Car Prices Philippines

I keep a stack of notes and papers next to my computer for background material on future articles.  I just noticed a leaflet someone stuck in my hand at the mall the other day for a Hyundai that I sat in recently (big enough for 4 Americans, not much else impressive about it that I could see).

But they did have the full price list and payment plans on the flier.  One thing you will find completely different here in the Philippines than in the US is, in general, there’s one price for a certain model car and that’s it. MSRP lists are readily available … in fact here’s a useful site with the price list for nearly all the cars sold here in the Philippines currently:

Auto Search Philippines

How to Move to the Philippines Manual

The other thing that’s probably pretty strange to most Americans is, there are virtually no ‘zero down’ deals, no cash backs, no zero interest specials etc. You can figure 15% to 35% down and while you can find loans up to 60 months (five years) hold on to your socks when you figure out what the total interest you will be paying on such a loan is … most car loans are 12% annual interest and higher and that’s just about the size of things.

The best way to buy a car here is enter into a program that hasn’t been seen in the US for years … ride public transpo and save your money in a bank until you have enough for Dave’s recommended “everything down and nothing per month” plan.

I know, I know, that sounds almost un-American … well you aren’t in Kansas anymore when you get here, Toto, that’s for sure.

Driving is fun here in the Philippines. buying a car is even “funner”.


  1. says

    @Tom N: Hello Tom, Thanks for dropping by. Would ‘here’ be the US … I guess it would but remember neraly 50% of my readers are not US these days … anyway, my answer is I have absolutely no idea. It’s been nearly 10 years since I bought a car in the US and I certianly have no plans to buy any more there, so i really don’t even know the models any longer, let alone what the prices are …

    Also, beware of the apples to oranges paradox … even cars sold here in the Philippines and sold in other countries under the same name are not necessarily the same cars .. especially not equipment wise .. the Toyota Corolla is a good example. It’s a good seller here but a Toyota to Philippine specs is mnot even eligible for import to the US … air bag systems, emmisiion equipment, etc … so your question is a lot more complex than it seems.

    The Ford SUV/truck line is artially imported here … these are Mexican vehicles, not US … all Ford trucks are made in Mexico from what I understand … and thus they can be built to different standards … for example there are Ford Rangers here virtually the same as Ford Rangers in the US but they have a different cab and other subtle differences

    My deisel 2.5 liter 5 speed manual 7 to 9 pax Mitsubishi cost me about $14,900 something USD when I bought it at ~56 pesos/dollar, it would have cost over $20,000 lats year when the peso was up to nearly 40 to the dollar, and it will run you about $16,500 USD at today’s rate … Mits still sell the same vehicle for the same price, ~PhP 820,000, hasn’t changed in 3 years.

  2. says


    the driving habits in the Philippines has always been a great source of humor and sometimes fear for me. Fear if I’m riding on a bus on a long distance trip. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about.

    I can’t possibly imagine driving there. Especially if I were to pay so much for a car! One of my greatest joys of the Philippines was public transportation. Let someone else do the driving!

    One surety about riding the bus is if you’re not on a close personal relationship with God when you get on the bus you will certainly know him well when you get off! LOL

    By the way I love reading your articles.


  3. says

    @Don: Thanks for your comment, Don. Driving n the Philippines is surely not for everyone, but I find it is fine for me. When you have bever done it for very long it seems very chaotic and strange, but after a few weeks practice it’s second nature to me now. There is a definite order and expected behavior, depending on the size of your vehicle and such.

    I’ve had a car since I was 16 years old and I’m going to drive one until I get too old to drive …driving is just too convenient when you have elderly family members, kids and such needing to go places, etc. … it’s just a part of my American culture that I am not likely to lose any time soon.

    If $14,500 a big price for a car? Like I said to Tom N I don’t know. What sort of 9 passneger SUV type vehicles can you get for that amount these days in the US?

