Thursday, February 25, 2016

A Different Kind of People Power - The Aurelio Super Car

Ever since we saw a sexy blue super car stride in front of us at our jogging place at Southwoods City, we have been trying to drop by Aurelio Concept Inc which is a stone's throw away from where we'd usually jog, but we normally went on weeknights and we didn't want to be seen as trespassers. But today is the People Power holiday and so we managed to jog early morning and finally grabbed the chance to visit them.

We approached with caution because we expected the shop to be highly guarded with all the highly valued things inside, but this one was wide open. So we took the liberty to step inside and check out the cars. We gaped amazement at the 2 prototype cars displayed and another 2 that were still on its very raw form.

A Filipino supercar. I'm no hardcore car enthusiast, i just recently got interested because of our Daisy, but who wouldn't be amazed at the thought of a Filipino building his own line of cars from scratch, and a super car (think Ferrari and Lamborghini) at that? 

We were obviously very curious and were hoping for someone to talk to. Luckily for us, no other than Sonny, the co-owner and Marketing Head of Aurelio Motors approached us with a smile and told us everything we wanted to know.his, coupled with a some internet research increased my amazement and admiration for the guys behind Aurelio Concept Inc.

With Sonny Garcia

Apparently they have been making waves among car enthusiasts since 2014 when they started appearing in car shows. It's really exciting how a 3rd world country such as ours could manage to come up with this. We've always been behind in terms of automotive manufacturing, we normally just have companies who create automotive parts, but none have attempted to build a even commercial car. In fact, it looks like we are even a step ahead from our Asian neighbors because so far only Japan has come up with super cars of their own.

When we say "Pinoy", the first vehicle that comes to mind is the jeepney, and this is what Sonny passionately wishes to debunk. Will we allow ourselves to get stuck in the Jeepney-culture without even pulling ourselves up? I couldn't help but agree.

Now i will not pretend to be a car-person, for the car review I'd like to refer you to this article to give car nuts comprehensive review. What I would like to talk about here is the passion that these guys stand for.

You would be stunned when you see their shop. Your usual mechanical engineering lab in school probably looks more complicated, no big machines, CNC, or whatnot. And that means EACH PANEL OF THE CAR IS FRIGGIN HAND CRAFTED (except of course for the engine). Imagine the precision, discipline, and hardwork needed to complete this beauty! Truly a work of love and a testament to Filipino ingenuity.

I was very impressed by how open their shop was. As I have mentioned, there's just a small gate and you can see everything from the outside. I'm pretty worried about the safety of the cars but this is indicative of how open they are with what they do and that's one thing that Sonny emphasized. They invite students, enthusiasts, people of all ages, because they want to inspire and show people how it's done and that yes it is possible and they can do it if they dream it (with a hell lot of hard work, of course). They intend to turn this into an elevated showroom so that people passing by the SLEX can see their model units. I'm looking forward to it!
It's not everyday that you get to ride a super car!

What really saddened me is that it's been 2 YEARS since a legitimate prototype has been created, but THEY ARE STILL WAITING FOR GOVERNMENT SUPPORT. Seriously?? They've been receiving awards after awards from various organizations here and abroad, they've been getting recognition from govt agencies, but the real support is not yet there. The reason? POLITICS. This is the frustrating part about being an inventor in this country. We're not lacking in heart and competence, but we sorely lack POLITICAL WILL.

Press releases say they intend to build only 10 units, we already saw about 3 prototypes in the shop and they intend to make each unit different and more polished. It's unavoidable to see some rough edges at some corners because of it being manually crafted, but the way I see it, it is every inch a Filipino Super Car because it was made by Filipinos with Super hearts who cannot take "impossible" for an answer. 

And this, to me, makes it a very fitting blog for the People Power holiday we celebrate today, and being the EDSA baby that I am. 30 years ago, our parents took a stand and said "NEVER AGAIN" to the dictators. 30 years after, we are faced with a whole new challenge - the challenge of moving forward. Today we met a very inspiring man who showed us we can LEAD to do just that. How do we respond? :) 

These guys are looking for Filipino investors and supporters who believe in this project and want to see it through completion just as badly. Because as most of you know, our government is too busy blaming other governments to even make a move (HAHA). They have a Facebook account at Aurelio Concepts Inc . Please do message them! And their shop is open to everyone if you're looking to invest or if you just want to be inspired. We sure were! :)))

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