Vehicle smuggling is common in the Philippines where car buyers can pay taxes of up to 50 percent on more expensive cars. The President of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte (who enjoys strong support from the United States despite being something of a mass-murderer) has shown a preference for discouraging smuggling by destroying fancy cars in public—and he’s at it again. The Robb Report reports that the Philippine government crushed $1.2 million in cars last week.
The country’s Bureau of Customs says that the crushings “send the strong message that the government is serious in its efforts against smuggling.” I mean, I think people get it now.
The crushings from last week are the second to take place this year. Of the $1.2 million in vehicles that were destroyed: A 2007 Bentley Continental Flying Spur, a Hyundai Genesis coupe, a 997 generation Porsche 911 C2S, a Lotus Elise, a Mercedes SLK, a random-ass Toyota Solara convertible,
and probably the hardest one to stomach for any enthusiast, a brand new Mclaren 620R. Remember, that’s one of only 350 that Mclaren is building.
The crushing of these cars can get way worse than this. Like in 2018, when over $8 million worth of vehicles were destroyed. Not everyone agrees with the crushing theatrics, though. The Filipino Senate proposed a plan that would have the vehicles auctioned off with the money going to victims of natural disasters. Senators said that it takes more money, energy, and resources to destroy them when you factor in the resources used in making the cars. Sound reasoning. But with Duterte in office, sadly these crushings don’t seem like they will end anytime soon.