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APRIL 2012

I N F O R M E D

PAGE 35 IN PARTNERSHIP WITH AUSTRALIAN BODYSHOP NEWS

I N N O V A T I V E

Should SA follow Brazil's Import Tax Strategy?

New Yaris Hybrid IN N OVAT I ON S

A N D

Inside AMT launches in Geneva

Productive meetings – part 2 UD Leads Japanese XHCV Attack FAW invests R600 M in SA Plant PAGE 1


AutoForum - April 2012

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April 2012

CONTENTS 06

24

Cover Stories Should SA follow Brazil's Import Tax Strategy?

16

New Yaris Hybrid

25

FAW invests R600 M in SA Plant

26

Productive meetings – Part 2

46

AMT launches in Geneva

50

UD Leads Japanese XHCV Attack

54

Trade Talk 06

Highlights of global and local industry news

Cover photo - Thank you to Toyota SA.

News Forum

54

14

Should SA follow Brazil's import tax strategy?

16

People's Wheels Awards

18

Metair diversifies with light and stop/start battery

22

New EU reg means GSI to be standard

24

Geneva hosts launch of Yaris Hybrid

25

FAW invests R600 m in SA Plant

26

Comparative vehicle mobility costs study released

28

registered users to provide bank account details.

Getting learners geared up for the motor sector

30

We can only hope its a step in the right direction.

FB and driving = a lethal combo

32

Why buyers avoid certain cars

34

BodyShop News 62

Editorial

EVs won't exceed 15% globally by 2025 – except maybe in Asia

“Disruption” 2011 top trend for claims and collision repair

38

SAMBRA OHS course

42

The first quarter of the year has passed and already its hotting up to be an exciting 2012. More displeasure and resistance continues to pour out over the e-tolling system as government stands by their decision, with our readers expressing their disgust in no uncertain terms. Court action is ongoing, and reports from the anti toll road Facebook page, TollfreeGP, have announced that already SANRAL has dropped the requirement for

EDITOR CLARE RUTKIEWICZ CONTRIBUTORS: AUSTRALIAN BODYSHOP NEWS DAVE SCOTT ROY COKAYNE Colin Windell Graham Bush ROBERT KAISER ADVERTISING: GRANT WEST WARWICK ROBINSON C: 076 727 8161 C: 082 855 7750 T: 011 466 3733 F: 086 627 1135 PRODUCTION: KAZ NEL EMAIL: INFO@AUTOFORUM.CO.ZA PUBLISHER: SWIFT PUBLICATIONS & OLYMPIC PARK TRADING SUITE 446, POSTNET X033, RIVONIA 2128

64

AutoForum has an ABC circulation of 12952 ABC (June - Dec 2011)


www.Autoforum.co.za I N F O R M E D

I N N O V A T I V E

Advertisers Guide

Business Forum The generation game

44

Meetings: An essential management tool or the bane of your life?

46

Too much water yet to flow under the bridge

48

Innovations AMT launched at Geneva Show

50

Volvo in smart charging JV

52

Commercial Vehicles UD leads Japanese XHCV attack

54

Freightliner driveline fest – New generation Argosy

58

Show Time KZN Top Gear Festival

62

Sandton Convention Centre hosts 4th Tyrexpo Africa

62

Auto Maintenance and Repair 2012 - Beijing

64

Gabriel launches new heavy duty SUV and 4x4 shock absorbers

66

New Releases Latest offerings of local products

A N D

Aer-O-Cure Alfa International AUDI Parts Autocosmos/Electrolog Autozone Bosch Diesel Electric First National Battery GMSA Highveld Garage Equipment Hofmann Megaplan Integrated Marketing Ital Machinery MACS MED MISA Motor Merchandise Partquip Parts Incorporated / Midas Group Safeline Snap-on/John Bean Tenneco/Monroe Thailand Trade Show Trade Fair Travel Trysome U D Trucks VW Parts Wheelquip

40-41, OBC 19 11 68 5, 36-37 31, IBC 17 27 29 39 52 43 47, 49 15 2-3, 9 50 35 61 13, 23, 59 21 69 33 53 51 25 57 7 46

68

After-Marketplace Directory Directory listings

70

While reasonable precautions have been taken to ensure the accuracy of the advice and information given to readers, neither the editor, nor the publishers, can accept any responsibility for any damages, injury or loss which arise there from. The opinions expressed by contributors to this magazine are not necessarily shared by the editor or the publishers.


Trade Talk

AutoForum AutoForum-- April April 2012 2012

Trysome to now manufacture too Trysome recently announced that it will be creating a new manufacturing division, responsible for research, design, prototyping, testing and manufacturing of new products, in line with industry demand. It will also customise and modify existing products to satisfy the specific needs of each customer. The company points out that product development or customisation will adhere to proven working practices and strict quality controls, and will include Instrument Panels, Harnesses, Battery Charging Bays, Battery Power Packs, Fatigue Warning Systems, PDUs and Audible Park Brake Alarms and more. Trysome says that it is, at present, the only company that manufactures Enclosures and Harnesses to OEM standards. For more information please contact Chris van der Merwe or Eddie Smith on 011 823 5650.

