Saturday, June 7, 2014

Car Features - We Compare the Car Offerings of Philippines and Thailand

We'll start this car feature in which we compare the car offerings in the Philippines as against to several countries in the world. We wouldn't go to the most ambitious markets like the United States, Europe, or even Japan since their markets are way larger than us. Why not we go first to the markets near us, such as our ASEAN neighbors especially we all share the same cars with us plus we get cars from their assembly plants.

In this series, we shall go to our first destination: Thailand. We all know that they love beaches plus the fact it is the hub of most car companies the region. Without further ado, lets go explore some of their offerings (some luxury brands will be skipped) and compare.

Do take note we are evaluating the current vehicles in the manufacturer's line-up. These data are as of June 2014. You make look at their Thailand websites for more information.

Screenshot of Audi Thailand's website
WHAT WE BOTH GET: A4, A6 Saloon, A8, Q5, Q7

The similarities and differences between the models:

  • The Thailand market A4 gets the saloon version with the 1.8 FSI gasoline engine having 160hp which is their only choice. The Philippine market A4 has both the regular and RS4 Avant versions with the former getting both 1.8 FSI gasoline and 2.0 TDI diesel engines.
  • The Thailand market A6 Saloon has a 2.0 FSI gasoline engine under the hood. Philippine market models get a wide range of options: a 3.0 TFSI with Quattro technology, and two engines in the form of the 2.0 and 3.0 TDI.
  • Thailand's A8 has both the short and long wheelbase models while the Philippine market has the long wheelbase one.
  • The Q5 in Thailand has only the 2.0 FSI engine while the Philippines get both gas and diesel engines.
  • Thailand's and RP's Q7 have both the 3.0 diesel under the hood.

Screenshot of BMW Thailand's website
WHAT WE BOTH GET: 1 Series Hatchback, 3 Series Sedan and Gran Turismo, 4 Series Coupe, 5 Series Sedan, 6 Series (all versions), 7 Series Sedan, X1, X3, X5, X6, Z4, M3 Convertible, M5 Sedan, M6 (all models), X6M
WHAT THEY DON'T GET: 1 Series Convertible and Coupe, 5 Series Gran Turismo
WHAT WE DON'T GET: 2 Series Coupe, 4 Series Convertible, Hybrid versions of the 3, 5, and 7, M3 Sedan, M4 Coupe and Convertible

The similarities and differences between the models:
  • The 1 Series in Thailand only has the 116i, which has a 1.6 engine. Philippine models do get both 1.6 gasoline and 2.0 diesel engines.
  • 3 Series models sold in Thailand do get the 320d, 320i, 328i M Sport, and 325d M Sport models. Philippine market units get the 328i, 318d, and 320d variants.
  • Thais have the 5 Series with the 520d, 528i, and 520i models. Filipino consumers get the 528i, 520d, and 530d.
  • Both countries have the 6 Series Gran Coupe and Coupe models in 640i guise. The main difference lies on the convertible model: the Philippines has the 650i while Thailand sticks to the 640i.
  • Both countries have the three 7 Series models: 730Li, 740Li, and 730d. The latter model can be ordered in an indent basis in the Philippines.
  • X1 models in Thailand have the sDrive 18i and sDrive 20d to choose from. Philippine based buyers have more choices to choose.
  • You can get either a gasoline or diesel model (sDrive 20i and sDrive 20d respectively) for an X3 in Thailand. Whereas in the Philippines, it is all diesel engines there.
  • Same case with the X3 is applied to the X5: Thailand has both gasoline and diesel engines while the Philippines only has the diesel.
  • Both nations get the X6 in xDrive 3.0d guise.
  • While the two countries get the sDrive 2.0i for the Z4, only the Philippines get the 28i guise.

Screenshot of Chevrolet Thailand's website

WHAT WE BOTH GET: Sonic, Cruze, Spin, Captiva, Trailblazer, Colorado
WHAT THEY DON'T GET: Spark, Malibu, Orlando, Traverse, Tahoe, Suburban, Camaro
WHAT WE DON'T GET: None actually

