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May 31, 2013

Shell Introduces Philippine Student Contigient to the 2013 Eco-marathon Asia

Photos by Ulysses Ang
They say the first automobile race happened right after the second car rolled off the assembly floor. The spirit of competition has always been innately human, but even more so when it’s a combination of man and machine. And though motorsports has commonly been about which car can run faster, brake shorter, and handle better; there’s another kind of competition—one that takes into account the concept of smart mobility, environmental-consciousness, and innovative thinking. This is the Shell Eco-marathon.

May 29, 2013

All-New 2013 Kia Carens Officially Launched; Public Debut Slated on Friday, May 31

When you think MPV, you think of something practical but nothing much more. They’re seen as the modern equivalent of beasts of burden—great at ferrying passengers and large cargo. It isn’t something you bring to a Friday night date much less brag to the entire barkada. It’s a car purchased mostly because of necessity rather than desire. That is until the sleek and sexy Kia Carens came along.

May 28, 2013

Toyota Opens 4 New Dealerships to Start 2013

This year, the #1 Automotive Company in the Country has added four more dealerships to its network to kick-off the next phase of its expansion plans. Toyota Calamba, Laguna (TCL), Toyota Mandaue South, Cebu (TMD-S), Toyota Marilao, Bulacan (TMR) and Toyota Tacloban (TTL) opened its doors to the public recently to cater to the growing demand of the market in these provinces. The opening of these dealerships in key strategic areas outside NCR aims to bring Toyota’s products and services closer to its customers. In 2012, Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) opened 3 new dealerships namely: Toyota Global City (TGC), Toyota La Union (TLU) and Toyota San Pablo (TSP). With the addition of these new outlets, Toyota’s network of dealerships has already reached 35 and this number is expected to increase by the end of the year.

A Date with M: BMW Driving Experience 2013

Photos by Ulysses Ang
Even if we were clothed in the most casual clothes imaginable (and the occasional Sketcher’s Shape-Ups), we felt like a million bucks when our ‘shuttle service’, a fleet of BMW 7 Series limousines arrived just to bring us to the Clark International Speedway. We certainly felt every bit like that British super spy, sans the Vodka-Martini and the suave accent. Nonetheless, with our good looks intact, we couldn’t wait for our date with M. And when we talk about ‘M’ here, we don’t mean a frumpy, grumpy middle-aged woman boss; what we’re referring to is the most sacred letter to any car enthusiast: the BMW M line.

Review: 2013 Mitsubishi Mirage GLS CVT

Photos by Ulysses Ang
Car of the Year – Philippines: that’s high praise indeed for the Mirage, the first sub-compact to have won the award and the first for Mitsubishi. It certainly bodes well for a car that beat the entire resurgence of affordable sports cars. But it also raised expectations given it handily wiped out the competition. So is the hype surrounding the Mirage all worth it, or is it all, well, just a mirage?

May 27, 2013

New Audi R8 Set to Arrive Q3 2013

The Audi R8 is the sporty spearhead of the Audi model lineup. The high-performance sports car is now more dynamic and powerful than ever before thanks to numerous improvements, including a newly developed seven-speed S tronic. The fast-shifting dual-clutch transmission features a launch control function that provides optimal traction when starting. Power is delivered to the road via the quattro permanent all-wheel drive system with a rear-axle bias.  The standard sprint times have improved by 0.3 seconds while fuel consumption has been reduced by as much as 0.9 liters per 100 kilometer.

May 25, 2013

New Porsche Cayman Launched in Philippines

In an exclusive event attended by Porsche owners and guests held in Alabang, the new Porsche Cayman was unveiled during its official launching in the Philippines last May 18, 2013.

The third generation of the Cayman has been completely redeveloped. It is lower and longer, lighter and faster, more efficient and more powerful than ever. A longer wheel-base, wider track and larger wheels enhance the driving performance of the mid-engine sports car to a level without equal in its competitive class. The new two-seater is – after the 911 Carrera and Boxster – the third sports car model line from Porsche to feature innovative lightweight body design. The new Cayman is up to 30 kg lighter, depending on the specific model and equipment, and it consumes up to 15 per cent less fuel per 100 km than the previous model – despite higher engine and driving performance.

Wild Waters Can't Stop All-New Ford Ranger

The all-new Ranger is one of the toughest trucks in its segment today boasting class leading capability including best-in-class water wading of up to 800mm. When encountering flash floods on the road, drive with confidence and a peace of mind with the all-new Ranger as it can easily traverse through the demands of the coming rainy season.