PAGE 6

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Elantra 1.8 GLS wins COTY 2012 The Hyundai Elantra 1.8 GLS has been announced the winner of Wesbank/South African Guild of Motoring Journalists South African Car of the Year for 2012. Although Hyundai has not had several vehicles in the Top 10 in the past few SA Car of the Year competitions, this is the first win for a Korean car manufacturer. All finalists are comprehensively put through their paces at the Gerotek vehicle test facility outside Pretoria via a number of modules designed to properly test the vehicles within a controlled and safe environment. Thereafter, the jury members - comprising some of SA’s top motoring journalists - allocate their points to the vehicles. The final scoring placed the finalists as follows: 1) Hyundai Elantra 1.8 GLS 230 Points 2) Kia Picanto 1.2 Ex 155 Points 3) Volkswagen Jetta 1.4 TSI 118 kW Highline 141 Points 4) Suzuki Kizashi 2.4i SDLX 6MT 49 Points 5) Alfa Romeo Giulietta 1.4 125 kW MultiAir Distinctive 48 Points 6) Audi A6 3.0 TDI quattro S tronic 30 Points 7) Ford Focus 2.0 TDCi Trend PowerShift Sedan 27 Points 8) CitroÍn DS4 1.6 THP 200 Sport 22 Points 9) Peugeot 5008 Active 2.0 HDi 20 Points 10) Mercedes-Benz SLK 350 BlueEFFICIENCY 3 Points The COTY competition is sponsored by WesBank, with support sponsorship from Total South Africa and Hollard Insurance.


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Ignition Switch Polo 1996-2003 Citi 1996-2009 Part Number: 6N0 905 865 Price: R287.85

Drive Shaft Golf 5 2006-2007 Part Number: 1K0 407 271BF Price: R3894.83

Throttle Body Polo 1996-2003 Part Number: 1HS 133 064 Price: R1507.39

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Front C.V. Boot Golf 1998-2007 Jetta 1999-2006 Beetle 2003-2005 Part Number: 1K0 498 203B Price: R173.65

Fuel Pump Citi 1999-2009 Part Number: 026 127 025A Price: R1281.48

Water Pump Caddy 2004-2008 Jetta 1999-2007 Golf 1998-2007 Part Number: 06B 121 011Q Price: R1594.63

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Trade Talk

AutoForum - April 2012

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Europe's Car of the Year Last month, the winner of the European ‘Car of the Year 2012’ was announced at the opening of the Geneva Motor Show. The Opel (Vauxhall) Ampera/Chevrolet Volt was voted the top car overall, following a series of exhaustive test drives by the jury. Hakan Matson, President of the panel of international automobile experts and automobile expert for the Swedish Dagens Industri newspaper, commented: “The Opel Ampera and its counterpart, the Chevrolet Volt, won in a field of strong competitors, particularly on account of the outstanding technical progress they reflect. With its range extender the Ampera presents a very sound new concept on our way to e-mobility. By solving the problem of range anxiety, it is a remarkable step into future of electrification.” The competition’s seven finalists were selected from the 35 most significant novelties of the year, by a total of 59 motor journalists from 23 European countries. The key criteria for Car of the Year comprise innovation and value for money but also safety, quality and design as well as environmental aspects. For the first time in the 50-year history of the award, this year’s ceremony was held at the opening of the Geneva Motor Show. The final counting of votes by the international jury took place on site.

Integrated Marketing launches BRIGHT wheel aligner Hugo Deveugele, MD of Integrated Marketing, proudly launched the new BRIGHT L963D – 3D Wheel Alignment Machine at the Aviator Hotel in Kempton Park on the 7th of March. Integrated Marketing’s invited guests were offered free overnight accommodation at the venue, ensuring the attendees could fully appreciate all aspects of the function. With committed support from Russell Chen, the Customer Development Manager, and his staff at BRIGHT Technology Company Ltd, Hugo introduced the new 3D wheel aligner and then called on Sean Joubert of Equipment Africa, an authorised distributor, to demonstrate the equipment’s capabilities and reply to the technical queries from the audience. For more details on the product, please contact Leonie on Tel: 011 974 2203.

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Trade Talk

AutoForum AutoForum-- April April 2012 2012

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Toyota shifts hybrid production to China According to a report from Japanese news service, Nikkei, Toyota will soon start to produce certain of its hybrid components in China. This, the news agency says, is due to lower costs in the latter country, which the automaker hopes will increase sales of the more environmentally friendly vehicles. The automaker has already started producing the Prius itself in China, but at this stage still ships components from Japan. Component production is expected to start early next year.

