Tuesday, February 23, 2016

The voice of God, also known as Morgan Freeman, is the latest celebrity voice on Waze

Waze, the popular community-driven GPS navigation smartphone app, has announced its latest celebrity voice and it's none other than the voice of God himself, Morgan Freeman

Freeman played God in the Jim Carrey-starrer Bruce Almighty in 2003. For Waze though, Freeman will be playing Vice President Trumbull as part of a cross-promotion with the upcoming movie London Has Fallen.

As Trumbull, Morgan will be addressing Waze users as if they were the President of the United States of America. So if you've always wanted God, or the US Vice President rather, guide you on what route to take if you're avoiding EDSA on a payday weekend, you know what to do. For the uninitiated, that means opening the app and then go through these instruction: Settings > Sound > Voice Language > Morgan Freeman.

Photo from Waze's Facebook page

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Could Under Armour be Manny Pacquaio's next athletic apparel supplier?

A few days ago, various news reports broke that Manny Pacquiao was being dropped by Nike as one of its endorsers for his heinous comparison of gays and same-sex marriage as being "mas masahol pa sa hayop" ("they are worse than animals").

With his April 9 fight against Tim Bradley Jr. looming in the background, netizens wondered who will supply the PacMan's shoes and other athletic equipment, with some speculating that he could be sponsored by either Adidas or Under Armour.

Well, we dug around and checked with the Human Rights Campaign's 2016 Corporate Equality Index for Lesbian,Gay, Bisexual and Transgender and, well, the PacMan's statements did go against Nike's stand on the matter as it scored a perfect 100 on the index which means the company is very LGBT-friendly. For those rooting for Adidas to add Pacquiao to its roster, they'll only be disappointed because it also scored a perfect 100 on the index, up by 20 from last year's score of 80.

What about Under Armour then? For the 2016 study, the relatively new athletic brand was conspicuously absent from the list yet based on the Human Rights Campaign's Buyer's Guide for the brand, it scored a measly 20. Apparently, while the company does not discriminate against its employees' sexual orientation and gender identity and expression, it failed to give them a company-provided domestic partner health insurance, parity in  their partner's soft benefits like supplemental life insurance and employee discounts, and equal health coverage for transgender individuals "without exclusion for medically necessary care" among other things.

So yes, if the index is indeed accurate, Manny Pacquiao could very well wear Under Armour shoes come fight night.

Photos from Manny Pacquiao's and Under Armour's Facebook pages

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Nike is reportedly dropping Manny Pacquaio!

We're sure you've heard of the news bit where Pambansang Kamao Manny Pacquiao spoke up against the issue of same-sex marriage, saying that it is "worse than animals" or "mas masahol pa sa hayop" as he reportedly said it. Check out the video by clicking the link on the date below.

"Mas masahol pa sa hayop." Senatorial aspirant and Sarangani Rep. Manny Pacquiao had this to say when we asked him for his stand on same-sex marriage. #BilangPilipino
Posted by Bilang Pilipino on Monday, February 15, 2016

Well, in today's socially-charged times, the PacMan's opinion may cost him his sponsorship deal with Nike. According to TMZ.com's sources, the athletic equipment brand "is preparing to cut ties" with Pacquiao for his anti-gay comment.

While 2016 marks Pacquiao's 10th year with Nike, that supposedly isn't enough to save the relationship as TMZ believes the break-up between the two parties is imminent.

TMZ even reported that the PacMan's merchandise on Nike.com is no longer available. We checked it ourselves and, yes, it's not there anymore.

Although Pacquiao was only giving his opinion on the issue, which also falls in line with his renewed faith in Christianity, it was probably his choice of words that doomed his relationship with Nike. 

If Nike does drop the PacMan, he'll be joining a long list of athletes the company has dropped over the years, like Oscar Pistorius (homicide), Lance Armstrong (performance enhancing drugs), Ray Rice (assault), and Michale Vick (animal abuse, although Nike re-signed him again in 2011).

What a shame to see the Pacquiao-Nike relationship end on such a sad note. Especially since his presumably last-ever fight is coming up soon on April 9 against Tim Bradley Jr. Then again, he can always turn to Adidas.


