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Passenger Cars, Bakkies & Vans News

Revitalised Bloodhound project gets new livery and headquarters

By: Irma Venter     22nd March 2019 The Bloodhound is back and on the hunt to set a new world land speed record (LSR). Under the new ownership of Ian Warhurst, CEO of Grafton LSR, the freshly assembled Bloodhound LSR team will focus on completing development of the jet- and rocket-powered car and moving to the next phase of the... 

Mercedes-Benz South Africa produces 500 000th W205 C-Class

By: Irma Venter     20th March 2019 The 500 000th W205 C-Class – the current model – rolled off the line at the Mercedes-Benz South Africa (MBSA) assembly plant in East London, in the Eastern Cape, on March 16. MBSA also this year celebrates 25 years of manufacturing the C-Class sedan and 25 years of women on the production line. 

Mercedes-Benz South Africa produces 500 000th W205 C-Class

Egypt, Nissan agree to produce 100 000 cars a year – Minister

By: Reuters     20th March 2019 Egyptian state-owned carmaker El Nasr Automotive Manufacturing and Japan's Nissan have reached an initial agreement to produce 100 000 cars a year in Egypt, the minister for public enterprises said on Tuesday. The agreement is part of efforts to boost the proportion of locally made auto... 

No escaping the move to electric, says Jaguar as it launches new I-Pace 

By: Irma Venter     19th March 2019 A third fully electric vehicle has made its debut in South Africa. The new Jaguar I-Pace adds to the Nissan Leaf and BMW i3 already available in the local market. 

No escaping the move to electric, says Jaguar as it launches new I-Pace
The Jaguar I-Pace

PE-based e-coating specialist seeks majority empowerment partner 

By: Irma Venter     15th March 2019 Port Elizabeth-based e-coating specialist, Electrocoat, wishes to sell at least 51% of the business to a black investor. Businesses that are successful in implementing major transformational changes will secure a sustained competitive advantage under the South African Automotive Masterplan 2035,... 

PE-based e-coating specialist seeks majority empowerment partner

Adapt to digital or be left behind — warning to South African auto industry

By: African News Agency      14th March 2019 South Africa's automotive component supply sector needs to urgently focus on vehicle electronics if it is to meet ambitious new localisation targets. This emerged at the the National Association of Automotive Component and Allied Manufacturers of South Africa conference which continued in Durban... 

Soekoe Bicycle Company to launch vintage-look electric bike for export market 

By: Irma Venter     11th March 2019 By his own admission Desmond Soekoe is not a traditional business man. Rather heavily tattooed and not fond of a suit and tie, he runs Soekoe Bicycle Company, a fledgling bicycle manufacturer based in Germiston. Soekoe is perhaps better known as the former MD of materials-handling company Deebar... 

Soekoe Bicycle Company to launch vintage-look electric bike for export market

New-vehicle exports to Africa improved by 10% in 2018 

By: Irma Venter     8th March 2019 New-vehicle exports from South Africa to the rest of Africa have improved by 9.8% in 2018 compared with 2017, “following a number of years of sharp decline”, says the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa) in its newest quarterly business review. Export sales to... 

 New-vehicle exports to Africa improved by 10% in 2018

Auto industry disruption is here with shakeup starting in Geneva

By: Bloomberg     7th March 2019 The great auto-industry shakeout has started to arrive in force. Anyone paying attention knows change is looming for global automakers grappling with new technologies, stricter emissions standards and apps that have turned car buyers into renters or just riders. 

Ghosn freed on bail after 108 days in jail

By: Bloomberg     6th March 2019 Carlos Ghosn walked out of a Tokyo prison on bail after 108 days in detention, vowing to fight allegations of financial crimes that could imprison the former Nissan Motor Co. chairman for as long as a decade. Flanked by police officers and wearing construction worker reflectors, a light blue... 

Ghosn's release on bail in doubt as Japanese prosecutors appeal

By: Bloomberg     5th March 2019 Carlos Ghosn’s impending release from a Tokyo jail is in jeopardy after prosecutors appealed a decision granting bail to the fallen car titan after 107 days in custody. The prosecution responded just hours after a Tokyo court approved the release of the former Nissan Motor chairperson on bail of... 

Second month of decline in domestic new-vehicle sales market 

By: Irma Venter     1st March 2019 Domestic new-vehicle sales faced a second consecutive month of decline this year, dropping by 6.5% in February, to 43 251 units, compared with the same month last year. New-vehicle sales numbers released on Friday showed that February new-passenger car sales fell by 13.3%, to 27 000 units. 

Second month of decline in domestic new-vehicle sales market

Daimler, BMW deepen cooperation with self-driving venture

By: Bloomberg     28th February 2019 Daimler and BMW have agreed to cooperate on developing self-driving cars, the latest move by the luxury-car rivals to share cost as a technology shift shakes up the industry. The German manufacturers have signed a memorandum of understanding to jointly develop the next generation of... 