GM and PSA Peugeot Citroën Alliance General Motors and PSA Peugeot Citroën have announced the creation of “a long-term and broad-scale global strategic alliance”. This, the companies explain, will leverage their combined strengths and capabilities, while contributing to their profitability and competitiveness in Europe.

Supplying the automotive market for 60 years The Diesel-Electric Group, established in 1951, is a network of 42 independently-owned automotive wholesalers, with Bosch as their longest-standing contract partner, which operates nationally in South Africa and its surrounding territories. Thanks to its owner-driven entrepreneurial management, well-trained technical staff and enhanced range of quality products, Diesel-Electric has become one of the major forces in the automotive aftermarket. The group supplies the needs of the automotive market for components, parts, equipment and information technologies. Diesel-Electric also supplies and services independent workshops and specialist repairers, garages, fleet operators and franchise dealers, in addition to retail and wholesale parts stores. It is the preferred supplier to the e-CAR workshops, its national workshop partners.

The alliance will see the two brands sharing vehicle platforms, components and modules and the creation of a global purchasing joint venture for the sourcing of commodities, components and other goods and services from suppliers with combined annual purchasing volumes of approximately $125 billion. Each company will continue to market and sell its vehicles independently and on a competitive basis. Initially, the collaboration is expected to focus on small and midsize passenger cars, MPVs and crossovers, and may later involve developing a new common platform for low emission vehicles. The first vehicle on a common platform is expected to launch by 2016.

Diesel-Electric focuses its operations in the fields of automotive electrical and electronics, gasoline and diesel fuel injection, and general safety and service lines, as well as Bosch automotive. The group supports, distributes and represents a wide range of prestigious automotive component brands, such as ATE, FAG, Gabriel, GUD, INA, LUK, Osram, RAM, Sachs, Valeo, Valvoline, VDO, and many others.

General Motors Chairman and CEO Dan Akerson (left) with PSA Peugeot Citroën Chairman of the Managing Board Philippe Varin

PAGE 10


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Trade Talk

AutoForum AutoForum-- April April 2012 2012

Transport Minister “Openess to discuss road funding” In late March, Business Report in the Cape Times newspaper ran a story in which Minister Sbu Ndebele expressed an openness to talking and finding the best funding solution for SA roads. Wayne Duvenage, Chairperson of the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (OUTA), responded to the article in a release to the media, saying: “This is an approach we would have liked to see many months ago. There has certainly been a change in heart by the authorities who have, up until now been very harsh in their responses to the outcry, which has merely created more ire and has not done them any favours. We wait and see to what extent Government decides to engage going forward.” “It was never OUTA’s or its member’s intentions to have a negative impact on the country’s credit ratings, which we realise may cause some unease in the market place under these circumstances,” adds Duvenage. “Unfortunately, these are the risks that authorities take when making such high impact decisions and one hopes that future actions and plans of this magnitude will undergo far more extensive assessment and consultation with those who will be impacted, before surging ahead.” OUTA believes that there have been huge lessons learned by the governing authorities in this matter, and that the public are no longer as apathetic as they were in the past. “People are more connected through social media and are able to mobilise common thinking campaigns and resources to challenge poor decisions that impact them. People expect governing and investing of their hard earned taxes and funds into managing their country and cities to be spent wisely, efficiently and with greater transparency,” concludes Duvenage.

Quantum and Ses'fikile – soon to be SA assembled In March, Toyota South Africa Motors (TSAM) made formal its intention to assemble the Quantum and Ses’fikile models at its Prospecton plant in Durban. Up to this point, both of the vehicle types have been manufactured in Japan and imported in fully built up form. The move is a positive one for the local economy, and is the result of much discussion between the parent company, its local arm and the SA government. Although there are certain “final preconditions” to be agreed on, all going well TSAM will thereafter announce the investment and job creation targets set by this project.

PAGE 12

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Protecting your workshop equipment against contaminated gas Contaminated refrigerant gas is a serious threat in our industry and more and more we hear of workshops that have suffered great losses to service equipment because of this. MACSAUTO, one of the most recognised names in the automotive air-conditioning parts industry, understands the effects of this problem and believes that its Ultima units are a must in any workshop environment. “As the issue of contaminated gas is on the rise, we advise any fitment centre or workshop that deals with refrigerant gas makes at least one of these units a standard item in their operation,” says Ian Griesel, MD of MACS. “The Ultima units are of excellent quality, boast an exceptional portable design and are easy to use. At the same time, the Mini-ID is extremely affordable and is able to analyse and verify the presence and quality of R134a refrigerant in vehicle air-conditioning systems. The rugged construction makes it ideal for a workshop environment and will assist in protecting a business against costly damage.” The larger Ultima units are able to give users a clear identification of R134a, R22, R22 and more. These units are ideal for larger business with costly equipment and a large volume of vehicles serviced on a daily basis. For more information, contact MACS’ branches countrywide or Charmaine Pieters on 011 4980700 or marketing@macsauto.co.za.


