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Thailand 1st Half 2015: Hilux transitions, Honda HR-V makes a splash

July 27th, 2015 No comments

Honda HR-V Thailand June 2015. Picture courtesy motortrend.comThe Honda HR-V is an instant blockbuster in Thailand, becoming the brand’s best-seller in June.

* See the Top 50 best-selling models and Top 40 All-brands by clicking on the title *

Nightmares and headaches: this is the daily routine of dealerships in Thailand as the market shows no sign of improvement over the First Half of 2015, down another 16% to 369.109 registrations, on top of a 41% fall at the same time last year. All-in-all, the Thai market has retracted by 50% in the past two years. Toyota is hit harder than the market at -25% to return to exactly 1 in every 3 sales in the country above Isuzu (-17%) while Honda bucks the trend and gains 16% to overtake Nissan (-16%) and Mitsubishi (-25%) and climb on the third step of the podium at 54.800 sales and just under 15% sales. Mazda (-2%) passes Ford (-29%) to rank 6th while Suzuki (-6%) outsells Chevrolet (-45%) to #8. A rare newcomer inside Thailand’s Top 20 most popular brands is Chinese manufacturer MG landing directly at #16 with 700 sales so far in 2015.

Toyota Hilux Revo Thailand May 2015. Picture courtesy autodeft.comThe transition to the new generation cost the Hilux the #2 YTD spot for two months.

In the models ranking, the two traditional leaders, the pickups Toyota Hilux (-18%) and Isuzu D-Max (-14%) hold onto their position with 16.1% and 15.4% share respectively, however the transition to the new generation Hilux Revo cost it the YTD top spot in April and May. The Toyota Vios takes advantage of the freefalling of the Toyota Yaris (-41%) and Honda City (-28%) to claim the #3 spot overall, but the success story of the year is without contest the Honda HR-V. The baby SUV, launched in late 2014, lands directly ay #7 with 12.300 sales and even shot up to #4 in June, becoming the brand’s best-seller in the country and threatening the Toyota Vios for the title of Thailand’s best-selling passenger car. Further down, the Honda Jazz at #10 (+134%), Nissan Navara at #11 (+73%) and Mazda2 at #12 (+110%) are all boosted by their new generations.

Previous post (1): Photo Report: The cars of Bangkok, Thailand

Previous post (2): Thailand June 2015: New Toyota Hilux shoots up to 21% share

One year ago: Thailand June 2014: New generation Honda Jazz breaks into Top 10

Full H1 2015 Top 50 models and Top 40 All-brands vs. Full H1 2014 figures below.

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Photo Report: The cars of Bangkok, Thailand

July 26th, 2015 2 comments

1. Toyota Hilux Bangkok July 2015Toyota Hilux Revo in Bangkok – July 2015

One week ago I had to chance to stopover in Bangkok Thailand for a few hours on my way from Sydney Australia to Europe. It was the first time I (quickly) visited Bangkok in ten years and the second time ever. One of the perks of visiting the Bangkok airport was to get my hands on local car magazine Formula, the only medium to publish full models sales for Thailand – albeit with a couple of months delay. A more complete Top 95 models ranking for the Jan-April 2015 period has now been posted. My main mission in Bangkok was to find and snap new generation Toyota Hilux Revo, which expectedly has taken the Thai sales charts by storm with over 20.000 sales in just two months…

2. Isuzu D-Max Bangkok July 2015Isuzu D-Max in Bangkok – July 2015

And lucky I was. I decided to keep it simple and take the Airport Rail Link to its terminal at Phaya Thai, then walk around for 1h30. As soon as I disembarked the train, one shiny new Hilux Revo parked next to me. It was literally one of the first cars I saw in the street and I thought it would be the first of many. Not. It ended up being the only Revo I saw the entire time I snapped pictures in the area. And the first striking impression when stepping foot in Bangkok is that the stats aren’t lying: the streets are packed with Hilux and Isuzu D-Max pickups, for the most part less than 7 years old.