Mahindra aims for top ten spot in SA market, tractors to launch this year

By: Irma Venter     27th February 2019 Mahindra South Africa (SA) aims to sell more than 6 000 units this year, which will be a significant jump from last year’s new record of more than 5 500 units – a 26% increase on 2017 sales. “We aim for more than 10 000 units by 2022, says Mahindra SA CEO Rajesh Gupta. 

Mahindra aims for top ten spot in SA market, tractors to launch this year
Rajesh Gupta

Naamsa appoints Mika Mabasa as new executive director

By: Irma Venter     26th February 2019 Mike Mabasa is set to take over as new executive director at the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa) at the end of March.   He will succeed Nico Vermeulen, who will be retiring after 37 years of service. 

Naamsa appoints Mika Mabasa as new executive director
Nico Vermeulen

Motus achieves H1 growth despite muted new-vehicle market

By: Marleny Arnoldi     26th February 2019 Amid a downturn in new-vehicle sales and a challenging economy, JSE-listed automotive holding company Motus achieved consistent operating profit, normalised headline earnings per share (HEPS) and revenue growth for the six months ended December 31, 2018, compared with the six months ended... 

Motus achieves H1 growth despite muted new-vehicle market
Motus CEO Osman Arbee

Start of production at BAIC plant delayed until later this year

By: Irma Venter     26th February 2019 Following a delay in the completion of the Beijing Automotive Group Corporation South Africa (BAIC SA) plant in the Coega Industrial Development Zone, in the Eastern Cape, full-scale vehicle production is now scheduled to start before the end of the year. At the sod-turning event in 2016, it was... 

Start of production at BAIC plant delayed until later this year

Ford South Africa achieves new export and production records

By: Irma Venter     26th February 2019  Ranger exports from Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa’s (FMCSA’s) Silverton plant reached an all-time high in 2018, with the company shipping 68 364 units to export markets. This is a 16.2% increase compared with 2017. 

Ford South Africa achieves new export and production records
The Silverton plant

Hyundai opens assembly plant in Ethiopia

By: Reuters     22nd February 2019 South Korea's Hyundai Motor Co opened a 10 000-a-year vehicle capacity assembly plant in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa on Thursday, its first factory in East Africa. While second-hand vehicles dominate sales in the Horn of Africa country, Hyundai hopes locally-assembled cars could prove... 

Africa still slow to take up EVs, energy storage solutions

By: Marleny Arnoldi     20th February 2019 Globally, there is a rise in the uptake of electric vehicles (EVs) and battery storage systems, especially in regions where there is a lack of constant, reliable energy supply or more economically feasible solutions, Electric Vehicle Industry Association representative Carel Snyman said during a... 

VWSA to reach record production this year, says Schäfer

By: Irma Venter     20th February 2019 Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA) should this year produce a record number of vehicles at its Uitenhage plant, in the Eastern Cape, says CEO Thomas Schäfer. He says the local arm of the German car maker should produce 161 900 vehicles, of which 108 000 are scheduled to be exported. 

VWSA to reach record production this year, says Schäfer
The VWSA plant in Uitenhage

South African new-vehicle market to decline by 0.4% in 2019, says Toyota

By: Irma Venter     20th February 2019 South Africa’s new-vehicle market should reach roughly 550 000 units this year, 0.4% down from last year’s 552 226 units, says Toyota South Africa Motors (TSAM) president and CEO Andrew Kirby. He says TSAM expects the first half of 2019 to be tough, especially with elections looming in May. 

South African new-vehicle market to decline by 0.4% in 2019, says Toyota

Load-shedding 'extremely dangerous' to local auto sector, warns Naamsa chairperson 

By: Irma Venter     19th February 2019 Load-shedding is “extremely dangerous” to the local automotive industry, says Toyota South Africa Motors (TSAM) president and CEO Andrew Kirby. Kirby is also chairperson of the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa). 

Load-shedding 'extremely dangerous' to local auto sector, warns Naamsa chairperson
TSAM president and CEO Andrew Kirby

The world still doesn’t have enough places to plug in cars

By: Bloomberg     15th February 2019 Even in the biggest electric vehicle markets, a driver venturing too far from home can have a hard time finding a place to recharge. Try your luck on California’s Pacific Coast Highway. The roughly 600-mile route between San Diego and San Francisco has dramatic sea cliffs, off-the-grid retreats,... 

VW, Ford are said to discuss $4bn valuation for Argo AI

By: Bloomberg     15th February 2019 Ford Motor and Volkswagen are progressing toward a potential agreement to join forces on self-driving cars and have overcome earlier obstacles, according to people familiar with the talks. Breakthroughs in the deliberations Thursday include a possible framework for Volkswagen to work with and... 

Continental optimises tyre test with driverless test vehicle

15th February 2019 Automotive tyre manufacturing company Continental commissioned the first driverless tyre test vehicle for an assortment of road surface types at its test site in Uvalde, Texas, in the US. The aim of the endeavour was to make test results for the company’s passenger and light trucks more... 

