Proton’s miseries in Pakistan elevate as its local partner Al-Haj Automotive continues to get harsh criticism for failing to deliver automobiles and handle the refund issues.
The Malaysian automaker officially stepped into the market with the launch of the X70 SUV in December 2020 and Saga sedan in April 2021 but it hasn’t even started delivering cars to the customers who reserved them in the very first days. As a result of delivery failures and unfair price increases that were blatantly imposed on those waiting for deliveries even after making full payments, there were numerous protests on social media and large demonstrations outside of various dealerships. Bear in mind Proton has increased the prices by 112% (which means more than double the original price) without delivering the vehicles.
In addition, Al-Haj has failed to compensate people who had to cancel bookings as a result of commitment issues. Not to mention, four authorized dealerships have parted ways with Proton within the last month citing the above reasons. Proton once had 11 dealerships in Pakistan, according to their official website, which means they are now left with 7 only.
To make matters worse, now the affected customers have appealed to Prime Minister (PM) of Pakistan Anwar ul Haq Kakar, Chief Justice (CJ) Qazi Faiz Essa, and the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Gen Syed Asim Muneer to intervene. The affected customers expressed their suffering in a large press advertisement that appeared in leading newspapers, calling on the country’s premiers—the most powerful people in charge—to take action against the company.
In the above press ad, the customers complain that they have been waiting nearly three years for deliveries of the X70, which was introduced in December 2020. The customers also highlight that the company holds over Rs 1 billion of customers’ money while only a handful of units were given to selected customers & their images were shared on social platforms to gain public confidence.
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During all these years customers have tried everything but the company has completely failed to keep up with its commitments. According to customers, the refund cheques issued by the company have been bounced. This adds to the growing concerns since customers are neither getting the vehicles delivered nor getting their hard-earned money back. Customers further say they have tried every possible thing but the company is not cooperating with them at all. As a last option, the affected parties claim that, besides Allah, this is their only remaining hope. They anticipate that the CJ, PM, and COAS will step in and take strict action against Al-Haj Automotive and Proton be held accountable.
A computer animation professional with over 23 years of industry experience having served in leading organizations, TV channels & production facilities in Pakistan. An avid car enthusiast and petrolhead with an affection to deliver quality content to help shape opinions. Formerly written for PakWheels as well as major publications including Dawn. Founder of CarSpiritPK.com