3. Honda HR-V Bangkok July 2015Honda HR-V in Bangkok – July 2015

But as it showed in the June sales charts where it ranks 4th overall, the runaway success of this First Half of 2015 is the Honda HR-V. I saw over 15 of them in just 1h30: Honda’s baby SUV is redefining the success parameters for this type of vehicle, selling almost 10 times more than its competitors, the Ford Ecosport and Nissan Juke. Even more so than in Indonesia, China or the rest of South-East China, the Honda HR-V has really struck a chord with Bangkok car buyers. A couple of months back, we reported that the HR-V was the #1 best-selling vehicle in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, well in Bangkok it shouldn’t be too far off the #1 passenger car spot.

4. Toyota Corolla Taxi Bangkok July 20155. Toyota Corolla Taxi Bangkok July 20156. Toyota Corolla Taxi Bangkok July 20156. Toyota Corolla Taxi Bangkok July 2015bMulti-coloured Toyota Corolla taxis in Bangkok – July 2015

Interestingly, I wouldn’t attribute this Bangkok #1 passenger car spot to the Toyota Vios (the #1 nationally), but to its larger counterpart the Toyota Corolla. Even though this Photo Report only displays the multi-coloured taxi versions swarming the streets of the Thai capital, the Corolla also looks like it could be the most popular passenger car choice for private buyers.

7. Street scene Bangkok July 2015bBangkok street scene – July 2015

7. Toyota Vios Bangkok July 2015Toyota Vios in Bangkok – July 2015

Not to worry, the Toyota Vios, Yaris and to a lesser extent the Honda City are also very frequent around the Bangkok area I visited. All the recent sales successes are also very well represented, namely the Honda Jazz and Mazda2, I also spotted a handful of new generation Mazda2 sedans.

8. Toyota Yaris Bangkok July 2015Toyota Yaris

9. Toyota Hilux Bodytype Bangkok July 2015aToyota Hilux

Watching the car landscape in Bangkok also offers a fascinating glimpse into the variety of usages pickups have in Thailand. Naked beds are the most common variety, a large part are also covered, either to transport utensils, in effect making it an SUV (see above), or people (see below) with add-ons of very various sizes.

10. Mitsubishi Triton Bangkok July 2015Mitsubishi Triton

11. Mazda BT-50 Toyota Hilux Bangkok July 2015Mazda BT-50 and Toyota Fortuner

Another very important learning looking at the pickup population in Bangkok is that contrary to perception, if the majority of pickups are 2WD variants used for commercial needs, an increasing part (compared to ten years ago) is clearly recreational. There is a surprisingly large amount of 4WD Hilux TRD or Ford Ranger Wildtrack roaming Bangkok streets.

12. MG 3 Bangkok July 2015MG 3

Finally, another chance spotting: the all-new MG 3 in flashy yellow. Chinese manufacturer MG entered the Thai new car market in 2014 but has only seen its sales rally take off in the past couple of months (totalling 700 year-to-date) with the arrival of the MG 3, currently heavily marketed in Thailand through billboards plastered all through the airport and the Rail Link.

The Photo Report continues below with the remainder of the 20 Bangkok pictures.

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Categories: Thailand

Thailand June 2015: New Toyota Hilux shoots up to 21% share

July 25th, 2015 No comments

Toyota Hilux Revo Thailand May 2015. Picture courtesy bangkokpost.com97% of Toyota Hilux sold in Thailand in June are the new generation Revo.

* See the Top 50 best-selling models and Top 40 All-brands by clicking on the title *

The Thai new light vehicle market continues to slip away: down another 13% year-on-year in June to just 60.322 registrations, pulling the half year 2015 total down 16% to 369.109 units. Toyota sells exactly double the amount of the #2 brand Isuzu at 36% share vs. 18%, with Honda strong again at 13.1% in third position, Mitsubishi (6.3%) overtaking Nissan 5.2%) above Mazda (4.9%), Ford (4.5%), Suzuki (2.8%) and Mercedes (2.1%). Now that the new generation Revo is in cruising mode (for only its 2nd full month in market), the Toyota Hilux shoots up to 21.3% market share with 12.824 sales, including 12.452 Revo.

Honda HR-V Thailand June 2015. Picture courtesy manager.co.thAstounding success for the Honda HR-V in Thailand.

