Toyota got Darna to sell the Tamaraw FX in the '90s
Who doesn't get sentimental when we talk about the '90s?
It was a decade of vibrant colors, oversized shirts, and the birth of the internet. It's easy to fall down the rabbit hole of '90s nostalgia, especially when it comes to old print ads. Recently, we came across an old ad for one of the most memorable cars from that era: the Tamaraw FX.
For those who wondered why the Tamaraw FX from the early '90s had the nickname Darna, this is why. When they introduced the wagon body that time, the folks at Toyota got former actress Anjanette Abayari to appear alongside the AUV. Not only that, she was in full Darna regalia while doing so. One look at the print ad and you can say it's as '90s as you can get.
Thanks to Darna's appearances in ads and commercials, the AUV (Asian Utility Vehicle) got the tagline of “Wonder Vehicle”. If that wasn't enough, it even had comic book-style print ads to keep it in line with the theme. Some of the ads were even in Taglish to enhance its masa-market appeal.
But we're not done with the throwbacks yet. We also found a TV ad that's as Pinoy as can be. It combines the country's favorite heroine (no, not THAT heroine), basketball, and, of course, Toyota. It even had high-tech graphics and effects (at the time) to show us what makes the Tamaraw FX special. You can tell Toyota spent a lot of bucks to market the FX.
Even with the all-out advertising, there is no denying that the Tamaraw FX is a simple, uncomplicated vehicle. Its 2C diesel engine isn't turbocharged or intercooled, and it didn't make a lot of power. Its naturally-aspirated diesel mustered just 69 PS and 125 Nm of torque. For reference, that's 105 PS and 235 Nm of torque behind its modern counterpart, the Innova. Airbags were non-existent, and you couldn't even have them with an automatic transmission. At least you can fit (or cram) ten people in the wagon body.
Some might say the ads were cheesy, but it worked. The Tamaraw FX quickly became the country's top-selling model in succeeding years. Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) wouldn't be the juggernaut it is today if it wasn't for this model, along with other memorable models such as the Corolla and Lite-Ace.
After this nostalgia trip, it would be nice if TMP would share some throwback ads on their Facebook page. Besides, who wouldn't want a trip down memory lane?