PAGE 13


AutoForum - April 2012

The latest global news

EVs won't exceed 15% globally by 2025 – except maybe in Asia

K

PMG recently held a press briefing to announce the results of its 13th annual Global Automotive Executive Survey. The survey found overall that nobody really agrees on what will happen over the next thirteen years, with no hard and fast belief on what the future holds for the industry. As Mathieu Meyer, KPMG’s Global Head of Automotive explains: “Compared to previous years’ results, the findings this year show that auto experts have no clear idea of the direction the industry is heading. One thing is certain, electromobility is the most critical trend for the industry - how and when fully-electric cars will be a reality, depends on a variety of complex and interrelated factors.” “These uncertainties and challenges are also impacting South Africa where the roll-out of Optimal Energy’s electric car (the Joule) is yet to receive support,” said Gavin Maile, KPMG Africa Automotive Leader. But, thankfully, it wasn’t all confusion. Some of the more definite future trends that were held broadly across the execs were the belief that China will be the biggest market globally for auto sales and exports by 2025, and that demand for electric vehicles will be the highest in emerging markets. It was also clear that ownership of the e-components space (that is battery management, power electronics, e-motors, battery cells and packs, and so forth) is expected to draw intense competition among OEMs and suppliers. Fifty-four percent of those surveyed felt that electric component suppliers will gain a bigger role by 2025, while 40% believe OEMs will lead in that area, in addition to their traditionally held powertrain technologies.

PAGE 14

A whopping 76% of the surveyed group across the globe believe that fuel efficiency remains the key factor affecting consumerbuying decisions, with 65% seeing environmental friendliness as key. However, over 66% still don’t think EVs will gain more than a 15% share of annual global sales within the next 15 years – apart from in China, Japan and other high-growth markets, where electromobility is expected to take hold far sooner. More than 50% of Chinese respondents foresee that e-cars will comprise in excess of 11-25% of new car registrations. Forty-six percent of Japanese respondents believe the figure to be more than 25%. It’s a sharp contrast to US respondents who only believe that e-car registrations will hover between 6 and 10% by 2025. Maile cautions: “The infrastructure requirements and payment technologies relating to e-cars are substantial and impacts the roll-out of e-cars in South Africa. Technologies are available to charge e-cars in off-peak times, but both the charge time and the travel range need further improvements to increase its viability.” Another uncertain future area is that of which fuel technology will emerge as the optimal and predominant method to power the electric car by 2025. Hybrid vehicles are expected to lead the market and attract the most investment in the interim, with full hybrids and plug-in versions expected to be the favoured technologies longer term and fuel-cell vehicles coming in third.


Asia again went against the Western grain, with 33% of Chinese and 46% of Japanese surveyed expecting batteryelectrified vehicles to be the most popular, followed by fuel-cell vehicles. One thing that was clear was in terms of how important internal combustion engines are believed to be for the immediate future. Close on two-thirds of respondents across the board foresee optimisation of the Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) as offering the greatest efficiency and the most potential for carbon emission reduction over the next five years. Asian and European OEMs are expected to grow the most market share by 2017, with 70% of the 10 fastest growing auto manufacturers expected to be from Asia. A majority of respondents believe that China will lead in both sales and exports of vehicles by 2017 followed by the US. Brazil is in a close tie for third with India. “Our survey also revealed that 75% believe that mature and emerging markets are converging, which will mean that the opportunities and the challenges will be the same for both,” said Chang Soo Lee, KPMG’s Head of Automotive for Asia. “This has big implications for OEMs from mature markets. They will have a wealth of new opportunities, but they can expect fierce competition from players in the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) countries for traditional and new technologies in their domestic markets.” Urban mobility was found to be a rapidly emerging issue, especially in the US and Japan, where over 60% of respondents believe urban planning will influence vehicle design and usage. Maile continues: “In South Africa, this trend is highly unlikely in the short to medium term, but will gain more popularity in the longer term as the strategy to densify existing cities and increase the use of existing infrastructure continues.” Other key findings from this year’s survey: • Brazil is expected be a leading market for mobility services - 42% predict over 25% of the country’s urban inhabitants will use those services by 2026. • Overall, China has the greatest potential to lead the market for mobility services with an expected 90 million potential customers. • As younger urban drivers grow more interested in car sharing, OEMs have an opportunity to dominate the space. Nearly 30% believe that joint alliances between OEMs and new mobility start-ups will be the way to go. • Over 60% believe full, integrated vehicle connectivity is long overdue. 30% see OEMs controlling the revenue stream in 2025 followed by IT and communications companies. For a look at the full survey, you can visit the website, www.kpmg.co.za.