The Isuzu D-Max concedes the year-to-date leadership and lodges a paltry 8.832 sales and 14.6% this month. If the Toyota Vios holds onto the third spot with 4.2% share, it is now threatened for the Thai #1 passenger car title by the Honda HR-V, going from strength to strength and gaining another spot to land at an all-time high #4 with a record 2.453 sales and 4.1% share, overtaking the Honda City (#6) while the Toyota Yaris is up one spot to #5. The Mitsubishi Triton is back up to #7 with the new generation accounting for 84% of sales.

MG3 Thailand June 2015. Picture courtesy manager.co.thChinese MG is starting to make its mark in Thailand.

Further down, the Mazda2 is back inside the Top 10 thanks to the success of the newly launched sedan variant, the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport jumps 10 spots on May to #16, the Ford Fiesta is up 8 to #20 and the Nissan X-Trail up 9 to #22. Chinese manufacturer MG is stepping up its game in Thailand with a record 300 sales this month, 280 of which are estimated to be for the new MG 3, which earns it a spot among Thailand’s Top 30 best-sellers.

Previous month: Thailand May 2015: 8100 new generation Hilux already on the roads

One year ago: Thailand June 2014: New generation Honda Jazz breaks into Top 10

Full June 2015 Top 50 models and Top 40 All-brands below.

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Categories: Thailand

Thailand May 2015: 8100 new generation Hilux already on the roads

June 26th, 2015 No comments

Toyota Hilux Revo Thailand May 2015. Picture courtesy autodeft.comToyota Hilux Revo Double Cab

* See the Top 50 best-selling models and Top 35 All-brands by clicking on the title *

The Thai new light vehicle market has been freefalling for almost two years now, with May down another depressing 19% year-on-year to just 56.697 registrations, meaning the 2015 year-to-date total is now down 16% at 308.542 deliveries. The new generation Toyota Hilux, dubbed Revo in Thailand where it is manufactured, unsurprisingly starts with a bang, selling 8100 units for its very first month. This is not enough to single-handedly grab the Thai pole position, but with an additional 684 previous generation Vigo sold this month, the Hilux nameplate does reclaim the #1 spot in May off the Isuzu D-Max in extremis at 8,784 sales vs. 8.774. The D-Max is however still on top year-to-date for now at 48.137 deliveries vs. 46.552 for the Hilux.

Toyota Hilux Revo Standard Cab Thailand May 2015Toyota Hilux Revo Standard Cab

Below, the Toyota Vios reclaims the passenger car crown both this month (2.780 units) and year-to-date (15.534), passing its hatchback variant the Yaris (15.330) with the Honda City in tow. Exceptional score of the Honda HR-V brilliantly breaking into the Thai Top 5 in May and for the first time thanks to 2.298 sales and 4.1% share, after ranking #7 in December, March and April. The HR-V is turning out to be an absolute blockbuster in South-East Asia after also peaking at #5 in Indonesia. Other great performers in Thailand this month include the Ford Ranger up to #7, the Mazda2 very solid once again at #11 and the Suzuki Celerio up a further 4 to a best-ever #24.

Previous month: Thailand April 2015: Hilux changeover lifts Isuzu D-Max to #1 year-to-date

One year ago: Thailand May 2014: Toyota Yaris back on podium

Full May 2015 Top 50 models and Top 25 brands below.

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Thailand April 2015: Hilux changeover lifts D-Max to #1 year-to-date

May 29th, 2015 No comments

Isuzu D-Max Thailand April 2015. Picture courtesy car4th.comIsuzu D-Max

* See the Top 50 best-selling models and Top 25 brands by clicking on the title *

* NOW UPDATED with the Top 95 best-selling models for January-April 2015 *

The Thai new auto market is sinking further into recession in April with sales down another 27% year-on-year to 54.058 registrations, bringing the year-to-date total to 251.845 units, down 16% on 2014. The big event in the Thai sales charts this month is the anticipation of the new generation Toyota Hilux launch, unveiled on May 21. A perennial leader in the country and produced locally, the Hilux Revo replaces the Hilux Vigo, a once-in-a-decade event that is bound to shake sales up. True to form and a testimony to the critical importance of the Hilux for Thailand, customers holding off their purchase until the Hilux Revo becomes available in late May have sent the entire Thai market into a spin in April.

