motoring

IPC Provincial Dealerships Resumes Operations Under GCQ Guidelines

May 19, 2020

Isuzu Philippines Corporation has re-opened a number of its provincial dealers as government eases quarantine measures. These dealerships are located in areas declared by the government’s Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) as being qualified to be downgraded from the strict Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) status to General Community Quarantine (GCQ), which means that certain non-essential economic and social activities may resume, but would still follow certain guidelines to minimize the public’s exposure to, and spread of, the deadly Coronavirus Disease 2019 (CoViD-19).     The following Isuzu dealerships are already open: Isuzu Isabela, Iguig, Naga, Calapan, Dumaguete, Bohol, Leyte, Cagayan De Oro, Butuan, Dipolog and General Santos.     In compliance with the IATF-EID’s guidelines for businesses within the GCQ-designated areas, these dealerships shall strictly enforce health measures such as social distancing and regular disinfection of showroom and service shop.     For onsite servicing and vehicle deliveries and pickups, physical distancing will still be enforced, as well as wearing face masks. Subject vehicles shall also be disinfected before and after servicing. For vehicles to be picked up for servicing, customers are advised to remove all valuables from the vehicle;     Before releasing to customers, brand new vehicles will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected. Vehicles that will be brought in for servicing, on the other hand, will be cleaned and disinfected prior to entering the service area and before releasing to customers.     The same operational measures shall be followed for other Isuzu dealerships that will open in other parts of the country once their areas are downgraded from ECQ to GCQ.     Isuzu clients are encouraged to contact the dealership’s hotline to book for sales and service appointment for faster transaction once in the showroom. For the list of dealer hotline, log on to www.isuzuphil.com for more details.     IPC and its nationwide network of 45 dealers have always kept the Filipinos’ health, safety, and well-being in mind. In this “new normal” forced upon the world by a global pandemic, IPC continues to be every Filipino’s responsible partner.

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Toyota Launches New Products and Services for New Normal Operations

May 19, 2020

Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) continues to deliver ever-better products and services to provide convenience and safety to customers amidst the country’s transition to the new normal. TMP’s digital platforms are constantly updated to make information readily available, and more features will be coming soon to meet every customer’s needs anytime and anywhere. TMP will also be offering more options and deals that will make car purchase lighter for customers.     TMP recently launched a dedicated webpage at https://toyota.com.ph/hereforyouwhich contains regular updates on dealer openings, frequently asked questions, the latest COVID-related news and announcements for customers, and links to assist our customers in any other inquiries they might have.      The Customer Assistance Center is also operational and is accessible at customerassistance@toyota.com.ph for any customer concerns and inquiries.     While some dealerships are still waiting for their respective local government units to allow resumption of operations, customers can check out their dream Toyota in the comfort and safety of their homes at https://toyota.com.ph/vehicles. Information such as vehicle specifications and features, price list, and current promos are also available here. For further inquiries on specific models, customers may leave their personal information in the inquiry form and choose their preferred dealer.  The virtual showroom will be available soon to provide our customers with the dealership experience in a better digital platform from making inquiries to looking at their preferred vehicles’ exterior and interior without having to leave their homes.     While some dealerships are still waiting for their respective local government units to allow resumption of operations, customers can check out their dream Toyota in the comfort and safety of their homes at https://toyota.com.ph/vehicles. Information such as vehicle specifications and features, price list, and current promos are also available here. For further inquiries on specific models, customers may leave their personal information in the inquiry form and choose their preferred dealer.  The virtual showroom will be available soon to provide our customers with the dealership experience in a better digital platform from making inquiries to looking at their preferred vehicles’ exterior and interior without having to leave their homes.     TMP values the importance of mobility and acknowledges the challenges that come with the new normal and GCQ. TMP will continue to provide flexible financing schemes, extended payment terms, and payment holiday terms to ensure that car purchase is lighter for our customers. Free services like periodic maintenance, insurance, and BactaKlenz vehicle sanitation will also be available so the customers get more value with their purchase.     Check out https://toyota.com.ph/news/ToyotaAdvisory for updates on advisories and daily dealer reopening schedule. For more Toyota updates, visit www.toyota.com.ph or check out Toyota’s official social media pages at ToyotaMotorPhilippines (Facebook and Instagram), and @ToyotaMotorPH (Twitter).

