Proton Cars (UK) is to begin the process of creating a stronger partnership with Lotus Cars by relocating its UK headquarters to new purpose built offices at the Lotus factory at Hethel in Norfolk. It is highly probable that Lotus cars will be sold through some parts of Proton's extensive UK sales network.

Proton Cars (UK) and Lotus Cars are both subsidiaries of the Malaysian car manufacturer, Proton.

Proton says the move to Norfolk will provide both companies with additional skills and disciplines, which will be of benefit to both Lotus and Proton customers. Proton Cars (UK) already handles parts distribution and warranty processing for Lotus Cars and will continue to provide these services on site at Hethel.

The announcement of the move was accompanied by the news that a new Proton Cars (UK) Managing Director has been appointed. Brian Collier takes over from Colin Low, who has returned to Malaysia to take a new role at the Proton factory.

Proton says that its Proton UK and Lotus sales units will work closely together in future and that this will be more easily achieved through both companies working from one UK base.

As well as the launch of new products in the small and medium car sectors, the first of a new family of high technology engines developed for Proton by Lotus Engineering will be phased into production next year.

The upcoming new new Proton models will be produced in Proton's new modular manufacturing plant currently under construction at Tanjung Malim in Malaysia.