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AutoForum - April 2012

NEWS FORUM

Should SA follow Brazil's import tax strategy? - Roy Cokayne

T

he SA government has been accused of failing to react quickly like other countries, such as Brazil, to protect the country’s automotive manufacturing base. Gavin Maile, a KPMG SA Director and partner responsible for the construction, industrial and automotive sectors, cited the example of an invasion of cheap vehicle imports into Brazil last year, which resulted in the importation of these vehicles, largely from the East, increasing by 87%. Maile said the Brazilian government on December 16 increased import duty on these “invaders” by 30% to 65%. It was forecast that the price of these vehicles would increase by 28% because of this duty increase, he said. Maile explained that vehicles imported into SA last year accounted for a record 69% or 272 000 units of the total 572 241 vehicles sold in the domestic market - an increase from 66% in 2010. Maile added that an additional 73 000 locally produced vehicles would have been sold locally last year if the ratio between local and imported vehicle sales had remained at 50:50, as it was in 2005. “It would be nice if our country reacted like some of the emerging markets, the BRIC [countries] of which SA is a party. We have the lowest customs duty out of all the BRIC countries by far,” he said. The BRIC countries comprise Brazil, Russia, India and China, with South Africa a recent new addition. Theo Loock, MD of listed automotive components company Metair, said the continued high level of imports was an unintended consequence of the Motor Industry Development Programme (MIDP) but would be addressed by the local production allowance in the APDP, which replaces the MIDP from next year.

PAGE 16

Maile attributed the trend of increasing imported vehicles sales into the South African market to the progressive reduction in import duties on imported vehicles from 71% in 2003 to 26% last year. Duties on imported vehicles dropped to 25% this year and will remain at this level until 2020, the duration of the new APDP. Maile said projections for locally produced vehicles sales into the domestic market this year were lower than in 1995 and would account for 65% of domestic sales in 1995. He said SA’s domestic production was now mainly being exported, while in those early years exports were very small. He continued that just under 272 000 locally produced vehicles were exported last year, the second best performance ever by the industry. He commented that Brazil did not regard its neighboring countries, such as Mexico and Argentina, as “invaders” and these countries worked together. He added that the only way the import duty could be rebated in Brazil was if the vehicle being imported had a local content from Brazil, Argentina or Mexico of more than 65%. “They are very much looking after themselves. They have been reported to the WTO [World Trade Organisation] for unfair practices, but the whole thing there is to protect their manufacturing base and they contend the WTO has the option to protect local manufacturing.” Maile added that temporary tax reductions sponsored by the Brazilian federal government were also used to increase sales and use the country’s automotive production capacity. “The federal government has come to the party and said you have got this capacity, use it and keep the jobs going. There has been a massive injection of programmes to help the vehicle companies to use their capacity.”

Roy Cokayne is a senior financial reporter for Business Report.


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NEWS FORUM

AutoForum - April 2012

People's Wheels Awards

E

arly last month, the winners of the inaugural Absa/Avusa Media People’s Wheels Awards were announced in Johannesburg, which saw the Kia Picanto named SA’s favourite car. The newly-formed awards, described as being an opportunity for South Africans to “voice their preferences regarding the vehicles they consider to be the best in the market”, and are run in conjunction with TNS Research Surveys and the Future Group. As Arrie Rautenbach, Absa’s Head of Retail Markets is quoted as saying: “These awards offer a fresh approach to the current motor vehicle survey landscape in rewarding automotive excellence. We believe it makes a lot of sense for us to actively engage the South African consumer in the selection of the ‘People’s Wheels (or Car) of the Year’. For the first time, South Africans are in a position to cast their votes for the vehicles that they think stand above the rest. Now, ordinary motorists have a voice – their right to be heard expressed in terms of their experiences of the vehicles they own and those which they aspire to purchase.” The survey involved car buyers voting in 26 categories that included Budget Buys; Compact Commuters; Entry Level Hatches and Entry Level Sedan, as well as many more. Car owners were also able to voice their feelings about the cars they drove. The Kia Picanto swooped the most votes overall claiming the title ‘most affordable vehicle’; the Volkswagen marque emerged tops across most categories with eight podium wins; and Mercedes-Benz was named most admired brand in the ownership survey. The awards were timed to coincide with the launch of the Absa Auto Annual, a 420-page motor industry information guide for industry professionals and consumers.

Andile Dlamini of Volkswagen South Africa accepts the People’s Wheels Award and trophy for the most awards overall. With him is Wessel Steffens of Absa, Brand Pretorius, Trevor Ormerod of Avusa and Richard Lendrum of Future Group.

