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August 15, 2020

Hey Guys, Let's Help This Man Buy a Car

Attention carmakers: this guy is looking to buy a brand-new car. Well, make that 1,000 new cars and he’s willing to shell out 1.4 billion pesos for it. This guy is Mark Leviste and he’s the vice-governor of Batangas.

Awww…doesn’t he look adorable in the photo?

In a document posted on his official Facebook page and shared to us by his social media team, vice-gov Leviste is looking to equip the various barangays of Batangas with multi-purpose rescue vehicles under its Capability Building Program.

You can see the Invitation to Bid document below, and dealers/carmakers who’re eager to join will note that there’s a pre-bidding conference on August 18 (the bid deadline though is September 21, 2020).

The document itself doesn’t give too much detail as to what Batangas needs for its “multi-purpose rescue vehicle” (that’ll be revealed during the pre-bidding conference), but as enthusiasts, maybe we can give our two centavos worth, and tell this “cute-but-might-delete-later-photo” of a man what sort of vehicle his province needs.

Let me be the first to chime in.

Given it’s going to be used for rescue and disaster relief, I’d immediately go for a pickup truck. For sure, he’ll need the versatility and capable to go through rough terrain and/or floods. That leaves us with the usual suspects from Chevrolet to Toyota.

For his budget though, I’d probably steer him to a base 4x4 which some carmakers offer. Why? While a well-loaded 4x2 model is good for the city and a bit of porma, the real manly man work is done by 4x4s. After all, these rescue vehicles might need to go through landslides and such; good luck doing that with your 4x2.

That leaves us the following entries:
  • Ford Ranger 4x4 XLS / XLS Sport – P 1,181,000 to P 1,211,000
  • Foton Thunder 4x4 – P 1,263,000
  • Isuzu D-Max RZ4E 4x4 – P 1,288,000
  • Kia K2500 Double Cab Dropside 4x4 – P 995,000
  • Maxus T60 4x4 Elite – P 1,328,000
  • Mazda BT-50 3.2 4x4 – P 1,350,000 (net of discounts)
  • Mitsubishi Strada 2.4 GL 4WD – P 1,175,000
  • Nissan Navara 2.5 EL 4x4 – P 1,285,000
  • Toyota Hilux 2.4 E 4x4 – P 1,202,000
They’re all great choices, but without knowing what Mr. Leviste’s requirements are, I’d go for a rather oddball choice: the Kia Karga Dual AC 4x4.

At P 1,215,000, not only is it priced at the same level as the pickup trucks mentioned above, but it already comes with an enclosed MPV body. It has a maximum seating of 18 people (9 with proper social distancing measures). The P 185,000 in change can then be used to outfit it with required rescue equipment—some can even be turned to ambulances. An added bonus? It’s less likely to be used by barangay personnel for non-official use—you know, like malling on a Sunday?

What do you guys think? What sort of vehicle will you get if you had Mr. Leviste’s budget and requirements?

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