Words by Christopher Kho 
 
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In a sport dominated by 900 horsepower purpose-built monsters, Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) is taking on the 2012 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb challenge in an all-electric production - a first in the brand’s history. Based on their road-going hatchback, the i-MiEV prototype is heading to the slopes of Colorado in the U.S. on the 8th of July to race against the clock to the heavens, driven by no less than legendary two-time Dakar Rally winner Hiroshi Masuoka
 
Describing the Pikes Peak-bound i-MiEV prototype as “based on the production model” is actually a bit of a misnomer. You see, judging from the sketches from Mitsubishi, this prototype looks absolutely nothing like its road-going counterpart. The main cabin has been narrowed to fit just one occupant, while its wheelbase and track width extended so much so that it should more or less look like an odd Le Mans prototype Frankenstein.
Words by Christopher Kho 
 
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Now on its third consecutive year, Sunshine STV is once again all geared-up to go for the 2012 edition of the Auto Rally Corporate Challenge (ARCC) this Saturday, March 3. This year's competition has left the beautiful roads of Subic and moved to a fresh new venue in Clark Freeport Zone, Pampanga. But as always, “on time, all the time” still remains to be the name of the game.
 
Hyundai Asia Resources Inc. (HARI) takes the 2012 ARCC head-on with a fleet of four all-new Hyundai Elantra's. Heading the pack are Roadwise Motoring's Art Guevarra and Mike Reyes with Gef Buraga from the Elantra Club Philippines. The boys from Top Gear Philippines consisting of Dinzo Tabamo, Raynard Olarte, and Aeus Reyes occupy car number 2, while the jocks of Jam 88.3's Gearbox, Eric Tipan and Andre Palma, will be joined by HARI's own Adrian Santos from Brand Management in car no. 3. Of course, rounding up the pack is the all-star team of Ferman Lao representing Top Gear Philippines, 99.5RT, and Kotse.com; Wave 89.1 Racing Beat's Charlie Cruz; and yours truly.
Words by John Luther Garcia | Photos and video courtesy of Honda Australia 
 
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Nope. This is not your typical stock Honda Jazz with a Mugen decal roaming the streets. Neither are its clustered foglamps and flared wheel arches just aesthetics for a car show. What you see here is a 245 horsepower Mugen-tuned Jazz that was re-engineered for rally racing. J.A.S Motorsports from Italy was responsible for turning the humble Jazz hatchback into a full-bred rally machine and was specifically built to compete in the 2012 Bosch Australian Rally Championship (ARC).
 
Underneath the hood is a 2.0L engine sourced from Mugen that pumps out a whopping 245 horsepower and 193 Nm of torque with a 9,000 rpm rev limit. While it maintains its front wheel drivetrain, this could very well be the fastest Jazz in the world! The J.A.S. Motorsports Jazz rally car will run under the Group 2 (G2) specifications of the Australian Rally Championship and will be driven by Mark Pedder with co-pilot by Claire Ryan, both of which are seasoned motorsports drivers. They will be joined by veterans Eli Evans and Glen Weston in a sister Jazz rally car, run by the Evans Motorsport team.
Words by John Luther Garcia | Photos courtesy of Honda Motor Co. Ltd.
 
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The FIA's World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) will have another manufacturer lining up on the grid this 2012 as Honda officially announced its entry into the championship with the all-new Civic. But with the car still under development and only less than a month until the season opens in Monza, Italy, the Japanese team has opted to participate only in the series of “inaugural rounds” starting in the Japanese round in Suzuka, followed by China and Macau. Hopefully, if things shape up well, they'll continue with their plans to compete in the full 2013 championship with a two-car roster.
Words by Niky Tamayo | Photos courtesy of the Chrysler Group LLC
 
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If your day job involves driving the fastest Ferraris in the most prestigious racing series the world has ever seen, you'd expect the perks to be among some of the best in the world. So, in a lead-up to the 2012 Formula 1 Season, Chrysler gave drivers Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa a special pair of Jeep Grand Cherokees. While that may not sound like a very exciting prospect, consider that these are SRT8 models, equipped with a 6.4 liter 468 horsepower HEMI V8 and decked out in exclusive Ferrari Rosso Corsa paint and bespoke trim.
Words by Niky Tamayo
 
ct01_frontback
For the first time in Formula One history, the Caterham F1 team (formerly Team Lotus) came in first... to unveil their 2012 contender, that is. Unfortunately, it doesn’t count towards the season’s point tally and means little for their standings in the championship. Still, the Caterham CT-01 is a good preview of what many F1 cars may shape up to be this season.
 
With new rules imposing a stringent maximum height for the nose and a minimum height for the bodywork behind it, the Caterham’s duck-billed countenance is no surprise. It’s not pretty, but Caterham’s road cars have never been praised for their beauty, anyway. Still, it remains to be seen how competitive this fledgling team will be this year.
 
boss_01After riding 24 hours non-stop on a 1,200 gruelling kilometer loop around Luzon, only 160 of the 250 starters successfully crossed the finished line on January 15, 2012 at the 7th edition of the BOSS Ironman Challenge. Organized by the BMW Owners Society of Saferiders (BOSS), the only club in the Philippines recognized by the BMW Clubs International Council, the Ironman Challenge is not a race, but there is undeniably an unspoken achievement to finish at the final stop in first. Still, finishing the 1,200 kilometer jounrney proves to be equally satisfying. 
 
The Asian Carmakers Corporation (ACC), the official importer and distributor of BMW vehicles and BMW Motorrad in the Philippines, awarded the finishers of the challenge. In the car category, Elbert Cuenca in a diesel powered BMW X1 was the first to reach the destination with a total time of 14 hours and 19 minutes - a welcome improvement over his second place finish last year in a gasoline powered X1. Meanwhile, Joey Almeda, Enteng Gonzales, Max Kienle, Hubert Soriano, and Nani Pascoguin were the first four riders to arrive in the motorcycle category. All four men were riding BMW R1200 GS Adventure's, except for Nani who was on a S1000 RR.
Words by Niky Tamayo | Photos courtesy of Nissan Motorsports
 
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Before the Nissan GT-R made a name for itself as the supercar-slaying cult hero of the streets, it was already widely known as a giant-killer on the racetrack. The legendarily super-sports car first gained notoriety for its utter dominance in Japan’s Grand Touring Car and Super GT championships as well as Australia's Super Car series. Its unbeatable performance on the track is what first earned it the name "Gojira" (Godzilla).
 
Of course, these were purpose-built racecars with little in common with the road-going version; but now, interested buyers can own an honest-to-goodness GT-R racecar through Nismo’s GT3 customer program.
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