Hyundai Asia Resources Inc. (HARI), in its unflagging support for the country’s PUV Modernization Program, officially turned over the initial batch of Hyundai HD50S Class 2 Modern Jeepneys to the Public Transport Alliance of Gensan (PTAG), led by PTAG president Robert N. Cang. Fifteen out of the 326 units ordered by PTAG were turned over during the event.
PTAG, one of the country’s major transport cooperatives, comprising 11 groups and around 2,000 individual members, is the first Mindanao transport cooperative to comply with the national Public Utility Vehicle Modernization Program (PUVMP).
The turn over ceremony took place in General Santos City Oval Plaza in the presence of Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) chairman Atty. Martin B. Delgra III, Department of Transportation (DOTr) assistant secretary for Road Transport and Infrastructure Atty. Mark Steven Pastor, LTFRB Region XII director Col. Paterno Reynato Padua (Ret.), PTAG president Robert Cang, and representatives from Hyundai Asia Resources Inc. (HARI) Commercial Vehicles Division.
In his speech, DOTr Asec. Pastor expressed confidence that the government program is gaining traction as operators, drivers, and commuters alike are realizing the economic, social, and environmental benefits of modernizing the local public transport system.
Asec. Pastor further reported: “Sa huling datos natin nitong Disyembre 2019, lumalabas na 1,030 na mga kooperatiba na binubuo ng 104,000 na miyembro ang accredited ng Office of the Transportation Cooperatives (OTC). Umabot na rin sa 562 ang authorized routes sa ilalim ng programa na may 15,650 authorized units. Sa bilang na ito, 4,120 ang operational na.” He ended with a rallying call to continue supporting the widespread implementation of PUVMP.
Echoing the DOTr’s call, PTAG president Cang confirmed, “Dati nasubukan namin ang e-jeep at nakita namin ang epekto nung paggamit ng bagong unit. Pero sa modernized jeepney units, nakikita namin na bukod sa maayos na public transport system at mas convenient ito sa mga commuter, malaki ang benepisyo nito sa mga kooperatiba kaya buo ang suporta namin sa programa ng LTFRB.”
The event also saw strong support from the local government with the presence of General Santos City mayor Ronnel Rivera who hailed the progress of PUVMP in his city; while LTFRB chairman Delgra expressed hope that the program would reach the farthest corners of the country.
The 15 Hyundai HD50S Class 2 Modern Jeepney units will operate under Lagao Drivers Operators Transport Cooperative (LADOTRANSCO) and will traverse three routes — Doña Soledad to Lagao Public Market, Calumpang to Lagao Public Market, and Calumpang to San Jose.
HARI president and CEO Ma. Fe Perez-Agudo sent her warm congratulations to the PTAG and reaffirmed solid support for the PUVMP: “We are happy to start 2020 strong in our commitment to support the PUVM. We made sure that the units reached GenSan safe and sound through their 1,230-kilometer journey from the Hyundai Logistics Center in Laguna. Kaya ang ating King of the Road ay maari na ring mabansagang King of the RORO—now at the service of this region. Gawang Pilipino, para sa Pilipino!”
The Hyundai Class 2 Modern Jeepney is built on Hyundai’s HD50S platform and is powered by a 2.9-liter Euro 4-compliant CRDi engine that provides better fuel efficiency, reliability, and cleaner emissions. It is designed for enhanced stability and power-to-weight ratio, boasting a 3,415-millimeter wheelbase.
The Class 2 vehicle also features roof-mounted air conditioning, AFCS, Wi-Fi, GPS tracking, CCTV cameras, 7-inch monitor, and speed limiter. It can accommodate 22 seated passengers as well as up to ten standing commuters.
Both units have figured prominently in numerous PUV caravans in 2019 and were granted their DOTr Certificate of Compliance (COC), signaling that they are ready for deployment across the country.