Are We Ready for Plug-Ins?

More and more hybrid vehicles are being brought in by local automakers and distributors.

Among the car brands already distributing or had distributed hybrids locally are Toyota, Hyundai, Lexus, BMW, Land Rover.

One of the latest to introduce a hybrid vehicle in the local market is Mitsubishi Motors Philippines, bringing in the Outlander PHEV, a five-passenger compact crossover with 4×4 capabiity using both electric motors and a gasoline engine.

Initially only one dealership, Mitsubishi Manila Bay of Peak Motors Philippines Inc., is distributing the Outlander PHEV, touted as the best-selling plug-in hybrid electric vehicle in the world.

But Mitsubishi says other dealerships — Fast Autoworld Philippines Corporation, SFM Sales Corporation, Motor Plaza Incorporated, Mindanao Integrated Commercial Enterprises Incorporated — will be carrying the Outlander PHEV beginning early next year.

Is the local market ready for PHEVs and other hybrid and electrified vehicles? Or are they being brought in as aspirational models to showcase a brand’s latest technological advancements.

Let’s hear it from MMPC president and CEO Mutsuhiro Oshikiri: “MMPC is very excited to launch the Outlander PHEV in the Philippine market as the car best represents Mitsubishi’s expertise in automotive engineering and its ever evolving technology. The Philippines is one of the strongest markets of the brand and we are honored to be given the opportunity to make the Outlander PHEV available here in the country.”

According to Mitsubishi, the Outlander PHEV powertrain has both the benefits of purely electric vehicle and a hybrid engine.

It is equipped with a twin-motor 4WD system that delivers power independently to the front and rear wheels.

On full charge, the Outlander PHEV has a maximum range of 55 kilometers using battery power alone. For longer drives, 128 horsepower gasoline engine with 199 Newton meters of torque kicks in.

The Outlander PHEV features Mitsubishi’s Super All Wheel Control (S-AWC), Active Yaw Control (AYC), Active Stability Control (ASC) and Anti-lock Brake System (ABS).

Also added for safety are Adaptive Cruise Control, Forward Collision Mitigation, Blind Spot Warning (BSW) and Lane Change Assist, Automatic High Beam, Automatic High Beam, Ultrasonic misacceleration Mitigation System (UMS).

It also comes with an 8-inch Smartphone-Link Display Audio (SDA) system compatible with Android Audio.

The Outlander PHEV is priced at Php2.998 million.

New Isuzu milestone

Isuzu Philippines Corporation (IPC) has reached another milestone deserving of congratulations.

Isuzu Philippines says it has now breached the 300,000 total unit sales mark since it began operations in 1996.

In a press release, Isuzu said it reached the new sales milestone in August.

Since it began operations 23 years ago, Isuzu said it has sold 241,389 light commercial vehicles and 58,744 commercial vehicles.

Isuzu added that for 20 of those 23 years, it was the country’s No. 1 truck brand.

“The company is honored to have achieved this milestone, and as we move towards the next, we vow to continue to provide business solutions and at the same time uphold local manufacturing contributing to the Philippine economy,” said IPC president Hajime Koso.

“We are very thankful to our loyal customers, who have been our brand champions and stands as our inspiration in attaining utmost ‘Customer Success,” he added.

Koso also thanked the 40 Isuzu dealerships nationwide as well as its parts suppliers. “This sales milestone will not be possible without them,” he said.

Subway still on

The Metro Manila Subway Project (MMSP) is alive and well.

The first of six Tunnel Boring Machines (TBMs) to be used for the construction of the country’s first underground railway system was unveiled during a recent Virtual Tour and Factory Acceptance Test.

The event gave transport officials and members of media a virtual tour of the plant where the TBMs are manufactured and assembled.

“Today, I tell you, I am happy to see and witness the virtual aceptance of the tunnel boring machine. I will be happier when it finally arrives in January and February of next year. And I will be happiest when it will actually operate, and we’ll have the partial operability of the first underground railway, the Metro Manila Subway, before the end of President Duterte’s term,” Department of Transportation Secretary Arthur P. Tugade said.

According to the DOTr, six  Earth Pressure Balance TBMs will be used to tunnel and connect the partial operability section of the subway (Valenzuela-North Avenue), while fourteen TBMs will be used for the remaining section of the railway project. The first two completed TBMs are scheduled to be delivered in the Philippines by the end of January 2021, and the others will follow shortly in February 2021.

More Busway stations

The EDSA Busway continues to move forward toward full operations. Three more median bus stops have started to be used. These are at North Avenue, Quezon Avenue and the Nepa Q Mart.

There are now seven median EDSA Busway loading and unloading zones.  The first four were at Guadalupe, Ortigas, Santolan, and Main Avenue.

According to the DOTr, the EDSA Busway will have 29 bus stops in all.

When all EDSA bus stops are in operation, the bus commute time from Monumento to the Paranaque Integrated Terminal Exchange will be cut from 2 to 3 hours to just around 45 minutes, it added.


The Public Utility Vehicle Modernization Program (PUVMP) continues to make headway even during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Cebu People’s Cooperative (CPC) have added 100 new modern PUV bringing its total to 170 that would serve major routes in Metro Cebu.

Transport officials are in the right to commend the CPC at the recent roadshow it held to showcase the new addition to its fleet.

“Congratulations to Cebu People’s Coop of Cebu City. You have not onlyembraced the transformative government program to modernize our public transport system, but you have done so in the midst of the pandemic. A testament of the resilience sa mga Sugbuanon and the singleness of purpose to overcome the challenges to get things done for good of the people of Cebu,” LTFRB Chairman Martin Delgra III said.

According to a DOTr press release, the modern PUVs are equipped with GPS, CCTV, speed limiters, front and rear cameras, and indoor TV for entertainment,as well as air-conditioning systems and foam seats for a comfortable ride. 

Happy Motoring!!!

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