Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) and the country’s automotive industry leader Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) jointly unveiled the new generation Toyota Hiace during the new model’s World Premiere held at the Grand Hyatt Manila, Bonifacio Global City.
A first for the Philippines and Toyota, holding the All-New Hiace’s worldwide launch in the country is making a statement in the industry. TMP has asserted the Philippines’ position as a primary market for Toyota’s range of iconic vans. The Hiace has become a common fixture in providing mobility services to both public and private sectors, helping promote education, tourism, healthcare, and more, aside from being the preferred family van of the Filipino people.
“We, at Toyota Motor Philippines, are honored to host the World Premiere of the All-New Toyota Hiace. For the first time, the world’s eyes are on the Philippines, to witness the unveiling of the Full Model Change Hiace, never before exhibited elsewhere,” said Mr. Satoru Suzuki, President of TMP.
The most noticable design change is the the new semi-bonnet design, which means that the engine is no longer mounted atop the front wheel axle. Previous models had the COE or Cab Over Engine. By altering the engine’s position (forward), both driver and front passenger can experience better ergonomics, It also eliminates the heat and vibration emanating underneath their seats and most importantly, lessens injuries significantly during front collisions, as there is more impact/crash zone provided.
This also results in better maintenance, as the engine becomes easier to access compared to the previous models.
Toyota is also the first manufacturer to include a center seat airbag on a utility van for its front center passengers, for a total of 3 Supplemental Restraint System (SRS) airbags for the Commuter Deluxe and 2 SRS airbags for the GL Grandia and GL Grandia Tourer variants.
The All-New Hiace’s GL Grandia and GL Grandia Tourer variants come with additional safety equipment such as: Vehicle Stability Control, Hill Start Assist, Anti-Lock Brake System, and Emergency Brake Signals. The Commuter Deluxe also has Anti-Lock Brake System and Emergency Brake Signals.
Continuing the Legacy
Unbenknownst to most people, the Hiace has been running around the Philippines since its introduction in the 70’s. Featuring then the unbreakable 12R 1600 engine and a 4-speed column shifter with Quad-round headlights. Since then, the Hiace has grew with the Filipino riders as part of the family; one that can accommodate all the members of the family. Known and trusted by many Filipinos, the Toyota Hiace is the leading model of the utility van segment with a 55.6% total market share last 2018.
The Hiace has seen a myriad of transport usage. Aside from ferrying passengers, it has been utilized as cargo hauler, schoolbus, ambulance and even military personnel transporter.
Toyota aims to offer a modern and practical solution with the new generation Hiace—functional made even better.
Chief Engineer Takuo Ishikawa from Toyota Motor Corporation put it nicely: “The Hiace is a faithful partner that makes people feel safe, satisfied, and proud. Owners, drivers, and passengers know they are in good hands when they own, drive, and ride in a Hiace. They know it can be trusted, and that it has excellent resale value. There is simply no substitute.”
The Philippines holds the distinct honor of most Hiace units sold outside of Japan, besting 150 countries where the ubiquitous Hiace is present; a testament to the utmost dedication of Toyota Motor Philippines in providing the Filipino commuters abetter and safer mode of transportation.
For more information on the All-New Hiace, visit TMP’s official website at www.toyota.com.ph
join the official Facebook group at www.facebook.com/ToyotaMotorPhilippines.
Images by Neil Pagulayan.