The similarities and differences between the models:
  • Both countries have the Sonic in sedan and hatchback guises. The only difference is Thailand offers both 1.4 (manual and automatic) and 1.6 (automatic only) in the two body styles, while the Philippines gains the former engine.
  • The Cruze sold in Thailand do get 1.6 and 1.8 gasoline engines and a 2.0 diesel, with their Base variant having a 1.6 engine paired with a manual then other models have an automatic (including the 1.8). Philippine market Cruzes get the 1.8 gasoline (the L and LS can be had with a manual) and the 2.0 diesel.
  • Thailand market Spins can be ordered with the 1.5 gasoline. Philippine market Spins can be had with either a 1.3 diesel or 1.5 gasoline
  • This is where the two countries share their Captivas, they can be had in both gasoline and diesel engines in either 2WD or 4WD. However, while the Philippines get the LS 4x2 and LT 4x4 in both engines, Thailand has one basic model and one upgrade model in every configuration (except for their diesel 2WD, only one model is available).
  • In the case of the Trailblazer, both engines with their respective transmissions (2.5 MT, 2.8 AT) are available in both countries. Except that their top of the line model is named LTZ1 4WD, with the LTZ being 2WD.
  • As expected, Thailand has three body styles for the Colorado named as S-Cab (standard cab), X-Cab (extended cab), and C-Cab (crew cab). Their engine options are similar to ours, but they do have a bewildering number of variants. Thai's S-Cab is basic in nature, while the others have alloy wheels and power features. Compared to the Philippine models, the 2.5 can be had in LT guise and 2WD while the 2.8 is available only in 4WD.

Screenshot of Ford Thailand's website
WHAT WE BOTH GET: Fiesta (the facelifted model), Focus, Ecosport, Everest, Ranger
WHAT THEY DON'T GET: Mustang, Explorer, Expedition, E150
WHAT WE DON'T GET: Fiesta (pre-facelift), Escape (do they still make those?), Territory (basically a crossover SUV from Australia)

The similarities and differences between the models:
  • Facelifted Fiestas (marked as the New Fiesta in Thailand) have the following models: Ambiente (in both 4 door and 5 door, the former can be had with either manual or automatic), Trend (both 4 door and 5 door, automatic only), Titanium (4 door, automatic), Sport (5 door, automatic), and EcoBoost (4 door Titanium and 5 door Sport). Philippine model Fiestas are available in these trims: Ambiente (4 door and 5 door, manual only), Trend (both bodies with both transmissions), Titanium (both bodies, automatic only), and EcoBoost (hatchback only). Both engines are similar to one another (1.5 and 1.0 EcoBoost)
  • They still sell the old body Fiesta (they are manufactured in Thailand) whose starting price is 549,000 Baht (or P736,000) as opposed to the facelifted model's starting price of 779,000 Baht (roughly P1,044,000). The variants are nearly the same as what had been offered in the Philippines, except we did not get a 1.5 engine.
  • When it comes to the available variants of the Focus in Thailand and the Philippines, they are nearly the same (1.6 Ambiente, 1.6 Trend, 2.0 Titanium+). However, Thailand offers more options and has different names especially that the 2.0 model comes with a GDi (gasoline direct injection) model in both body styles plus 2.0 variants get a normal version (Titanium is the sedan, Sport is the hatchback) and an upgrade version (marked with a +).
  • The Ecosport that the Thais and Filipinos get the same variants and engines.
  • While the Escape had been discontinued in 2013 locally, the Thai market can be had in 4x4 XLT+ guise whose price is 999,000 Baht (P1,339,000).
  • Everests that both countries get are nearly identical, but Thailand misses out the 2.5 XLT AT.
  • You'll be dizzied here: Thailand has 15 Ranger models (plus 6 2015 model year ones) that you can buy, so we will leave the link here to spot the differences. In comparison, there are 13 models available in the Philippines.

Screenshot of Honda Thailand's website
WHAT WE BOTH GET: Brio (soon), Brio Amaze (soon), Jazz, City, Civic, Civic Modulo, Accord, CR-V, CR-Z
WHAT THEY DON'T GET: Odyssey (USDM), Pilot
WHAT WE DON'T GET: Jazz Hybrid, City CNG, Civic Hybrid, Freed, Odyssey (JDM), Stepwgn

