Rainy Weather and your Car

Some much needed rainy weather is always welcome, and it gives the car parked outside a nice wash too. Have you ever wondered if rain water is safe for your vehicles paint job?
 When living in heavily populated areas such as the Metro cities we have in South Africa, the pollution levels are generally raised causing Acid Rain.

When it rains, the water droplets contain higher levels of deposition (deposited material) collected from the atmosphere and have higher than normal amounts of nitric and sulfuric acids.
In simple terms, rain can sometimes contain more pollution and elements than normal depending on the area in which you live in and your areas weather patterns.
The higher than normal acidity of this rain is different than normal water spots and can cause paint damage if left unattended.
The cure is simple, make sure to give your vehicle a good wax every now and then, and wash your car after rainy weather to get rid of the water marks left on the paint work that could cause more damage.




Cars for Her

The 14th of February, a day known for treating that special person in your life. Nothing beats flowers, chocolates and a fancy dinner OR is there?
If you are on the market for a more lavish gift for the Mrs, here are some top picks she might appreciate, remember ladies like to accessorize!

Opel Adam:
One car offering 3 trim levels, thousands of possible combinations. Make it your own fashion statement. Colours that will stand out in a crowd, a trim accessories list longer than a presidential state of the nation address.
Some options include: colourful wheel clips, side mirror covers, and interior décor pack, inside rear view mirror covers, front logo bars and the list goes on.
1.4L – 74kW / 130Nm Adam from R 206,500
1.0L Turbo – 85kW / 166Nm Adam Jam from R 230,700
1.0L Turbo – 85kW / 166Nm Adam Glam from R 254,000

Mazda MX-5 Roadster:
Mazda Signature KODO Design – connecting driver and car to become one.  SKYACTIV-G 2.0L engine delivering a sporty 118kW / 200Nm.
Accessories available: aero kit, Brembo brakes, BBS wheels, luggage rack and other trim options available. Pricing starts from R 441,700

Fiat 500:
If any vehicle were to be a pure fashion statement it would be the new range of Fiat 500’s available. As their slogan suggests; “either you have it or you don’t”. In this day and age keeping up with the Jones’ does not have to cost an arm and a leg.
Some accessories available on the list: different stickers and badges, colourful key covers, Fiat boot container organiser and much more.
0.9L TwinAir 85HP (Turbo) Fiat 500 Pop from R 179,000
0.9L TwinAir 85HP Dualogic (Turbo) Fiat 500 Pop Star from R 199,900
0.9L TwinAir 105HP (Turbo) Fiat 500 Lounge from R 227,900


Relief for SA Motorists as Fuel Price’s Drop in November 2015

According to the Department of Energy, the reasons for the decrease are a result of the strengthening of the Rand against the US Dollar and the reduced price of petroleum products during the period under review.

Prices of both grades of petrol are set to decrease by 22 cents per litre while 0.05% (50 PPM) diesel will decrease by 9 cents per litre and 0.005% (500 PPM) diesel by 10 cents per litre.

This decrease will come into effect at 12 pm on Tuesday the 3rd of November 2015.

Fuel Price Change Coastal Price Reef Price
Petrol – 93 Octane -22c/litre R11.75 R12.08
Petrol – 95 Octane -22c/litre R11.96 R12.39
Diesel – 0.05% Sulphur -9c/litre R10.52 R10.85
Diesel – 0.005% Sulphur -10c/litre R10.57 R10.90


New Bakkie for South Africa

Paris, France – Renault has been the No.1 Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) brand for the past 17 years in Europe, reports the automaker. 

Renault hopes to grab its share of the bakkie market. The new Renault Duster Oroch bakkie  – headed for SA – was launched in Buenos Aires in June 2015

The new Renault Duster Oroch slots in between the half- ton and one-ton bakkies. However, the Oroch has been designed with four doors and five seats so it brings something different to the market. The competition in this part of the segment are purely workhorses like the Nissan NP200 and the Chevrolet Ute. The Oroch brings a baby double-cab to the segment. It is scheduled for international launch in the second half of 2015.

The technical details are sparse for now, but it will be sold with a choice of 1.6-litre and 2-litre engines, optimised for heavy-duty applications.

“This new model, Renault’s first pickup, is the next step in Renault’s globalization strategy. With Renault Duster Oroch, the brand is launching its offensive in the competitive pickup segment”, said Ashwani Gupta, Renault’s Global Head of Light Commercial Vehicles.

Renault SA was approached for comment and a spokesperson said that while the Duster bakkie wasn’t on the cards immediately, there’s potential after the first quarter of 2016. Given the Duster’s success in South Africa.