May 24, 2013

Subaru Forester Earns IIHS Top Safety Pick; Only Compact SUV to Earn "Good" Marks Overall

Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. (FHI), the manufacturer of Subaru automobiles, is pleased to introduce the announcement made by Subaru of America, Inc. that the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS; a nonprofit organization supported by auto insurers in the US) has awarded the best possible ranking of  2013 TOP SAFETY PICK + (TSP+) to the all-new Forester currently sold in the North American region. The Forester earned an overall rating of good in the small overlap test required for winning the TSP+ as the only one of 13 small SUV. This is the third TSP+ award for Subaru vehicles following the last year’s first win of 2013 Legacy and Outback (built after Aug. 2012). The Institute’s 2013 “TSP+” award which requires “good” ratings for occupant protection in at least four of five IIHS evaluations, with no less than “acceptable” in the fifth test.

Petron Lakbay Alalay Backs "Paoay Kumakaway!" Tourism Campaign

For the whole month of May, Petron’s landmark motorist assistance program, Lakbay Alalay, is helping the Provincial Government of Ilocos Norte’s (PGIN) tourism campaign, billed as Paoay Kumaway!, now on its second year of implementation.

Hyundai and Gawad Kalinga Inaugurates Hyundai Center for Green Innovation

Hyundai Asia Resources, Inc. (HARI) through HARI Foundation, Inc. (HFI) and Gawad Kalinga (GK) celebrated the inauguration of the Hyundai Center for Green Innovation (HCGI), located at the GK Enchanted Farm in Bgy. Encanto, Angat, Bulacan. The state-of-the-art green innovation center, built by architects and engineers commissioned by HFI, fuses the ethnicity of the “bahay kubo” and the Hyundai design philosophy of "Fluidic Sculpture”. It is envisioned to be the epicenter of ideas, talents, and resources committed to growing a sustainable green economy and community for the Filipino and stands as a symbol of the evolution and progress of Hyundai and GK’s enduring partnership to build empowered, self-sustaining Filipino communities from the grassroots.

May 23, 2013

Isuzu Philippines Sales Rise 7.6% in April, Lifted by Crosswind

Isuzu Philippines Corporation’s (IPC) bestselling model once again powered the company’s sales in April, as well as in the first four months of 2013.

Combined reports from the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines Inc. and the Truck Manufacturers Association show that the Isuzu Crosswind AUV led IPC’s tally in April with 628 units sold, or a significant 22.7% rise compared to the model’s total of 512 units in March. Together with deliveries of the Isuzu Alterra SUV and D-MAX pickup, the company posted a 13.2% growth in its AUV, SUV and pickup vehicle lineup in April with 882 units sold compared to March’s 779-unit result.

May 22, 2013

Mitsubishi to Launch Mirage Sedan A.K.A. Attrage

All those rumors can be put to rest as Mitsubishi Motors Corporation officially announces the Mirage sedan, though it takes a different name: Attrage.

Built alongside the Mirage at Mitsubishi's Third Factory at Laem Chabang Industrial Estate in Chonburi province in Thailand, the name change may be due to the fact that the Attrage is slightly larger than the Mirage it is based off on. Though no details have been revealed as of yet, the Attrage is pointing out its generous rear legroom and large trunk. The Attrage is clearly the Concept G4 without the concept car bits.

Underneath the hood, the Attrage will share the same 1.2-liter MIVEC 3-cylinder engine that complies with Euro 4 regulations. It will also be available in both CVT or manual transmission variants.

With a Thai launch in July, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to determine that Mitsubishi Motor Philippines will indeed launch the Attrage sometime mid to late this year. In fact, sources indicate that the car maker is flying some journalists in next month for a special preview of the Attrage.

Peugeot Opens Temporary C-5 Libis Sales Outlet

In anticipation of the growing demand for Peugeot vehicles, Eurobrands Distributor Inc. (EDI), official importer and distributor of Peugeot vehicles in the country, has committed to opening 12 full service dealerships in the country over the course of 2013. To address the public’s clamor for Peugeot to have a sales outlet in the central business district immediately, EDI recently opened its C-5 Libis temporary sales outlet.

Toyota Motor Philippines Sales Up 33% in April Year-on-Year

Toyota Motor Philippines Corp. experienced a 33% increase in sales during the first four months of the year, compared to the same period last year. All in all, TMP sold a total of 23, 395 units garnering 41.3% of the market, according to the latest CAMPI report.

