Thursday, 10 September 2009


VW SA SAYS: Volkswagen of South Africa has added a 1.6 TDI Comfortline model to its new Golf range.

The new Golf 1.6 TDI will be offered in a common rail engine with a diesel particulate filter (DPF) similar to the new Golf 2.0 TDI. The common rail engines feature a high pressure fuel rail which feeds individual valves as opposed to a lower pressure fuel pump feeding unit injectors found in the ‘pumpe deuse – pump nozzle’ engines.

The main benefits of a common rail system are lower engine noise due its refinement, improved performance, efficient fuel consumption and lower emissions.

The DPF removes diesel particulate matter commonly found in the exhaust gas of diesel engines. In addition, the DPF burns off the accumulated particulate.

The new Golf 1.6 TDI engine has power output of 77 kW at 4400rpm. Its torque of 250Nm is available between 1500 and 2500rpm. Customers will have an option of a 5-speed manual or 7-speed DSG transmission. This is the first time that Volkswagen of South Africa will be offering a 7-speed DSG transmission as an option in its model line up.

The most prominent component of the DSG is its dual clutch. In comparison to the 6-speed DSG, there is no “wet” clutch in the new transmission – that is a clutch immersed in an oil bath – rather a “dry” clutch. This is a world first for the DSG technology. The result: Efficient fuel consumption, low emissions and sporty driving experience.

With a top speed of 189 km/h, the new Golf 1.6 TDI will sprint from 0 - 100 km/h in 11.3 seconds. The fuel consumption is respectable at 4.5 litres per 100 km for the manual and 4.7 litres per 100 km for the DSG.

The standard specifications of the new Golf Comfortline range apply in the 1.6 TDI.

They include:

Radio/CD player with MP3 capabilities and 8-speakers

Cruise control

16-inch alloy wheels

Electric windows all round

Anti-dazzle view mirror

Manually adjustable lumbar support in the front seats

2-cup holders in rear

12V power socket in boot

A list of convenience optional features will be available with the new Golf 1.6 TDI. Some of them are xenon headlights, park distance control, satellite navigation system, electric sunroof, leather seats and multifunction steering wheel.

Service plan of 5-year/90 000km is standard together with a 3-year/120 000km warranty. The service interval is 15 000km.

VW Golf 1.6 TDI Pricing
Five-speed manual (R260 400)

Seven-speed DSG (R274 900)


MICROSOFT XBOX SAYS: Whether fast conjures up images of limited production American muscle, advanced European supercar designs or purpose-built races cars, you’ll find a car to meet your tastes in Forza Motorsport 3.

In honour of Gamescom in Germany, we start this week’s reveal with the 2008 Audi A4 Touring Car and 2009 BMW M3 GT2 #92 Rahal Leterman Racing models. With its exotic arrangement of canards, side pod spoilers, ribbed rear wheel well fins and massive rear wing, the Audi A4 Touring Car is a master of down force. Alternatively, Rahal Letterman Racing’s #92 ushered the return of BMW to the American Le Mans Series and it showed speed early, nabbing a runner-up in GT2 at its second race of 2009. This M3 sports 361kW, tons of mechanical grip and 50/50 weight distribution. Handling the M3 GT2 through the turns will challenge most players but get it right and your lap times are destined to drop.

However, our tour through Europe would not be complete without a brief stop in Italy. But instead of Ferrari, today we’re showcasing one of the most powerful, most expensive and rarest of all Lamborghinis, the Reventon. The 2008 Lamborghini Reventon is a full-tilt thrill ride that will leave even the gutsiest of drivers with a fevered brow and white knuckles. The car’s V12 unleashes 471kW. It costs R11 million and only 20 were produced.

The 2009 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 may cost less than many of its European counterparts but will still give them a run for their money at the track. With generous amounts of supercharged V8 power, carbon ceramic brakes and a barely detuned race suspension, the 638-horsepower ZR1 can hit speeds of more than 322km/h.

We round out Volume 1 of our manufacturer’s showcase series with a couple of highly regarded, high performance speedsters – the 1995 Nissan Skyline GT-R SpecV and a 1993 Ford SVT Cobra R. Built with the racer in mind, the 1993 Cobra R was a stripped of everything but the bare essentials. Larger brakes, stiffer coil springs, Koni shocks, larger anti roll bars, and a strut tower brace were added to increase performance. Only 107 1993 Cobra R models were ever produced making it one of the rarest, fastest, and most collectible Fox Body Mustangs of all time.

Last but not least, the 1997 Nissan Skyline GT-R SpecV rides lower than standard GT-Rs with race- tuned shocks and springs. Skyline GT-Rs have one of the biggest upsides on Forza 3 from a modification standpoint so consider effort in the tuning garage time well spent.

“Forza Motorsport 3” will be available in October 2009.


We’ve known for a while that Audi would be showing the R8 Spider (Cabriolet) at the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show but what we didn’t really know is what the supercar would look like. Well now we do, thanks to these leaked pictures!

Unfortunately the roof is down so we can’t see how the thing works but I’m sure we’ll know by this time next week, if not earlier. Audi is only offering the Spider with the 5.2-litre V10 engine, and not the 4.2-litre V8. I drove that engine in the R8 V10 coupe at the Audi 100 year celebration in Kayalami two weeks ago and was pretty much blown away by its performance. Power is the same at 386kW and peak torque is 530Nm.

The Mzansi operation of Audi is considering the R8 Spider but they aren’t too sure if they’ll bring it here because it will certainly be very expensive. I say bring it on, very limited numbers and sell it as a “more affordable” Lamborghini Gallardo Spider.

Wednesday, 9 September 2009


Full official pictures of the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG are now out for all to see. The new “Gullwing” takes its inspiration from the 300SL of the 1950s and 1960s. You can see that firstly from the gullwing doors that appear to have missed the practicality boat (best to park in that far away spot at the mall).

Up front the old car is quite evident; big front grille and a sharp nose. No small rear window and no sloping rear end either on the new beast, but there are side gills to link the two directly.

A previous IN4RIDE post stated: “Planted under the bonnet is a naturally-aspirated 6.2-litre V8 engine. At its peak it produces 420kW (571hp) at 6800rpm and maximum torque of 650Nm at 4750rpm. Through its new 7-speed double-clutch gearbox the SLS is said to be able to accelerate from 0 – 100km/h in just 3.8 seconds. Top speed is 315km/h.” And there’s nothing wrong with reusing it!

I’d be interested to find out if SL300 fans are keen on the SLS AMG or if they feel it was bastardised for no reason at all but to make money.

*Head on to our FaceBook page and see more pictures!


Fiat and its Ferrari division have collaborated to bring us youth the 695 Abarth Tributo Ferrari. It’s a special, limited edition blazing hatch based on the Fiat 500 meant to cement the link between Fiat and Ferrari.

Under the short bonnet is a turbocharged 1.4-litre that dispatches all of 132kW at 5750rpm and maximum torque of 230Nm 3300rpm. Drive is through the front wheels and is actuated via a 5-speed manual automated gearbox. Acceleration is said to be a brisk sub-7 seconds on the 0 – 100km/h standard while top speed is 225km/h. Its C02 emissions are 155g/km.

The fancy wheels are 17-inch types wrapped in 205/40 ZR17 tyres. Their design is inspired by Ferrari wheels and they boast Brembo four-piston callipers. Those four tailpipes compliment the Record Monza dual mode exhaust system.

Interior finishing is characterised by red leather inserts, Ferrari-style instrumentation, footwells made of non-slip aluminium and carbon fibre seats that weigh 10kg less than standard ones.

I don’t think the Abarth is coming to South Africa, not anytime soon anyway.