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Kawasaki Joins the Fight Against Covid-19 by Producing Medical Face Shields for Donation

May 19, 2020

Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KHI) has begun manufacturing medical face shields and gowns at our Kobe and Harima factories, and has been donating them to medical facilities since the 20th of April.     Up to 500 medical face shields can be made per day using the transparent pattern film used for steel processing, and up to 1,400 medical gowns can be produced per day based on the guidelines by Osaka University Hospital. We have been donating the supplies to Kawasaki Hospital (Kobe City) since 20th April, and plan to supply to other prefectural hospitals as well through the Hyogo Prefecture Hospital Bureau.     KHI would like to express their appreciation for the medical staff who have been devoting themselves on the frontlines. By utilizing their design, production and quality control techniques to efficiently produce medical face shields and gowns for donation to medical institutions, they hope to contribute to the prevention of the spread of COVID-19.     KHI also reaches out to those who have lost loved ones to COVID-19. They sincerely hope that those currently suffering from the virus will recover quickly, and that the spread of COVID-19 will end as soon as possible.

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Maxus Offers Worry-free Ownership, Emergency Roadside Assistance

April 21, 2020

During these extraordinary days, every trip is essential to your family’s well-being and health. These are the days when you need your vehicle to perform at its best.      On board a Maxus vehicle, not only will you get the optimal power, performance, adaptability, and versatility of British-bred light commercial vehicle, you will also get maximum peace of mind through Maxus Philippines’ aftersales support.      For every Maxus G10 multi-purpose vehicle, Maxus V80 passenger, cargo or utility van, and Maxus T60 pickup purchased, Maxus Philippines has automatically guaranteed a total package of aftersales services. These are the following:      •    A 24/7 emergency roadside assistance, a pick-up and delivery service for customers, and on-site servicing for corporate fleet accounts. However, in consideration of the various community quarantine requirements in different local governments, servicing response time may vary from area to area, depending on the coordination among the LGU, vehicle owner, and the particular Maxus Philippines service provider;      •    For the Maxus G10 MPV, the periodic maintenance service (PMS) interval schedule covers the first 5,000 kms or 6 months and every succeeding 10,000 kms or every 12 months, whichever comes first. This is more convenient and more cost-efficient compared to the industry-standard 5,000-km PMS interval;      •    For the Maxus V80 and T60 variants, the PMS interval schedule is set for the first 5,000 kms or 6 months, and every succeeding 15,000 kms or every 12 months*;      •    All PMS schedules for the G10, V80, and T60 that fall within the duration of the extended enhanced community quarantine shall be extended for another 30 days after the official lifting of the quarantine period;      •    For all G10 MPV and V80 variants purchased since Maxus Philippines began operations in June 2019, the general warranty remains at 3 years or 100,000 kms*;      •    For all 4x2 and 4x4 variants of the Maxus T60 pickup, the general warranty for the Maxus T60 is 5 years or 100,000 kms*.

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Ford Shares Tips on Keeping Your Car in Shape During Quarantine

April 21, 2020

With the extension of the enhanced community quarantine until April 30, 2020 to further contain the spread of the Covid-19 virus, private vehicles will now have to be parked in the garage for a longer period of time, limiting movement only to purchase essential products such as food and medicines. In order to keep your vehicle in good condition while parked in your garage, here are car care tips from Ford that you can follow: 1. Choose a parking spot      Picking a spot where to park your vehicle is very important to its overall well-being. Do not park it on grass or soil, because moisture can make its way up and rust certain parts of your vehicle. Make sure to choose a covered area, or an area out of direct sunlight, and has a solid floor.   2. Give your vehicle a wash  Spend time to wash your vehicle in your garage or parking area once in a while to ensure you are able to remove dirt particles or even bird droppings. These will be harder to remove after a couple of days if left uncleaned.  3. Clean and place a dehumidifier inside the cabin  Give your interior thorough vacuum and throw away food particles or remnants. Having a clean car will avoid insects and animals from entering your vehicle and potentially causing damage to it. Placing an off the shelf dehumidifier inside your vehicle can help combat unwanted moisture, especially in more humid climates.   4. Fill up the fuel tank Make sure to fill the fuel all the way to the brim. This avoids a gap in your fuel tank where oxygen can oxidize. Oxidization is a chemical reaction between the fuel and oxygen which results in gum forming in your fuel tank, which can cause damage to your vehicle if not properly cleaned before using. 5. Overinflate the tires The tire pressure can slowly drop over a period of time, even when the car is not in use. Ensure that you overinflate your tires and the spare tire before parking your vehicle. This can also avoid flat spots forming on your tires. 6. Leave the parking brake down If you leave your parking brake engaged, it could possibly become stuck or seized after being parked over time. Unless you are parked on a slope, simply shift your vehicle into Park for automatic transmissions, or engage the first gear for manual transmissions.  Keep in mind about shifting back the transmission to Park or engage the gear back to neutral for manual transmission when starting the car. 7. Lift your wiper blades      This very simple advice can save you money and time after the strict travel restrictions. Lift the wipers and place a ball of cloth underneath it so the blades are not touching the windshield. Heat can damage the wiper blades over time and take away its wiping credibility. 8. Start your car once a week Take at least 10 minutes every week to start your vehicle. Let the engine idle so the oil and other fluids can circulate through the engine. This will also enable to recharge your battery if you do not have a trickle charger. This will keep your battery healthy and ensure an efficient start every time.

