The government's PUV Modernization Program continues to make progress and Foton Motors Philippines Inc. (FMPI) showed its unwavering support by joining the Department of Transporation (DOTr) and Land Transportation & Franchising Regulatory Board's (LTFRB) PUV Caravan.
Dubbed 'Pagbabago Tungo sa Kaunlaran', the caravan launch held in SM Clark, Pampanga saw the automaker's F-Jeepney join the first of many phases the two gov't agencies plan to kick off in the coming months. First revealed back in April 2019, the F-Jeepney is Foton's take on a modern, 21st century PUV that will benefit the riding public, as well as its operators.
According to Rommel Sytin, president of Foton Philippines, it is important for the public transport system to move a large number of people in a safe manner while also taking care of the environment. Their F-Jeepney can do both as it will serve as a workhorse and multi-functional partner for the growing number of PUV operators in the country.
Besides being larger than typical jeepneys, the F-Jeepney has GPS navigation, CCTV camera and dashcam for added safety & security, automated fare collection system, Wi-Fi connectivity, and an array of monitors for entertainment purposes. Each PUV is capable of holding up to 24 passengers (16 seated and 8 standing up), and it has an airconditioning unit to keep the cabin cool.
Powering the F-Jeepney is a 2.8-liter Cummins Blue Energy turbo-diesel. It puts out 116 PS along with 260 Nm of torque. It meets Euro4 fuel standards and is mated to a five-speed manual gearbox.
Since its launching, Foton said that they have already turned over examples of their modern PUVs to transport cooperatives in Cainta, Rizal and in Pampanga. Foton is optimistic that more transport groups will make the switch to safer and cleaner PUVs.
“It’s time to make a step forward with our entries for the PUV modernization. The F-Jeepney will not just provide a comfortable riding experience for the commuters. We also aim to promote the capabilities of the national icon of Philippine transportation,” added Sytin.
Phases 1 and 2 of the PUV Caravan will cover Northern Luzon and Southern Luzon respectively, while Phase 3 will cover the Visayas Region. Finally, Phase 4 will see the caravan go to Mindanao.