Words by Christopher Kho | Photos by Hans Gerald Chua and author
Now that we've finished a third of the Qualitative Tests, it's finally time to take on the big boys of the 2012 - 2012 Car of the Year Philippines (COTY-P). At the break of dawn, nine behemoths lined up at this year's official test venue at the Eton Centris, Quezon City last October 20, 2012. It was a tough battle between the Americans, Japanese, British, and surprisingly, the Chinese. Summing up all their values, we had more than P20 million worth of sheet metal to play with that day.
CATS Motors, Inc. returned with their luxurious Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited and Dodge Durango Citadel. Also making their second appearance at testing this year is Honda, this time bringing the all-new CR-V 2.0 LX and 2.4 EX. And despite being a Japanese automaker, the Odyssey 3.5 V6 AT and Pilot 3.5 V6 AT that Honda brought with them were undoubtedly American. Meanwhile, all eyes were on the firenze red Range Rover Evoque. Priced at well above P5 million, this compact crossover was a toy we all couldn't get our hands off. But the real surprise of the day were the Great Wall Hover H5 and Wingle H5. First tested in 2010, the two Chinese utes came back after a fresh facelift and a new CRDi engine.