While South Africa might be passionate about the bakkie genre, it seems we are unlikely to see the Duster Oroch soon. For now, it will only be manufactured in left-hand drive.


Blue Oval (Ford) fans have some interesting new models to look forward to

Ford is bringing out some new vehicles in the near future, here’s the low down:


Based on Ford’s B-car platform, the B-Max is built on the same platform as that of the current Fiesta. Ford refers to the B-Max as a multi-activity vehicle (MAV) and highlights features such as the rear sliding doors and the full-length panoramic roof.

FORD B-MAX Suggested Retail Price


Excl. Vat

Incl. Vat

B-MAX 1.0 EcoBoost Ambiente



B-MAX 1.0 EcoBoost Trend



B-MAX 1.0 EcoBoost Titanium



New Everest

The new Everest brings with it all the new tech the Blue Oval makers can throw at it – but in one important respect it’s all about old tech.

Because it’s based on the newly announced Ranger bakkie (be afraid, Hilux, be very afraid), it has a good old-fashioned ladder chassis – still the toughest way to build a heavy-duty vehicle – underpinning its uprated turbo-diesel and new turbo-petrol engines, intelligent all-wheel-drive and uprated suspension.

Ford’s Terrain Management System (also a first in class, says the maker) gives drivers four pre-set settings – Normal, Snow/Gravel/Grass, Sand and Rock – that reset and re-map the Everest’s throttle response, transmission shift points, intelligent all-wheel drive system and traction control to suit the terrain.

Ford Everest Suggested Retail Price


Excl. Vat

Incl. Vat

3.0L TDCi 4×2 XLT

R 337,544


3.0L TDCi 4×4 XLT

R 378,947


3.0L TDCi 4×4 LTD Auto

R 395,439


New Figo

Ford South Africa has just confirmed that the new Figo is due to hit our shores in the fourth quarter of this year and has revealed that customers will have a lot more choice than before.

For starters, there will be a choice between five-door hatchback and four-door sedan body styles and Ford has also promised more derivatives and specification levels, as well as the option of an automatic gearbox. As with the current model, the new range will offer petrol and diesel power, although no local engine details have been announced as yet.
Given that our Figos are sourced from India, the local entry model is likely to be powered by Ford’s new 1.2-litre Ti-VCT normally aspirated petrol engine, which is expected to produce around 62kW to match the current 1.4 while sipping less fuel. The Indian-spec diesel version inherits the EcoSport’s 1.5-litre TDCi diesel engine and should match is outputs of 66kW and 205Nm.

Ford would do well to offer South Africans a more powerful petrol option and given that, as yet, none of the international versions are fitted with Ford’s 1-litre EcoBoost turbopetrol, which might prove a bit too expensive in any case, our best bet seems to be the 77kW 1.5-litre normally aspirated motor offered in Brazilian versions, which carry the Ka nameplate incidentally.
As with the engine details, we’ll have to wait until closer to launch to hear about the interior specifications and pricing, but Ford SA has mentioned that its Sync connectivity system will be offered.
Given the fresh new style and wider range of derivatives, Ford’s new Figo is sure to make an impact at the lower end of the market, provided Ford SA gets the pricing right. The current car has a dated feel but its Fiesta mechanicals make it great to drive and the new one is sure to build upon those credentials.
*Pricing TBC

New Focus RS (2016)

Ford have now revealed output figures for the high-performance vehicle. With a 2.3-litre four-cylinder Ecoboost turbocharged engine sourced from the SA-bound Mustang, this new Focus RS will continue the legacy of fast Fords.

Ford will again call on its RevoKnuckle suspension geometry (similar to previous Focus RS) to curb excessive torque steer when the vehicle is driven in anger. The fast Ford should hit the showrooms in 2016, but Ford South Africa is keeping tight-lipped about the local introduction date, price and expected numbers.  Only 60 units of the previous RS was brought in so best is to keep your deposit money ready.
*Pricing TBC


With the first right-hand drive Mustangs due for release in the UK during October, deliveries to South Africa are hoped for in December, although that’s still to be confirmed – and this is what those lucky customers will be getting.
The new Mustang will be available as a fastback or a convertible, with either a five-litre V8 delivering a quoted 303kW and 530Nm, or a more fuel-efficient 2.3-litre EcoBoost turbopetrol four, quoted at 233kW and 432Nm.
The maker says that, coupled to a six-speed manual transmission, the big banger will get off the line and up to 100km/h in 4.8 seconds – making it the hardest-accelerating Ford on the EU market since the limited-edition GT supercar of 2005.
The 2.3-litre EcoBoost is no slouch either, disposing of the 0-100 sprint in 5.8 seconds.
*Pricing TBC