For the month of April, TMP registered a total of 6, 334 units. Furthermore, the company has maintained its lead in both the Passenger car segment and Commercial vehicle category selling 1,990 units and 4,344 units respectively.

Toyota’s line-up proved to be strong as several models took the top spot in their respective categories. The Toyota Vios continues to be the top-selling vehicle in the country with 1,476 units sold for the month of April. The Toyota Innova on the other hand, maintains its hold as the #1 MPV model with sales of 1,245.

“TMP experienced positive sales across the board, seeing continued strength with our locally manufactured Vios leading the charge,” said Michinobu Sugata, President, Toyota Motor Philippines. “2013 is forecasted to be another record breaking year as reflected in the performance of the industry in the 1st four months of the year.  We can expect this trend to continue as the Philippines shows growth in its economy and specifically the automotive industry.”

Petron Celebrating 80 Years with "Road to 80 Rewards" Promo

Petron, the country’s leading oil company, is celebrating 80 years of service to Filipino motorists in September this year. And to shower their loyal customers with bountiful tokens of appreciation, Petron has lined up a year-long series of promos under the banner “Road to 80 Rewards.”

Kia Launches "Kia Advocate" Program, Get a Chance to Win a Trip to South Korea

KIA Motors Corporation together with Columbian Autocar Corporation, exclusive distributor of KIA vehicles in the Philippines will once again recognize its family members for staying true and loyal to KIA through the KIA Advocate Program. It is a 5 day all-expense paid trip wherein winners were chosen according to criteria set by KIA.

May 21, 2013

Review: 2013 Ford Expedition EL Limited

Photos by Ulysses Ang

Some people simply like having bigger things. Give them a 4-inch smartphone and in a few months, someone will counter with a 6- or even 8-inch unit. Give them a 100-inch LED television, and someone will hit back with a 102-inch screen. Give them the well-equipped Ford Explorer and someone will still clamor for the Expedition. Perhaps this way of think is born from penal envy—the irresistible urge to own the biggest, most badass thing around. However, it could also be for more practical reasons (generous seating for 8 and luggage). Whatever your case may be, you’ll be glad to know that the Ford Expedition EL is still around to provide one of the biggest modes of land transportation available in the Philippines.

May 20, 2013

The Daddy Trap: Ford Offers Young Husbands, Daddies to Be Some Unique Parenting Tips

You got her pregnant—those were the first lines displayed in the AVP presentation marking Ford’s Daddy Day Out. Though those words certainly didn’t apply to me, James Deakin’s sheepish grin seems to indicate otherwise. Whether or not he’s guilty of something, I told him to volunteer to try on the Ford “Pregnancy Suit”—a unique suit which features belly weight inserts, a six-pound (three-kilogram) pouch that applies pressure to the bladder, and compartments for water and ball bearings that mimic mild fetal kicking. Initially, James was all smiles, playing with the suit’s belly and err, mammy glands, and even happily jogged for a couple of meters. But then, he started sweating, panting—clearly the suit taking its toll.

Valvoline Reiterates Commitment to Environment

Valvoline Philippines, a subsidiary of Ashland Inc., is reiterating its commitment to deliver world-class automotive products as well as being environmentally-friendly in a press conference held last week. As one of the world’s leading lubricant and motor oil manufacturers, Valvoline is offering a full range of products to offer unparalleled protection for your car from its interior to its engine and even its exterior.

May 19, 2013

Sony Confirms Gran Turismo 6 for Holiday 2013 Release on PS3

It seems the Playstation 3 will be given the swansong it deserves. Sony has just officially confirmed that Gran Turismo 6 will debut for the Playstation 3 video game console this holiday season.

GT6, as it's commonly known, will boast 1,200 cars, 33 locations, and 71 track layouts. Plus, GT6 will use an entirely new game and physics engine which "pushes the limits of the PS3".

A demo version of GT6 will make its way to the Playstation Store for download sometime in July and will feature 19 cars. The launch of the demo version will also serve as the kick off to GT Academy 2013.

McLaren Reunites with Honda Starting 2015

McLaren is delighted to confirm that it will form a new multi-year Formula 1 technology partnership with Honda.

From the start of the 2015 season, McLaren's Formula 1 cars will race using Honda engines and energy recovery systems, renewing an association that became one of the most successful and powerful in Formula 1 history during the 1980s and ’90s.

