Friday, 19 February 2010


GMSA SAYS: Over the past 12 months General Motors South Africa has provided support for the advanced driver training of a group of 2200 members of the SAPS. The course, designed and administered by the Driving Dynamics organisation, has been tailored around the need to enhance the driving skills of operational members of the SAPS, to better prepare them for their important role in our society by enhancing their advanced and defensive driving skills.

This intense training programme comes ahead of the 2010 Soccer World Cup and has specifically targeted members of the Flying Squad, Police Dog Unit, Crime Combating Unit, and the elite Special Task Force, who will be at the forefront of ensuring the highest level of security and crime prevention during this massive international event, when the spotlight will be on South Africa.

During the staging of the World Cup these units will be on call to ensure that both overseas and local fans are able to enjoy the event to the fullest extent in a secure and safe environment.


RENAULT SAYS: The Renault Clio range's line-up of sporty models – which was until now made up exclusively of Clio Renault Sport and Clio GT – has been joined by an 'S' version which delivers sporty looks at a competitive price.

Renault has chosen to rekindle the Renault Clio 'S' name which was first introduced in the 1990s. Available in both three- and five-door form, the 'S' version remains true to the original intention which was to provide a car with sporty appeal at a contained price.

Renault Clio S sits squarely on 16-inch wheels and is recognizable at a glance by its alloy rims and a number of white or red highlights (front bumper insert, exterior mirror housings and rear lip spoiler). The package is rounded off by extra-tinted rear glass and striking 'S' stripes which run along the sills and across the roof.


Volvo is going all out with the new-generation S60 as it prepares to launch it worldwide. South Africa will get it during the first quarter of 2011. According to the company, the new S60 is unlike any other Volvo ever produced.

“This was never going to be a conventional engineering project, not for a single second. We've crossed into territory where we've never been before,” says Stefan Sällqvist, who is in charge of developing the chassis of the all-new S60. “Now that we had the chance to take daring initiatives, we seized the opportunity with both hands. For instance, we have matched our technical solutions with the very best competitors to verify that we have truly made it to the very top.”

These are big words considering the main competition (Audi A4, BMW 3 Series, Cadillac CTS and Mercedes-Benz C-Class).

At the heart of it all is a full range of engines, also among the best in their respective classes. At launch there will be a 2.0T straight four with turbo technology. It produces 149kW and 300Nm of torque. Next up is a D5 turbo diesel making 151kW and a good 420Nm. At the very top is a T6 model featuring a straight-six turbo petrol motor worth 224kW and a whopping 440Nm of torque.

Volvo South Africa expects to sell about 1 250 units of the new S60 in total during the first year of sales.

Thursday, 18 February 2010


Mercedes-Benz is quite serious about being blue and fuel-efficient. So serious that they have launched the latest-generation diesel powerplants to the South African market. The two concerned models are the C220 CDI BlueEfficiency and the E250 CDI BlueEfficiency. Don’t’ let the nomenclature fool you though; both engines displace the exact same volume at 2.1-litres. But they are quite special in a number of ways.

First off they use the latest common rail diesel system with Piezo-injection technology and two turbos placed in sequence. One of those turbines is a small unit capable of spinning at up to 240 000rpm (no typo here) but doesn’t often do so because of a bypass duct that reduces its speed. The second is bigger and only takes over once sometime in the mid-range of the rev band. Why they do this is to kill what is called turbo lag, you know, the one or two second time delay you feel after planting right foot through the floor. Thanks to this combination the C220 CDI BlueEfficiency and the E250 CDI BlueEfficiency make their respective torques at very low rpms each.


Audi is quickly growing into a hot contender for the company with the most product lines in the business. The Ingolstadt-based automaker has no choice but to expand quite rapidly in order to catch and surpass its fellow German nemesis BMW to become the world’s biggest premium car maker.
Because of these and other reasons, the new Audi A1 has now been announced. Forming the basis of of Audi’s entry-level onslaught, the A1 is pitched against cars like the MINI and the new Citroen DS3 which we’ve spotted in Jozi. These are premium cars aimed at the young at heart, sporting design elements to attract this digital crowd and performance engines to meet their throbbing hearts.
As far as design, Audi has chosen to go hatchback for now (a Sportback version is also being planned) and ultra compact. Dimensions are: 3.95 metres long, 1.74m wide, 1.42m tall and the wheelbase is 2.47m.

Wednesday, 17 February 2010


AUDI SAYS: The Audi A5 Cabriolet is a soft top that successfully combines sportiness, elegance and performance, setting a new benchmark in the B Cabriolet Segment of the market. A key selling point of the Audi Cabriolet is its design, giving it all the essential ingredients of the Audi brand due to its decidedly sporty appeal and compelling, dynamic silhouette, whether the hood is up or down.
To further capitalise on the success of the A5 Cabriolet, we are pleased to announce the launch of the S5 Cabriolet quattro S tronic. This exciting flagship features the new 3.0 V6T FSI engine (245kW and 440 Nm) which will further enhance the sporty positioning of the A5 Cabriolet range.

Audi S5 Cabriolet Pricing
3.0T FSI quattro S tronic (R 693 500)


I happened to be in an underground parking lot here in Jozi when my eyes were pulled in by this red colour. Upon closer inspection I discovered that it was the new Citroen DS3, the French MINI-killer with a beautiful coupe silhouette and a youthful design.
Naturally I had to pull out my NOKIA 6210 Navigator to take pictures. Citroen hasn’t launched the DS3 in South Africa yet, but it’s definitely in the pipeline for some time before June 2010.
The DS3 is a compact premium-segment car that has been praised by its maker as being on par or even better than the MINI in every way. I peeked a boo inside to see what kind of materials make up things like the dashboard and I must say it looks pretty solid and easy on the eye.
Engines will include both petrols and diesels, although I doubt Mzansi will get the diesels. It’s possible though. Just think about the fact that the new C5 (which I haven’t driven but I’ve seen) only comes in two diesels at the moment.


Renault has revealed the all-new Megane Coupe Cabriolet ahead of its world debut at the Geneva Motor Show next month. The new CC boasts a number of innovations not found in competitors like the Volkswagen Eos and Peugeot 308 CC, such as an all-glass roof which opens and closes in 21 seconds. I’m not sure if that would work in our sun-soaked country but time will tell. It also has a fixed rear wing deflector which can be complimented by a net one, just to make doubly sure.
Renault has supplied a total of six engines for the CC which include a TCe 130, a 2.0 16V with 103kW and a 110 dCi. Gearboxes include a 6-speed manual and a CVT. Renault South Africa has not yet confirmed which of these powertrains will be available when the car goes on sale later this year.
Outside you’ll find things like LED brake lights, bi-xenon headlights and cornering dipped beams. The inside has nice gadgets like the Carminat Tomtom satellite navigation system, a USB connection for all your music needs and 3D sound.

Monday, 15 February 2010


BP Ford Abu Dhabi World Rally Team drivers Mikko Hirvonen and Jarmo Lehtinen started the 2010 FIA World Rally Championship in style with victory in Rally Sweden today.  The Finns won the opening round by 42.3sec in a Ford Focus RS World Rally Car after three days' competition in the ice-bound Scandinavian forests.  The win moved Ford level at the top of the all-time standings with 74 WRC victories.

Team-mates Jari-Matti Latvala and Miikka Anttila finished third in a similar Focus RS WRC, 1min 15.4sec behind their fellow Finns.  The double podium gives the BP Ford Abu Dhabi squad a 10-point lead at the top of the manufacturers' standings after the first of 13 rounds.