NOTE: As we write this, the 2014 Jazz would be introduced in the Philippines in a few weeks time, so we would skip it. You may want to check this brochure for the Jazz available in Thailand.
    The similarities and differences between the models:
    • Both City models in Thailand and the Philippines have the 1.5 engine and even the structure of variants. The S in Thailand and E in the Philippines are the ones that get a manual. However, the ones in the Philippines are rather short (E, VX, VX+) than Thailand's (S, V, V+, SV, SV+) but the content level and their hierarchy is the same.
    • Civics sold in Thailand and the Philippines are nearly identical to one another, except that the former has more variants (1.8 S, 1.8 E, 1.8 ES, and 2.0 ES) as opposed to the latter (1.8 S, 1.8 E, 2.0 EL). While the 1.8 S sold in Thailand still has the manual, the Philippine sold ones do not carry after a May 2014 update. The 1.8 E and 2.0 ES can be ordered with a navigation system in Thailand.
    • The Civic Modulo model in both countries are available in the 1.8 E. It is priced at 939,000 Baht (or P1,258,000)
    • Thankfully, we do have the 2.4 and 3.0 V6 Accord in the Philippines. In this case, the Thais have the 2.0 and 2.4 engines but they get a tech variant for the latter, while the navigation is available for both engines.
    • While the CR-V sold in both countries nearly follow the same structure, Thais get a 2WD (EL) option that is paired with the 2.4 and a 2.0 paired with 4WD (E) that we don't get. No Modulo cladded model is available in Thailand.
    • Only one CR-Z variant is available in Thailand, which is named JP and only available in CVT. In the Philippines, you can get a base (1.5), Modulo, or Mugen variant in either transmission.

    Screenshot of Hyundai Thailand's website
    WHAT WE BOTH GET: Grand Starex/H1, Tucson, Elantra, Sonata
    WHAT THEY DON'T GET: i10, Grand i10, Eon, Accent, Azera, Genesis, Genesis Coupe, Santa Fe, H100
    WHAT WE DON'T GET: Veloster

    The similarities and differences between the models:
    • The Grand Starex and H1 sold in Thailand are basically one car, but the two are different. The Grand Starex has more plusher appointments and a different grille and its engine produces 175hp and 441Nm, compared to its similar model sold in the Philippines with 168hp and 392Nm. On the other hand, the H1 has three models including the Touring (base model), Executive, and Deluxe. The Starexes here have a 2.5 engine carrying either 99hp or 168hp. Oh, the H1 Touring has a six speed manual, as opposed to our five speed ones.
    • Only one Tucson variant is available in Thailand: the 2.0 diesel 4WD. Philippine buyers get gasoline engines and a manual transmission apart from the oil burner.
    • Thais get their Elantras with a 1.8, while that engine had been dropped from the line-up in January 2014 in the Philippines.
    • Sonatas sold in Thailand are only available in 2.0 guise. Philippine market ones have a 2.4 engine while a 2.0 is also available.

    Screenshot of Isuzu Thailand's website
    WHAT WE BOTH GET: D-Max, Trucks
    WHAT THEY DON'T GET: Crosswind
    WHAT WE DON'T GET: Mu-X (basically a second generation Alterra)

    The similarities and differences between the models:
    • The D-Max is Isuzu's bread and butter model in Thailand, and incidentally their best seller there. They do offer a wide range of models including a two door, four door, V-Cross (a more sporty variant), and Spark (a basic truck meant for businesses). In the Philippines, we do get the LT in both 2WD and 4WD and LS (in both 2WD and 4WD and MT and AT). Oh, Thailand gets the upgraded engines whose specs are the 2.5 carrying 136hp and 320Nm (against the PH's 108hp and 280Nm) and 3.0 having 177hp and 380Nm (local models have 144hp and 294Nm).

    Screenshot of Kia Thailand's website
    WHAT WE BOTH GET: Picanto, Rio, Carnival, Sorento, Soul, K2700
    WHAT THEY DON'T GET: Optima, Carens, Sportage
    WHAT WE DON'T GET: None, since Kia is strong here.

    The similarities and differences between the models:
    • Apart from the K1 moniker, the Picanto sold in Thailand has a 1.2 engine which can be paired with either a manual or automatic. Philippine market Picantos do only currently have a 1.0 engine as the 1.2 was dropped.
    • The Rio Hatchback sold in Thailand is identical to the Philippines as regards to the engine and transmission option, except there is a different interior color scheme and the exterior colors available in Thailand.
    • We're not sure about the Rio sedan sold in Thailand, especially that the e-brochure provided was that of the previous generation model.
    • Thailand market Carnivals (they are sold as the Grand Carnival) can accommodate 11 people and available in either Touring or CEO variants. Philippine market Carnivals are available in either short wheelbase (it is the one with a manual) or long wheelbase that can seat eight people. The engine, a 2.9 diesel, is fitted in both markets.
    • Unlike in the Philippines which had a variety of models to choose from, Thais can only have their Sorentos in 2WD 7 seater guise carrying the same diesel burner as ours.
    • Luckily for the Philippine market, the Soul we have is the second generation model. The Thais still have the older model.
    • The Thai K2700 is only available in pick-up truck model. The Filipinos have freedom in choosing since we get a single cab dropside, double cab dropside, single cab aluminum, and high side pick-up with roof with an option of 4WD.