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A paradigm shift whose time has come: The 2020 Corolla Altis HEV self-charging automobile

March 30, 2020

In our not so distant past, the free falling prices of gasoline and diesel products brought by nil demand worldwide would have encouraged motorists to travel more. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has constrained all kinds of travel, including land transport. The sudden drop in demand has also brought to fore just how significant the effects of fossil fueled vehicles are in the air quality of the world’s leading metropolitan cities which are now enjoying clear blue skies and fresh air after so long a time. This brings us to the rising popularity of electric vehicles especially in urban areas. At zero emissions and negligible noise, they appear to be the personal vehicle of choice even in a post-COVID-19 word. But the present profile of the power industry in the Philippines precludes the efficient and economical operation of all electrical vehicles (EVs). This doesn’t have so much to do with the EVs per se but rather with the “generation mix” of how electricity in the country is now produced. When the full costs of a EVs operation in the Philippines are factored over its average economic life, it is still more expensive and inefficient compared the fossil-fueled internal combustion engines (ICE). Moreover, in the Philippines where the provision of charging points is next to non-existent, Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) chose to instead begin with Hybrid Electric Vehicles (HEV) in the transition from gasoline and diesel powered ICEs to full EVs As Ritsmond A. Kalambacal, TMP Group Head for General Job Technical Training Group 1, CSO-Customer Service Training Dept., Marketing Division explained to us: “Because of the generation mix and availability of electricity in Luzon (where the bulk of the Philippine market is), TMP believes HEVs are the electric vehicles that are most suited for the Philippines at this time,” he noted.  “We are constantly working to dispel misconceptions most motorists have about HEV: one, it is complicated to drive, and that it can be switched to full gas or full EV manually.” “However, the Corolla Altis HEV drives just like a conventional ICE powered vehicle and automatically charges the car’s batteries as needed. There’s no need to plug it in the grid to recharge it.” “The Toyota Corolla Altis HEV is ready for today’s infrastructure and local power situation,” said Elvin G. Luciano, PR and Communications Section, Marketing Services Dept. “New owners will need almost zero learning curve since it’s no different from driving a conventional powered Altis.” That’s exactly how auto journalist Jacob Oliva of autodeal.com.ph relates it in his review after trying out the Corolla Altis Hybrid for a week. “ I learned one thing: it’s no different from a vehicle with an internal combustion engine – except when you start the car up, which is as silent as a teenager escaping in the middle of the night.”  Teacher Bogie Teves, who blogs at  Bogie's Wonderland and was lucky enough to test drive the 2020 Toyota Corolla Altis during the HEV Toyota Hybrid Electric Vehicle Campus Tour in Cagayan de Oro on February 21, remarked: “The car was very comfortable but what stands out the most is the super quiet engine.” Previous Prius In fact, the Prius, Toyota’s first HEV was already introduced in the Philippines as early as 2009 but never took off even when the more affordable Prius C was later offered as a more affordable option. With taxes and other custom duties making them relatively expensive, Toyota loyalists opted for the more affordable gasoline powered models which in their minds returned more bang for the buck. Not the least, there were fears the new technology  wasn’t mature enough to guarantee the affordable life cycle costs that had long been the most decisive factor in making previous and new Toyota owners opt for the brand. However, topgear.com.ph's Drei Laurel  believes the 2020 Toyota Altis HEV’s P1,580,000  price point could be a “real game changer” relative to the Prius (P2,289,000) and Prius C (P1,907,000).   