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Automotive Industry

Gautrain costs mount as work begins in earnest

By: Nelendhre Moodley     8th December 2006 The R20-billion-plus Gautrain rapid-rail link, a state-of-the-art public-transport system, which government hopes will ease mounting traffic congestion in the Gauteng province, is costing more than R20-million a day, says project manager Jack van der Merwe. 

'No conflict of interest in Gautrain decision' - Cabinet

7th December 2006 Cabinet had no influence in the tender decision for the R23-billion Gautrain project, Government Communication Information System head Themba Maseko told journalists on Thursday. 

Comair expects interim earnings to rise 40%-60% y-on-y

6th December 2006 Airliner group Comair announced on Wednesday that it expected its headline earnings a share and earnings a share to be between 40% to 60% higher for the six months ended December 31, than those of the prior corresponding period. 

Nov new vehicle sales up 9,6% y-on-y

4th December 2006 Motor-industry body the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa) reported on Monday that the momentum of sales, particularly new car sales, had slowed significantly during November, an indication that interest rate hikes were beginning to take a toll on demand. 

Imperial says buys construction- and mining-equipment firm

4th December 2006 Diversified transport group Imperial has bought the entire issued share capital of Terex Africa, a construction, mining and road-building equipment distributor, it said on Monday. 

EU-SA car-tarff deal will save millions

By: Irma Venter     1st December 2006 AN agreement between the Euro-pean Union (EU) and South Africa to cut tariffs on car exports between the two markets will save local vehi-cle and component exporters hundreds of millions of rands. 

Transnet approves acquisition of 212 new general-freight locomotives

By: Terence Creamer     30th November 2006 State-owned transport utility Transnet confirmed on Thursday that its board had sanctioned a plan for the purchase of 212 diesel and electric locomotives to overcome capacity constraints in the general freight business (GFB). The procurement comes in the wake of a R1,12-billion deal with a... 

SA's record auto sales set to slow on rates

By: Mariaan Webb     29th November 2006 South Africa's vehicle manufacturing sector is set for record sales in 2006, boosting new job creation, but sales growth should ease in coming months due to higher interest rates, an industry body said on Tuesday. 

Value of automotive exports now exceeding that of gold

By: Irma Venter     24th November 2006 The local automotive industry contributed 7,64% to the country’s gross domestic product in 2005, while the value of automotive exports currently exceeds that of gold exports, says McCarthy CE Brand Pretorius. 

New bakkie assembly

By: Irma Venter     24th November 2006 Mitsubishi Motors, a division of DaimlerChrysler South Africa (DCSA), will start local assembly of the new Triton bakkie in mid-2008, says Mitsubishi Motors divisional manager Peter Skei. 

Rosslyn factory confident of winning rights to assemble next-geneation luxury car

By: Irma Venter     24th November 2006 Car manufacturer BMW South Africa will know within the next 12 months whether it has secured a manufacturing contract to replace current E90, or 3-Series, production at its Rosslyn plant, just outside Tshwane. 

Secret is in local production, not mere selling, says auto-body head

By: Irma Venter     24th November 2006 Many market oracles have spent the last two years crunching numbers to see if South Africa can sell one-million vehicles a year by 2010. New-vehicle sales are expected to be more than 700 000 this year, in a cooling market that is starting to show the strain of recent interest-rate hikes. 

Local firms team up on cash-in-transit vehicle

24th November 2006 As the number of cash-in-transit (CIT) heists in South Africa increases and the tactics that the perpetrators employ become ever more sophisticated, CIT companies have been searching for vehicles designed to withstand the growing risks of transporting cash. 

Chinese firm makes local inroads

24th November 2006 Auto Africa was full of the usual pomp and ceremony with many of the truck and bus manufacturers showing off a glittering array of new and exciting technology. 

Lever hoists ensure safe, secure transportation

24th November 2006 Becker Engineering, specialists in lifting and pulling equipment, is the exclusive distributor in Southern Africa, of Kito lever hoists, chain blocks and electric chain hoists, ideally suited for lifting loads onto trucks, trailers and bakkies and ensuring they are safely secured during... 

Caution urged when outsourcing re-engineering services

24th November 2006 Apart from the fact that outsourcing re-engineering services offers the obvious advantage of no longer having to provide large infrastructures with the requisite machinery, it is now considered more practical and indeed, cost efficient, for a company to opt for this route while concentrating on... 

Grindrod announces new director

By: Matthew Hill     24th November 2006 JSE-listed shipping company Grindrod Limited announced late on Thursday that David Polkinghorne has been appointed as a company director, effective from November 22. 

Dorbyl slumps to an interim loss on downsizing costs

23rd November 2006 JSE-listed automotive component manufacturer Dorbyl posted an earnings loss for the six months to September 30 of R3,2-million, or 9,4c a share, the company said on Thursday and blamed restructuring costs for the slump. 

