It doesn’t take someone with Sherlock Holmes’ deductive capability to notice that subcompact crossovers are a popular segment in the local automotive marketplace today. A quick look out onto the streets and you’re bound to see quite a few on it, and then some. And with Toyota unveiling a production-ready Toyota C-HR in the first quarter of 2016 following its global debut in the 2014 Paris Motor Show as a concept model, it didn’t come as a surprise that many were anticipating its arrival here, both for its good looks and the brand’s renowned reliability.
Well, if you’re one of the many people waiting for the Philippine-market debut of the C-HR, it may all be for naught as Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) is supposedly not planning to sell the aforementioned model here.
“We’re committed to selling the RAV4 because it’s a global model,” our source told Carmudi Insider. “Our concern is that it (the C-HR) would eat into the sales of the RAV4 if we sold it locally.”
Apparently, since the RAV4 is considered a global model by Toyota, TMP HAS to sell it and can’t remove it from the carmaker’s local lineup in favor of the C-HR. And even if TMP thinks the C-HR has a very good chance of wrestling the compact crossover sales crown from the leading model, it would mean sacrificing the sales of the RAV4 which, on its own, isn’t moving out of Toyota’s dealerships as much as it wants to.
However, the C-HR will supposedly be assembled in Toyota’s Rayong, Thailand plant by either this year or in 2018, though it's not yet known if the units to be produced will be for local consumption or for the region. If it’s the former, then we can only look at our ASEAN neighbor in envy, but if it’s the latter, then we need only wait for its regional launch.
The C-HR is currently on sale in Europe with either a 1.8-liter hybrid engine or a 1.2-liter turbocharged mill while the United States-market model is solely available with a brawnier, naturally-aspirated 2.0-liter powerplant.