New Ranger

Ford has been giving the country’s long-time best seller, Toyota’s Hilux, a good run for its money on the sales charts in recent months and now the Blue Oval has just clenched its fist and upped the game with a comprehensive makeover that includes a fresh look inside and out, advanced new technologies and upgraded engines.
Revealed in Thailand on Monday, the new Ranger is set to hit local streets in the fourth quarter of this year. An all-new Hilux is also in the works for 2016, although Toyota has yet to officially reveal it.
On the outside, the new Ranger has a redesigned front end featuring a trapezoidal grille and projector headlights, giving it a more muscular face that matches the side profile and chiselled rear end, both of which remain unchanged.
*Pricing TBC


New Audi TTS coming to South Africa

Audi SA has just announced that the TTS will soon be available locally.


The Audi TT models launched locally in early 2015 were a choice of front-wheel or quattro drive.  The Audi TT coupé 2.0T or Audi TT coupé 2.0T quattro.  169kW and 370Nm from the multi-use 2.0 TFSI engine is not to be sniffed at, with the quattro (thanks to its off-the-line grip) achieving a 5.3-second acceleration to 100 time.

The TTS quattro pumps up the turbo power from 169 to a more Audi S-like 228kW (59kW to save you the maths).  Torque is up by 10 to 380Nm.  Performance S-es up to 4.6 sec for 0-100km/h.  Top speed on all Audi TT including TTS are restricted to 250km/h.

The extra power does not come at too much of a petrol-pump sacrifice, with Audi listing the 2.0T quattro at 6.4 l/100km and 151 g/km compared to 6.7 and 155 for the TTS quattro.

No more manual – all Audi TT is offered in 6-speed S tronic automatic only.

Local TTS prices+specs?

Local full equipment specification has not been announced yet, though visually we can see the red S flash to make a TTS badge and the satin-silver mirror housings showing the Audi S trademarks.

The Audi TT line-up will now consist of 3 models:

Audi TT 2.0T coupé R 558 000
Audi TT 2.0T coupé quattro R 642 000
Audi TTS 2.0T coupé quattro R 700 500

This means all the additional S-ed up TTS trim and performance costs R 58 500 extra.

Want to wait for the TT roadster?  This is already out overseas, so Audi SA will definitely bring it, in TT roadster and TTS roadster.


Things to consider when applying for Vehicle Finance

If you’re like most people, paying cash to buy a new car just isn’t in the realm of possibility. And even if it’s in the realm, you may not want to deplete your savings account to buy a new vehicle. This means that you’re either going to be leasing the car, or buying the car by financing it. If you’re buying, then you’re probably financing it through the dealership, a bank or credit union, an online financial institute, or maybe even a family member.

There are several different ways that you can finance your car, and there are pros and cons about each of them.

Pros: Convenient, fast, sometimes competitive
Cons: High pressure, usually not competitive; be prepared for a big sales push on add-ons; loans are often front-loaded (payments are made up of more interest in the beginning of the loan than toward the end — that’s bad if you think you may be paying the loan off early.)

Pros: Competitive rates, personal service, no sales pitch for add-ons; often can tell you if you’re paying too much for a car; often provide free life insurance or disability insurance with loans; loans are usually simple interest loans (interest spread evenly throughout the term of the loan)
Cons: Not as convenient as dealership financing — can’t set it up at night or on the weekend

Online financial institutions
Pros: Usually competitive rates, quick, easy
Cons: Not a personal service; dealing with an unknown; some scams to watch out for

Family members or friends
Pros: Personal service, easy, sometimes flexible; usually competitive rates
Cons: Could jeopardize a relationship

Determining the Rate
The interest rate you get when financing a new or used car can vary quite a bit from the advertised rates you see on TV or read about in the paper. Probably the biggest influence on your rate is your credit rating. Your credit history and credit score tell lenders a lot about your money habits and are designed to give them an idea of what their risk is if they loan you money. They often raise the interest rate if your loan is seen as high-risk.

Another thing that affects the rate you get is the length (term) of the loan. Typically; the shorter the loan, the lower the rate. Keep in mind that the shorter the term, the higher your payments will be.

Used cars will have higher rates than new cars. The newer the car; the lower the rate. (You may find an exception to this rule at some credit unions. Some give the same interest rate for new and used cars.)

Your geographic location can also be a factor in the rate you get.