Keeping it simple To partly address these apprehensions and  simplify the workings of the Altis HEV, TMP distributed a pamphlet to students who attended its Feb. 21st  lecture at a local restaurant “HEV 101 Hybrid Electric Vehicle powered by Toyota.” The material describes the HEV as “Combining one gasoline engine with two electric motors, the Toyota Hybrid Synergy Drive makes the vehicle powerful, fuel efficient and environment friendly.” One System. Two Worlds. “Enjoy the performance that you’re used to getting from a gasoline engine, while experiencing more kilometers per liter and generating less pollutants.” Power and Performance. Fuel efficiency and lower emissions. “One motor keeps your vehicle moving at low and moderate constant speeds, and charges the battery when you brake. Need to go faster? The other motor starts the gasoline engine to add power, and also fills up the battery. The engine turns off automatically when you come to a full stop.” One gasoline engine. Two electric motors. “The Hybrid Synergy Drive works automatically to make your driving efficient and great for your wallet and the environment. All these while still giving you the great performance you love!” A simple illustration describes in a series of line drawings how the HEV “From a full stop or at a low or medium constant speed it uses one electric motor. Uses the gasoline engine and one motor when you need more power. Back to one motor when you need less power. And charges the battery when you brake.” For the techies reading this, the Altis HEV is powered by a 1.8-liter four-cylinder DOHC gasoline engine and an electric motor that together churns out 121hp at 5,200rpm and 142Nm of torque at 3,600rpm. First Dibs The effort seems to have paid off. As topgear.com.ph’s  Drei Laurel reported, “TMP tells us that it managed to sell 30 units of the Toyota Corolla Altis in October 2019. That figure accounts for a little over 12% of total Corolla Altis Sales. In contrast, that’s already five times the number of Prius units sold in all of 2018.” “At first glance, 12% doesn’t seem that impressive, but keep in mind that, at P1.58 million, the hybrid variant is by far the model’s most expensive option locally. The top-spec conventionally-powered Corolla Altis 1.6 V CVT, at P1.185 million, costs nearly P400,000 less. What’s more, TMP tells us it estimated the hybrid would only account for 7% of Corolla Altis monthly unit sales, so this is definitely a good start.”  The Lowdown Asked how much emissions are reduced in the HEV, Kalambacal replied: “Based on data from our regional office, the total emissions from our HEV is reduced by 34% per kilometer compared to a similar ICE powered vehicle.” He also dispelled apprehensions about the provincial “casas” capability to service the  HEV, explaining how local service centers are ready to maintain the “new” tech cars, with their mechanics being trained at TMP. Toyota also uses nickel-hydride batteries over the newer lithium ion batteries since the former are recyclable and have a mature technology compared to the latter. “If a HEV is not used often, the battery deteriorates. However, if the car is used responsibly, its batteries will last the entire life of the vehicle without need of replacement,” Luciano stressed. For Toyota hybrid vehicles beginning with model year 2020, the hybrid (HV) battery is covered for 5 years from original date of first use or 200,000 kms, whichever comes first. Coverage is subject to the terms and conditions of your New Vehicle Limited Warranty. Mileage Since I was unable to test drive the car itself due to other pressing concerns, I turned to existing reviews online to find out more about its mileage. In an article posted last October, autoindustriya.com’s Vince Pornelos reported consuming only 3.28 liters on a trip from Manila to Tagaytay.  In a later article, the same author reported the Altis HEV used only 0.622 of a liter on his 17.8 kilometer route from his home to the office in fairly heavy to moderate traffic at an average speed of 18 km/h. “That's not even two thirds of one liter because of a very high 28.5 kilometers per liter fuel economy figure with the A/C set for comfortable levels, yet still it only used up about 30 pesos worth of gasoline.”  In his previously mentioned review, Oliva  reported 14.2 km/L. after an hour on northbound EDSA starting around 4PM, while a leisurely drive on a Sunday clocked in 26.2 km/L on an average speed of 60 km/h. “The best fuel economy number I got with the Corolla Hybrid was 29.7 km/L – that’s after an hour on the highway with the cruise control set at 90 km/h.” “Of note, these numbers are better than our initial Corolla Altis Hybrid fuel efficiency testing, which was done with five people on board.” Put all these in the context of the current pandemic with gasoline prices in the Philippines dropping by P3.90/L from the start of 2020 before dropping by a further P4.25/L on March 17, and the Toyota Corolla Altis HEV looks more and more like a car whose time has come.

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