The days of the old jeepneys are numbered. And a future beaming with safer, efficient and more organized mass transport system now awaits. With this, the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) is ever upbeat in its initiative to promote the more effective and beneficial mover. Recently, the steadfast government firm organized the Modern PUV Caravan 2019, which started in Manila and concluded in Clark, Pampanga with the aim to promote the nationwide adoption of modernized public utility vehicles (PUV)
One of its eager participants was Isuzu Philippines Corporation (IPC), the country’s leading assembler and distributor of brand-new Isuzu trucks.
The caravan started with a 5 a.m. motorcade beginning at the Quezon Memorial Circle. The slow-running convoy traversed the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) and Subic–Clark–Tarlac Expressway (SCTEX) before arriving at the main office of the Department of Transportation (DoTr) at the Clark Economic Zone in Pampanga by 9 a.m. for the launch program.
The motorcade, composed of modernized PUV from Isuzu and other manufacturers, carried onboard representatives from participating sectors of government and various industries, such as: the DoTr, LTFRB, Land Transportation Office, Development Bank of the Philippines, Landbank, Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines, Inc., Truck Manufacturers Association, Association of Vehicle Importers and Distributors, Automotive Body Manufacturers Association of the Philippines, Electric Vehicles Association of the Philippines and Philippine Parts Maker Association. This was followed by presentations from different participating groups. With the unveiling of the Modern PUV Showcase, displaying the various new PUV also sharing in the limelight. LTFRB also announced the new nationwide routes of modern PUV during the launch program.
Ever-eager modern player
IPC, for its part, showcased the brand-new Isuzu QKR77 and NLR77 light-duty trucks configured as modernized PUV (BPS PNS compliant) with body developed by the country’s leading body builders: Almazora Motors Corporation, Centro Manufacturing Corporation and Santa Rosa Motor Works Inc.
Modernized PUV from Isuzu can now be seen plying various routes in Metro Manila and across the country. These vehicles have already passed local and international vehicle manufacturing standards. They have also satisfied public utility vehicle modernization program (PUVMP) requirements, such as the automatic fare collection system (AFCS), a GPS tracking system, CCTV cameras and dashcams and WiFi router.
Apart from the Isuzu modern PUV offering more legroom, headroom and seat space for its passengers, the QKR and NLR platform assembled in the Philippines is equipped with the Euro IV-compliant 3.0-liter 4JH1-TC CRDI diesel engine that delivers better fuel economy and cleaner emissions.
IPC was also instrumental in helping the government kick-off the PUVMP program in June 2018 when the Japanese truck manufacturer supplied the modern PUV for the program’s pilot operator the Senate Employees Transport Service Cooperative (SETSCO).
According to IPC president Hajime Koso, the caravan provided a great opportunity for more Filipino commuters to be more aware of the numerous benefits of riding in modern PUVs in their localities and for transport cooperatives to gain easier access in acquiring such vehicles.
The grand caravan
The Grand Caravan 2019, with the theme “Modern PUV: Arangkada ng Pagbabago Tungo sa Kaunlaran,” has been planned as a series of events starting from the kick-off in Clark, extending all the way to Northern Luzon and Mindanao.
The caravan will be held in four phases, with Phase 1 covering North Luzon area from 4 July to 2 August, and will visit the cities of Clark and San Fernando, Pampanga (4 and 5 July), Tarlac (8 July), Urdaneta and Dagupan in Pangasinan (10 July), Baguio, Benguet (12 July), San Fernando, La Union (15 July), Vigan, Ilocos Sur (17 July), Laoag, Ilocos Norte (19 July), Tuguegarao, Cagayan Valley (24 July), Cauayan, Isabela (26 July), Solano, Nueva Vizcaya (29 July), Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija (31 July) and Marilao, Bulacan (2 August).
Phase 2 will be held in September, and will cover the South Luzon area: the Paranaque Integrated Terminal Exchange (2 September), Antipolo, Rizal (4 September), Bacoor, Cavite (6 September), Santa Rosa, Laguna (9 September), Lipa, Batangas (11 September), Calapan, Mindoro (13 September), Lucena, Quezon (16 September), Boac, Marinduque (18 September), Naga, Camarines Sur (20 September), Legaspi, Albay (23 September) and Puerto Princesa, Palawan (TBD).
Meanwhile, phase 3 will cover the Visayas region and will be held in November. The cities set to be visited are Catbalogan, Samar (4 November), Tacloban and Ormoc, Leyte (6 November), Tagbilaran, Bohol (8 November), Cebu City (11 November), Iloilo, Panay (15 November), Bacolod, Negros Occidental (18 November) and Dumaguete, Negros Oriental (20 November).
Phase 4 will traverse the Mindanao region and will be held in January and February 2020.