Test Drive This: 2013 Foton Thunder
Over the week-end, Foton mounted a Big Show exhibition at the World Trade Center where they had all of their big cars, trucks and event machineries up for a test drive.
While we were excited at the idea of driving a crane or ten wheeler, we eventually settled for a tamer model — the Foton Thunder.
The Foton Thunder is the company’s own 4×4 pick-up truck that all comes with manual transmission. The model that we drove was diesel-powered so you can easily feel that vibration of the engine and the shaking of the gear shift while driving.
It’s a huge truck, nevertheless, and that custom bumper grill makes it look bad-ass. What’s more surprising is that this unit actually costs only a little over Php1.1 Million. Not bad for a 2.8L 4×4, right?
We took the Thunder around World Trade Center and the drive was a bit shaky despite the smooth road. We wished we could have driven it on some terrain or off-road to see how it fared in rough roads, where we think the experience will be more realistic.
The interior looks pretty simple but well-apportioned and you also get leather seats. Over-all, the pick-up looks pretty decent and to think this Chinese car company was only established in 1996.
Foton also manufactures heavy machineries, agricultural tractors, buses and heavy-duty trucks. They have cranes and bulldozers that were also on display during the exhibitions and I was told I can also test-drive those but I was not that confident to drive them anyway.
Btw, I hear Foton has an R&D facility here in the Philippines (just like Japan, Taiwan and the US) so it’s possible some of the research or design were done here.