UPDATE: Nike has dropped Manny from its roster of athletes, saying that it finds his comments on the issue "abhorrent." Here is Nike's statement in full:

"We find Manny Pacquiao’s comments abhorrent. Nike strongly opposes discrimination of any kind and has a long history of supporting and standing up for the rights of the LGBT community. We no longer have a relationship with Manny Pacquiao."
Any trace of Nike's sponsorship of the PacMan was totally erased by the company from even its news site. Yesterday, a quick search for "Manny Pacquiao yielded nine results. Now, you'll only get this:

Fortunately for PacMan, Nike's departure won't hurt his bank account too much as most of his wealth comes from his cut of the pay-per-view earnings of his fights. Forbes.com even estimates his endorsement deals to account for less than 10% of his earnings.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Honda Cars Philippines officially confirms all-new Civic's local debut to happen soon

We reported it way ahead of everyone else--on December 6, 2015, as a matter of fact--nearly two months ahead of Honda Cars Philippines' first teaser of it on its Facebook page. Well, it's finally official: Honda is bringing in the all-new, 10th-generation Honda Civic to the country soon.

The design of the all-new Honda Civic departs from its predecessor's conservative styling, with its aggressive new face complemented by its low and wide stance and shortened front overhang. To give the new compact car a sporty countenance, the Japanese carmaker gave it LED headlights and daytime running lights up front while the rear has C-shaped taillights.

The biggest news for the all-new Honda Civic though is under the hood, with the vehicle being powered by either a 1.8-liter engine--which, if we presume correctly, would be a holdover from the outgoing model which means it's good for 141hp and 174Nm of torque--or Honda's first-ever turbocharged engine which has an output of 172ps (170hp) and 220Nm of torque, a displacement of 1496cc (1.5 liters) and a boost pressure of 16.5psi.

Also new to the 10th generation Civic is the Continuously Variable Transmission which was developed under Honda's Earth Dreams Technology and supposedly delivers "a powerful driving performance and a fun-to-drive experience in different driving situations."

We do have a couple of questions for Honda Cars Philippines though:  

1) Will we ever get the hatchback which is slated to debut at the upcoming Geneva Motor Show before it goes on sale in 2017; and

2) Can't we get the European market version of the turbocharged engine which has a higher 10.6:1 compression ratio that lets it put out 201hp and 260Nm of torque?

Too soon, we know, but one can hope...

Anyway, the all-new Honda Civic will be available in the following colors:
  • Midnight Burgundy Pearl (new color)
  • Cosmic Blue Metallic (new color)
  • Lunar Silver Metallic
  • White Orchid Pearl
  • Modern Steel Metallic
  • Rallye Red
The best news about the all-new Honda Civic? Honda dealerships nationwide are now accepting reservations for it!

Monday, February 15, 2016

First Impression: The all-new, second-generation Toyota Fortuner

A few days ago, Toyota Motor Philippines invited select members of the local motoring media to sample its updated lineup of its Innovative Multi-purpose Vehicle (IMV) models which consisted of the all-new Toyota Hilux, the recently-launched and equally all-new Toyota Fortuner, and the third model which we've been embargoed to not say absolutely anything about until February 27 but which you probably already know what it is.

What we are allowed to talk about in detail though is the Fortuner, and since a day's drive around the Clark International Speedway is far from ideal to conduct a thorough evaluation of the midsize SUV, we'll give you our first impression of it for now with a full review to follow soon, hopefully.

The design of the all-new Toyota Fortuner is a far cry from the boxy, stodgy styling of its predecessor. Unsurprisingly, according to IMV chief engineer Hiroki Nakajima, the vehicle's design evolved with an emphasis on a "stylish, cool presence" to compete with the form of its competitors and to distance itself from the outdated image of the boxy SUVs of old. This is evident in the slim bi-beam headlights (LEDs in the V variants, halogens in the Gs) with LED daytime running lights that blend neatly with the chrome grille out front and the equally slim LED taillights that blend into the liftgate. The all-new Toyota Fortuner is also longer than its predecessor (a difference of nearly four inches) which is emphasized by the three character lines that run down its side, particularly the lightning bolt-shaped kink on the rear doors which lead to blacked-out exterior D-pillars to give the vehicle a "floating roof" effect.

