The PERT’s Proton Saga Iswara 4WD Turbo Group S
Proton was doing rather well for itself in the 80’s and the 90’s. Their cars are reliable, economical, tough and reasonably well equipped for a reasonable price. However, as every petrolhead knows, there’s no better way of boosting public recognition other than to compete in the great world of motorsports, which is what Proton did when they collaborated with Petronas, Mitsubishi Motors and Edaran Otomobil Nasional (EON) to form the Petronas EON Racing Team (PERT) back in the 1980’s
Proton first taste of motorsports started with the formation of Petronas EON Racing Team (PERT) in the late 80s, a fruitful partnership between Petronas and EON. We started out with circuit racing then got increasingly involved in rally events. The performance and durability of Proton cars led our team to win many races in their respective classes – locally and internationally.
Competing for Group S from 1991 to 1994, the Proton Saga Iswara 4WD Turbo had a fairly successful career until it was later banned by the FIA. The PERT’s Proton Saga is powered by a 2.0 DOHC 16-valve Turbocharged Intercooler engine with a MoTEC Engine Management System, producing 337 BHP at 6,800 RPM according to PERT. A six-speed sequential gearbox with centre viscous coupling and front and rear limited-slip differential powering all four-wheels in this very unique Proton Saga Iswara.
PERT’s team had a good start when they won the 1989 Shell Malaysia Rally with Proton Saga rally cars by Mitsubishi’s RalliArt division, featuring 150 BHP engine as part of the rally specification.
Behind the wheels of the PERT’s Proton Saga Iswara are Australian Driver Tolley Challis with Zuber Ismail and Henry Yap ( Malaysian rally veteren) with Ron Teoh. Later the years, Greg Carr (3 times Australian Rally Championship in 1978, 1987, and 1989) with Allen Oh also competes with PERT.
Although Petronas EON Racing Team’s (PERT) glory days are now far behind, there is no getting away from the fact that it had played a major role in providing Proton the invaluable experience in Motorsports competition. With the experience gained from the collaborators Petronas and Ralliart during the days of PERT, here’s hoping that Proton R3 will be able to compete in motorsports event and dominate with an iron fist, just like how PERT did back then.