Summit Media's Gokongwei defends Top Gear from critic

Summit Media president Lisa Gokongwei Cheng defended Top Gear Philippines against a critic who linked the motoring magazine to Mitsubishi.

When TGP shared on Facebook a story contributed by a certain Allan Agati, who did a research and found out a so-called design flaw on the pedal of the Montero Sport after comparing it to a Toyota Fortuner's, one Michael Javier posted a comment urging other readers to search for "Gokongwei Mitsubishi" on Yahoo! and Google.

Javier said "Top Gear Philippines is under Summit media owned by the Gokongwei's" and apparently hinted, "If you wonder why top gear is always defending mitsubishi [sic]."

The magazine has been accused of defending Mitsubishi following its online publication of an article that criticized television network ABS-CBN for its alleged bias reporting about the issue on sudden unintended acceleration (SUA) of Montero Sport vehicles.

Googling the keywords leads one to several old articles regarding the partnership between the Mitsubishi Group of Japan and the Robinsons retail chain of the Gokongwei Group forged over four years ago (like this report on PhilStar). The joint venture paved the way for the operations of the Mini Stop convenience store chain in the country.

Javier provided an "interesting" yet "misleading" information. As a reaction thereto, Cheng made a clarification and defended TGP, saying:

I had to google "gokongwei Mitsubishi" to see what you were getting at. I can understand why anyone would have that idea given "your googling" but to be very clear, the gokongwei joint venture with Mitsubishi corp is for mini-stop.

Mitsubishi corp, just like any huge zaibatsu or Japanese conglomerate, has its fingers in every industry. And if you want to investigate further, Mitsubishi corp has tie-ups with several Filipino conglomerates, not only with the gokongwei group.

The gokongwei group has no connection to Mitsubishi motors. I can assure you and top gear's audience that there is no conflict of interest here. You definitely have the instincts of a reporter but research pa more pare ko.

Javier did not reply to Cheng's comment and his post was already deleted.