PAGE 18

List of categories: PEOPLE’S WHEELS 2012: CATEGORY WINNERS CATEGORY A: BUDGET BUYS – The Most Affordable 1 KIA Picanto 2 CHEVROLET Spark Lite 3 HYUNDAI Atos CATEGORY B: COMPACT COMMUTERS – City Cars for City Slickers 1 TOYOTA Yaris Zen 2 HYUNDAI i10 3 CHEVROLET Spark CATEGORY C: ENTRY LEVEL HATCHES – Five-Door Value Propositions 1 VOLKSWAGEN Polo Vivo 2 FORD Figo 3 CHEVROLET Aveo CATEGORY D: ENTRY LEVEL SEDANS – Four-Door Value Propositions 1 VOLKSWAGEN Polo Vivo 4-dr 2 HYUNDAI Accent 3 CHEVROLET Aveo 4-dr CATEGORY E: SUPERMINIS – New Age Compacts 1 VOLKSWAGEN Polo 2 FORD Fiesta 3 HONDA Jazz CATEGORY F: FAMILY STYLED HATCHES – Five-Door Driveway Favourites 1 AUDI A3 Sportback 2 VOLKSWAGEN Golf 3 ALFA ROMEO Giulietta

David Sieff of Kia Motors accepts the People’s Wheels Award and trophy for most votes overall, for the Kia Picanto. With him is Trevor Ormerod of Avusa and Wessel Steffens of Absa, Brand Pretorius and Richard Lendrum of Future Group.


CATEGORY G: FAMILY STYLED SEDANS – Four-Door Driveway Favourites 1 VOLKSWAGEN Jetta 2 CHEVROLET Cruze 3 HONDA Civic CATEGORY H: PREMIUM COMPACT CARS – Smart Road Warriors 1 BMW 3-Series 2 MERCEDES-BENZ C Class 3 AUDI A4 CATEGORY I: LARGE EXECUTIVE CARS – Big on Status 1 BMW 5-Series 2 JAGUAR XF 3 MERCEDES-BENZ E Class CATEGORY J: EXECUTIVE LUXURY CARS – The Rich Choice 1 ASTON MARTIN Rapide 2 PORSCHE Panamera 3 JAGUAR XJ CATEGORY K: WIND IN THE HAIR – Cabriolets and Convertibles 1 BMW 1-Series 2 AUDI A3 Cabrio 3 MAZDA MX-5 CATEGORY L: TRENDSETTERS – Cabriolets and Convertibles 1 MERCEDES-BENZ SLK 2 BMW Z4 3 PORSCHE Boxster CATEGORY M: DESIGNER LABELS – Cabriolets and Convertibles 1 MERCEDES-BENZ SLK AMG 2 BMW M3 Convertible 3 JAGUAR XKR Convertible CATEGORY N: FOR THE REALLY RICH – Cabriolets and Convertibles 1 LAMBORGHINI Gallardo Spyder 2 AUDI R8 Spyder 3 FERRARI California CATEGORY O: HARD TOP SPORTS CARS 1 VOLKSWAGEN Scirocco 2 AUDI A5 Coupe 3 MERCEDES-BENZ CLC CATEGORY P: IN THE FAST LANE – SUPER SPORTS CARS 1 AUDI R8 Coupe 2 NISSAN GT-R 3 PORSCHE 911 GT3

PAGE 19


NEWS FORUM

AutoForum - April 2012

Selvin Govender of Mercedes Benz South Africa accepts the People’s Wheels Award for the Most Admired Brand in the ownership Survey. With him is Wessel Steffens of Absa, Brand Pretorius, Trevor Ormerod of Avusa and Richard Lendrum of Future Group.

CATEGORY Q: DREAM MACHINES – THE SUPERCAR LEAGUE 1 FERRARI 458 Italia 2 LAMBORGHINI Aventador 3 MERCEDES-BENZ SLS AMG

CATEGORY X: MPVs & PEOPLE CARRIERS – AT WORK & AT PLAY 1 VOLKSWAGEN T5 Kombi 2 VOLKSWAGEN Touran 3 MERCEDES-BENZ Viano

CATEGORY R: YOUNG RACERS – AFFORDABLE HOT HATCHES 1 VOLKSWAGEN Golf GTi 2 FORD Focus ST 3 RENAULT Megane RS Sport

CATEGORY Y: SUVs & CROSSOVERS – TOWN & COUNTRY VERSATILITY 1 LAND ROVER Discovery 4 2 RANGE ROVER Sport 3 BMW X5

CATEGORY S: TRACKDAY SPECIALS – SUPER HOT HATCHES 1 BMW 1-Series M Coupe 2 AUDI S3 3 VOLKSWAGEN Golf R

CATEGORY Z: DOUBLE CABS – WORKHORSES FOR ACTIVE LIFESTYLES 1 VOLKSWAGEN Amarok 2 TOYOTA Hilux 3 NISSAN Navara

CATEGORY T: UPPING THE PACE – HIGH PERFORMANCE SEDANS 1 MERCEDES-BENZ C63 AMG 2 BMW M3 Sedan 3 SUBARU Impreza WRX STi

MOST AWARDS: PEOPLE’S WHEELS The manufacturer with most category wins (eight wins, two second places, two third places): Manfacturer: Volkswagen First Places: Polo Vivo Hatch; Polo Vivo Sedan; Polo; Jetta; Scirocco; Golf Gti; T5 Kombi; Amarok Double Cab Second Places: Golf; Touran Third Places: Golf R; Amarok Single Cab