Mazda2 sedan Thailand April 2015. Picture courtesy headlightmag.comThe new sedan pushes the Mazda2 inside the Top 10 this month

The Isuzu D-Max takes the lead of the models ranking (9.554 sales) and its advance over the Hilux is such that it also (temporarily) snaps the 2015 year-to-date top spot at 39.363 units vs. 37.768. Overall a month to forget for Toyota down to 24.4% share and just managing to keep its #1 spot from Isuzu at 21.6%. Honda is in top shape at 15.6%, with the City hopping up to #1 passenger car at 2.555 units (Yaris 2.368 and Vios 2.175) and the HR-V confirming its record 7th spot with an all-time high 3.5% market share. The Mitsubishi Triton improves to #6 and 3.9% with 2.121 deliveries including 1.850 new generation. The Mazda2 breaks into the Top 10 at #10 now that the new generation sedan has hit dealerships, the Toyota Camry holds strong at #16, the Mazda3 is up 10 spots on March to #17 and the Nissan March is up 17 to #18.

Previous month: Thailand March 2015: Honda HR-V and Toyota Camry shoot up

One year ago: Thailand April 2014: Honda City back in the game

Full April 2015 Top 50 models and Top 25 brands, Jan-Apr Top 95 models below.

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Thailand March 2015: Honda HR-V and Toyota Camry shoot up

May 1st, 2015 No comments

Honda HR-V Thailand March 2015. Picture courtesy autobild.co.idThe Honda HR-V jumps to 7th place overall in Thailand this month.

* See the Top 55 best-selling models and Top 35 All-brands by clicking on the title *

The recession is still not over for the new light vehicle market in Thailand: sales are down another 12% year-on-year both in March (74,117 registrations) and over the First Quarter (197,787), noting that Q1 2014 was itself down 46% on 2013… The brands ranking is remarkably stable once again: Toyota leads by far with 37% share above Isuzu at 17.5% (with only two models!), Honda at 14.2%, Nissan at 8.1% and Mitsubishi at 6.1%. Ford (#7 and 3.4% share) and Chevrolet (#9 and 2%) are the only two non-Japanese brands in the Top 10, while BMW overtakes Mercedes to snap the premium crown this month.

Toyota Yaris Thailand March 2015. Picture courtesy autoevolution.comThe Toyota Yaris is now the best-selling passenger car in Thailand in 2015 to-date.

Model-wise, below the two untouchables local pickups Hilux (16%) and D-Max (14.3%), the Toyota Yaris reclaims the passenger car pole position over its sedan variant the Vios thanks to 4,736 sales in March, bringing its Q1 total to 10,869 vs. 10,579 for the Vios. But the main event in the Thai Top 10 this month is the thunderous arrival of the Honda HR-V in 7th place with 2,500 deliveries and 3.4% share, more than 3 times the level of its nearer competitor the Nissan Juke. Boosted by its facelift, the Toyota Camry shoots up 22 spots on February to #12 and 2.1% share while the Nissan X-Trail improves again at #18.

Previous month: Thailand February 2015: New Mitsubishi Triton lands

One year ago: Thailand First Quarter 2014: New vehicle sales down 46%

Full March 2015 Top 55 models and Top 35 All-brands below.

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Thailand February 2015: New Mitsubishi Triton lands

April 2nd, 2015 No comments

Mitsubishi Triton Thailand February 2015. Picture courtesy autospinn.com947 new Mitsubishi Triton found a buyer in Thailand in February.

