BMW April 2022

The Americans certainly have taken to F1 racing. At least the Texans have! They recorded an all-time record crowd of 444 000 people. This must put them amongst the biggest crowd at any sporting event. The bumpy Circuit of the Americas provided a brilliant arena for the MotoGP and F1 World Championship. 

The counting of electoral votes had hardly finished when our trusted Government pushed the price of petrol, paraffin and diesel up to around the R20 mark per litre. This must be one of the highest prices paid for petrol anywhere in the world.

The Government rates the motorists as their “Cash Cow”, taking something like R7 out of every litre. We sell 27 billion litres of fuel a year – or we once did.

Funny they haven’t made an announcement on E-Tolls where everyone is going to pay, or AARTO, where they will deduct points for every offence.  You will be fined for speeding, licence renewal etc. 

Vryburg, which is a town that almost started off-road racing in South Africa held the penultimate round of this year’s National Championship. Once again it was Toyota Gazoo Racing (can they be beaten?) with Henk Lategan and co-driver Brett Cummings, who scored a win by four seconds after two days of racing to increase their lead at the top of the Championship points table. They went on to retain their title at Parys.

Interesting to note that Glyn Hall and his Toyota Gazoo Hi-Lux team who were getting ready for the Dakar tested their new V6 turbo-charged Hilux there with Giniel de Villiers and Nassa Al Atiyah.  Other members of the team used the current model.The Ford Ranger team were happy with Lance Woolridge and Elvene Vonk (rallyist Kassie Coetzee’s daughter) who fought hard for second place in the championship. Lance’s brother, Gareth, grabbed fourth spot.

SAVRALA, the Rental and Leasing people, gave a gold award to Isuzu in two categories.   This competition that has been on the go for 26 years.

The motor industry has been good for the community. The latest from Eagle Ford is that they upgraded Olympic medallist, Tatjana Schoenmaker, from a Ford EcoSport to a brand new Mustang.

Mahindra, the Indian motor manufacturer, making inroads into our market have now introduced a tractor for our farming community. Mahindra is the Number 1 tractor company in the world by volume.

Nearly two tough years of Covid doesn’t seem to have made much difference to us in 20/21 as far as sales go. The industry has been active with new vehicles and lots of special deals for customers. Well done.

BMW is making their first electric vehicle for the States. They want to take on Tesla and our very own South African Elon Musk, who put electric cars on the map.

Toyota has a new Rumion to replace the Avanza. It’s the first time a hybrid has been made in South Africa.

Good to see that some of the executives in the motor industry are also serving time on the NAAMSA committee. Neal Hill, MD of Ford has been elected president. Kia’s all-new Electric Vehicle recently made Guinness world record history travelling 2 880.5 miles (4 636 km), with the shortest charging time to cross the United States in an electric vehicle. During the seven-day trek from New York City to Los Angeles, the Kia EV6 was plugged in for a scant 7 hrs 10 min 1 second. 

Jaguar Classic is creating a limited run of new hand-built examples of the iconic Jaguar C-type to celebrate its 70-year anniversary at Hampton Court Palace, England from 3-5 September 2022.  Revealed in 1951 – the year it won Le Mans on its debut – the C-type was a pioneering race car, introducing aerospace-inspired aerodynamic principles to the sport, and later on disc brakes, and a 3.4 litre straight-six engine with triple Weber carburettors producing 220 bhp (162kW). 

GWM is to take over operations at the Nissan production plant in Spain. 

Ford has donated R2.5 million to Gift of the Givers to address the ongoing water crisis, with the Nelson Mandela Bay metro’s combined dam levels currently at 10.5%. Funding will cover the cost of drilling and installing boreholes at three schools in Gqeberha (Port Elizabeth).

Porsche achieved a return on sales of 15.5% at the end of the third quarter of 2021. Porsche remains one of the most profitable car makers in the world. 

KwaZulu-Natal is absolutely certain of one thing – that Tiger Wheel & Tyre is the “Best Tyre Shop”. For the 17th consecutive year the Daily News readers voted in the “Your Choice” awards. The annual awards have been polling readers since 2004 to vote in the Daily News newspaper for their top performing businesses in a host of categories. The results are the independent reflection of the reader’s choice, and as the newspaper points out are “an endorsement by the general consumer that your business is the best in the industry”

Five years after its launch, the Peugeot 3008, one of the brand’s bestsellers, is already celebrating its one millionth model which has rolled off the production lines in France. 

The new 718 Cayman GT4 RS and Taycan GTS were among numerous Porsche world premieres in California alongside exhilarating petrol engine and powerful plug-in hybrids and electric powertrains. In addition to the new 718 Cayman GT4 RS, one of the highlights at this year’s event the 718 Cayman GT4 RS Clubsport, the Taycan GTS and the Panamera Edition are making their first appearances.  

A new second generation Isuzu mu-X is now available in South Africa. Engineered for superior performance in harsh environments. The introduction of Isuzu’s Intelligent Driver Assistance System (IDAS) is available in model derivatives, with 3.0 Diesel Engine and 6-speed Auto Transmission.

Listen to Roger McCleery to hear more inside stories every Tuesday afternoon on his motoring programme Radio Today (1485 AM) or on DSTV Audio Channel 869; on social media and podcast broadcast around the world.

 

By Roger McCleery