CATEGORY U: STATION WAGONS – NEW STYLE FOR THE TRADITIONAL 1 AUDI A4 Avant 2 MERCEDES-BENZ C Class Estate 3 VOLVO V60 CATEGORY V: HYBRIDS – DAWN OF A NEW AGE 1 LEXUS CT-200h 2 HONDA CR-Z 3 TOYOTA Prius CATEGORY W: LDVs, PICK-UPS & VANS – THE COMMERCIAL WORKHORSE 1 TOYOTA Hilux 2 CHEVROLET Lumina Ute 3 VOLKSWAGEN Amarok

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OWNERSHIP SURVEY Mercedes-Benz is the brand most admired CAR WITH THE HIGHEST NUMBER OF VOTES: PEOPLE’S WHEELS The model that scored the most votes overall: Manufacturer: Kia Model: Picanto Category: Budget Buys: The Most Affordable Percentage of Category Vote: 59,77%


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NEWS FORUM

AutoForum - April 2012

Metair diversifies with light and stop/start battery - Roy Cokayne

M

etair, the listed automotive components manufacturer, has positioned the company to benefit from the strong drive towards greener economies and a reduction in carbon footprints by developing a “stop/start” battery and an energy efficient street light. The Envirolight street light will also help Metair position the company to take advantage of the opportunities presented by SA’s electricity crisis and the need to reduce electricity consumption. The development of the Envirolight forms part of a deliberate strategy by Metair to bring more balance to the group, its client base and product lines and improve the sustainability of the business, by focusing on growing its aftermarket and non-automotive business to diversify the group’s earnings base. Theo Loock, Metair’s CE said the “stop/ start” battery meant zero emissions from a vehicle when it was standing idle at a traffic light, in a parking lot or when a parent was picking up their children. Loock said the battery enabled a vehicle’s engine to shut down in an idle position, which required a paradigm shift for batteries that could be built into vehicles. He said it was not being manufactured under licence but was a home grown innovative product developed out of Metair’s 20 years of experience in its non-automotive business, with its mining helmet lamp technology. Loock explained that it was designed to align with the new world requirement to reduce emissions and carbon footprints. It had also extended the life of lead acid batteries and given them a competitive advantage against lithium-ion batteries. According to Loock, the product had only been sold in the local market to date, but purely as part of its research

PAGE 22

and development analysis and to prove the product quality. Metair’s focus for the coming year is on executing its strategy of effectively developing markets for the new “stop/start” batteries. Loock said these markets would be developed economies because this was where a reduction of carbon emissions was a requirement. He envisaged export sales of the batteries increasing significantly from about 2015 when the percentage of vehicles with this technology would increase dramatically, in line with a swing towards this technology. Loock believed the batteries could make a substantial difference to the future earnings and revenue of Metair’s non-automotive business. He said the Envirolight was also a home grown developed product for the African market by Metair and was based on innovative automotive reflective technology for vehicle headlights. The CE continued that the Envirolight used a 54 watt lamp instead of a 125 lamp, resulting in an about 43% electricity usage saving. He confirmed the Envirolight had now been installed in parts of the City of Johannesburg, Nelson Mandela Bay, Ekurhuleni, Tshwane and Cape Town, who were obviously the biggest users of electricity and where it could make the biggest impact in reducing electricity usage. However, Loock said the Envirolight had only been installed in a small portion of these metros and described the current phase of the project as “a test phase”. “The next phase is to get everybody on board, make it a national programme and intensify the rollout to major metros.”

Loock said Metair was dealing with the mechanisms of local government, which were sometimes slow and frustrating, but believed there would be intensive demand for its Envirolight in the next 12 to 18 months. He said it was already exporting its Envirolight to some countries in Africa on a trial basis. The Envirolight was approved by the SABS in July 2008 and had undergone testing and evaluation by the Central Energy Fund (CEF).
Loock did not anticipate the Envirolight making a significant contribution in the future to Metair’s earnings but stressed it would assist with the group’s diversification programme. “The more competitive we can be in both the OEM and non-automotive business, the more it helps spread the load of costs of the business.” Metair started trading more than 30 years ago as a supplier of products to Toyota SA, which until recently was a sister company. This resulted in the majority of Metair’s business being in the OEM automotive manufacturing space and the company being reliant on a few customers. Loock said the company had followed a deliberate strategy of bringing more balance to the group and was now a supplier to all seven OEMs producing in SA and had significantly expanded the OE product lines it supplied. He said the OEM business still remained core to the group’s strategy despite the focus on growing the aftermarket and non-automotive areas of the business.


