MIAS is back!
The original industry motor show of the country, the Manila International Auto Show, has always been an annual staple on the calendar.
But in 2020, the organizers of MIAS couldn't do anything. They had to cancel because of the outbreak that turned into a pandemic. That was the only call they could make at the time, and they had to do it with less than a month to go.
Today, it's all about bouncing back.
Yesterday, the World Trade Center Manila once again opened its doors to host the Manila International Auto Show. This is the first major industry-driven motor show since the 2019 MIAS as the last edition of the CAMPI-led Philippine International Motor Show (PIMS) was in 2018.
So what can you expect from the 2022 Manila International Auto Show? Let's take you through what you will see when you head over to MIAS this weekend.
One company looking to make a big impression at MIAS is Peugeot. Now under a new distributor, the brand is displaying their entire range at the show, such as the 3008, the 5008, and the Traveller. Actually the Traveller on display is neatly accessorized to appeal to camping/glamping enthusiasts with the pop up roof tent, the awning, and other bits of kit.
The star of the booth has to be the orange Peugeot 2008, and it's priced at PHP 1.550 million.
You'll also notice that many of Peugeot's prices are much lower than previous years, as they can take advantage of a new factory in Southeast Asia. The Traveller though is still imported from France.
Motor Image came to the show to conduct not just one launch, but two. The first is the Subaru Forester. This is an update of the current generation, but they did fit it with new features, new colors, and the newer EyeSight 4.0 system; yes, this one can steer by itself to follow the lane markings on the highway.
The other is the all-new BRZ. Subaru actually beat Toyota when it came to launching the new generation “Toyobaru” twin coupes in the Philippines. In 2012, it was Toyota that launched the 86 first, followed by Subaru several months later. The new model gets a new look, an upgraded interior, and a punchier engine with either a manual or an automatic with the EyeSight system. You can also catch the BRZ in action as Russ Swift returns to MIAS.
The other models on display include the Evoltis, the Outback, and the XV.
MIAS 2022 is actually Geely's first time to participate in a motor show event in the Philippines under Sojitz. In 2020 they were also supposed to join MIAS, but we all know what happened.
For the 2022 edition, Geely has their entire lineup of 4 models on display. The new Emgrand is there for the public to check out, as well as the Azkarra crossover and the Okavango MPV; that last one even has a roof-mounted tent for glamping.
But the stars of the Geely booth has to be the two units of the Coolray. One is the blue Coolray GT; that one is modified locally with a special kit, different wheels, and some power upgrades. The other is the Coolray SE; that one is actually a facelift, but a mild one.
Like Geely, Changan is out to make a big splash at MIAS. The group managing Changan is the same team that has been the distributor of Hyundai's passenger models, and they're looking to translate their successes with the new brand. They brought several units of their models that include the Changan CS35 Plus crossover, the larger CS75 Plus crossover, and the neat-looking Alsvin 4-door sedan.
But over in the back, Changan has something special: the Eado EV460. It's a 4-door sedan, but it runs purely on electricity. Hopefully, Changan can bring in that model at an attractive price for sale to the general public.
Judging by the Chery booth, they really went big and loud at MIAS. They brought several vehicles to the show; actually, they redefined their fleet.
The biggest model of Chery was launched at MIAS: the Chery Tiggo 8 Pro. If you've been observing Chery's model strategy, Pro is the highest grade available and includes all the bells and whistles. Brown leather and a panoramic glass roof are standard. Power comes from a 1.6L turbo and it's mated to a 7-speed wet DCT. And on center stage, is the PHEV version of the Tiggo 8 Pro.
The other model is more of a preview: the Chery Tiggo 5X Pro. The 5X has already been available in the market since Chery returned, but this is the first time they showed it with the Pro variant. The model is not being launched yet, but we expect it to only be a matter of time.
Back to back with Chery on the exhibition hall is their sister company: Foton.