    Screenshot of Lexus Thailand's website
    WHAT WE BOTH GET: GS, LS, RX, RX Hybrid, CT, GS Hybrid, LS Hybrid, IS F Sport, GS F Sport, CT F Sport
    WHAT WE DON'T GET: ES Hybrid, IS Hybrid, LS F Sport

    The similarities and differences between the models:
    • The ES that the Thais get is in hybrid flavor while Filipinos get the 3.5 V6
    • Both countries get the IS F Sport but the similarities end here. Thailand has the hybrid while the Philippines get the IS350.
    • One can get the GS Hybrid in both countries but the GS350 is Philippine exclusive while Thailand has the F Sport version.
    • While both nations get the LS Hybrid and LS460, the spice loving Thais get a (wait for it).. LS F Sport.
    • RX models available in both countries are the RX350 and Hybrid but Thailand gets the RX270.
    • Same CT models are sold in the Philippines and Thailand.

    Screenshot of Mazda Thailand's website
    WHAT WE BOTH GET: CX-5, 2, 3, BT-50, MX-5, CX-9

    The similarities and differences between the models:
    • While the CX-5 sold in both Thailand and the Philippines have the 2.0 and 2.5 gasoline engines, the former country has a SkyActiv 2.2 diesel engine.
    • In Thailand, the Mazda 2 sedan is called the Mazda 2 Elegance that has a 1.5 engine and available in the following trims: Groove, Spirit, and Maxx. Philippine market Mazda 2 sedans are available in 1.3 (with a stick shift) and 1.5 engines.
    • The second case in Thailand (again), the hatchback counterpart of the Mazda 2 is called the Sports and the variants are similar to its sedan brother. In the Philippine islands, one can get the hatchback with a 1.3 (manual only) or a 1.5 (automatic shift) engine.
    • While the Philippines has both the 1.5 and 2.0 engines, Thailand has only the 2.0 engine for both body styles but under numerous variants.
    • Unlike the Ranger, the BT-50 comes in both extended cab (dubbed as the Freedom) and double cab in which the 2.2 is strictly 2WD and the 3.2 is 4WD. Locally, the BT-50 has a 2.2 MT in 2WD while the 2.2 AT and 3.2 is 4WD.
    • Both countries have the retractable hard top model of the MX-5.
    • Thai consumers only get the CX-9 in AWD form, while their Filipino counterparts can get one in FWD and AWD.

    Screenshot of Mercedes Benz Thailand's website
    WHAT WE BOTH GET: A Class, B Class, C Class (old model, coupe), CLA Class, CLS Class, E Class, GL Class, GL Class, M Class, S Class, SLK Class
    WHAT THEY DON'T GET: CL Class, GLK Class, SL Class, SLS AMG
    WHAT WE DON'T GET: New generation C Class, GLA Class


    WHAT WE BOTH GET: Lancer EX, Triton (Strada), Mirage, Attrage (Mirage G4), Pajero Sport (Montero Sport)
    WHAT THEY DON'T GET: Adventure, ASX, L300, Pajero, Trucks and buses
    WHAT WE DON'T GET: Be thankful we do have a wide range of options

    Screenshot of Nissan Thailand's website
    WHAT WE BOTH GET: Almera, Altima (badged as Teana there), Sylphy, X-Trail, Navara
    WHAT THEY DON'T GET: Patrol, Urvan, Murano, Grand Livina
    WHAT WE DON'T GET: NV350 Caravan, Navara CNG, Livina (a shorter version of the Grand Livina), Juke, March, Pulsar

    The similarities and differences between the models:
    • Thailand market Almeras do get a 1.2 engine that can be paired with a manual or a CVT transmission. Philippine market Almeras have the 1.5 engine with either a manual or automatic transmission.
    • Are we sensing a trend here? The Teana in Thailand is available either with a 2.0 4-cylinder or a 2.5 V6 plus they have numerous variants which even gives them a navigation system. For the Altima, there is a choice between a 2.5 and 3.5 V6.
    • Counting at the available variants in Thailand, the Sylphy can be had in 10 variants including a CNG version. The Philippine market gets three variants using the two engines (1.6 and 1.8).
    • Lucky us Filipinos, our X-Trail has a 2.5 engine that can be paired with 2WD or 4WD. Thais have to contend with a 2WD mated to the 2.0 engine.
    • In Thailand, there are four Navara variants including a king cab (extended bed), single cab, double cab (crew cab), and a CNG version. While in the Philippines we do have the crew cab version, there are four variants plus two of the previous generation model. The Navara here shares the same engine as the Thais.