Bentley Manila Opens

The very first ever Bentley showroom in the Philippines was inaugurated last May 8, 2013 with a simple ceremony attended by VIPs and Media guests.  This exclusive event was marked with the ceremonial ribbon cutting led by PGA Automobile Chairman Robert Coyiuto, Jr., together with UK Ambassador Stephen Lillie, and Bentley Regional Director for Asia-Pacific and Middle East, Geoff Dowding.  In a keynote speech delivered by Robert Coyiuto Jr., he stated, “Today, PGA Automobile formally embarks on a new adventure – a partnership with Bentley Motors and I am proud to bring you one of Britain’s oldest motor companies, well known and admired as a manufacturer of exclusive automobiles, founded 94 years ago by Walter Owen Bentley.”

Honda Offers Great Deals This Summer

Honda Cars Philippines, Inc. (HCPI) announces this season’s promo that is packed with great deals and exciting perks for its various models.

May 14, 2013

Review: 2013 Subaru Forester XT

Photos by Ulysses Ang
The Forester is perhaps the most important product for Subaru. What was once an odd little all-wheel drive wagon on stilts has matured into a competitive crossover that accounts for about half of exclusive Philippine distributor, Motor Image Pilipinas’s total sales. With those numbers continuing to swell even in the third-generation (SH5)’s twilight hours, engineers and designers found themselves in the unenviable position of being asked to build up on the strengths of the outgoing model while trying to achieve better fuel efficiency, more useable space, and a more refined drive.

Chevrolet Set to Re-Enter Makati with New Dealership

Chevrolet is set to re-enter the Makati market with the formal groundbreaking of its newest dealership located in the heart of the business district’s automotive row. Last week, The Covenant Car Company, Inc. (TCCCI), the exclusive importer and distributor of Chevrolet automobiles and parts in the Philippines formally signed an agreement with BT Auto Sport, Inc. to open a new dealership located along the vibrant automotive strip along Pasong Tamo Extension in Makati City. The new venue is ideal in terms of size, location, and accessibility for the market.

May 13, 2013

Blaupunkt is Back in the Game

Europe’s number one audio specialist Blaupunkt is BACK – and quite impressively so – with a selection of modern car radios, stylish headphones and products designed for contemporary home entertainment. This was the message that Blaupunkt Philippines announced in a launch held recently. “We are back with guns blazing armed with the latest in car and personal audio,” says Edbert Tiu, President of Blaupunkt Philippines.

Volvo Philippines Complies with New MMDA Conduction Plate Regulations

Following the recent directive of the Metro Manila Development Authority regarding the use of conduction sticker numbers for cars without license plates, Volvo Philippines extended its care for new Volvo owners by providing them with specially-made conduction plates until they have received their actual vehicle license plates.

100 Free Movie Passes Up for Grabs Through

Iron Man 3, The Wolverine, Man of Steel, Fast and the Furious 6 –are all movies to watch out for in the coming months. Now you can get a chance to watch them for free by simply posting an ad on

This May, Team, in cooperation with SM Cinema, will be giving away 100 Free Movie Passes weekly beginning April 30 to June 2, 2013. This really makes it a “Mas Ayos Dito!” selling experience on

Phoenix Petroleum Sponsors 22nd Trans Sport Show

Phoenix Petroleum Philippines, the country’s youngest and most progressive petroleum brand, continues its partnership with Trans Sport Show for 2013 slated on May 30-June 2 at the SMX Convention Center by Mall of Asia.

The leading independent petroleum company confirmed this partnership—the third of a five-year contract between the two companies—with the slogan “Phoenix Petroleum Fuels A Driving Generation.” For 2013, the company is still the show’s main “diamond” sponsor.

May 9, 2013

Honda Wants You to Celebrate Mother's Day in Dealership Open House

Honda Cars Philippines, Inc. celebrates Mother’s Day with an open house event happening in all Honda dealerships nationwide from May 10-12. This weekend, Honda welcomes all families to their showrooms, offering its full line-up of vehicles moms will surely enjoy, available for viewing and test drive.

Ford Philippines Continues to Outpace Industry, Sales Up 63 Percent in Best-Ever April Performance

Ford Philippines today reported sales that continued to outpace the overall industry, with retail sales jumping 63 percent year-over-year to 1,101 vehicles.

The strong month represented Ford’s best-ever April performance in the Philippines, and continued the company’s momentum from a record first quarter performance. Ford’s year-to-date retail sales have now risen 82 percent to 3,786 vehicles.

22nd Trans Sport Show on May 30, 2013

How does one take originality, innovation and perfection and improve on it? For the 22nd Trans Sport Show, the answer will happen on May 30, as the country’s longest running automotive show unlatches the hood once again at the SMX Convention Center in the SM Mall of Asia grounds.

