Remember the 45 Toyota Prius hybrids that were donated last year to the Philippine National Police-Region 8 for use as patrol cars? Well, it has been more than a year now since that happened, and the Department of Energy set out to check if the cars are still running in good condition after more than 365 days of being in service.
The verdict? The inspection revealed that all the Toyota Prius hybrids are in good condition. For the next five years, DOE will do followup assessments of the cars semi-annually to make sure that the cars will be running smoothly.
In case you’re wondering, it’s not every day that our government gets electric vehicles (EV) as service cars, so monitoring the performance of the cars is important. It’s also a way to remove the stigma on hybrid cars and electric vehicles as unreliable forms of transportation. In other words, if you’re planning to buy a hybrid vehicle soon, you’ll be assured of its longevity since service vehicles go through a lot, and if they can withstand tough conditions, so does yours.
The 45 Toyota Prius hybrid vehicles were part of Japan Non-Project Grant Aid to the Philippines for the procurement and delivery of next generation vehicles (i.e. hybrid vehicles, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and electric vehicles). The aid was worth 500 million yen, and was donated by DOE to several agencies, such as the Departments of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Bureau of Fire Protection, Philippine Information Agency, Land Transportation Office, and the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council. In turn, the receiving agencies will be assisting the DOE in research, performance testing, and promotion activities so we can finally adopt the use of alternative fuel vehicles.
The Philippines isn’t new to using EVs in its agencies. In fact, we now have EV quick charging stations, thanks to the partnership between Mitsubishi Philippines and Meralco.