2024 Proton X50 RC looks the same because Geely Binyue facelift styling is ‘too aggressive’ – DCEO

The model year 2024 Proton X50 has an unchanged exterior

Earlier today, Proton unveiled the 2024 model year X50 a.k.a. X50 RC. RC stands for Running Change, which means that this is not a facelift, and those who were expecting to see a refreshed face, or even wheels/colours, were left disappointed.

It’s now almost four years since the B-segment SUV debut in 2020, but Proton has seen fit to soldier on with the X50’s original look, choosing to focus instead on improvements to NVH and the infotainment system, which we’ve detailed in full here along with the extra equipment. So, what’s behind the call to not alter the design, even by just a bit?

“We have plans to change the physical, but after we assessed the design, whatever that Geely has, it’s not suitable for the Malaysian market because it’s too aggressive. This model is sexy, if we change it won’t be sexy, it will be ugly,” Proton deputy CEO Roslan Abdullah told paultan.org, adding that the ‘internal work’ had progressed and waiting for a suitable new skin would be ‘too late’.

2024 Proton X50 RC looks the same because Geely Binyue facelift styling is ‘too aggressive’ – DCEO

The 2021 Geely Binyue Pro’s face was deemed to be too aggressive for Malaysia

“It’s a waste (sayang) that the upgraded one at Geely is too aggressive, which I don’t think the customers will continue buying,” he reiterated. The face that is deemed to be too much for Malaysia is the mug of the 2021 Geely Binyue Pro – take a look at it and share your thoughts.

If you’ve been wondering why Proton can’t design its own face/facelift as opposed to only picking from what Geely has in China, the answer is simple – volume.

“We’ve always considered this (own design), but if we look into the volume – if the X50’s volume was 4,000 units before, it’s now 1,000 to 2,000 – we’ve got to look at what’s the investment per unit. It’s not that we don’t want to do (own design), but the ultimate aim is we want to maintain this price,” Roslan said.

That’s just half of the story though. While there are plans for a proper X50 facelift, part of the reason why we’re not getting it now is because Proton’s vendors have committed to certain volumes for the parts you see here.

2024 Proton X50 RC looks the same because Geely Binyue facelift styling is ‘too aggressive’ – DCEO

The actual X50 facelift – with Binyue Cool looks – is currently being tested in Malaysia

“Physical, not now, not so soon, because if we change now, the vendors will come and complain about unmet volumes, the cost. So what we’ll do is we take into account what the design looks like, the market acceptance and the ecosystem, particularly the vendors.

“We can change (the design), but what happens to the investments (by the vendors). So this is something that we’ve got to balance. If we fail to manage this, customers are happy but the vendors won’t be happy – so this is the balancing act that we have to do,” the deputy CEO added. Proton’s issue with its parts suppliers is ongoing – basically, it boils down to the OEM not making/selling enough cars – full story here.

So, what will the eventual Proton X50 Facelift look like? A mule with Geely Binyue Cool styling has been spotted roaming local roads, and you can check it out here. Is the Binyue Cool look less aggressive than that of the Binyue Pro? Anyway, check out our launch report of the 2024 Proton X50 RC here.

GALLERY: 2024 Proton X50 RC Flagship

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