JAC Motors Philippines already has a contender in the pickup segment, the T6. Naturally, the Chinese carmaker wants a sizable share of the booming truck market, and it intends to do that with a sub-P1,000,000 product. But given the purchase price, is this thing a strong contender against more expensive Japanese and American rivals?
The T8 is a tough-looking truck. Up front, the huge chrome slatted grille is flanked by projector headlamps and LED running lights. Fog lights can be found at the lower part of the chiseled front bumper. The sides have a pronounced character line that runs from the front fender all the way to the truck’s bed. Plastic overriders adorn the wheel arches. The stylish 18-inch alloy rims are wrapped in 265mm-width tires.
Interestingly, JAC has opted for brown leather upholstery, while the black plastic trim pieces are paired with silver accents. In the center stack, you’ll find an eight-inch touchscreen that doubles as a reversing or 360⁰ camera, depending on the variant. The three-spoke tiller has audio and cruise-control switchgear on it. Quite a stylish cab, all things considered.
But the T8’s toughness isn’t just skin-deep. At 5,325mm long, 1,880mm wide and 1,830mm tall, this truck is properly huge. Water crossings shouldn’t be a problem with its 220mm ground clearance. Under the hood is a 2.0-liter turbocharged diesel engine good for 136hp and 320Nm, transmitted to the rear or all four wheels via a six-speed manual transmission.
The truck is pretty loaded in terms of safety, too. It has hill-start assist, traction control, stability control and a tire-pressure monitor. You can even remotely open and close the truck’s windows using the key fob. Interestingly, the top-of-the-line Ultimate trim level has disc brakes at all four corners.
As mentioned, the JAC T8’s acquisition cost significantly undercuts the competition. Prices are P928,000 for the base Luxury variant, and P998,000 for the range-topping Ultimate version. This is definitely worth considering especially for pickup shoppers on a tight budget.