* See the Top 37 All-brands and Top 50 best-selling models by clicking on the title *

The Thai new car market has not bottomed out yet: down another 10% year-on-year in February to 63,949 registrations, bringing the year-to-date total to 123,670 units, down 11% on 2014. Toyota is ultra-dominant in the brands ranking once again with 22,470 sales and 35.1% above Isuzu (18.4%) and Honda (13.8%) while Nissan (7.5%) and Mitsubishi (6.8%) round up the Top 5. Mazda is above Ford unlike in 2014. The Toyota Hilux reaches 18.6% share vs. 16.5% for its archenemy the Isuzu D-Max, the Toyota Vios is back up to third place thanks to 3,612 units and 6%, overtaking both the Toyota Yaris (5.2%) and Honda City (4.4%). Although it is immobile at #7 and 3.4%, the Mitsubishi Triton welcomes the arrival of its new generation, accounting for 47% of its total sales for the month. The Mitsubishi Attrage knocks at the Top 10’s door at #11 and a strong 2.4% share, while the Honda HR-V steps out of it at #12 but delivers another impressive month at 1,440 sales.

Previous month: Thailand January 2015: Honda HR-V in Top 10 again

One year ago: Thailand (pick-ups) February 2014: Ford Ranger stays afloat

Full February 2015 Top 37 All-brands and Top 50 models below.

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Thailand January 2015: Honda HR-V in Top 10 again

March 3rd, 2015 No comments

Honda HR-V Thailand January 2015Runaway success: the Honda HR-V in Thailand.

* See the Top 50 best-selling models and Top 9 brands by clicking on the title *

Sadly, the Thai new car market continues to sink deeper into recession with another harsh 13% year-on-year drop in January to just 59,721 registrations. Toyota remains the most popular manufacturer by far with 33.6% share but Honda now threatens Isuzu for 2nd place at 16.9% vs. 18.8%, thanks to exceptional results by the brand’s all-new small SUV: the HR-V. After reaching an out-of-this world 7th place in December for its 2nd month in market, the HR-V ranks #10 in January with another very strong 1,718 sales and 2.9% share.

Mazda2 Thailand January 2015. Picture courtesy paultan.orgThe Mazda2 is the brand’s best-seller in Thailand this month.

The Toyota Hilux keeps the lead of the models ranking with 16.5% share vs. 15.6% for the Isuzu D-Max, the Honda City climbs back into third place with 5.4%, overtaking the Toyota Yaris (5%) and Vios (4.7%) to reclaim the passenger car crown, the Nissan Navara shoots up to #8 vs. #12 in FY2014 thanks to the new model, the Mitsubishi Attrage is back to #12, the Mazda2 benefits from the new model to reach #13 and become the brand’s best-seller in Thailand and the Nissan X-Trail confirms the success of the new generation at #26.

Previous post: Thailand Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux leads, Yaris on podium

One year ago: Thailand January 2014: Toyota Yaris nails it, Isuzu MU-X #10

Full January 2015 Top 50 models and Top 9 brands Ranking Tables below.

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Thailand Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux leads, Yaris on podium

February 2nd, 2015 No comments

Toyota Yaris Thailand 2014. Picture courtesy of cheshili.comToyota Yaris (Chinese model shown)

* See the Top 50 models and Top 40 All-brands by clicking on the title *

Catastrophic year for new car sales in Thailand: as soon as the government’s “first car” incentive program was ditched in mid-2013, the market has fallen back to 2011 levels. If a very strong first half in 2013 (+31% over the first 5 months) limited the slump to 8% at 1.32 million units, 2014 is hit full frontal at -33% to 881,832 registrations. Toyota is still king of the (battered) castle by far, with sales down ‘just’ 27% it even manages to markedly improve its market share further: from 33.6% in 2013 to 37.1% in 2014. The combination of a very successful launch for the Isuzu MU-X SUV and the crumbling apart of Honda’s main passenger cars means Isuzu is back to #2 manufacturer in the country with sales down 23% to 160,286 vs. -50% and 106,482 for Honda. Ford is up two spots to #6, Mercedes and BMW are the only brands to post year-on-year volume gains in the Top 25 and Chinese MG lands at #24 with a discreet 204 MG 6 sold.

Toyota Hilux Thailand 2014The Toyota Hilux is once again the best-selling vehicle in Thailand.

