**SATIRE, PARODY, UNTRUE. Just a joke, folks**
SHAH ALAM — DRB-HICOM Bhd today announced the appointment of an artificial intelligence-enhanced Proton Inspira 2.0 as Proton Holdings Bhd’s new chief executive officer, following the investment conglomerate acquiring the carmaker a few weeks ago.
At the announcement ceremony, DRB-HICOM group managing director Datuk Seri Mohd Khamil Jamil said that the parent company had made the perfect choice in putting the fate of the national automaker in the hands of a car they had built.
“DRB-HICOM has always maintained that we cannot afford to appoint just about anybody, especially those not from the auto industry. We’d want the new Proton CEO to really know the product. And who would know cars better than a car?” said Khamil at the Press conference, as the Inspira, serial number 3765-210-0444-IQ57 looked on, its red ‘Knight Rider’-inspired sensor light swooshing calmly on its grille.
“Throughout Proton’s almost 3 decades of operation, humans have called the shots,” Khamil continued. “And as the company enters a crucial chapter, where the stakes are higher and global competition is getting stiff, we cannot afford to risk human error. Inspira here will be able to make logical, objective and heartless decisions that would benefit the company and the cars it produces, free from emotions or political pressure,” said Khamil, as the new CEO scanned the faces of all the journalists in the conference hall, the supercomputer under the hood buzzing menacingly. “This is a car business, and it’s best to leave the hard decisions to those in the business.”
Khamil then proceeded to explain to the reporters the characters of the new CEO.
“The CEO started as an ordinary production car, of course. It was assembled just like any other Inspiras out there,” said Khamil. “But we picked the best one from the assembly line, and added on a few things that would make it functional in the boardroom as well as the highway.
“The AI is top of the line. Developed right here in the Proton Centre of Excellence by local programmers, the neural network sits in a Cray-XK7 supercomputer with multiple-core processors,” said Khamil, proudly showing the processor-infused engine bay. “We spared no expense. We wanted the very best leader for Proton, one who could carry the weight of the nation’s expectations.”
Responding to a reporter’s question about appointing a non-Malaysian as head of a Government-linked company, what with the Inspira model originating as a Mitsubishi Lancer GT, Khamil said that the Inspira was only ‘inspired’ by the Japanese automaker’s model, not an exact copy. “To say that the Inspira is Japanese is like calling a Malaysian who graduated from Harvard University an American! That would be very silly,” he retorted, to the laughter from the audience. “We are proud of the CEO’s Malaysian heritage and spirit, and have no doubt about its loyalty.”
Additionally, Khamil would not confirm or deny rumours of DRB-HICOM appointing other cars from Proton’s model lineup in the management.
“Let’s start small, ladies and gentlemen,” he said. “As it is, we’ll be the first company in the world that has a non-human as CEO. While we celebrate our innovative step today, we should take baby steps into the next phase. Our expectations are high, but who knows, if the Inspira performs well, we’ll be seeing the Satria Neo as COO, Saga as CFO and Exora in charge of marketing?” said Khamil, as the current human being management team looked on nervously.