Foton has the distinction as one of the most successful Chinese auto brands in the Philippines, as they have banked their success more on rugged vehicles that can take a beating, and still keep on ticking. And at MIAS, they showed off the new generation of their tough pick-up truck: the all-new Thunder.
The new model has been thoroughly restyled with FOTON proudly emblazoned on the front grille, and features a lot of upgrades and improvements that should make it reliable for years to come. Powering the model is a 2.0-liter turbodiesel, and can have either a manual or automatic. It will come as a 4x2 and a 4x4.
Actually, the Thunder is still being prepared for its actual market launch as Foton is still finalizing some last details for the model. Once we know more, we'll show you what you can expect from this new pick-up truck.
At MIAS, GAC is out to prove one thing: they're here to stay. That's why they went very big with their booth, showcasing basically everything they have for showgoers. They have the two crossovers in the GS3 and GS4, as well as the people carriers such as the GN6 and luxurious GN8.
But the stars of the GAC booth are two models. The first is the Empow sport sedan, and it is quite frankly the showstopper from the brands arrayed near the entrance of the hall. This is actually a preview and not a launch, as GAC has basically tinted the vehicle and locked the doors, but it gives a strong indication that there's more to GAC than just budget vehicles.
The other model is the all-new GS8. Like the Empow, the GS8 is a preview too, but this seems to be more production spec. This big SUV blends the characteristics and styling cues of more upscale SUVs, and it is being prepared for the local launch. They won't let you open the doors or peek inside just yet, but judging by the exterior, it should be impressive.
MG has actually proven to be a regular at MIAS, and this year they've got their growing lineup on display. The ZS is easily one of their most popular models, and it's joined by the new turbocharged ZS T. The MG5 and RX5 are also on display.
What a lot of customers will be interested in is the MG HS. This is a very modern compact crossover with very European styling (Italian, actually), a turbo engine, and a long list of standard equipment. The best bit though is the price.
Right next to MG is their sister company under distributor TCCCI: Chevrolet. Here, they've got the Camaro in red, along with their two small crossovers: the Trailblazer as well as the Tracker.
What Chevrolet launched at MIAS is the new generation Tahoe. The vehicle is the slightly smaller counterpart to the Suburban, but be that as it may, it's still a very big SUV overall. It also has a very big engine: a 5.3-liter V8. We had expected that they would launch the diesel version, but they opted not to.
The Swedish auto brand may be historically known for safety, but at MIAS they want to show a new side to their brand with a trio of hybrids.
They're displaying the XC60, the S90, as well as the larger XC90, and all of these vehicles come with their Boost Hybrid systems. Technically these vehicles are mild-hybrids, but that also means the pricing is much more attractive than before. The vehicles are also now assembled in Malaysia.
Nissan may be a CAMPI member (meaning they should be at PIMS) but they really went big at MIAS. When you actually enter the building, a Nissan Kicks e-Power is outside. It's basically a preview of the upcoming model, and yes it will come with their e-Power hybrid system.
At their actual booth, Nissan has the Almera, Patrol, Terra, as well as the Leaf EV. The big launch though is a new version of the Navara called the Calibre-X. Essentially it's a Navara Pro-4X package, but it isn't 4WD.
Like Nissan, Mitsubishi would normally be seen at PIMS, but they also went to MIAS to showcase to the public what they have.
Mitsubishi has the facelifted Mirage G4 on display; this is a model that is made in the Philippines in Santa Rosa, Laguna. They also have the Strada Athlete as well as the Montero Sport. Surprisingly, Mitsubishi didn't bring the facelifted and upgraded Xpander MPV to MIAS. Instead, they have the Xpander Cross, but in a nice shade of orange.
There are more things to see, experience, and buy at MIAS, so head on over to WTC so you can check it all out for yourself. The show runs until Sunday, April 10. Entrance is PHP 100, and you'll need to bring your vaccination card and mask up. No need for face shields. And yes, kids can visit the show too.