Proton Holdings Berhad has been at the forefront of Malaysia’s automotive industry for over 30 years, blazing a trail of innovation. Since its establishment, this premier car manufacturer has played a pivotal role in shaping Malaysia’s position as a formidable competitor in the global automotive arena. Proton’s distinction as the country’s sole national car company for more than a decade is a testament to its commitment to driving the industry forward.
Meaning and History
Founded on July 9, 1985, under the visionary leadership of Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, Malaysia’s fourth Prime Minister, Proton set forth an ambitious mission to create a domestic automobile brand of international recognition, reducing the nation’s dependence on imported vehicles. Today, Proton Holdings Berhad is headquartered in Shah Alam, Selangor, and takes pride in its cutting-edge facilities, including the renowned Proton City in Perak.
What is Proton?
Proton is a Malaysian automotive manufacturer. It is one of the leading car companies in Malaysia and has been producing cars since 1985. Over the years, Proton has developed and produced a variety of affordable and practical passenger cars, including sedans, hatchbacks, and SUVs, catering to the local and Southeast Asian markets.
1985 – 1992
The original Proton logo, unveiled in 1985, featured an elongated rhombus with a vibrant upper part and a silver base. Set against a blue background, the badge showcased a yellow star atop a horizontally placed yellow moon. The lowercase “more” wordmark, designed to resemble Arabic lettering, accompanied the badge.
1992 – 2000
By 1992, Proton sported three distinct badges. The star and moon logo was reserved for the local market, while two other badges, featuring white and yellow mandalas against a deep blue backdrop, adorned the exported cars. The wordmark received bolder contours and a darker blue hue, sometimes accompanying the badges, reminiscent of the 1985 design.
2000 – 2008
In a significant rebranding move, 2000 brought a new Proton badge. A dark purple shield outlined in gold cradled a green circle at its center, surrounded by a golden outline. Within the circle, a modern, fierce tiger faced right with an open mouth, symbolizing strength and courage. The wordmark, in sleek sans-serif capitals, rested above the emblem, boasting a glossy golden texture that added dynamism.
2008 – 2016
The badge’s color palette evolved to black and silver in 2008, exuding a more robust and solid appearance. The three-dimensional emblem exuded power and adapted well to various car colors. The lettering was slightly enlarged and boldened.
2016 – 2019
In 2016, the wordmark was moved below the crest, while all badge contours were redrawn with thicker lines and enhanced glossiness in the silver elements, resulting in a sleeker look. The wordmark, designed in a bold sans-serif style with a gradient metallic palette, featured thin black outlines, adding to its solidity and distinctness.
2019 – today
In 2019, the Proton visual identity underwent further changes, removing the shield from the logo. The circular emblem now showcases a redrawn tiger with an open mouth enclosed within a thin silver frame. The wordmark remains below the badge, maintaining a balanced and fresh color palette.
Proton’s wordmark has evolved significantly, transitioning from ornate lettering to a bold and clean font without serifs seen today. The current design features thick, straight letters in a confident square font, giving the logo a substantial presence without overwhelming the overall image.h
In terms of color code, Proton has traversed various options throughout its journey. Starting with blue and yellow, and experimenting with purple and gold, the brand has ultimately arrived at its most minimalist solution: metallic silver.