Proton S70 R3 racecar confirmed for Sepang 1,000 km (S1k) endurance race – sportier R3 roadcar to follow?

Proton ‘S70 GT’ rendered by Theophilus Chin


National carmaker Proton has announced that its motorsport arm, R3 Motorsports is developing a Proton S70 race car for entry into the Sepang 1000km (S1K) endurance race.


The carmaker’s R3 division launched the X50 R3 20th Anniversary Edition last October, and it could be joined in the road car line-up by an R3-enhanced version of the S70 sedan, according to Proton deputy CEO Roslan Abdullah earlier this month.


Recent R3 editions such as the Saga R3 and Iriz R3, while limited in production, were largely visual in changes, with their powertrains carried over from existing variants of their respective models. This would not be the case with the potential ‘S70 R3’ roadgoing model, Roslan told The Sun.


Proton is focused on delivering a comprehensive performance package for the S70, rather than a cosmetic makeover, with the aim of distancing the potential S70 R3 road car from the X50 R3 20th Anniversary Edition that is largely unchanged from a mechanical standpoint.


Proton S70 R3 racecar confirmed for Sepang 1,000 km (S1k) endurance race – sportier R3 roadcar to follow?


Proton ‘S70 GT’ rendered by Theophilus Chin


As it stands, there already is performance headroom for the S70 in terms of what is available from the wider Proton inventory of engines, as the sedan is currently offered with the port-injection version of the 1.5 litre turbocharged three-cylinder petrol powerplant, which makes 150 PS and 226 Nm in the S70 currently.


The direct-injected TGDi unit as specified in the X50 makes 177 PS and 255 Nm, offering power and torque gains from the outset. For both the S70 and X50, transmission is via a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox driving the front wheels.


The aforementioned comprehensive performance package mooted for the S70 R3 road car suggests there could be upgrades to its chassis as well, though it remains to be seen what extent the R3 division would go to; the Satria R3 of the early 2000s was made from the factory with twice the amount of structural welds as compared to the ‘regular’ Satria GTi of its contempoary, whereas the later Satria Neo bodyshell was deemed already sufficiently rigid for its stepping up into the R3 Satria Neo.


The post Proton S70 R3 racecar confirmed for Sepang 1,000 km (S1k) endurance race – sportier R3 roadcar to follow? appeared first on Paul Tan’s Automotive News.


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