    • says

      Hi Phil, enjoy reading your blogs. One thing that impressed me about car owners here is the number of times a week they wash and wax their cars. In the states I’d be lucky enough to head to the car wash once a month (probably because living in the northwest nobody really washed their cars). I asked my neighbor one day why he washes his car so damn much, he told if a filipino owns a car it’s an extension of his soul or something to that matter. I guess what he really wanted to say is, having a car in the philippines is a luxury not many people here can afford so they treat it as if it’s their baby. Guy owned a 96 corolla but it still looked right out of the lot. As far as drving goes, took me a couple weeks as well to get used to the driving culture here, quite insane really. I have never used my horn or bright lights as much in my life, I’m also becoming an expert at cutting people off.
      .-= filamboboy´s last blog ..Time Zone =-.

      • says

        Welcome and thanks for your comment. It all rings true to me. The comment about the ‘extension to the soul’ would ring true for a lot of Americans too … some people just use a car as an appliance, others sacrifice unbelievable care and attention, modification and such. I try to take mine to the car was around the corner at least once a weekm 89 Pesos for a wash including vacuuming out the iniside, 80 Pesos for a paste wax by hand … how can you beat that?

        ‘Cutting off’ is a concept that is totally different here, it will cause a lot of problem to people from the US prone to road rage and their ‘rights’. Before you even think about moving here you better consider if you want to lose your temper or get into serious battles with people on an hourly basis. Because if ‘being cut off’ means anything to you … you will absolutely froth at the mouth here.

        Philippine road concept is, if there is apiece of pavement, even a sliver, that you are not occupying, it is fair game for all .. democracy in action. It matters not if you ‘planned’ to operate on that pavement .. as in having your turn signal on and getting ready to make a turn, since you were not physically yet _in_ that s[ace, someone else can use it … and if you get angry, it’s no fun, because the guy you are angry at honestly has no idea that he ‘did something’ to you … I mean blowing your stack has no satisfying factor if the ‘other side’ has no clue.

        Also, in city traffic, better watch things like the front wheel of the bus you are passing. That willbe the first indoication he is moving to your lane … and don’t worry about horn, lights, etc. He _is_ moving, whether you vacate or not … since pride is cheaper than body work, I usually just cuss once and give way.

        It’s kind of a neutral thing. It isn’t actually good or bad, it just _is_.

  4. queeniebee says

    Hi Dave, I’m new to your site but I find it very interesting, well written and quite informative. On buying a car I wouldn’t overlook taking a reliable mechanic friend with you to purchase a good condition used vehicle. If you have the cash in hand you can oftentimes find a good deal.

  5. says

    I would think that there is nothing in the U.S. that you can buy for $14,500 that seats 9. Not even something that will fall apart tomorrow. At the very least you are in the $20,000s, almost certainly more for something that seats 9.

  6. says

    @queeniebee: Hello Queeniebee, thanks so much for coming by and for your valuable comment.

    You are absolutely right in your views but I think it’s a lot harder to find the ‘trusted mechanic’ friend than it is to find a good used car. Certainly nothing wrong with buying used, but I didn’t choose to. I also go for ‘casa’ maintenance … I take all my work to the dealer. The state of local mechanic’s work places makes me think the phrase ‘shade ree’ mechanic would be a step up.

    I wrote about my dealer here: Visit To The Dealer … I’ve been very pleased with their service and the way I get treated there … I don’t have the actual costs at my finger tips but the car only goes in every 5000km and for me that’s every six month sor so … the last time I was there the basic work was under $70 USD and compared with US prices I felt I was well taken care of.

    Certianly nothing wrong with going the used route …but I’m retired I didn’t move here to spend my time looking for ways to shave the last centavo. Actually that’s one of the more negative aspects of living here … even when you _want_ tospend money there is always someone trying to stop you buying what you know you want to steer yo to something cheaper. In many ways the Phlippines is saving itself into the poor house … never use a new screw to fix somehting when a a worn out rusty one will do … pwede na isn’t always good enough.

    Anyway, that’s just my thoughts, everyone else has rtheirs and as always, YMMV.

  7. says

    @Tom N: Well remember where I am. Tom. It seats 9 or more Filipinos (the actaul maximum? “One More”) LoL. But it has seven real seats …. this particular car isn’t sold in the US but size-wise you’d be looking at the smallest Ford Explorer, only narrower …you definitely want a narrow car here 😉

  8. queeniebee says

    I see what you mean–a good mechanic friend or relative is worth his weight in gold. Also, our home is in the province, where we have a neighborhood mechanic that does very good quality work. As you said, it’s all a matter of preference.