The market implosion mainly affecting affordable passenger cars, both the Toyota Hilux and Isuzu D-Max reinforce their domination of the Thai market by losing less ground and improving their market shares to 16.4% and 14.6% respectively, selling more than double any other nameplate. Now that its new generation is (logically) priced under the Vios, the Toyota Yaris becomes the best-selling passenger car in Thailand for the first time and for this generation’s first year in market, selling 2.5 times more than in 2013 at 52,809 units. The Toyota Vios (-54%) and Honda City (-52%) follow.

Isuzu MU-X Thailand 2014Total success for the Isuzu MU-X in Thailand.

Boosted by the new generation, the Toyota Corolla gains two spots and 4% to land at #6, the Ford Ranger breaks into the Top 10 at #9 and the Isuzu MU-X closes an outstanding first full year in Thailand inside the Top 10 at #10 with 19,040 sales. Helped by the new generation launched mid-year, the Nissan Navara is up 4 spot stop #12 but will feature in the 2015 Top 10, the Mitsubishi Attrage is up 10 ranks to #17 and the Nissan Juke closes its first full year in market at an excellent 20th place. There are 5 all-new nameplates landing in the 2014 Thai Top 50: the Ford Ecosport at #27, the Honda HR-V at #34 (but #7 in December!), Honda Mobilio at #38, Suzuki Celerio at #42 and Nissan Livina at #48.

Nissan Navara Thailand 2014. Picture courtesy headlightmag.com60% of all Nissan Navara sold in Thailand in 2014 are space cab bodied.

Finally, for the first time on BSCB I can share with you a split by body for all the best-selling pickup trucks produced locally. We discover that the most popular body for pickups in Thailand, and by far, is the “Space cab” with 2 doors and enlarged space in the cabin. For example, 59% of all Toyota Hilux sold in Thailand in 2014 were space cab variants, with the double cab representing 24% of sales and the single cab just 17%. Similarly, the Isuzu D-Max sells best as a space cab (58%), followed by double (30%) and single cab (12%). The Chevrolet Colorado (74%) and Nissan Navara (60%) display a particularly high space cab sales ratio, with the Ford Ranger the exception to the rule at a dominant 73% double cab sales ratio.

Previous month: Thailand November 2014: Honda HR-V lands at #14

Previous year: Thailand Full Year 2013: Toyota, Isuzu and Honda on podium

Two years ago: Thailand Full Year 2012: Mitsubishi Mirage and Nissan Almera in Top 10

Full Year 2014 Top 50 models and Top 40 All-brands below.

Full December 2014 Top 20 models and Top 40 All-brands below.

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Thailand November 2014: Honda HR-V lands at #14

December 31st, 2014 No comments

Honda HR-V Thailand November 2014Honda HR-V

* See the Top 50 best-selling models and Top 35 brands by clicking on the title *

New car sales in Thailand just can step out of a nightmarish year so far in 2014: down another 21% year-on-year in November to just 73,068 registrations after drops of 20% in October, 26% in September, 31% in August and 35% in July. The year-to-date total now stands at 792.328 deliveries and should settle around 865.000 for the Full Year 2014 vs. 1.32 million in 2013 and 1.44 million in 2012… Very tough times indeed for the new car market in Thailand, just as local production continues to evolve at stratospheric levels. No surprise in the models sales charts: the Toyota Hilux remains the most popular nameplate in the country with a gargantuan 17.8% market share ahead of the Isuzu D-Max at 13%, Toyota Yaris at 6.9% and Toyota Vios at 5.8%. A spectacular new arrival is the Honda HR-V (aka Vezel) directly landing at #14 and leading its segment with 1,122 deliveries vs. 605 for the Ford Ecosport and 367 for the Nissan Juke. Notice also the Nissan Navara solid again at #8 and 3% share, the Toyota Fortuner up to #9 and 2.6%, the Honda Mobilio confirming it is a Top 20 blockbuster at #18 and the Nissan X-Trail jumping up to #44 thanks to the new model.

Previous month: Thailand October 2014: Toyota Vios, Nissan Navara up

Previous year: Thailand Full Year 2013: Toyota, Isuzu and Honda on podium

Full November 2014 Top 50 models and Top 35 brands Ranking Tables below.

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Categories: Thailand