Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Mitsubishi Motors Philippines banners 2009 industry sales with 33% growth

As total industry surpassed its 2009 forecast and registers 6% growth

The Philippine automotive industry defied threats of automotive slump due to global financial crisis as it registered a 6.4% growth in 2009.   Total vehicle sales reached 132,444 units in 2009, exceeding the flat growth forecast for 2009 by the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines, Inc. (CAMPI) and Truck Manufacturers Association (TMA) or 125,000 units.  In 2008, total vehicles sold were 124,449 units. 

CAMPI and TMA credits this growth to the aggressiveness of automotive players in introducing new models and various promotion schemes as well as by  banks/financial institutions to accept auto financing from loans especially from entry level buyers such as small to medium scale entrepreneurs and also Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs).   In addition, the strong typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng last October which brought heavy floods in Metro Manila and Luzon areas caused irreparable damaged to most vehicles, have partially contributed to the increase as it accelerated vehicle replacements especially in the last quarter.

Meantime, Mitsubishi Motors Philippines (MMPC) closed 2009 with sales of 23,247 units, accounting for an impressive 32.5% growth compared to its 2008 sales of 17,539 units.  With this sales performance, MMPC also managed to improve its market share from 14% in 2008 to 17.6% in 2009, to maintain its strong No.2 position in the industry.


MMPC also registered growth in all segments for the first quarter.  Lancer and Galant sales totaled to 1,562 units for a slight 1% growth in the passenger car segment.     

In the light commercial vehicle segment, total growth registered was 36% as MMPC sold a total of 20,959 light commercial vehicles versus 15,382 units sold in 2008.   MMPC credits this performance to the strong sales of its new Montero Sport, Adventure, Strada pick ups and L300 models.   Both Adventure and L300 models continue to attract private and government fleet, as well as small to medium scale entrepreneurs, and OFWs and their dependents.  The Adventure and L300 continue to be significant due to their very low cost operation and maintenance and reliable performance of its now Euro-2 compliant 4D56 engine.

Meantime the warm market acceptance for the Montero Sport and Strada pick up were further validated by the various awards received last year.   For the Montero Sport, it was voted as the best mid-size SUV and best value for money by motoring media in the Auto Focus People’s Choice Award and also the best mid-size 4x2 SUV in the 2009 Car Awards Group Inc.  Likewise, the Strada was also voted as the best pick up in the Auto Focus People’s Choice Award.

In the truck and bus segment, MMPC sold a total of 726 units which has increased by 20% compared to 2008 due to improved fleet sales business.

Aside from its notable sales performance, MMPC also led the industry in customer satisfaction by topping both J.D. Power Asia Pacific 2009 Philippine Sales Satisfaction Index Study and Customer Service Index Study.   In December 2009, MMPC also achieved its 500,000th cumulative production milestone, being the first automotive manufacturer in the country to achieve this feat, as it rolled off its first locally assembled Lancer EX in its manufacturing plant situated in Cainta, Rizal.   MMPC is confident in further increasing sales of its Lancer EX given the sustained availability from its local production at the same time repositioning the price at very competitive levels.   The Lancer EX was initially introduced by MMPC in 2008 as a completely built up unit from Japan and received commendations from several local motoring media including the Car Awards group which proclaimed it as the best Compact Sedan for 2009.

For 2010, MMPC remains to be very optimistic as it aims to further increase sales volume and market share.  “Our objective for this year is to sell 28,000 or a 20% growth from our 2009 performance”, Froilan Dytianquin, Assistant Vice President for Marketing Services remarked.  “Our positive growth projections will be supported by our refreshed vehicle line up such as the 2010 models of the Lancer EX, Montero Sport, Strada and Adventure.   There will be also new exciting additions this year such as the Lancer EX Ralliart, a new compact cross over plus new variants of our core models.   Apart from realizing this sales target, MMPC will also continue to improve further its after sales to ensure the total satisfaction of our customers”, Dytianquin added.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Motolite at forefront of Philippine solar car project; supports SIKAT development for 2011 world challenge

Motolite, the country’s leading automotive battery brand and a strong supporter of alternative energies, has strengthened its commitment to the Philippine solar car project with its continued support for SIKAT, the country’s second foray in the World Solar Challenge.  SIKAT is currently being developed by a student team from the De La Salle University (DLSU), to compete in the 11th World Solar Challenge set for 2011 in Australia. 


The World Solar Challenge is an extreme endurance race, requiring solar-powered cars to travel 3,010-kilometers across the Australian Outback from Darwin to Adelaide.  First run in 1987, the race attracts teams from across the globe. 

SIKAT is the successor to SINAG, the country’s first solar car, which was conceptualized and developed by DLSU engineering students, and entered as the Philippine entry in the 9th World Solar Car Competition in 2007.  SINAG successfully completed the grueling cross-country route and finished 12th in a field of 41 solar cars from different countries worldwide. 

According to Ramon Agustines, chairman of the Philippine Solar Car Society (PSCS) and president of Motolite, “We believe solar energy can be the fuel of choice for transportation in the future, especially in the Philippines where solar energy is so abundant.  This year, we hope to build awareness of the benefits of solar technology and our country’s potential to play a leading role in this field.” 

To promote increased awareness of the benefits of solar energy among Filipinos, SIKAT was publicly launched last December 16, 2009, at the SM Mall of Asia in Manila.  This is the first of a series of provincial road shows that will bring SIKAT and solar energy closer to the general public.

“SIKAT will be a great source of pride for the Philippines, as it highlights our ingenuity, our will to lead, our capability for technology, and our commitment to the use of clean, renewable energy,” Agustines remarks. 

