Saharudin Busri, a former designer at Proton and current head of industrial design at MIMOS, has shown off his concept designs for a modern rendition of the Proton Saga Knight. He has posted several other concepts on his Facebook page before, such as a Malaysian sports car “Bunga Raya Red” or a Drone Taxi for Grab, but this reimagining of a modern classic seems to be an ongoing project of his.
For those who don’t know, Proton Knight is a special edition Proton Saga Aeroback that was launched in the late 80s. It is believed to be inspired by the popular 80s TV show Knight Rider. Even the old Proton Knight ad mentions “The Knight Rider is here” and “Knight Rider by Proton”.
It came with a 1.5-litre Mitsubishi-sourced Magma 8-valve engine that produces 76 hp and 127Nm of torque, paired with a 5-speed manual transmission.
The redesign seems to be quite an overhaul, keeping the essence of the original Proton Knight while completely changing many elements to make it fit the current design landscape. While the original Knight has that classic boxy 80s shape, the new Saga Knight features a more rounded contour, arguably fit for an EV. It still retains the same black paint job with Knight’s grey, red and orange decals on the sides.
On the front, the headlights of the Saga Knight are in the shape of a slanted thin strip. Although the overall shape is rounded, some parts such as the wheels and the sides feature sharp edges that give the car a futuristic, cyberpunk feel.
On the interior, Saharudin has kept the overall slanted dashboard idea from the original but made it flatter and set all of the components flush with the surface. Replacing the traditional gear knob is a rotary gear shifter. Also gone is the old school handbrake which gives it a cleaner look.
The front of the interior holds a gigantic screen, spanning the entire width of the car. Below that lies another screen to display even more information regarding the vehicle. The new Knight concept still has control knobs on the middle console which is still a practical input interface despite the popularity of touch screen interfaces.
Over at the rear, the concept retains the familiar Aeroback design. Instead of having a tacked-on ducktail spoiler, the tail end looks somewhat similar to the Proton Preve. You’ll also find a long LED strip that stretches the entire width and it flows downwards along the sides. True to the original, the number plate is still mounted on the rear door between the rear lamp assembly.
Saharudin used Autodesk Alias for the design, a computer-aided design (CAD) program popular among automotive designers and Vred Pro for animation.