BMW April 2022

The Binder brothers, Brad and Daryn, from Krugersdorp are ready and fit for their upcoming MotoGP season. They have been keeping fit here in South Africa by riding in off-road bicycle events like the Sani2C and others.
Daryn is riding a Honda this year and this will hopefully give him another famous win or two in the Moto3 Class. Brad, who took the Czech GP in Brno last year in his third MotoGP race is all ready to win another one which has turned South Africans to watch two wheeler GP racing even more intently.
Alfa Romeo has just launched an all-new Giulia GTA and GTAM at their legendary Balocco proving ground between Turin and Milan.
Who did they get to try the cars out these 540 hp V6 2.9 litre bi-turbo’s a shakedown? Their formula 1 team drivers, Kimi Raikkonen and Antonio Giovanizzi.
I always thought a GTA behind an Alfa name meant Grand Tourismo America but it doesn’t. It means Grand Tourismo Allettarita. These cars are the most powerful produced by Alfa for private buyers. Put your name down now.
Talking Alfa Romeo, the Giulia won all three categories in the Executive Car Class of Malcolm Kinsey’s Parts Price Report of 2020. It means the most affordable servicing and repair costs as well as the cheapest parts basket you will come across.
There are new models aplenty coming to South Africa this year. Latest is the new Audi S7 Sport pushing out 331kW and 600 NM of torque. That’s serious power from a three-litre turbo engine. Top speed is governed at 250 km/h.
Ford has been good to the community in these Covid times. Latest news is the company donated 240 locally assembled engines to technical high schools across the country together with the Department of Basic Education. The value of that little gift is R7.8m for those engines that are produced in Port Elizabeth.
Ford has a birthday coming up this year. It was 50 years ago this year that Ford launched the Cortina Mark 3 bakkie. In1971 it was badged the Springbok edition to commemorate the All Blacks coming to play the ’Boks. Incidentally, Ford has been in this country for the past 96 years.
Every year thousands of accidents are recorded by drivers or passengers opening the car door into the path of a cyclist. Here is a new word “car dooring” which has resulted in 60 cyclists being seriously injured or killed in the UK alone. In Germany it was the cause of 3 500 accidents in 2018.
Ford has fitted a new exit warning device to some models to alert you that a bicycle is coming up alongside you when you are parked or driving. This is all part of Ford’s “Share the Road” campaign.
Hyundai just keeps on introducing revamped or new models. At the end of last year the new edition Creta was introduced, a model that gives you just about everything you could ever want in a motor car at an affordable price. This is part of their policy which keeps them right in the hunt, beating a lot of local manufacturers in the sales charts.
Here’s a new one I have never heard of in the motor industry before. KIA is now going to give you two free tanks of fuel every month in the first six months of owning a KIA Picanto, which is super economical anyway with its 1.0 litre three-cylinder, five-speed manual model or the four-speed auto version. They also come with unbeatable peace of mind with its five-year warranty and a two-year, 30 000km service plan.
Talking about economy, KIA thought they would take their Seltos on an economy run from Johannesburg to Cape Town. It was driven normally, sticking to the speed limit, with the aircon at full blast through the Karoo. They averaged 4.37lt/100km.
More innovation from the motor industry is that Mercedes-Benz is offering free driver training for 260 drivers through their Truck Training Driver Programme. This is another new one for me.
Nissan has a new Magnite, a compact SUV which is the way the South African market is going. SUVs are getting smaller, more economical and more spacious.
Always a bit on/off in the Nissan range has been the Nissan Patrol. Well a new one has just arrived in South Africa, full of features, sophistication and intelligence. Their big opposition of course is also from Japan called the Land Cruiser. Go and have a look at them. These Patrols are as good as you can get.
From Jay Leno, the man with probably the greatest collection of cars in the world: “The problem with political jokes is they get elected.” And another: “If God wanted us to vote he would have given us candidates.” Applies here. As well as everywhere else in the world, it seems!
From a lowly two models that launched into this country some years ago, Renault has now brought an ultra limited edition of their Kwid. Prices of this new model range start at R162 900 up to R194 000 with everything.
It was 100 years ago that Michio Suzuki officially registered the Suzuki Loom manufacturing Company. Who could have foreseen that Hammamatsu would become a global automotive, motorcycle and marine powerhouse? Suzuki Centurion took the top award of Dealer of the Year. They actually received no less than 10 awards to go Top of the Pops.
Nothing seems to be able to beat the Toyota Gazoo competition team. Guy Botterill and navigator Simon Vacy-Lyle won all six rallies in a row to win the South African Rally Title which they were defending. An unbeatable combination.
Toyota has brought over a Star Wars looking vehicle on its 79 series chassis. It has got upgraded suspension wheels and tyres. It’s got protection against AK47’s and R1 rifles and bomb blasts, its damage resistant against riot type attacks, is available in single cab, double cab and armoured personnel carrier. It is actually called their Max3 – the latest of specialised bullet resistant vehicles. Prices start from R1.6m plus VAT. Power is provided by the famous 4.5 litre turbodiesel engine pushing out 151kW. Top speed is restricted to 140kmh.
Volkswagen has just celebrated manufacturing no less than four million vehicles built at their plant in Uitenhage. That is over the last 72 years when they first got production going in the same factory in 1948. First vehicle off the assembly line for Volkswagen was a Beetle in August 1951. Over time they have built Audis and VW Transporter series of the famous Kombi, Jettas and Polos.
Roger Penske, Chip Gonazzi and Wayne Taylor have been the racing teams in America for many years. Wayne and his two sons just keep winning way everything from Daytona 500’s, 8- and 10- and 12-Hour races all over the States. Wayne is of course ione of our former South African Champions.
Another South African doing well is Cam Petersen from the famous Petersen brothers stable. He just won the American Super Stock Motorcycle Championship – that included a win at Indianapolis.
South African – Matthew Scholtz –unfortunately fell off and injured his ankle, crashing on debris left by some other motorbikes.
Cape Town’s David Perel shared a Ferrari 488 with two other drivers to take the lead in a DTE European Le Mans Series Championship.
Two names you often hear competing either here in South Africa in a variety of championships are Bradley Liebenburg and Jeffrey Kruger. Towards the end of last year Liebenburg claimed pole position in the GTC SUPA Cup race by 0.003 of a second from Kruger. You can’t get it much closer than that.
Nice touch to Formula 1 racing was Mick Schumacher handing his father Michael’s helmet to Lewis Hamilton when he equalled his dad’s 91 total Grand Prix victories at Nurburgring. 23 races are to be held for Formula 1 this year starting in March and ending in December. There are going to be some very busy teams beavering away this year.
What we don’t need is another fire like Bahrain when the Haas car of Grosjean hit the barrier and broke in half, bursting into flames. One of the men who helped him out of the car was our South African racer, Alan van der Merwe, the driver of the Medical car travelling behind the field on the first lap.
Don’t forget to listen to Roger McCleery to hear more inside stories every Tuesday afternoon on his Motoring programme on Radio Today (1485 AM) or on DSTV Audio Channel 869, on social media and podcast around the world.