The Philippine Solar Car Society is a non-stock, non-profit organization designed to promote sustainable utilization of renewable energy sources. Its board of trustees is composed of top executives from some of the country’s leading companies — Ramon Agustines, president of Oriental Motolite Marketing Corporation; Edgar Chua, chief executive officer of Pilipinas Shell; Henry Co, chairman of Ford Motor Co.; Roberto Kanapi, vice-president for communications of Pilipinas Shell; Tammy Lipana, chairman and senior partner of Price Water House Cooper; Vince Perez, former secretary of the Department of Energy; and Greg Reichow, president of Sunpower. 

Motolite is the market leader in automotive batteries.  It is manufactured by Philippine Batteries, Inc. (PBI), the largest manufacturer, exporter and distributor of automotive, motorcycle and industrial battery products and solutions in the Philippines.  Its fully integrated facility in Sta. Maria, Bulacan, is one of the largest and most modern battery manufacturing facilities in Southeast Asia.  It also has the country’s only ISO 14001-certified, environmentally-compliant recycling facility, the second biggest in Asia.  Both Motolite and PBI are part of the Ramcar Group, a 100% Filipino-owned conglomerate with diverse range of business interests including battery manufacturing, lead processing, tire retreading, real estate development, and fast food operations.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Someday When We Touch - The PacMan's song for Floyd Mayweather


*sung to the tune of Dan Hill's Sometimes When We Touch*

They asked you if you’ll fight me
And you choked on your reply
I’d rather Arum deal with you
Than mislead you with a lie
And who am I to judge you,
On what you say or do
The fans are now beginning
To see the real you..

And someday when we tats
My LEFT will be too much
That you have to close your eyes
Where do you hide?
I wanna pound you til you’re white
‘Til your face breaks down and cry
I wanna beat you
‘Til you dream and say, goodnight.

You think you are a strategist
That you can insult my pride
But through your insecurities
You’re ZERO loss seemed right
You’re just another fighter
So far from what is true
An overrated boxer
Who never gives his due

And someday when we tats
My RIGHT will be too much
That you have to close your eyes
Where do you hide?
I wanna pound you til you’re white
‘Til your face breaks down and cry
I wanna beat you
‘Til you dream and say, goodnight.

At times I’d like to break you
And drive you to your knees
The fans would like to watch you
And see your first defeat
Your huggers understand you
And we know how hard they try
I’ve watched your Dad protect you
And your Uncle loves to smile :biglaugh:

My coach thinks you're a loser
Still searching for a break
You think your odds are better
But then the public bets AGAINST!

And someday when we tats
My SPEED will be too much
That you have to close your eyes
Where can you hide?
I wanna pound you til you’re white
‘Til your face breaks down and cry
I wanna beat you
 ‘Til you dream and say, goodnight!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Suzuki Swift: rally-proven sporty sub-compact

A proven winner not only in the racing scene through its Junior World Rally Championship (JWRC) wins, but also in automotive showrooms through outstanding sales in Europe, Japan and other global markets, the Suzuki Swift is a smart choice for the up and coming iconoclast out to make a statement.

Development of the JWRC Swift started in 2004, with the Swift Super 1600 debuting in the JWRC Rally Finland in 2005. In 2006, the Suzuki Swift Super won five out of nine events and was acclaimed as the best Super 1600 car. In 2007, the Suzuki Swift Super, driven by Per-Gunnar Andersson won the JWRC championship.


On the sales front, the Suzuki Swift has been introduced as a global car, with production bases in Hungary, India, Japan and China. Sales figures in Japan and many European markets have exceeded forecast, making the Suzuki Swift a runaway success. It has received a four-star rating (out of five) in the EuroNCAP crash tests.

Sporting a 1500cc DOHC 16-valve VVT (variable valve timing) engine, that delivers maximum power of 110hp @ 6000rpm, the Suzuki Swift strikes the optimum balance between power and fuel efficiency. Excellent handling ability marks the Suzuki Swift’s JWRC heritage, with McPherson strut front suspensions and torsion beam rear suspensions ensuring a stable and comfortable ride. Power-assisted steering and small 4.7m turning radius make the car a breeze to drive and park in tight city streets. Front ventilated disc and rear drum brakes ensure stopping power. Passenger safety is further assured with dual airbags, anti-lock brakes with electronic brake force distribution, side impact beams, and 3-point ELR seatbelts.

The JWRC-homologated body of the Suzuki Swift features an aerodynamic and distinctively sporty design that is sure to turn heads. Multi-reflector halogen headlamps, front foglamps, side marker lamps, color-keyed side mirrors and door handles create a racy profile when matched with low profile tires mounted on 15-inch alloy wheels.

A sophisticated instrument panel includes the usual tachometer and digital trip meter, and mounted on the dashboard are the digital clock, outside temperature and fuel consumption meter. The plush 3-spoke leather steering wheel with audio switches conveys a touch of luxury for driving pleasure.

Despite its rally heritage, the young urbanite will delight in the comfort and convenience features of the Suzuki Swift. Power windows, power side mirrors, a pollen filter, keyless entry, and an integrated audio system with in-dash CD and 6-speakers come standard in this sporty sub-compact.

The cabin is surprisingly roomy, belying its 3695mm x 1690mm x 1500mm (L x W x H) dimensions. Comfortably seating 5 adults, the rear seats can be folded down to create additional cargo space. Small items can be stored in front and rear cupholders, passenger seat back pocket, and passenger seat under tray.

In the Philippines, the Suzuki Swift is available in manual transmission, priced at P730,000, and automatic transmission retailing for P 770,000. Catering to the young, sporty individual, it is offered in five color choices including pearl supreme red, silky silver metallic, pearl white, bluish black pearl and kashmir blue.