Interest rate, term of the loan, down payment, rebates, and monthly payments: Remember you can negotiate that interest rate. Make sure every element is spelled out on your contract and is correct. Don’t sign until you’re satisfied that all of the numbers have been filled out correctly. Also, make sure the interest rate you are agreeing to doesn’t change during the term of the loan (linked to the interest rate), and ask about prepayment penalties. Remember that the bottom line is how much you’re paying for the car, not what your monthly payment is. You may be getting a really low monthly payment, but how long will you be paying it? Almost any payment level can be reached if the loan term is long enough.

Some other things to keep in mind when financing a vehicle:

  • Banks generally do not finance vehicles for under R 40,000.00
  • Generally do not finance cars older than 5 years old
  • Generally do not finance care with more than 110,000 kms on the clock
  • You will need a credit rating of 4 and up
  • The vehicle must be in running order and you will have to have insurance in place before you can sign your finance agreement. For the insurance to be approved you will need a valid driver’s license

Some requirements will be amended to accommodate the deal if it’s worthwhile for the finance institution.


Made in China

Let’s face it, when checking the manufacturers label on a product nowadays you are almost bound to find “Made in China” written on it! The quality of the products are forever improving and becoming more reliable. If you are looking at purchasing a vehicle then look into the Chinese manufacturers such as FAW, GWM, Chery, Geely and Foton. The Chinese have however become masters of fake knock-off products and they are blatantly copying other motor manufacturers:

Landwind X7 – Replica of Range Rover Evoque
This is the most identical replica the Chinese have copied. Launched at the Guangzhou motor show in November, 2014. From its signature body shape, radiator grill, lights and silver logo at the edge of its bonnet, its all Range Rover Evoque! The British company Jaguar Land Rover is not happy and wants to take legal action against the Chinese car brand LandWind.

Geely Emgrand EC6-RV – Replica of MINI Cooper
Emgrand EC6-RV has some MINI Cooper in there and also a little of Suzuki Swift, especially around the roof-top. The upper and lower character lines on the flanks look familiar too.
BAIC B90 – Replica of Range Rover
A combination of Land Rover and Jeep inspired off-roaders. The Chinese manufacturer BAW, a subsidiary of BAIC, produced this SUV named B90, a copy of the Range Rover and Jeep Grand Cherokee.

Haima M2 C-sport – Replica of Mazda 2
The M2 C-sport look much more like a Mazda 2; what it lacks is the Mazda badge. This extreme copy is manufacture by Haima.

BYD F8 – Replica of Mercedes-Benz CLK Cabriolet
Mercedes-Benz is one of the brands that is often copied. The BYD F8 is one replica that stands out superlative. Copied from CLK Cabrio. Funny, this same company has partnership with that Mercedes-Benz to produce electric vehicles in China.

Zhejiang Jonway UFO – Replica of Toyota RAV4
Jonway UFO, a China-built SUV is copied from the second-generation RAV4, and was on sale in Europe. Though this second-generation RAV4’s design was registered and protected in China, Toyota did not take any legal action nor stop the sales of the UFO after Jonway began selling the clone in China in June 2006.
Geely Merrie 300 – Replica of Mercedes-Benze C-Class
Another Mercedes rip-off, why spend money on a design when you can copy from other companies?

 Shuanghuan SCEO – Replica of BMW X5
Shuanghuan CEO was one of the most talked-about cars at the 2007 Frankfurt auto show, because it looked more like the BMW X5. BMW filed for damages in Munich court, which eventually ordered the cars to be destroyed.


Some Wacky Tricks to Clean Your Car

Use Hair conditioner for shine
Wash your car with a hair conditioner containing lanolin. You’ll become a believer when you see the freshly waxed look, and when you find that the surface will repel rain.
Fizz windshields clean with cola
When it rains after a long dry spell, a dirty windshield turns into one big mess. Get rid of streaks and blotches by pouring cola over the glass. (Stretch a towel along the bottom of the windshield to protect hood paint.) The bubbles in the cola will fizz away the grime. Just be sure to wash the sticky cola off thoroughly or your cleaning efforts will end up attracting dust and dirt.

Alcohol on the job
When your windshield-washer reservoir needs filling, raid the alcohol cabinet to make your own washing fluid. In 2 litre container, mix 3 cups vodka (the cheapest you can find) with 4 cups of water and 2 teaspoons of liquid dish wash. Screw on the cap and shake well, then pour as much fluid as needed into the reservoir.
Shine those car lights
Keep your headlights polished (and yourself, safe) by applying window cleaner and rubbing vigorously with an old pair of panty hose.

A one-step window cleaner
Clean your windshield and car windows by rubbing them with baby wipes stored in your cubby hole. What could be easier?