Newly refurbished coach to meet 2010 passenger demands

22nd November 2006 Transport Minister Jeff Radebe has unveiled a newly refurbished coach to enhance customer services ahead of the 2010 FIFA World Cup as well as to meet future passenger demands. 

BMW says introduction of new BMW Hydrogen 7 imminent

By: Irma Venter     17th November 2006 German car maker BMW has announced the imminent introduction of its new BMW Hydrogen 7. 

Taxis, heavies still selling well . . .

By: Irma Venter     17th November 2006 . . . but the party is coming to an end for passenger cars. 

Indian group prepares to enter commercial, agricultural scene

By: Irma Venter     17th November 2006 Vehicle company Mahindra South Africa will launch a range of commercial vehicles into the local market within the next 12 to 18 months, says CEO Vijay Nakra. 

DaimlerChrysler mulls technology-intensive solutions to compete with low-cost Asian components

By: Irma Venter     17th November 2006 Vehicle manufacturer DaimlerChrysler South Africa (DCSA) is revisiting its policy on local content. 

The fast the furious, the elegant and even the economical

By: Irma Venter     17th November 2006 Auto Africa this year again offered a glimpse into what the automotive future holds. Senior contributing editor Irma Venter found that it varies from face-recognition technology, to ensuring cars become less expensive to own and maintain. 

Long-distance taxi operators take delivery of new vehicles

By: Nelendhre Moodley     15th November 2006 Ten taxi owners recently took delivery of the first batch of twenty-five Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Commuter mini-buses from the Mercedes-Benz commercial vehicle dealership in Centurion. 

Luxury-car maker invests in parts-ordering solution

By: Irma Venter     10th November 2006 Auto maker BMW South Africa has implemented a parts-ordering system that has seen its Rosslyn plant achieve annual savings of R3,6-million through vehicles that no longer require rework, as well as reduced downtime within the plant. 

GM and Isuzu to set up new SA trucking venture

By: Irma Venter     10th November 2006 With “our truck performance not what we want it to be”, General Motors South Africa (GMSA) and Japanese truck maker Isuzu Motors Limited Japan have each invested R40-million in a 50:50 partnership to form Isuzu Truck South Africa (Itsa), says GMSA sales and marketing director Malcolm... 

Tata Africa to make SA vehicle-assembly decision soon

By: Irma Venter     10th November 2006 A decision on whether local arm of Indian conglomerate Tata Africa will start vehicle assembly in South Africa is due within the next four months, says Tata Africa MD Raman Dhawan. 

Tiger Automotive to make JSE debut in December

By: Mariaan Webb     6th November 2006 JSE-listed auto parts manufacturer Tiwheel's retail and wholesale trading operations, Tiger Automotive, will make its debut on the JSE as a separately listed entity on December 11. 

Bidvest unit claims installation of Africa's fastest shiploader at Durban port

6th November 2006 The freight-management arm of the JSE-listed Bidvest Group, Bidfreight, on Monday commissioned Africa's fastest and largest grain ship unloader at its bulk terminal operations in Durban harbour. 

Digital mapping

By: Irma Venter     3rd November 2006 US-based Navteq has announced that it is gearing up to meet what it terms the “digital-map requirements” for the 2010 Soccer World Cup to be held in South Africa. 

DaimlerChrysler's East London plant is declared SA's best

By: Irma Venter     3rd November 2006 The best local passenger-car manufacturing plant is DaimlerChrysler South Africa’s East London plant, where the Mercedes-Benz C-Class is produced for the South African and export markets. 

Volkswagen to invest R400m in skills development

By: Irma Venter     3rd November 2006 Volkswagen of South Africa (VWSA) will invest more than R400-million in training and skills development between now and 2010, in a project called “People for the Future”. 

New propulsion system under test for army's fighting vehicles

By: Keith Campbell     3rd November 2006 South Africa’s defence acqui-sition, disposals and research and development (R&D) agency, Armscor, will next year start a combat vehicle electric-drive technology test programme for the South African National Defence Force (SANDF), using a modified Rooikat armoured fighting vehicle, as the... 

Spoornet incorporate manufacturing spin-off model into procurement scheme

By: Terence Creamer     3rd November 2006 Railways utility Spoornet, which signed a R1,12-billion locomotive-acquisition deal for the supply of 32 new class 15E electric locomotives for the Sishen–Saldanha iron-ore channel, has promised that some 55% of the contract value will be conducted locally. 

Best October ever for SA car industry sales

2nd November 2006 The South African new car industry achieved its best October ever, last month, National Association of Automobile Manufacturers' figures showed on Thursday. 

SAA launches controversial low-cost carrier, promising best prices

By: Mariaan Webb     30th October 2006 South Africa's national carrier, South African Airlines (SAA), launched its controversial low-cost domestic airline, Mango, on Monday, committing itself to operate flights which will, initially, be priced at around R200 a ticket between Johannesburg and Cape Town. Low-cost operators in South... 

Not just pink

By: Irma Venter     27th October 2006 US car giant General Motors will introduce its luxury Cadillac brand to South Africa in the first quarter of 2007. 

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