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.

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