RAMON S. Ang is a man of few words. His favorite word is “Sir.” I know. He calls me “Sir” all the time. He called me “Sir” again during the recent launch of two Ferrari muscles at his Velocita Motors showroom along Edsa near Ortigas Ave. in Mandaluyong City.
“Sir, halika, magpalitrato tayo,” he tells me.
I oblige. Who am I to decline the invite of the country’s third richest person, whose humility is as massive as his wealth anchored on his San Miguel Corp. empire?
“This is Sir Al, the veteran journalist,” he informs my colleagues.
Veteran? Means, I’m an old chap already.
RSA to everyone, Ang remains energetic both in mind and in heart despite his sixty-ish knees. My idol since the seventies, I find him a man of substance.
“Every living thing, every object, every idea, is big,” he told me once. “Believe in what you do. There is wisdom, knowledge, behind every option you take.”
Already the lead man in the BMW brand in his historic foray into the vehicle business just a while back, he stunned the industry once more by buying the country’s franchise for the iconic Ferrari.
RSA personally attended the recent launch of the white FUV (Ferrari Utility Vehicle) named Purosangue (P46 million) and the Ferrari 296 GTS sports car (P26M).
Too pricey you say?
Think again because combined advanced orders for both have already breached the hundred-barrier mark, with Purosangue hitting the 86-plus count. Each order to be delivered within two years.
The Ferrari Purosangue is the first ever four-door, four-seater, V12-engined car in the company’s history—a culmination of 75 years of leading-edge research.
Ferrari said the Purosangue is “a peerless encapsulation of the Prancing Horse’s iconic DNA.”
The red 296 GTS Ferrari’s new mid-rear-engined berlinetta spider is equipped with an 830 cv Ferrari V6 hybrid powertrain, guaranteeing “pure emotion not just when pushing the car to its limits, but also in day-to-day driving.”
Car buffs can visit the Ferrari showroom at 169 EDSA, Brgy. Wack Wack, Greenhills East, Mandaluyong City, which is open from Monday to Saturday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Here is RSA’s well-applauded speech:
“Good evening ladies and gentlemen.
“Tonight marks a significant milestone as San Miguel Corporation, through Velocita Motors, takes on the honor of being the official distributor of Ferrari in the Philippines.
“Ferrari has always been one of the most iconic and recognized premiere brands in the world. To be entrusted with this brand is a great privilege. Thank you Mr. Dieter Knechtel for the confidence you have placed in us.
“Allow me to also extend my gratitude to our predecessors who paved the way for Ferrari in the Philippines.
“San Miguel has always been more than just a company. We are an institution that holds the trust of millions of people.
“Similarly, Ferrari, with its legacy of speed, passion, and unmatched performance, has been more than just a luxury car-maker.
“It represents the best of Italian engineering and craftsmanship. It is a symbol of aspiration and of many dreams realized.
“This is a partnership that combines our strengths, not just in delivering the best products and services to valued customers, but in creating a positive impact on society, and the many lives that we touch.
“That said, we promise to deliver not just extraordinary cars, but also an unparalleled experience that celebrates the rich heritage and craftsmanship of Ferrari.
“Rest assured that Velocita Motors will live by the values of the brand and keep the legacy of the great Enzo Ferrari alive.
“Thank you everyone for joining us.”
So there. Short but sweet.
PEE STOP The Volvo China Open will be held in Shenzhen’s Hidden Grace Golf Club on November 2-5, with US$1.5 million at stake. I once covered this event when it was held in Shanghai in 2005, with Toyota Motor Philippine Chairman Alfred V. Ty joining hundreds of fans to watch Tiger Woods play. Memories…The new Hilux GR-S is now available at all 74-plus Toyota dealerships nationwide. The best-selling pickup is a 2.8L diesel, 4-cylinder, 16-valve DOHC with a variable nozzle turbo engine.