"More power, more style, space is a bonus" is the tagline for the newly launched Proton Exora Bold. More power where the Exora Bold comes with a Campro Charge Fuel Efficiency (CFE) engine uses forced induction technology to produce maximum power at lower rpm. This is one of Proton's solutions in resolving underpower issue in current Exora. More style where the Exora Bold gains a new front end (except headlights, which is blacked-out for Exora Bold), sportier alloys, smoked taillights and new rear bumper.
Exora Bold's CFE engine is a 1.6litre with 138bhp at 5000rpm and 205Nm of torque at 2000-4000rpm! To compare with current Exora's CPS engine, the new CFE engine has increased by 13bhp and 55Nm. By comparing power-to-weight ratio with Toyota Innova, the Exora Bold wins. The powerplant is mated with a CVT gearbox.
Now, the part that everyone has been waiting for: performance. Well, the new CFE engine felt meatier than before, capable of producing punch without having to step on the accelerator as much as in Exora CPS. You'll have to step on the accelerator until the engine reaches 2000rpm to feel the power because 205Nm of torque will only be available starting from 2000-4000rpm. But still, the power was not as much as I've expected. Maybe it will make a difference when the car is laden with passengers.
The engine was a bit noisy and jerky, probably because it was still new and I was among the first one who drove that unit. I remember vividly that current Exora with the CPS engine doesn't sound that harsh. However, there is no excuse for the fuel lid which the sales person failed to open when he wanted to add in petrol, and he did pulled the latch for 2 to 3 times. Hope this defect only appear on this very test drive unit.
Other than that, the Exora Bold felt solid with no unwanted noise and comfortable when going over road undulations. The heavily advertised CVT gearbox found in the Saga FLX SE also made its way to the Exora Bold, and it gave a smooth ride with no apparent feel of the gear changing. The leather seat also provided good support and is nice to touch too! Reverse camera comes as standard for Exora Bold but the screen is slightly small to my liking because it is integrated into the rear-view mirror. Only Exora Prime will get the reverse camera integrated to a proper screen in the centre console.
Another thing worth mentioning is the Proton badge on the steering wheel. Proton should embed a chrome badge for the Exora (even Exora Prime doesn't have one) so that the cabin will look more upmarket. The steering looks empty and dull without a chrome badge...
All these updates come with a price. The price differences of the Exora Bold and Prime compared to the current Exora are as above. The more powerful CFE engine solved the underpower problem but the car is still charged as a 1.6litre car in terms of road tax! All these upgrades give the Exora Bold better value for money, but quality wise I'm still not sure......
+ Improved engine, space, sportier styling.
- Quality is still questionable, no chrome badge on the steering wheel.
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