  9. says

    @queeniebee: You certainly have that right, Queeniebee. Guard that man well (and have him to dinner often ;-)). A trusted mechanic friend is indeed a treasure.

    You make agood point about living in the provnces too. Dealer? What’s that? Many Americans are used to having pretty much the same stores and services almost any where we live, but in the Philippines things are still very much localized around the larger cities … in many cases only Metro Manila. I knew a fellow with a new BMW living on Masbate (IIRC) correctkly. Part of his car service plans had to include ferry schedules, because the closest dealer is in Manila … typically the dealer sends a mechanic on a scheduled basis to do the routine service … if the car really breaks bad, it’s going to have to go back to the city on a tow truck … becuase you just aren’t going to get qualified maintenance any closer.

    There’s a lot to consider aside from whether you like cities or not when you decide on where you’ll live … but, of course, that’s part of the fun of it all.

  10. says

    Hi Dave, I haven’t owned a car/truck since I left Vancouver in 2002. Still don’t own one here, but I think eventually we need to have one. I don’t look forward to shopping again. If I buy one though, might go for hyundai. I drove and abused the poor company car over gravel roads, knee high snow and mountains (where you will meet black bears) and it hasnt failed me once. It used to be the cheapest car, am not sure now. Forgot my keys inside once, and got the hyundai roadside service – and they couldn’t even break in their own car. Had to call head office with serial number for instruction.

  11. says

    @Ellen: Hmmm mountains, snow? Are you trying to make me homesick? I never owned a Hyundai, but I wouldn’t hesitate to … the line they sell here in the Philippines seems well suited to conditions here.

    Dince I owned several in Japan and then in the US I’m abit of a Toyota fan, but they are not doing well here in their choices of models. I had a 12 pax diesel HiAce in Japan and I really, really loved it … now the HiAce is a foot and a half wider and a way lot more expensive. The Revo, which is very close in size and performance to my Adventure, seems to be on the way out too … so that’s two of my favorites coming off the market. I really am not looking for anything else though, my Adventure doesn’t even have 20,000 kilometers on it yet and will last me a long, long time. If I bought a second vehilce I’d buty one of those little 600cc Suzuk carry piclups so I had atoy to haul dirt, tools or basura … I’ve had a truck for a second car for years and years, I miss something you can shovel dirt into .. or wash with a hose inside as well as out … once a rancher always a rancher I guess.

    • says

      Thanks Tony, that seems a well-done site, they are doing a good job of covering the motoring scene here in the Philippines.

  12. says

    I would point out that because the minority disagree does not mean the author is right. Make up your own mind. This article about the (please see my comments policy before dropping links, thanks) might change your position

    • says

      I don’t understand what disagreement you are speaking about, Keith. Is this one of those auto-generated comments? There is no mention of driving schools that I see at all … those that like them find value in them, those that don’t, don’t.

      I removed the gratuitous link to the article we weren’t discussing.

      if you can tell me why my other readers will be interested I may even feature it, but I don’t spend the time and effort I do on this blog just to provide you a place to try to drop off links …

      I did get a chuckle from the article, so much of it has absolutely no applicability to the Philippines … people don’t drive that way here and they aren’t going to start because some driving instructor in some other country tries to tell them to,

  13. Mike says

    Hi Philly.
    I’m curious. I saw on Honda’s Phillipines website, that a brand new sport model 155 or 200 CC motocycle can go for a mere 61,000 or so PHP. That’s dirt cheap compared to the states, less than 50% the price of a 250cc bike in the US. My questions is… is driving a crotch rocket there ill advised, or ok if you’re careful? I love bikes, and to me it seems like a cheap and convenient way to get around….

    • says

      @Mike (ID 4676): Hi Mike, what a good question. I probably should have talked about motorcycles long ago. I know nothing about US prices, but indeed I think the prices you are talking about are pretty representative here. Motorcycles are cheap. They represent a great form of transportation here too, given that we have no winter. Of course, in some areas we do have a significant rainy season, but even then the weather is likely rideable sometime during each day. Motorcycles are great for getting through traffic, coping with limited parking, etc.

