from UK and Ireland
A sporty Proton? Well I never!
Bonnet catch sticky - sorted with a spot of WD-40.
Replaced front brake pads, skimmed front brake discs at 50,000 miles.
Occasional leak from sunroof in heavy rain.
Offside rear anti-roll bar link snapped.
The main and only real major problem I have had with this car is that the tappets are quite noisy when cold - apparently quite common with these Mitsubishi engines - may be a knocking-down point when selling as it would be noticable even to the most clueless tyre kickers.
These cars are so rare nobody has a clue what it is! I have only ever seen a couple of them on the road.
Why the car is so rare I have no idea - its really quite fast and handles like a proper sports car (I used to work for Subaru and in terms of a driver's car the little Proton is really not that far behind - in dark blue it even has a slight resemblance to an Impreza.) The brakes are not up to the performance of the car, however, and I have often found myself wincing as the scenery suddenly becomes closer and closer!
I find the Recaro seats very comfortable and provide great support. Anyone with "bigger bones" need not apply as they are quite narrow. The rest of the interior is fantastic if you like cheap grey plastic.
Comfort is not what this car is primarily built for, although it does plod along on the motorway, if a little bit noisily. Electric sunroof and windows are nice and a rare commodity in Protons!
This is my second Proton, and I cannot fault them in terms of reliability and quality of the Mitsubishi engineering. The coupe was an absolute bargain at just over £1000 and does over 30mpg. It is an absolute hoot to drive quickly and is just as happy plodding around town.
If you can ignore the "pipe and slippers" image of the Malaysian company's previous efforts, there really is a cracking piece of machinery beneath all the wrinkles!
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 26th April, 2008
I found another Coupe owner! I agree with all you said, I love the 'beast' as I call it. About those tappets then, do you know of a cure? On the single cam models they are adjustable, but the twin cam has hydraulic tappets, should I replace them?
Otherwise I love overtaking most of 'em & seeing the puzzled looks. No-one knows what it is!