Continental optimises tyre test with  driverless test vehicle
DRIVERLESS NAVIGATION The driverless vehicle pilots the testing route with a GPS-supported satellite navigation system

Isuzu consolidates truck and bakkie manufacturing plants

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     14th February 2019 Isuzu Motors South Africa has consolidated its truck and bakkie manufacturing plant – relocating its truck production facilities from Kempston Road, in Port Elizabeth, to its new headquarters in Struandale, Port Elizabeth, where all truck and bakkie manufacturing will now take place. The... 

Fiat Chrysler South Africa aims for recovery to 4 000 units in 2019

By: Irma Venter     12th February 2019 Fiat Chrysler Automobiles South Africa (FCA SA) aims to sell more than 4 000 Fiats, Jeeps and Alfas in South Africa in 2019. This will be a significant improvement on the roughly 2 600 units moving off showroom floors in 2018. 

Fiat Chrysler South Africa aims for recovery to 4 000 units in 2019
The 2019 Jeep Wrangler

Ford’s Silverton plant starts production of refreshed Ranger 

By: Irma Venter     11th February 2019 Ford’s Silverton vehicle assembly plant in Pretoria has started production of the refreshed 2019 Ford Ranger. “Following the investment of over R3-billion in our local operations and extensive upgrades to our plants over the past 18 months, we are delighted to see the first of the new Ford Ranger... 

Ford’s Silverton plant starts production of refreshed Ranger
The refreshed Ford Ranger

Lance Schultz appointed as Gauteng AIDC CEO

By: Irma Venter     8th February 2019 The Automotive Industry Development Centre (AIDC) in Gauteng has appointed Lance Schultz as its new CEO. He joins the AIDC after a near four-year tenure as CEO of the Centurion Aerospace Village. 

Lance Schultz appointed as Gauteng AIDC CEO
Lance Schultz

New tech balances ever-increasing demands

8th February 2019 As Industry 4.0 continues to cut a swathe through the automotive industry globally, Port Elizabeth-based global technology company Jendamark Automation is providing new technologies that allow local and international manufacturers to keep pace with the ever-increasing demands. Jendamark... 

New tech balances  ever-increasing demands
NEW TECH Odin software improve efficiency when operated

Naamsa projects 1% increase in new-vehicle sales

By: Thabi Madiba     8th February 2019 The National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa) projects a marginal increase in new-vehicle sales of 1.0% for 2019, premised on the assumption that South Africa will not be downgraded and a modest increase in gross domestic product (GDP) to about 1.5%, says Naamsa... 

Naamsa projects 1% increase in new-vehicle sales
Photo by Creamer Media
READY FOR A PRICE TAG The new passenger car market and light commercial vehicle market reflected year-on-year volume declines of 0.2% and 7.0%

Fuel price increases led to decline in new-car sales, says Strobel

By: Thabi Madiba     8th February 2019 Bearings and power transmission products distributor Bearings International (BI) customer offer marketing manager Victor Strobel says fuel price increases have affected new-car sales, which slid from 47 478 units sold in November 2018 to 39 984 units in December 2018. Subsequently, many people... 

Fuel price increases led  to decline in new-car  sales, says Strobel
SALES DOWN New-vehicle sales have dropped owing to increased fuel prices

New paint process leads to greater flux stability

By: Thabi Madiba     8th February 2019 Converting to potted Koch KPAK ultrafiltration (UF) membrane in the automotive electrodeposition paint process from the drop-in style process can lead to greater flux stability over time and lower system downtime, says filtration and water purification solutions company Sagisa sales engineer... 

New paint process leads  to greater flux stability
LITTLE BIT OF COLOUR The UF membrane has been supplied to automotive manufacturers for vehicle paint jobs

OneLogix to broaden logistics footprint in R280m Umlaas project

By: Irma Venter     7th February 2019 Niche logistics provider OneLogix aims to more than double the size of its automotive logistics site at Umlaas, in KwaZulu-Natal, in a project that is named ‘Umlaas 3’. OneLogix CEO Ian Lourens said on Thursday in Johannesburg that the R280-million development, next to the N3 highway, will add... 

OneLogix to broaden logistics footprint in R280m Umlaas project
The Umlaas hub

Ford digs up litany of unexplored claims ahead of inquest into burnt Kuga

By: News24Wire      6th February 2019 Unexplained casino chips, a "bullet cartridge" and a suspicious maroon car are among a litany of unexplored claims which the Ford Motor Company dug up ahead of a High Court inquest into the death of Reshall Jimmy. Jimmy's burnt body was found in his Ford Kuga four years ago while he was on... 

Ford engages the mining sector on the road to more EVs

By: Kim Cloete     5th February 2019 Ford is quickening its pace towards the mass production of electric vehicles (EVs) and researching how the mining industry can help it to achieve its goals. “There are tremendous investments taking place at every level to achieve this radical revolution in the automotive industry,” Ford energy... 

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