Is the “Cheaper” Toyota 12-seater PUV the Answer to Small Roads in the Country?

Cherryl Anne Cruz

Let’s face it: the Philippines does not have enough wide roads–especially near major or even major thoroughfares.

And apart from our highways and main roads, we typically see a lot of narrow lanes, especially in provinces and  smaller municipalities.

Toyota Motor Philippines recently unveiled its new 12-seater modern public utility vehicle (PUV) prototype. According to the company, its Toyota Hilux Class 1 is ideal for narrow roads, especially those found in inner-city and provincial roads.

Hindi po talaga ito kalakihan. It will depend on the operator kung ito po ang pipiliin nilang bilhin depende sa ruta at pangangailangan nila (This is not large. It’s up to the operator if they will choose to buy this depending on their route and their needs). If operators want a more spacious and bigger unit, they can opt to purchase a Class 2 vehicle,” the DOTr statement said.

According to the Department of Trade and Industry – Bureau of Philippine Standards’ (DTI-BPS) Philippine National Standards (PNS), Class 2 vehicles have a maximum seating capacity of 23. Meanwhile, Toyota’s 12-seater prototype PUV is under Class 1, which has a seating capacity of 9-12. According to the Department of Trade (DOTr), this comes close to tricycles or ‘multicabs’ that can accommodate around 10 people.

Toyota also boasts that their 12-seater PUV–priced at PHP998,000–is less expensive compared to other PUVs that are usually priced at around PHP 2.6 million up.

“Gusto lang po namin maintindihan ng marami na hindi totoong lahat ng units eh PHP2 to 2.6 million pataas. May mas mura pong options. (We just want people to understand it’s not true all PUV units cost PHP 2 to 2.6 million or up. There are cheaper options),” it added.

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