Inside, Toyota consciously avoided in giving the all-new Toyota Fortuner the same dashboard as the all-new Toyota Hilux to give the former a more premium character compared to the latter's more utilitarian nature. That's why the top-spec'd Fortuner V variants has leather accents on the dashboard and door trims. The V variants also have a Hazel Brown interior color scheme while the G variants come with a Chamois scheme. The interior is also roomier than its predecessor thanks to cut of the front seat backs which improves the knee room for second-row passengers. But perhaps the most telling example of the Fortuner's newfound civility is this: it has 12 available cup holders to accommodate the Grande Caramel Macchiato Frappe of all seven occupants.

As popular as the outgoing Fortuner was, the biggest complaint the public had of it was its harsh ride. Well, Toyota has listened to your plight and has retuned it significantly that, despite utilizing the same double wishbone with coil springs and stabilizer front and four-link with coil springs, stabilizer and lateral rod rear suspensions, it now rides better. On an off-road trail right outside of the Clark International Speedway, only the deepest ruts unsettled the occupants of the all-new Toyota Fortuner.

With all of its improvements inside and out, it's really more of an affordable Toyota Prado now than a Toyota Hilux that gestated a roof over its cargo bed.

Toyota Motor Philippines has been accepting reservations for all seven variants of the all-new Toyota Fortuner, from the base 2.4-liter diesel 4x2 G model with its six-speed manual transmission (P1.386 million)  to the top-spec 2.8-liter diesel 4x4 V model with its six-speed automatic with sequential manual control (P2.141 million), with the delivery of the first customer units starting in March.

Unlike the outgoing model, which was produced in Thailand, the all-new Toyota Fortuner will be imported from Indonesia with Toyota Motor Philippines projecting it to sell over 2,000 units every month.

By the looks of it, it looks like Toyota Motor Philippines has another winner in its hands.

Photos taken with a Fujifilm FinePix XP80 except for the last one which was taken with a Starmobile Muse

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Nike auctioning off complete, all-black Air Jordan I to XXX collection on eBay!

Nike is auctioning off--for only one day!--the complete, all-black set of Air Jordans I to XXX on eBay.com, with the starting bid at $100,000 and the proceeds going to the Kobe and Vanessa Bryant Family Foundation.

The set is an alternate of the mostly all-white pairs that the Jordan Brand gave to Kobe at the 2016 NBA All-Star Game in Toronto this weekend. Of the 30 pairs of Air Jordan shoes, only the Air Jordan III and Air Jordan VIII came with a splash of color in them: the Lakers' purple and gold. The two Air Jordan pairs are significant as these were what Kobe wore during the 2002-2003 season which, incidentally, was also Michael Jordan's last ever as an NBA player.

You can't just be an eBay member and place a bid on the auction though. To join, you'll have to pre-qualify first "to maintain the integrity of the fundraising promotion" by submitting some information about yourself to as much as requiring you to place a "fully refundable deposit."

So if you've been wanting to have a complete Air Jordan collection for yourself, that has the provenance of being a mostly all-black pair that is a complete alternate to the Jordan Brand's tribute to Kobe, then this is what you've been waiting for. And don' forget, it's only a one-day auction that starts at February 13, 9 a.m. Pacific Time (February 14, 1 a.m. Philippine Time) so you have exactly 24 hours starting RIGHT NOW as I'm posting this!

Too bad Nike didn't say what size the shoes are so at least you'd know if you can wear them comfortably or not--not that we would if we were even pre-qualified.

UPDATE 1: The auction is officially LIVE and you can check out the individual photos of 29 of the pairs of Air Jordan shoes there! According to Auction Cause, which is handing the bidding on eBay, the Air Jordan XXX "was unavailable for photography at the time of the auction." All 30 pairs, however, are in US Size 14--which happens to be Kobe's size--so you have to have really big feet to wear them. Of the 30 pairs in the collection, I really love how the Air Jordan VI and the Air Jordan XIV look.

UPDATE 2: The auction has ended at $240,100. Congratulations to the winning bidder! 

UPDATE 3: To correct the news as reported by ABS-CBNNews.com, 37 bids were placed by only two bidders and not 37 bidders. And Jordan Brand only gave Kobe the all-white collection, not the all-white and all-black sets. It's in the damn press release, for crying out loud. Do our research and don't just rely on a site about sneakers.

