Lotus has been owned by Proton since 1996.
Lotus has been in limbo in recent years. After former CEO Dany Bahar revealed his plans to build six new models, its parent company was sold, Bahar was sacked, his plans were canceled and a new CEO was hired in the form of former Peugeot chief Jean-Marc Gales. The industry has been waiting ever since to find out what Gales would do with the storied marque, and now we seem to have some indication.
It's been about two years since DRB-Hicom took over Proton, and through it Lotus. One of its first courses of action was to fire the existing CEO, Dany Bahar, and proceed to scrap most if not all of his (arguably over-) ambitious plans. In his place they put one of their own – Aslam Farikullah – as Chief Operation Officer, but now the Malaysian-owned British automaker has attracted an industry heavyweight to lead it into the future.
More details have come out about the legal suit and countersuit being contested between Lotus cars owner DRB-Hicom and former CEO of Lotus Dany Bahar. Bahar was brought in by Malaysian car company Proton in 2009 to turn Lotus around, and events during his tenure have made just about everyone wonder "What's going on?" That's not unusual – it can take a minute to figure things out when a new leader takes everything in a new direction – but in this case the clouds didn't clear quickly e
Honda and Malaysia's Proton have signed an agreement to work together, but before we go and start dreaming about a Lotus-derived Honda S2000 successor, Automotive News Europe breaks down what the deal could mean for both automakers. Proton (parent company of Lotus) has been trying to build a relationship with bigger automakers (including Volkswagen) since being acquired by DRB-Hicom back in January, but this agreement with Honda could be a great opportunity for the rebuilding automaker to grow.
The friction between Volkswagen and Proton continues, but this time it's coming from Germany, not Malaysia. The two firms have talked about some sort of partnership, or VW buying Proton outright, intermittently going back to 2005. In 2007 a partnership was nixed after a year of talks, then in 2010 after more talks a partnership was nixed again. The landscape has changed since then, with Malaysian firm DRB-Hicom taking control Proton and buying out the Malaysian government's stake. Volkswagen is
Let's say you're an automaker bent on world domination looking to grow your sales. That's going to have you looking at Asian markets, because that's where some of the biggest growth has been, and that's exactly what Volkswagen is doing as it considers making another run at Malaysia's Proton.
The plan put forth by former Lotus CEO Dany Bahar was to explode the British brand into the high-dollar sports car segment and directly challenge its marquee names. The first explosion came with the surprise introduction of five concepts at the 2010 Paris Motor Show. What has continued to surprise, though, is that the explosions haven't stopped: parent company Proton has had troubles leading to a reworking of its Formula One involvement, its IndyCar effort has had a rough ride, Proton's sale to
DRB-Hicom has suspended Lotus CEO Dany Bahar pending an investigation into the executive's conduct. While the sports car manufacturer's parent company has declined to comment on exactly which facet of Bahar's conduct is in question, The Telegraph reports the inquiry may be related to expenses. DRB-Hicom is said to have confiscated Bahar's laptop and mobile phone as part of the investigation. Reportedly, the executive rented in two homes in Norwich, both paid for by Lotus.
There have been plenty of rumors surrounding the fate of Lotus and its relationship with its longtime parent company, Proton. Some are saying that Dany Bahar has been axed as CEO, that the company is undergoing bankruptcy protection, and that its involvement in Formula One has drawn to a close. Lotus itself is hard at work quashing those rumors – attributing most to the people at Caterham – but among them we have some juicy tidbits of information regarding its arrangement with the Fo
Group Lotus will no longer sponsor Lotus F1, according to Autosport.com. The manufacturer pulled its endorsement shortly after parent company Proton announced the sale of Group Lotus to DRB-Hicom. Additionally, Proton won't purchase 50 percent of the race team as previously agreed.
Lotus has put a halt to all development of future models. The news comes after the Malaysian government sold its controlling stake in Lotus parent company Proton. According to EVO, the company's takeover regulations require all involved parties to enter into a "lockdown" wherein anything outside of normal business is brought to a halt. For Lotus, that means stalling development for 60 days and pushing back launch dates for vehicles like the Exige S, Evora GTE and the upcoming Esprit successor. L
Reports this week out of London indicate that Lotus CEO Dany Bahar seeks a partner, or even a purchaser, for the Hethel firm. Malaysian automaker Proton currently owns Lotus, but Proton was taken over in January when Malaysian auto parts supplier DRB-Hicom bought the government's controlling interest. The trend with new ownership is to put every project on the table for review, and with Lotus in the midst of massive initiatives – Esprit, Elan, Eterne, new Elise and in-house V8 – it m
A deal has been reached to sell the Malaysian government's controlling, 43-percent stake in Proton Holdings Bhd to Malaysian conglomerate DRB-Hicom for $410 million. Rumors surrounding the deal have been in the news for a few months, with Proton's deteriorating profits leading to speculation about if the government would get out and who be the savior. Of course, the other big question was: what happens to Lotus in the event of a sale.
There's a lot of smoke going on over at Lotus, but we still have a while to wait before we get the first evidence of fire: the new Lotus Espirit and it's in-house V8 won't be here until 2013. On the other side of the world, there's a fair bit of smoke and fire happening at Malaysian automaker Proton, which owns Lotus.
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