      There are a number of Chinese brands that undersell Honda and the ‘name brand’ bikes as well … and some of them even make “replica-style” bigger bikes that too my untutored eye look pretty interesting … imitation Honda big two-cylinder models, others that are styled to resemble Harley s and such. Here in Central Luzon, some guys enjoy ‘big bikes”, meaning 400cc or larger, becuase they are authorized on the toll roads (which for practical purposes have no speed limits).

      Insurance, registration, etc. is pretty cheap too, so far as I know.

      However, remembering I’m hardly a rider … only driven a bike on the road a few times in my life … you really need to factor in the true facts of life here. If you think driving a car is ‘different” here, and it certainly is, motorcycling here is way, way, way different (and much more dangerous). Rules if the road do not apply, period. Not only are cars, trucks and buses oblivious to motorcycles, motorcyclists themselves are insane … driving on the wrong side, cutting through traffic, taking to the shoulders or even cutting across sidewalks and popping back out into traffic, etc. I’ve chatted with many US riders, those who haven’t yet written here, who quote me rules and statistics about motorcycle safety from the US, how accidents are so often the car driver’s fault, etc. They are totally naive about the road pecking order here. If a bus cuts off a motorcycle and literally rides the rider under the bus, if he survives he’s going to be the one responsible and have to pay for any dents and scratches to the bus..

      You can count me a big “chicken”, as well as a complete novice, but in metro areas, I wouldn’t go near a motorcycle with a ten foot pole. Come, view, see for yourself, maybe you’ll consider the danger a bit more manageable.

      • says

        Dave: We were just looking at some new bikes in Abulug… The prices here are normally cheaper because most are actually manufactured in the Philippines or other ASEAN countries like Indonesia, thus avoiding the tariffsand being competitively priced with the Chinese bikes. I think that Kawasaki is made here and Yamaha in Indonesia. The parts are actually made here, rather than simply assembly.

        As you, I am not a biker, but I would certainly think hard about riding here. With bikes, just as pedestrians, the bus drivers are normally told to make certain that the biker / pedestrian is dead in the event of an accident…often intentionally backing over them again. Dead men tell no tales, nor do they sue.

        • says

          @John Miele (ID 4687): Interesting, John. I had no idea that many bikes were actually built here. Out in the country-side I feel a small bike could be a good idea, but here in the Metro (or close by), not so much in my view.

  14. kennet Taft says

    I’M glad I found you’r wab site you have alot of good info here
    i’m currently in Japan, stationed on a U.S. Marine Air Station and planing to retire soon
    from the marines thinking of living in Surigao DEL Norte . thats where the wife is from
    I will be visiting this site alot now !! thanks for all the great info u have here

    • says

      @kennet Taft (ID 4734): Hello Kennet. Iwakuni, Ourah 😉 (no I’m not a Marine, but I used to run the government long-haul networks for Japan and have visited there many times) Welcome. Anything I can do to make your planning easier, give me a shout. 1-179-966-4295 if you want to chat, or my direct email is dave(at)

  15. Nick Arellano says

    Hi Phil I’m originally from the quezon city area and am now living in phoenix az.. I’m thinking of going back there towards the end if this year and I might stay there for a few years.. I’ve learned driving in the US and using an automatic car.. So my question is: how bad (or traumatic) would it be if I tried to drive over there (pi)-any hints? Also are cars with automatic transmission more expensive than the stickshift cars? Lastly, do cars in the Philippines now have airbags? Anyway I found your blogsite when I was searching for ‘cars for sale in the philippines’. I thought that your blog was very informative.

    • says

      Nick, welcome and thanks for contributing to the conversation here. You’ll have to forgive me a little chuckle when I first read your comment, because one of the things which I find moist strange about living here in the Philippines are some of the reactions I see from balikbayan Filipinos. As a foreigner here I do sometimes feel a little like a “Stranger in a Strange Land”, but a great many returning Filipinos seem to feel very much more like a “Stranger in their own Land”.

      I can’r predict exactly how your time here will go for you, Nick, but really and truly, you should have no problem IF you can relax and let yout “Filipino-ness” resurface. Life is not hard here at all, if it was, I’d be back in the USA fast as the next plane smokin’ out of NAIA would carry me, and my Filipina/US wife would be rushing on ahead of me in the boarding line. But there isn’t much chance of that happening any time soon.