No windshield washing fluid?
If the reservoir is empty (and doesn’t it always seem to be?), use an unlikely substitute to clean your windshield: feminine hygiene maxi-pads, a box of which you could stash in the boot. Hold a pad on the sticky side and rub the windshield vigorously. The glass will really shine once you’ve wiped it to the max.

Clean your blades
If your windshield wiper blades get dirty, they’ll streak the glass instead of keeping it clean and clear. Make a solution of 1/4 cup household ammonia to 1 litre cold water. Gently lift the blades, and wipe both sides with a soft cloth or paper towel soaked in the solution. Then wipe the blades with a dry cloth before lowering them into place.

You can see clearly now
Add 1/4 cup household ammonia to 1 litre water, pour it into a plastic bottle with a water-tight cap, and keep it in your car for washing the windshield and windows. As soon as your windshield begins to get dirty, take out the solution and apply it with a sponge; then dry the windshield with a soft cloth or paper towels.

Baking-soda car cleaner
Pour 1/4 cup baking soda into a big container, then add 1/4 cup dishwashing liquid and enough water to fill the jug almost to the top. Screw on the cap, shake well, and store the concentrate for later use. When it comes time to wash the car, shake the container vigorously and then pour 1 cup of cleaner base into a bucket. Fill the bucket with warm water, stir to mix, and your homemade cleaning solution is ready to use.

Banish back-road dirt
In many rural areas, so-called oil roads (some unpaved, others semi-paved) are sprayed with oil to control blowing sand and dust. If you find yourself driving along one of these back roads, your windshield may end up coated with oily grime. To cut through the muck, sprinkle cream of tartar over the windshield, and then wipe the glass down with soapy water, rinse well, and dry.

A surprising no-wax washer
Add 1 cup kerosene to a bucket filled with water and then sponge the solution over your car. You won’t have to spray the car before washing or rinse or wax it once you’re done. And the next time it rains, rainwater will bead up and roll off the car, lessening the likelihood of rusting.

Watch the heat
Washing your car when it’s too hot—right after you’ve been driving it, for example, or when it’s been parked in direct sunlight—can result in soapy splotches and deposits.

Avoid air drying
Air drying your car—or driving it around while it’s wet—after washing can leave unsightly watermarks on its exterior. Use a chamois or a soft terry cloth, plus a squeegee to soak excess water up—just make sure it doesn’t pick up dirt that can scratch the vehicle.



Koenigsegg’s One:1 – a 1014kW megacar!

The Koenigsegg One:1 Megacar, says the automaker is the world’s first megacar in production. It’s capable of 1014kW and rocketing to 300km/h in 17.95 secs.

The One:1 produces one megawatt of power, and the automaker claims it is the world’s first series produced megacar. The Swedish automaker has produced a car with the ‘dream equation’ with kW-to-kilogram curb weight ratio of an astonishing 1:1. (Hence the name)

Christian von Koenigsegg, CEO and founder of Koenigsegg automotive, said: “When we design a new car here at Koenigsegg, we don’t make any compromises.”


Power: 1014kW at 7500rpm – limiter at 8250rpm
Torque: over 1000Nm from 3000 to 8000rpm
Max torque: 1371Nm at 6000rpm
0 – 400 km/h – 20 seconds (claimed)
400 – 0 km/h – 10 seconds (claimed)
Braking distance: 28m (100-0 km/h)
Max lateral g-force: 2.0g

Unfortunately, the One:1 is not only fast, but it is also super-rare, as only six units will be released. On top of that, all six units have been sold for a handsome sum of about $2.4 million, with the majority of them heading to the Chinese market.

With its limited numbers and huge power output, theKoenigsegg One:1 will become an almost immediate legend in the supercar world.

The designers at Koenigsegg left no stone unturned to make the One:1 as aerodynamically efficient as possible. The result is a hypercar that looks more like a track-only rig than a road-legal car.

To optimize cooling, the car features two large intercooler intakes on the sides along with numerous gills and radiators. Also present is a huge dynamic rear wing to give the best combination of downforce, drag and braking. The only thing this extreme in terms of the looks and aerodynamics is probably the Pagani Zonda R, but let’s not forget that it’s not street-legal.

Bathed with carbon fiber, the gills, air flow directors, mirrors, rear wing, air scoops and the vertical stabilizer add to the performance as well as the ferocious look of the car, so it can’t really be mistaken for an Agera.

Other options include full-naked carbon body, custom body stripes, titanium exhaust outlets and painted brake calipers if it still doesn’t feel special enough to you.

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