Latest Industry News

Plug-in hybrid versions of the Range Rover and Range Rover Sport are now available in South Africa.

Both models wear the P400e badge, and combine a 221 kW turbocharged 2,0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine with an 85 kW electric motor (the latter housed inside the ZF-supplied eight-speed automatic transmission) for a total system output of 297 kW (and 640 N.m).

A 7 kW on-board charger and lithium-ion battery pack (mounted under the luggage compartment floor) are also included, with the access point for the charging cable hidden behind the grille badge.

Both the Range Rover P400e (available in standard and long wheelbase) and Range Rover Sport P400e offer two additional drive settings: parallel hybrid mode (combining petrol and electric drive) with a “save” function (preventing the battery charge from dropping below a pre-selected level) and predictive energy optimisation function, as well as EV mode, which sees the vehicle relying solely on the electric [...]

Datsun South Africa has announced that all new vehicles sold under its brand from the start of March 2019 will be covered by an extended six-year/150 000 km warranty.

Before now, Datsun Go hatch and seven-seater Go+ models featured a three-year/100 000 km warranty.

As part of the lengthier warranty programme, the Nissan-backed firm also offers roadside assistance and access to a customer contact centre buyers can call toll-free at any hour of the day.

In South Africa, Datsuns range currently comprises the Go hatchback (in 1,2 Mid and 1,2 Lux forms) as well as the Go+ (offered in the same specification levels, plus as a panel van).

As we reported late in 2018, all new Datsun models now come standard with ABS and two airbags.

Source: Car Magazine

The head of the Volkswagen R division says the high-powered Golf R400 concept didn’t ever make it into production because “customers don’t want it”.

Speaking to Top Gear UK, VW R boss Jost Capito said the Wolfsburg-based firm’s research showed there was no demand for the extreme Golf R, particularly once price had been factored in.

“We did research and customers don’t want it. They want around 300 horsepower [around 220 kW] and a price-tag below €50 000 [about R810 000]. To move up to 400 horsepower [around 300 kW] you lose 50 percent of the sales volume and increase the cost of ownership,” Capito said.

The Golf R400 was expected to go into production back in 2016 after being unveiled in concept form at the Beijing Motor Show in 2014.

The British publication also spoke to Jürgen Stackmann, VW’s member of the board responsible for sales, marketing and after sales, who added [...]

The new Mazda CX-30 unveiled at the Geneva International Motor Show earlier in March 2019 is unlikely to be offered with the Japanese brand’s turbocharged 2,5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine, according to a senior executive.

Speaking to through an interpreter, powertrain development chief Ichiro Hirose said the firm had “no special plans” to use the turbocharged engine (offered in some markets in the Mazda6 and CX-5) to power the latest addition to the stable.

Of course, Mazda has confirmed the powertrain line-up in Europe will include the latest SkyActiv-G naturally aspirated 2,0 petrol engine, with a SkyActiv-D 1,8 turbodiesel unit also expected to be available. In addition, the Japanese firm will offer its clever new SkyActiv-X compression-ignition petrol mill, as used in the latest Mazda3.

While the CX-30 is scheduled to arrive in South Africa in the first quarter of 2020, the local engine range has yet to be confirmed.

Hirose, though, suggested [...]

Mahindra South Africa has taken the wraps off its new Thar Adventure Series model, with the special edition equipped with what the Indian brand describes as “a host of off-road accessories”.

Priced at R293 999, the Thar Adventure Series is based on the standard 2,5 CRDe 4×4 SE derivative, but furthermore gains special off-road bumpers, a steel canopy, new alloy wheels and a snorkel. It is offered in three exterior colours: Rocky Beige, Red Rage or DSAT Silver.

Power comes from the brand’s 2,5-litre turbodiesel unit, which delivers an unchanged 78 kW and 247 N.m.

The new bumpers have been sourced from Bundu Gear, with the front item featuring upwardly slanting sides to expose more of the tyre surface and further improve on the Thar’s approach angle. It also features brightly coloured recovery points, a nudge bar and high-lift jack mounting points.