      Regarding your specific questions: you might start with my Driven Crazy in the Philippines article. Be sure to read some of the “Related Posts” listed at the end.

      With regards to automatic transmission, yes there are cars available here, more every year, with automatic transmissions. Just like the USA, they cost more than manual transmission cars. They also waste gas, cause a lot of heat buildup and extra wear and tear, but people who prefer them do love them. (they are certainly better when stuck in traffic, I’ll readily give credit there. being stuck for a couple hours on EDSA shoving the clutch in and out, in and out is both tiring and boring)

      My own advice, learn to drive a stick shift, they are better in almost every way for the driving we do here, and there are plenty cheap driving schools … it will take you perhaps an hour or so … I’m always amazed how many Americans seem to think driving a manual transmission is so hard. But whatever, we have strokes to suit all folks.

      Airbags? Some cars which are imported here have them, but they are far from common.

      I live very near Quezon City (Marilao, Bulacan), if you make the trip, give me a shout and I’ll be happy to take you for a drive 😉

      • Rick Boyer says

        Hey Philly,

        Just came across your blog as I’m reading up on buying a car here in the Philippines… turns out, I’m just down the street from you. Literally, I walked to the Marilou SM last month. (I’m in Mountain View, Muzon.)


        • says

          Hi Rick,

          Yes you do live nearby. Although if you’re in the Muzon on the SJDM-Marilao Road .. out past Loma de Gato, near Harmony Hills, well that’s an impressive walk. Further than I ever walk around here, that’s for sure.

          Give me a shout someday if you want to meet for coffee in the mall -0919-231-6525- (same invite to any other readers as well). What kind of car are you looking to buy? if you’re looking at something in the Mitsubishi line, I’d be happy to introduce you to Romel, the VP of Sales at CarWorld, Marilao … he treated me right when I bought there. Coming up on my fifth year of ownership with my Adventure, over 50,000 km now, and I am still convinced I made a good choice … it’s been a fine car for us.

  16. Cavite Boy says

    I found your blog while searching for information on buying cars in Philippines. It was good reading, thank you.

    • says

      Cavite Boy, glad you found something useful, Boy. Actually, I could write a whole blog on cars alone, easily … I still have the ‘bug’, evn though I now drive a boring, mundane family car. I wonder why someone doesn’t “go for it” with cars and the Philippines? It’s a subject that both Filipinos and foreigners are both interest in too, and much of the language is common. I get tons of search engine visitors who were looking for car information, and I have very little here for car buys or car enthusiasts … it’s just that most other blogs have even less. “They” say there is no opportunity in the online world. “They” don’t really know what they are talking about.

  17. says

    Hey there Philly, found your blog while searching “how to buy cars in the Philippines”, I was born in the Philippines, came to US when I was a teenager and planning to go back for couple of years. Here in the US as you may know buying cars usually involves looking at Dealership websites with pictures and videos, given the fact that Philippines are not too far fetch when it comes to technology , why is that is har d for me to find a dealership that has a good functioning website/s with good quality pictures? Is it Philippines hasn’t caught up with the “information superhighway” or is it Dealerships in the Philippines are that really cheap? lol.

  18. says

    As usual, no real info. Nothing but idiots on the internet talking in vague collectives. Did you say how much… no… is it that hard to be descriptive, exact? All of these tools in modern civilization and nothing but apes to use them.

    • says

      @ Rowan

      Thanks for your helpful comment. Glad you enjoyed visiting so much. Since you didn’t feel you got value received, be sure to send me a copy of your receipt and I’ll be happy to send you back triple what you paid. Be well.

  19. Cali Guy says

    In the US. when buying a new car from a dealer, no smart person would ever pay the “sticker price” (MSRP). You research dealer actual cost and incentives, etc. and you negotiate.
    What about in the Philippines. Is there room to negotiate, or does a car dealer refuse?

    • Philly says

      In my experience new car dealers do not negotiate at all. Cars are sold at list in the Manila area and at considerable markups in the provinces. It’s nothing like the US where there is a car dealer on every other street corner competing with dealers who sell online. A car, especially a new car, in the Philippines is an expensive luxury and priced accordingly.

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