The future is electric

MIKE ABOUT TOWN - Atty. Mike Toledo - The Philippine Star
The future is electric
Range Rover PHEV. All sold units will be bundled with a Wallbox-type charger.

The current pandemic, and the lockdowns that ensued, were seen as chances for Mother Earth to have a hard reboot to be able to heal from the wear-and-tear that humankind has beset upon it.

We experienced pollution levels, particularly in the air, go down during the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) and Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine (MECQ) periods, not just in Metro Manila but in the whole of Luzon.

Each day of the lockdown greeted us with clear, blue skies never experienced in a long time in the metropolis, so much so that I was tempted to rush to the parks and take in a whiff of fresh air, if only it was not so risky to breathe openly without a face mask.

Land Rover Defender exploring Tanay, Rizal.

Now that we are in a General Community Quarantine (GCQ) and with the economy slowly opening up, under the expected “new normal,” there is a need to rethink the old ways in line with our recovery.

As the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in his International Earth Day message, “We need to turn the recovery into a real opportunity to do things right for the future.”

I have mentioned here before that our future will be electric. Meaning, that cars will resort more to electric power rather than fossil fuels to be more sustainable and cleaner to the environment.

Back in 2012, Meralco chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan proposed that the country manufacture its own electric vehicles or EVs. Eight years later, there are 28 firms that are engaged in the manufacture of EVs with 11 parts and components manufacturers and seven importers that support them. This has the full support of the Department of Transportation under Secretary Art Tugade and the Department of Energy under Secretary Al Cusi.

Electrified Luxury: The Jaguar I-Pace on the streets of Manila.

Not wanting to be left behind in their own game, foreign car companies have also joined in the pitch by bringing in more EVs. Of course, we all know that foreign car brands have gone through great strides in upping the ante where EV technology is concerned.

Coventry Motors, the authorized importer and distributor of Jaguar Land Rover vehicles in the country, recently brought to these shores not just one but three electric vehicles worthy of their place on the road and in the boondocks as well.

In a virtual launch, Coventry introduced to aficionados two plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV) and a full-electric Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV). These are the Range Rover PHEV, the Range Rover Sport PHEV, and the Jaguar I-Pace BEV.

Range Rover SPORT PHEV in Manila.

PHEVs are basically cars that use a battery to power an electric motor and petrol to power an internal combustion engine, while BEVs rely fully on batteries to run an electric motor.

The Range Rover PHEV and Range Rover Sport PHEV have a maximum range of 700 kilometers and can run totally on pure electric power for up to 50 kilometers per charge. Of course, each vehicle comes standard with a wall charger and, aside from the energy obtained from regenerative braking, battery packs can be fully charged in two hours and 45 minutes time. Really impressive!

The Jaguar I-Pace BEV is also no slouch. It can shoot from zero to 100 kilometers per hour in 4.8 seconds without sipping any amount of fossil fuel. That kind of speed is already in hypercar territory.

Speaking of Land Rover, many 4x4 enthusiasts the world over mourned the passing of the iconic Defender when Jaguar Land Rover decided to stop its production in 2016 after a 67-year run. Now, however, there is a New Defender that does not necessarily seek to replace the old and discontinued one but, rather, carry on the tradition of off-road supremacy that Land Rover is known for since the Second World War.

All British Cars Inc. GM Chris Ward.

True to form, the new Defender recently arrived in our shores to satiate the appetites of diehard aficionados and newbies alike who have been eagerly awaiting, with bated breath, its arrival since its global launch towards the end of 2019.

Now, I’ve been informed that All British Cars (ABC), the sole authorized dealer of Jaguar and Land Rover vehicles, parts, and accessories in the Philippines, has these irresistible offers for its September weekend specials that make owning these iconic cars much easier. Promo is until Sept. 30, 2020 only, so best to hurry down to their showrooms along EDSA Greenhills and Bonifacio Global City (BGC) at the soonest possible time this month.

I guarantee that, just like a breath of fresh and COVID-free air, perhaps on the beach or up the mountain, with your Jaguar or Land Rover, once this pandemic is over, you won’t be disappointed.

Land Rover chief creative officer, professor Gerry McGovern.



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