May 8, 2013

Audi Ad Pits Old Spock vs New Spock

Here is something to lighten your Wednesday.

It's a cheeky and funny advert featuring the Old Spock, Leonard Ninoy going against New Spock Zachary Quinto. The advert features the Audi A7 and is the second US Summer blockbuster film Audi has tied up in, the first being Iron Man 3.

Star Trek Into Darkness opens in the Philippines on May 15.

Philippine Car Price Guide: May 2013

In this installment of the Philippine Car Price Guide, we feature the following additions/changes:
  • Chevrolet Spark (facelift)
  • Ford E-150 (price adjustment)
  • Ford Everest (price adjustment)
  • Ford Expedition EL (price adjustment)
  • Ford Focus (price adjustment)
  • Honda City (facelift)
  • Kia Carens
  • Kia Carnival (new variant)
  • Kia Sorento (new variants)
  • Mazda CX-9 (facelift)
  • Suzuki Alto 800
  • Suzuki Swift DZire
  • Volvo S80 (price adjustment)
  • Volvo V40
  • Volvo XC60 (new variant)

Honda Cars Breaks Ground in Calamba City, Laguna

Honda Cars Philippines, Inc. (HCPI) has recently added to its list of car dealerships, Honda Cars Calamba, as it broke ground on its future site. Soon to rise along Maharlika Highway, Barangay Milagrosa, Calamba City, residents of the area will enjoy more convenient access to Honda’s world-class products, services and facilities.

With a land area of 3,000sqm, Honda Cars Calamba is strategically placed at a very accessible location for the customers going or coming from the city proper and nearby towns and cities. This dealership shall carry the latest Honda product line-up and complete vehicle service facilities such as general repair, preventive maintenance and body-and-paint. Honda Cars Calamba is another fulfillment to HCPI’s promise to bring products and services with utmost quality to its customers.

Groundbreaking ceremony was headed by Mr. Tatsuya Natsume, President and General Manager of Honda Cars Philippines, Inc. (HCPI) and Mr. Anthony N. Cheng, President of ANC Group and their executives.

May 7, 2013

Review: 2013 Mercedes-Benz GLK 220 CDI

Photos by Ulysses Ang
Tune in to MTV and chances are you’ll see a Mercedes-Benz somewhere there. And it’s not on MTV Classics, mind you. No sir! Save for the one or two you’ll see with wire wheels and eight-track decks, most are the modern variety used to dress (pimp) up rap videos. It’s one slick marketing move—transforming Mercedes’s image from your daddy’s car to Puff Daddy’s (excuse me, P. Diddy’s) car overnight. It’s not anymore the car for the rich and geriatric. It’s hip and it’s cool. It’s the new yuppie mobile!

May 5, 2013

Ford Motor Company Appoints Kay Hart as Managing Director of Ford Philippines

Ford Motor Company has announced the appointment of Kay Hart as managing director, Ford Philippines, effective June 1. She will report directly to Matt Bradley, president, Ford ASEAN. Hart is currently serving as Dealer Development and Field Operations Director, Ford Asia Pacific, based in Shanghai, China.

Hart will replace Randy Krieger, who has been appointed director, Marketing and Sales, Ford ASEAN. Krieger will be based in Bangkok and will continue to report to Bradley.

May 1, 2013

Suzuki Philippines Launches All-New Alto 800 and Swift DZire

Filipino motorists will continue to experience environment-friendly driving and best-in-class mileage as Suzuki Philippines Inc., the only integrated automobile and motorcycle company in the country, recently launches the all new Alto 800 and the Swift Dzire.

With the competitive price points of these latest offerings, Suzuki eyes to take a bigger chunk of the market in the subcompact car segment.

Honda Cars to Expand in San Juan and Cebu

Honda Cars Philippines, Inc. (HCPI) breaks ground in Greenhills, San Juan, signifying the start of construction of the newest addition to the growing number of Honda Car dealerships, and following its commitment to bring quality products and services closer to its customers.

Marlon Stockinger to Parade Lotus F1 Car in Manila Speedshow

On May 4 to 5, the streets of Manila will bear witness to some never-before-seen motor action.

Filipino-Swiss racer Marlon Stockinger will sit behind the wheel of the famed Lotus Formula 1 car and give Filipino fans a much-anticipated demo at the first ever Manila Speedshow. The event opens on May 4 at the Quirino Grandstand, the starting line for the F1 car demo, and will conclude on May 5 at the Mall of Asia Atrium with an adrenaline-pumped exhibition.