About a month ago, we were able to get a glimpse at Toyota Motor Philippines' (TMP) entry into the government's Public Utility Modernization Program (PUVMP). While it looked promising, it was rather strange to see TMP using an older-generation Hilux instead of a new one.
However, it looks like the previous model used was only a prototype. Now, TMP has officially revealed their Class 1 PUV based off the new Hilux, and it only costs less than a million Pesos. Approved by both the Department of Transportation (DOTr), as well as the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Toyota's modern PUV is ready to transport commuters to and from their destinations.
Unlike other PUVs that have a cab-over / bus-like design, Toyota opted to use a cab & chassis variant of the Hilux and appeared to have commissioned a body builder to make the rear cabin for the passengers. As it is categorized under Class 1 of the PUVMP, the 12-seater Hilux PUV is intended for city and municipal transport.
In order to comply with PUV Modernization standards however, Toyota had to install several features inside the Hilux. These include: air-conditioning, a CCTV camera for security, Wi-Fi, an automatic fare collection system, a dashcam video recorder, and GPS. Moreover, it also has to be PWD / Senior Citizen friendly, and has to meet Euro 4 emission standards.
How much will Toyota's Class 1 PUV cost? The new Hilux PUV will have a sticker price of just Php 998,000. “Modernization is not expensive, provided that you make the right choice. There is a cheaper alternative,” said Arthur Tugade, DOTr Secretary.
While it may be smaller than a Class 2 PUV, the DOTr stated that this proves that there are affordable ways to get a modern PUV. The more options operators have in chossing what PUV they want, the more that commuters will be able to hitch a ride home or on their way to work, added the government agency.