Proton X90 Flagship: Powerful, roomy, refined, premium appointments


AS a feature-rich family hauler in the large sports utility vehicle (SUV) arena, the six-seater top Flagship variant of the Proton X90 offers value at RM152,800 on-the-road.

Other X90 variants are seven-seaters, priced at RM123,800 (Standard); RM130,800 (Executive) and RM144,800 (Premium).

Climbing into the X90 Flagship reveals a roomy interior fitted with a mix of nice-looking plastics, smooth and chromed surfaces and Nappa leather upholstery.

Pilot headrests on the first and second row, as well as the second-row’s captain seats, provide a more upmarket feel.

Second-row occupants also enjoy the comfort of individual air-conditioning vents as well as air-conditioning fan control, and access to a USB-A and a USB-C port.

The X90’s large exterior dimensions translate into a spacious cabin with all three rows offering ample head, elbow and leg room.

We found easy walk-through access (a wide passage between the captain seats) to the third-row where there is adequate headroom for 1.7-metre persons, and each occupant enjoys the convenience of individual air-conditioning vents, cup holders, and access to a USB-A port and a mobile phone holder.


The third-row seats also fold flat for more cargo room.

A minor niggle for us was the lack of reading lights for third-row occupants.

Practicality is further enhanced by storage solutions such as seatback pockets on both front and second-row seats, for storing mobile devices and travel essentials.

The centre storage box is deep and there is a huge amount of space to store items.

The powered panoramic sunroof allowed us to enjoy natural light, while the 360-degree surround view camera system is a great help with parking manoeuvres in tight spaces.

Its six-speaker audio system produces crisp, high-quality sound for enjoyable listening experiences especially as the cabin is well insulated from road, wind and external noise.

Also, under low-light conditions, the Proton logo is projected onto the floor on both sides of the SUV when the front doors are opened.

As with other Proton models, the infotainment system does not support Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.


Like the Proton X50 B-segment (flagship variant) and X70 C-segment SUVs, the X90 has a powerful 1.5-litre petrol three-cylinder DOHC turbocharged mill, with direct fuel injection, which produces 177PS at 5,500rpm and 255Nm of torque from 1,500 to 4,000rpm.

Power is routed to the front wheels via a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox.

Based on the Geely Haoyue, the X90 is also Proton’s first mild-hybrid electric vehicle (MHEV) with a 48volt electric motor synergy (EMS) system which delivers better fuel efficiency as well as extra muscle (total system output of 190PS and 300Nm).

Our four days spent with the six-seater X90 Flagship only underlined the reasons for the top variant winning the Best Large Crossover/SUV (3-row seating) and Local Car of the Year awards at the StarCarSifu Editors’ Choice Awards 2023.

Award judges had pointed out that Proton’s biggest SUV is large, roomy, well-appointed and delivers a refined motoring experience, while the Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) provides a high level of safety.

Second row occupants relax on captain seats and pilot headrests, and the kit list includes an N95 cabin filter, air-conditioning vents for every row, seven charging points for mobile devices and a powered tailgate.

Exclusive appointments in the top two X90 variants include 19-inch wheels (instead of 18-inch), Nappa Leather upholstery, Auto Dimming Rear View Mirror, Security Tint, powered front passenger seat, Lumbar 2-Way adjustment for powered driver’s seat, Ambient Lighting and a wireless charger as well as quite a number of ADAS features.


Meanwhile, extra kit on the X90 Flagship are a panoramic sunroof, a ‘Boss Switch’ for the powered front passenger seat, second row ventilated Captain seats, and a Digital Video Recorder (DVR).
Presently, the X90’s three-row SUV rivals include the Chery Tiggo 8 Pro, Kia Sorento, Hyundai Santa Fe, Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace, Peugeot 5008 and Nissan X-Trail.

It’s also worth noting that, unlike other markets where the Haoyue gets a rear torsion beam suspension, the X90 has a more costly and complex rear multi-link set-up tuned for Malaysian roads, in order to provide better driveability and value.

On the centre console, a rotary dial selector allows three drive modes - Eco, Comfort and Sport.

We spent a lot of time driving in Comfort mode although there were many instances when we switched to Sport mode to enjoy more responsive acceleration.

There’s more than enough power from the 1.5-litre turbo mill with a 48V mild hybrid electric system, and low-end torque was always sufficient.

We found reassuring braking power, and the Continental EcoContact 6 tyres sized 235/50 R19 felt grippy when we pushed the X90 somewhat spiritedly on curvy roads.

The electric power steering felt well-tuned and accurate, while the suspension setup prioritises a smooth ride and did well in absorbing bumps and road imperfections on less-than-ideal surfaces.

There’s some body roll when we tackled corners with enthusiasm, but the X90 still impressed us with enough composure in the bends as we pushed it hurriedly along winding roads.

Proton’s range of X-series SUVs is known for delivering value and a refined motoring experience, and the X90 Flagship continues with the positive momentum.

It offers a compelling package for those seeking a spacious, comfortable, and well-equipped six-seater SUV with a smooth and responsive powertrain, at a more accessible price tag compared to other contenders in this segment.

Proton X90 Flagship (6-seater)
Engine: 1,477cc 3-cylinders in-line, 12-valve DOHC, TGDi (turbocharged petrol direct injection) with 48V electric motor
Maximum power: 177ps at 5,500rpm
Maximum torque: 255Nm at 1,500 to 4,000rpm
Electric Motor (maximum power/torque): 14ps/52Nm
Transmission: 7-speed Dual Clutch, with Manual Mode
Fuel tank capacity: 60 litres
Drive System: Two-wheel drive
Suspension: MacPherson struts (front); Multi-link with stabiliser (rear)
Features: 6 seats, All-round disc brakes, Electric Parking Brake, LED headlamps, LED daytime running lamps, automatic headlamps and Follow Me Home feature, automatic rain sensing front wipers, powered tailgate with Nearby Auto Open feature, Nappa Leather steering wheel, Cruise Control with Speed Limiter, Auto Dimming Rear View Mirror, Walk Away Auto Lock, Remote Engine Start, Panoramic Sunroof, Security Tint, Nappa Leather seats, powered and ventilated front seats, front passenger power seat with ‘Boss’ switch, second row ventilated Captain Seats, Auto Dual Zone Air-Conditioning with N95 Cabin Filter, second and third row air vents, 12.3-inch touchscreen, Voice Command, Bluetooth, Proton Link App, 6 audio speakers, 7 USB ports, Wireless Charger
Safety features: 6 airbags, Auto Brake Hold, Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Traction Control, Hill Hold Assist (HHA), Hill Descent Control (HDC), front and rear parking sensors, Digital Video Recorder (DVR)
Advanced safety features: Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB), Forward Collision Warning (FCW), Rear Collision Warning (RCW), Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) with Stop & Go, Intelligent Cruise Control (ICC), Lane Departure Warning (LDW), Lane Departure Prevention (LDP), Lane Centering Control (LCC), Emergency Lane Keep Assist (ELKA), Traffic Sign Information (TSI), Lane Change Assist (LCA), Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA), Intelligent High Beam Control (IHBC), Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS), Auto Park Assist (APA), 360 Camera with 3D Display
Price: RM152,800 on the road without insurance
Warranty: 5 years warranty, unlimited mileage; 5-year data package (1GB/month); 6 times free labour service

Autos Proton
CarSifu's Rating: 8.2