VW to develop BEE suppliers
Following on from the successful VWSA Black-Owned Supplier’s Day held in 2016, Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA) has extended its assistance to strategically align black-owned suppliers in the automotive sector by launching the Ntinga Project.
The project was launched 19 October in Uitenhage. Ntinga is an isiXhosa word which means to soar and by offering business mentorship and training to up-and-coming suppliers, Volkswagen hopes they will rise to great heights in the automotive sector and beyond.
The Ntinga Project started with over 300 suppliers being approached and assessed by the Automotive Supply Chain Competitiveness Initiative (ASCCI) who, together with the Volkswagen B-BBEE Trust and Volkswagen Group South Africa chose 10 finalists to be part of the launch.
The 10 finalists will be mentored and coached over the next month by existing VWSA Suppliers. The end goal of this coaching is for the suppliers to successfully present their business plan to a panel of judges on 29 November where five winners will be chosen. These five winners will then embark on an 18-month intensive business-based mentoring and coaching programme.
10 awards in a week for VW
The past 7 days have seen Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA) scoop 10 trophies at 3 different Industry Award Ceremonies, in the areas of Rental and Leasing, Customer Service and Motor Body Repairs.
Held on 20 October, SAVRALA (the South African Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association) Manufacturer of the Year Awards recognise manufacturers who have provided the best possible support and assistance to the Rental and Leasing Association. Volkswagen claimed the Manufacturer of the Year Rental title for the seventh consecutive year and came third in the Leasing Category. Loshini Pillay received the Best Rental Account Executive for the second-year running and Robert Wright, also from VW, was voted best Rental Technical Representative for 2017.
The SAMBRA (South African Motor Body Repairers’ Association) Awards, held on 20 October, honour top vehicle insurers and OEMs for their contribution to the sustainability of motor body repairers in South Africa. Audi was awarded second place in the Best OEM Category with Volkswagen taking third. Audi also received awards for Best Training Programme and Communication Excellence.
Rounding off the week, at the 16th annual Ask Afrika Orange Index, held 25 October in Johannesburg, Volkswagen Group South Africa walked away with two awards. Audi was first and VW third in the Automotive Companies Industry category. The Ask Afrika Orange Index, which is South Africa’s broadest customer service benchmark, measures 165 companies across 32 industries.
BMW M festival at Kyalami
The new BMW M4 CS was recently unveiled at the media launch of the first-ever BMW M Festival at the Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit in Gauteng.
At the festival, BMW customers, fans and car enthusiasts got a sneak preview of current and upcoming BMW M models, experienced hot laps and booked test drives across the BMW M as well as M Performance model range. Festival goers also got the opportunity to participate in drag races, drifting, walk through one of the largest BMW showrooms with attractive finance offers to choose from, booked test drives, enjoyed live music by some of South Africa’s top DJs and artists, gourmet food and drinks, a children’s play area and more.
The BMW DTM race team (Team Schnitzer with driver Tom Blomqvist) also made a special appearance at the event and offered visitors hot laps in the BMW M4 DTM car around the 16-turn, 4.522km anti-clockwise FIA graded circuit.
BMW M4 launched
M GmbH is presenting another exclusive limited-run special-edition model in the shape of the new BMW M4 CS (fuel consumption combined: 8.4 l/100 km*; CO2 emissions combined: 197 g/km*). The BMW M4 CS fills the gap in the line-up between the M4 Coupe with Competition Package and the uncompromisingly track-focused BMW M4 GTS. With its accentuated sporting presence, the new M4 CS continues the decades-long tradition of successful M special editions which began in 1988 with the E30 BMW M3 Evolution. The new BMW M4 CS will be built at the original BMW plant in Munich.
The 3.0-litre high-performance engine raises the output of the M4 with Competition Package by 10 horsepower, to 460 hp (338kW). State-of-the-art TwinPower Turbo technology allows the M4 CS to dip below the four-second mark for the 0 to 100 km/h sprint, stopping the clock at 3.9 seconds. The top speed of the M4 CS, which comes as standard with the M Driver’s Package, is electronically limited to 280 km/h.
Running of Automechanika
The fifth staging of the biennial Automechanika Johannesburg event at Expo Centre, Nasrec, from September 27-30 was a major success as Africa’s trade fair for the automotive aftermarket. There were plenty of quality visitors, excellent networking opportunities and a bigger than ever programme of workshops and conferences covering a wide spectrum of topics and burning issues.
“Importantly the number of trade visitors who came through the gates to Automechanika Johannesburg 2017 showed an increase of 43% over the number who attended the 2015 show,” commented Konstantin von Vieregge, CEO of organisers Messe Frankfurt SA.
“Launched in Germany in 1971, Automechanika has advanced to become the leading international trade fair for the automotive service industry after we started exporting the brand abroad. There are now 17 Automechanika trade fairs in 15 countries on four continents. Altogether there are 20 000 exhibitors and 600 000 visitors behind the Automechanika brand worldwide,” added the Messe Frankfurt executive.
2018 Honda Gl1800 Gold Wing
Model updates: Redesigned from the wheels up, the new Honda Gold Wing is sharper, more compact and lighter; its monumental flat six-cylinder engine now features 4-valves per cylinder and comes equipped with Throttle By Wire, 4 riding modes, Honda Selectable Torque Control and Hill Start Assist. The new chassis features an aluminium beam frame, double wishbone front suspension and single-sided Pro-Arm – damping is electrically adjustable, as is rear spring preload. An electric screen, Smart Key and Apple CarPlay are also standard equipment. An entirely new, third generation of Honda’s unique Dual Clutch Transmission – with seven speeds – will also be available.
Mazda reveals KAI CONCEPT and VISION COUPE
Mazda Motor Corporation revealed two concepts at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show. The Mazda KAI CONCEPT, a compact hatchback that heralds a new generation of inspired vehicles, made its world premiere. It was the second appearance for the Mazda VISION COUPE, a design concept that debuted at a pre-show event. Featuring the next-generation SKYACTIV-X petrol engine, SKYACTIV-Vehicle Architecture and a more mature expression of the KODO design language, the KAI CONCEPT embodies the technology, engineering and styling concepts that will define the coming generation of Mazdas. Refinements in all areas of dynamic performance have produced a considerably quieter, more comfortable ride and enhanced performance. The KAI CONCEPT features muscular, solid proportions in a form brought to life by a delicate flow of reflections over the sides of the body.
World’s safest Safety Car gets faster
The world’s safest Safety Car – the Volvo V60 Polestar used in the FIA World Touring Car Championship – has become faster with the introduction of the new Model Year 18 Volvo V60 Polestar WTCC Safety Car.
Aerodynamic enhancements made from lightweight carbon fibre material have increased the car’s downforce by 30 per cent, improving the performance and handling of the car and ensuring it can attend to urgent incidents during the races as quickly as possible.
The 270 kW Volvo V60 Polestar WTCC Safety Car heads the FIA WTCC field ahead of races and during race incidents. The car is equipped with a roll cage, rescue and communication equipment in order to meet the rigorous technical and safety requirements set by the FIA, the International Motorsport Federation, and WTCC promoter Eurosport Events.