The future of Lotus is questionable after a Malaysian state-owned investment firm sold its stake in Proton today.

The deal worth $410m included a 42.7 per cent stake in Proton Holdings sold to car distributor and importer DRB-Hicom by Khazanah Nasional. DRB-Hicom builds and distributes Mercedes and Volkswagen models, and has eight assembly plants, four of which are for cars.

The future of Lotus, owned by Proton, is unknown at this stage. The British car maker will report on its future tomorrow. Proton is deeply unhappy at the lack of profit produced by the British company.

Proton bought into Lotus in 1996, in the fifteen years that have since passed, Lotus has not turned a profit. The fact that Proton is now privatised, can lead to a renewed focus on profitability.

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