    Screenshot of Suzuki Thailand's website
    WHAT WE BOTH GET: Ertiga, Swift, Carry
    WHAT THEY DON'T GET: APV, Grand Vitara, Alto, Kizashi, Jimny, Swift Dzire, SX4
    WHAT WE DON'T GET: Next gen Celerio

    The similarities and differences between the models:
    • While the Philippine market Ertiga isn't available yet, the specifications are out especially we do get the 1.4 engine. The Thai market also shares the same engine, and the trim levels are the same (GA, GL, GX).
    • Thailand has the 1.2 Swift which can be ordered in three trims that can be paired with a manual or a CVT. Our market has both 1.2 (which is coming soon) and 1.4 models available with either manual or automatic transmissions.
    • The Carry that is sold in both countries are the same.

    Screenshot of Toyota Thailand's website
    WHAT WE BOTH GET: Vios, Yaris, Altis, Prius, Camry, Prius C, 86, Hilux Vigo, Hiace, Alphard, Avanza, Innova, Fortuner
    WHAT THEY DON'T GET: Wigo, Land Cruiser, Prado, RAV4, FJ Cruiser, Previa, Coaster
    WHAT WE DON'T GET: Also be thankful we do have a wide range of options

    The similarities and differences between the models:
    • The Thai market can get the Vios with a 1.5 engine under a multitude of trims: J, E (first two are available in both MT and AT), Sportivo, G, and S (only available in AT). Locally, we do have either a 1.3 (J and E) and a 1.5 (G).
    • Another rare specie: the Thailand market Yaris gets the 1.2 engine that can be had with a CVT transmission and available in J Eco, J, E, and G. The Philippines has the 1.3 and 1.5 with the former having a manual transmission option.
    • If the most common taxi in the Philippines is the Vios, in Thailand it is the Altis. They do have both 1.6 (J MT, J CNG MT, E, G) and 1.8 (E, ESPORT, G, V Navi) engines paired to a CVT transmission. We do get both 1.6 (E, G, V) and 2.0 (V) with the same transmission options.
    • While the Prius in the Philippines is only available in one trim, Thailand gets more. They have five variants named Standard Grade, TRD Sportivo Standard, Top Grade, Top Option Grade, TRD Sportivo Top Option. If only hybrid prices are low here.
    • No 3.5 V6 in Thailand, that's reserved for the Philippine market. The Thais get a 2.0 (G, G Extremo), 2.5 (G), and hybrid (CD, DVD, and Navigation trims which we are not making them up) engines. The second engine option is available in our shores.
    • The 86 that both Thailand and the Philippines get are the same, save for the Aero Kit MT model available in the latter country.
    • While the Prius C in Thailand is only offered in one model, the Philippines has two (regular and fully optioned).
    • Pick-up trucks are best sellers in Thailand, and the Hilux is numero uno there. It is available in regular cab (Standard), extended (Smart Cab), and crew (Double Cab) in which they offer lots of variations including a TRD kitted model. The Philippine market has an open cab that can be fitted with a body, J, E, and G trims.
    • Thailand gets three variations of the Hiace: the plain Hiace which has panel windows and a 3.0 engine, the Hiace Commuter that has a bubble top and an option for an automatic transmission, and the Ventury which is a high end variant that has a 2.7 gasoline engine and side skirts. In the Philippines, the standard engine is a 2.5 diesel fitted among the Commuter, GL Grandia, and Super Grandia.
    • For the Thai consumers, they get their Alphards in either hybrid, 2.4 gasoline (paired to a CVT), or a 3.5 V6 flavors. Their Filipino counterparts miss the CVT (replaced by a 4-speed automatic) and the hybrid version.
    • We sense a trend here: Thais love larger displacement vehicles as evidenced by the Avanza, it has a 1.5 gasoline engine for its five variants: E MT and AT, G, S, and S Touring. Motorists in the Philippine islands get the 1.3 J, 1.3 E, and 1.5 G.
    • The Innova over there across the seas is the pre-facelift model, so it does not have the big grille. It skips out the diesel option and the E model is their J (which is the base model locally) minus the 2DIN stereo. Their V has a standard microphone system, which our counterpart doesn't have.
    • Our Fortuners are similar to Thailand, except that the 3.0 has a 2WD option, the 3.0 engine produces 360Nm, and a Sportivo body kit on the 3.0.

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