The Bundu Gear front bumper furthermore boasts LEDs and [...]

Production of the facelifted BMW 7 Series has officially started at BMW Group Plant Dingolfing around three-and-a-half years after the sixth-generation version of the sedan was launched.

Since production of the first 7 Series began back in 1977, more than 1,9 million units of the Munich-based brand’s flagship luxury sedan have been built at Dingolfing.

“The BMW 7 Series has defined our identity at this site for over 40 years. We are proud that BMW’s top model, the new BMW 7 Series sedan, will also be built here in Dingolfing,” said Ilka Horstmeier, director of BMW Group Plant Dingolfing.

“Our goal as the brand’s primary plant for the luxury class is to ensure that every vehicle our experienced and competent team puts on the roads guarantees excellent quality.”

In January 2019, BMW whipped the covers off its facelifted 7 Series, handing its flagship luxury sedan a larger version of the signature kidney [...]

The head of Audi has admitted the future of the TT range is uncertain, saying my heart bleeds when you ask that question.

The folks over at Autocar asked Audi CEO Bram Schot whether there would be a next-generation TT.

Thats a very good question. I think theres a future for an [Audi] icon but I dont know if its a TT. My heart bleeds when you ask that question, he told the British publication.

Still, Schot revealed he had some things cooking which could replace TT, though not necessarily directly.

His comments lined up with an earlier report from February 2019 suggesting the Ingolstadt-based firm had no plans to build a next-generation TT, preferring to instead direct investment elsewhere.

The current TT range was handed a facelift in July 2018, with a refreshed version of the high-performance TT RS following in February 2019.

But that earlier report by Autocar said Audi [...]

The head of the Volkswagen Group in North America has promised the upcoming Golf 8 GTI “will stay GTI”, explaining that the three-letter badge “is the heart and soul of our brand”.

Speaking to CarBuzz, Volkswagen Group of North America CEO Scott Keogh suggested the German firm’s focus on electric vehicles would not threaten the Golf GTI.

“Right now, the GTI is the heart and soul of our brand. However, I’m not naïve that the segment is getting smaller, but I’m also not naïve to the fact that we have got to hang on to that,” he told the US-based publication.

Keogh added “we need these types of cars”.

“We will be bringing the eighth-generation Golf. That will have a GTI. We’re 100 percent on board. Right now GTI will stay GTI. We need these types of cars,” he said.

Keogh furthermore made reference to the recently revealed US-spec Jetta GLI.

“One of the things [...]

The senior exterior designer at BMW responsible for the facelifted 7 Series has explained why the updated luxury sedan was given a massive grille.

Speaking to BMW Blog, Alexey Kezha described the refreshed 7 Series as “one of the most drastic LCI [that’s ‘Life Cycle Impulse’ in BMW speak] programmes we’ve had so far”.

“What you really can see is at the end of this programme we have a completely new-looking vehicle at the front, and thanks to the big changes we have brought in our kidney [grille] area and also the design of the lights – they became much slimmer – the lower part of the bumper became much more clean and integrated,” he said.

Kezha went on to suggest these changes created a closer connection between the flagship vehicles (such as the new X7, updated 7 Series and new 8 Series) towards the very summit of the Munich-based firm’s line-up, while further separating [...]

A high-ranking Land Rover executive has promised the all-new Defender will “retain some of the original appeal”, while becoming far “more liveable” than its forebear.

Speaking to, Joe Eberhardt, chief executive of Jaguar Land Rover North America, suggested the upcoming new Defender would be the automaker’s most capable off-road vehicle ever, but still offer comfort and versatility.

“The new Defender will retain some of the original appeal. But it’s a vehicle you can drive every day for as long as you want as opposed to the old Defender,” Eberhardt told the US-based publication.

He furthermore suggested the fact the new model would be “more liveable” than the original would see it appeal to a wider audience. Nathan Hoyt, a spokesperson at the firm, agreed.

“The vast majority of people are living with this car day-to-day so it needs to be refined and comfortable but also live up to that Defender name,” Hoyt said.

“I’ve [...]

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