First impression, the 1.8L Inspira is obviously have lower specification than the 2.0L model. From the front – easily noticeable, there isn’t any bodykit fitted with it. Without further inspecting the car, we went for a test drive and see how it drives.
We were told that Proton Inspira is tuned with Lotus handling, so we went fast into some corners and did some snake moves on the straight. We feel that the Proton Inspira ride is comfortable , the car have no problem absorbing bumps caused by uneven roads. The Inspira also has sufficient among of grip, the problem is we feel that there’s some amount of body roll with this setup as well as the driver doesn’t not get enough feedback from the car. Later we scan through the brochures to find “Lotus Handling” but what we found was only “Proton Ride & Handling”.
Proton Inspira has been spied with masked tapes and it has been often refer as the re-badged Mitsubishi Lancer, or the Proton Waja replacement model. It was launch on Wednesday and we went to do some detail review and inspection of the new product by Proton.
It is a known fact that this is a car based on the Mitsubishi Lancer, from a unconfirmed source we were told there’s only 26% of the car part has been localize, all others are from Mitsubishi Japan. Although we knew what we would expect but however on first glance, is still feels a new car to us. Proton has made quite a few changes and cleverly “Protonize” the Lancer to Inspira.
Not too sure if you agree with me, the Proton Inspira gives me the idea of a Tiger, where as the Mitsubishi Lancer gives me the impression of a hammerhead shark. Proton has given the Inspira it’s own redesign of bumper, headlights are the same with believe and sadly no projector headlights found. The Inspira 2.0 Premium gets body kit which is also design by Proton. Proton has also fitted in their signature front grille and styling on the fog lights area.
From the rear, the Proton Inspira 2.0P gets full body kit, as well as the rear boot lip spoiler. The car is rebadged with Proton’s Logo as well the Inspira badge. The rear bumper has also redesign by Proton to give it a rear diffuser like touch, to enhance its sportiness.
Proton has also retain the metal stripe on the boot from the Mitsubishi Lancer Ex model. The facelifted Lancer clear rear light with black base is chosen to be used in the Inspira.
The video we recorded walks you thru the Exterior of the Proton Inspira, be sure to check out in HD mode too.
Proton has given the Inspira newly designed rims. It is 16-inch with the profile 205/60 R16 92H. We seriously think Proton could have done better on the rims. We got no other complains other than the rims design as for the exterior. In fact we think is better look than the Mitsubishi Lancer Ex that we review earlier. The Proton Inspira is equipped with all 4 disc brakes and standard ABS (Anti-lock braking system) with EBD (Electronic Brake-force Distribution).
Moving forward to the Technical Specification of the Proton Inspira, the 1.8 Executive model will be fitted with Mitsubishi 4B10 1.8 MIVEC 4 Cylinder DOHC 16V Engine mated with Manual or CVT Transmission. This 1.8 engine is similar to Mitsubishi Lancer Fortis 1.8 in Taiwan. The 2.0 Premium model is fitted with Mitsubishi 4B11 2.0 MIVEC 4 Cylinder DOHC 16V Engine mated with CVT Transmission. The 2.0 engine is similar engine with the current Mitsubishi Lancer GT, GLS or EX. The 2.0 engine is bore and stroke both measure 86.0 mm while the 1.8 is having 86mm bore and 77.4mm stroke. The 2.0 engine is running on 10:1 compression ratio while the 1.8 is running on 10.5:1 compression ratio.
Based on the specifications list, the Inspira’s engine is having slightly lesser output compare to the Mitsubishi Lancer by 3HP (Inspira 1.8 – 138HP; Lancer Fortis 1.8 – 141HP) to 6HP (Inspira 2.0 – 147HP; Lancer GT 2.0 – 153HP). We suspect the engine tuning is tuned more conservative based on our local fuel quality and better reliability. Apart from engine slightly detuned, it is physically identical to the Lancer’s engine.
The INVECS-III CVT Transmission comes with 6 virtual gears in Sport Mode on both 1.8 and 2.0 version. The 2.0 version added with Paddle Shift on the steering wheel. Regrettably, the 1.8 Manual is still fitted with 5 Speed Manual Transmission.
In terms of Performance, the Manual transmission is still greater than CVT transmission. The 1.8 Manual did 0-100km/h in 10 secs (as claimed) with a top speed of 202km/h, 1.8 CVT did 0-100km/h in 11.4 secs (as claimed) with a top speed of 191 km/h and 2.0 CVT did 0-100km/h in 10.5 secs (as claimed) with a top speed of 198 km/h.
Moreover, some of you may have known that the disadvantages of CVT transmission at high-speed (above 200km/h) due to high friction and heats. However, Proton has addressed the issue by redesigning the front for better airflow to cool down the CVT gearbox.
The power steering system is similar to the Lancer which comes with Rack-and-pinion with Hydraulic power assist The Front Strut Bar is missing in the Inspira compared to the Lancer GT. The rest, the suspension design is greatly similar with Lancer apart from Inspira is fitted with different revision of shock absorbers that selected by Proton.