Friday, February 12, 2016

#FaptasticFriday: Fil-Canadian FHM Philippines covergirl Misa Campo

Misa Campo is H-O-T. Hailing from Canada, Misa got her start in the entertainment industry as a bartender in a club in Montreal where she was discovered and subsequently introduced into the modeling world. With her good looks and amazing figure, she quickly became popular in the import car show scene which quickly propelled her to the international stage. 

Thanks to her popularity and her half-German/half-Filipina (by way of Pampanga!) heritage, it didn't take long for FHM Philippines to tap her as its February 2011 cover girl. On November of that same year, Misa was also one of the two girls--the other one being Fil-Am Kim Lee who we'll have on here soon--to grace the cover of FHM Philippines' Ladies' Confessions Celebrity Diaries.

So, in honor of her fifth year of her first appearance in FHM Philippines, Misa Campos is our #FaptasticFriday honoree. Enjoy!

A photo posted by Misa Campo (@realmisacampo) on

A photo posted by Misa Campo (@realmisacampo) on

A photo posted by Misa Campo (@realmisacampo) on

A photo posted by Misa Campo (@realmisacampo) on

And if you've always wanted to Misa Campo strip...

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Video: Check out DeLorean's new car commercial!

A little over a week ago, we reported that the DeLorean Motor Company was planning to reproduce the only car the brand has ever produced: the iconic DeLorean DMC-12 that was made popular by the Back To The Future movie franchise as a time machine.

As if the excitement over the initial planned reproduction of 300 units in 2017 isn't enough, DeLorean has released its first all-new commercial for the car. You can check it out below.

Friday, February 5, 2016

The Mitsubishi Pajero's demise has been greatly exaggerated

Back in November 2016, various news outlets reported that the Mitsubishi Pajero nameplate was going to be retired due to weight and fuel economy issues, though, ironically, the Japanese carmaker did admit that its future was in SUVs hence the continued production of the Mitsubishi Montero Sport for the ASEAN market and the Mitsubishi Outlander for everywhere else.

Well, it seems the Pajero's demise has been greatly exaggerated based on our conversation with Mitsubishi Motors Philippines marketing manager Arlan Reyes.

"It's not true that the production of the Pajero will be stopped," Reyes told TheTypicalGuy. "It's the development of the next-generation Pajero that has been suspended temporarily. It will be resumed in the future although no date has been set yet on when it will be launched."

As the current-generation Pajero turns 10 this year (twice the lifetime of most car models save for the recently-discontinued Land Rover Defender), Reyes added that it will continue to be produced in Japan.

Mitsubishi Pajero loyalists can sleep better at night now knowing that the nameplate will still be around though they might have to wait a couple of years at least to see the next-gen model.

Playboy previews its first non-nude issue

Back in October, Playboy announced the unthinkable: that after 64 straight years starting with its first issue in December 1953 that featured a nude Marilyn Monroe in it, the magazine will abandon its nudity policy and feature scantily-clad women instead. Sacrilege! And a shame, really, since many a young man's introduction to naked women were courtesy of their dad's issue of Playboy. Then again, with nude women being easily accessible on internet--which was often rumored to be the cause of Playboy's dwindling circulation year after year, it's no surprise that the publication had to reinvent itself. Personally though, we feel like it's a step back to being a lad's mag in the same vein as FHM, Maxim, etc.

Anyway, Playboy is giving everyone a sneak peek at its restructured content starting with the March 2016 issue which will go on sale on February 12. For its very first non-nude cover, the magazine has model Sarah McDaniel. And perhaps as a nod to the internets which it could give credit for its non-nude turn, the cover has Sarah in a Snapchat-style photo. According to magazine, this was done "to present a more intimate experience for the reader." Sure, whatever you say, Playboy.

Besides McDaniel, the March 2016 issue also features Dree Hemingway, the daughter of actress Mariel Hemingway--who was also on the cover and featured in Playboy's April 1982 issue which we saw in our gradfather's collection!--and a great-granddaughter of author Ernest Hemingway as the first non-nude Playmate in the magazine's history and model Myla Dalbesio.

To be fair to Playboy, yes, there's still some nudity, if by nudity you mean the women will be sans underwear. But to have the breasts and vagina--and even butt cracks--covered by strategically placed hands and arms is just too much. This is even worse than the 1960s when you didn't even show a woman's pubic hair! Such a shame, Playboy. Such a shame...