I attended the Proton Exora VIP Test-Drive Session held in Full House, Sunway Giza Mall on Saturday (21st).
Participants were selected based on the registration at their website : http://www.allaboutexora.com/, and the session that I attended was held for the Chinese community and had about 20 couples attending (well, it wasn’t all couples, there was a pair who’s a mother and son team).
After registration, we were ushered in to have breakfast.
And when it was time, everyone proceeded to the Event Hall in Full House for the start of the event.
Melvin Wong, Head of Marketing Communication from Proton Edar, made the opening speech.
This is a session to let the couples selected to experience Proton Exora as never before. It’s not just a test drive session; various speakers were invited to cover topics of interest, and then games will be played which actually allow you to get to know the car better.
Kenneth Chiew, Driving Instructor for Proton Exora covered the Product Safety of Proton Exora, i.e. airbags available, advance seat belts for all passengers, protective frame of the car etc.; and we were shown how the car was designed to handle various accidents (front collision, roll over) as well.
For those couples who have children, Ms Loh Sit Fong, Clinical Psychologist from UKM Medical Center, talked about child development, and how to keep children safe in a car ride.
She definitely caught the attention of this little girl, who came with her parents for the event.
It was then the start of the test drive session. First we were all brought outside for a group photo (I didn’t get in, because I prefer to be the photographer than to be photographed).
Or maybe I should have joined in, because see the number of photographers available?
We were then assigned our cars. 2 couples to a car and I got this red one, the last car of the lot and my partners were Mr Ong from Sin Chiew Jit Poh, Izaton from Proton Edaran, and Sam from the media company.
Mr Ong, since he’s going to be our drive, got briefed.
Look at the number of Proton Exoras assigned to the Proton Exora VIP Test-Drive Session.
Couples started boarding their cars, ready for the take off.
Each car were given a walkie-talkie, and the organiser had the walkie-talkies tested out. He gave the last of the instructions, and then of we went.
The convoy of cars driving towards Desa Park City.
Somewhere in Sri Damansara, we stopped to swap drivers, so that everyone get a chance to test drive the car.
The parking lot next to Waterfront in Desa Park City has been set up for the outdoor event, with driving circuits and all.
3 different games were held concurrently. All were eligible for points collection, which will qualify couples for various placing, and gifts were then given later based on this placing.
Game number 1 was the blind fold challenge. Each couple decided on the driver, which was blind folded, and the navigator, which was to give instructions to the driver. The challenge is to have the blind folded driver do a parallel park with instructions given to him/her by the partner.
This is to see how a couple trusted one another, for if there was no trust, it’s difficult to give the instructions as well as well as to receive it. Of course having a car that’s easy to maneuver with power steering, like the Proton Exora, helped a lot as well.
Some navigators really did a terrific job, getting the driver to park the car in slightly more than a minute.
Game number 2 was piling challenge. Each couple was timed, they had to get some suitcases, a golf bag and a pram into the car boot, usher in their 3 passengers, get themselves into the car and buckled up as quickly as possible.
From this challenge, you can see how much luggage the Proton Exora can take, and how easy it is to turn the seats on the last row to provide bigger boot space.
On the driving circuit, game number 3 was held, to test out the ride handling of the Proton Exora. Kenneth, the Proton Exora driving instructor were giving instructions to cars via the walkie-talkie on when to accelerate, when to step on the brakes on the circuit, or when to do a steep turn.
This is the sort of things you won’t get to try out in a normal test-drive session. Here, you get to actually try out the ABS & EBD brake, and the Proton Lotus Ride and Handling on a circuit.
Lots of brakes screeching were heard. This must be fun for those who get adrenalin rush from speeding. I get dizzy just seeing the cars zoomed by.
Kenneth took the excitement 1 step further, he took the wheels and drove a couple of people in the Proton Exora, and of course being the driving instructor, he was driving faster, and tested the ABS and EBD brake, and Proton Lotus Ride and Handling to its fullest. I didn’t want to be his passenger (or anybody doing the ride handling) in case I threw up.
That was the end of the outdoor fun, and we then went back to Full House in our respective car. The convoy again stopped in Sri Damansara for another driver swapped.
Back in Full House, the cool aircon and lunch welcomed us.
We were famished!
While lunch was going on, some couples were brought to a corner to be interviewed about their Proton Exora test drive experience.
After lunch, we all got ushered back to the event hall.
Ms Loh Sit Fong went back on stage to talk about relationships. Couples were asked to rank things important to them in a relationship, and then checked if the female and the male have similar priorities.
Cherrise Tan, an image consultant from Adamaya Image Consultancy, came on next, and did a make over of one of the participants.
Kenneth came on again to answer any questions we had after test driving the car. I guess people were really impressed with the Proton Exora, its ride handling after they have driven the car on the circuit, its ease of maneuvering, and its space available.
We then got a talk on managing investment as well from Eric Wong, from A.D. Financial Sdh Bhd.
A little boy named Ethan (Merryn’s son), patiently sat through the talk after talk (I salute him, not easy for a kid his age), but he did say, “Why this one always not yet finished one.”
(Zaria wanted to follow me, and good thing I didn’t bring her along. Getting a child sit through the whole thing can be really testing their patience).
What was the end message delivered by Melvin Wong? Proton Exora is a practical and economical family car(fuel consumption : RM0.13/km), now if any of us is considering a family car, this is a good option, however, “Do not buy a product if you have not tried it.” We should have at least done a thorough test drive before committing. And in deed, this session allowed the participant to thoroughly test out the car.
At the end of the session, there was prize giving (it was Cash prize, ok?); it was done in such a way that every couple got a prize, but of course the couples in the 1st, 2nd and 3rd places, got bigger envelopes.
Every couple got a goodie bag with spa vouchers as well.
Haisay, I sat at this table throughout.
So no spa vouchers nor cash prize for me.
I’m going to register myself for the next Proton Exora VIP Test-Drive Session, I want to go as a participant this time.
So what was the knowledge that I gained from this session? For me, with a family of four, to choose an MPV, I’ll choose one :
1) that gives me space (I sure love the space in Proton Exora),
2) that’s economical (RM0.13/KM for Proton Exora, half of my current car’s fuel consumption),
3) with all the necessary safety features included (2 airbags, ABS & EBS brake system, advance seat belt, protective frame).
Now, don’t believe what others say about the car, don’t even believe what I say here, test drive the Proton Exora and experience it for your own.
What are you waiting for?