AutoForum - April 2012

NEWS FORUM

New EU reg means GSI to be standard

I

nternational regulations body Interegs, has announced the finalisation of a new regulation in Europe that will see carmakers being required to include gear shift indicators from November this year. Gear shift indicators inform the driver when to change gear to minimise fuel consumption, thereby encouraging a fuel efficient driving style and reducing both fuel consumption and CO2 emissions in real world driving. Originally published as EC Regulation No. 661/2009, the new requirement initially concerned “M1 classified vehicles with a manual gearbox, and having a reference weight not exceeding 2610 kg, to be fitted with a gear shift indicator (GSI).” Whilst it specified the introduction dates for the mandatory fitment of GSIs it did not include the relevant technical requirements for such systems. After many months of consultation and negotiation, the new EU Implementing Regulation for (EC) No. 661/2009 containing the technical requirements for gear shift indicators and testing requirements was published at the end of January. It also contains a detailed definition of

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a “manual gearbox” to clarify that the requirement for the fitment of a GSI applies to any type of gearbox that has at least one manual mode. With regard to the gear shift indicator itself, the Regulation specifies that the gear shift indication must be provided by a visual indicator, although this may be supplemented by an audible signal. The visual indicator must provide a clear indication to the driver of the suggested action and must not interfere or be confused with any other legally required indicator. The Regulation also specifies that information on the operation and function of the gear shift indicator must be included in the owner’s manual for the vehicle. To demonstrate and verify the fuel consumption benefits of the gear shift indicator, the new Regulation contains test procedures, a specific drive cycle and calculation formulae, which vehicle manufacturers must undertake to compare the difference in fuel consumption when the vehicle is driven “normally” and when the vehicle is driven following the advice of the gear shift indicator.


Geneva hosts launch of Yaris Hybrid

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s always, this year’s Geneva Motor Show played host to the cream of the crop in the automotive field, and was the venue for a number of very high profile launches. One of these was the world debut of the Yaris Hybrid – a combination of the well-known urban agility of the traditional Yaris model with what the automaker describes as “the unique driving experience and efficiency of Toyota’s full hybrid powertrain, Hybrid Synergy Drive (HSD)”. And the even better news is that this model will also be rolled out to SA. The Yaris Hybrid features the first downsizing of Toyota’s HSD powertrain and sees the combination of a 1.5 litre petrol engine with a lighter, more compact electric motor, transaxle, inverter and battery pack. The smaller sized powertrain, along with under-seat located fuel tank and battery, means that occupant space and luggage capacity is not at all impaired. Toyota boasts that according to its studies, the cumulative effect of the full hybrid powertrain leads to up to 66% of zero-emissions operation, and thats despite an automatic transmission and air conditioning unit. All in all, it makes downsizing the family car seem that little bit more attractive.

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NEWS FORUM

AutoForum - April 2012

FAW invests R600 m in SA Plant

F

irst Automobile Works (FAW) is set to become the first Chinese motor manufacturer to establish a plant in South Africa following a R600 million investment in a state-of-the-art truck and passenger car plant at the Coega Industrial Development Zone (IDZ) in the Eastern Cape. The investment is being jointly funded by FAW and China-Africa Fund and is expected to create 500 permanent jobs in the Eastern Cape in the first phase. The investment is based on FAW using SA as an export for other parts of Africa. Mehdi Abbas, FAW SA’s Operations Manager, said R200 million was being invested in the first phase to build a commercial vehicle production line with an annual capacity of 5 000 units, with R400 million invested in the second phase in a passenger vehicle line with an annual capacity of 30 000 units. Abbas said the R600 million investment formed part of a $100 million investment in SA, with the balance of investment used to develop grassroots part suppliers. He said the first commercial vehicles were expected to roll off the line by the last quarter of next year, with construction of the passenger vehicle line commencing directly thereafter and expected to be operational between the second and last quarter of 2015.

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Abbas continued commercial vehicles were currently exported directly from China to Angola, Tanzania and Kenya, where its annual sales were in excess of 3 000 units. His comments coincided with a sod turning function in the Coega IDZ in March, which signalled the commencement of construction on the first phase of the project. According to Abbas, sales into the SA market of a completely built up (CBU) FAW special utility vehicle (SUV), half ton single and double cab and panel van would commence this year, with distribution and retailing handled by the Imperial Group. Sales were anticipated to total 1 000 vehicles a model annually. He said FAW SA was pushing to achieve the 50 000 unit annual production threshold in the government’s APDP and qualify for APDP incentives in the first full year of operation of its Coega plant. FAW Group is a Fortune 500 company, the third largest truck manufacturer in the world and China’s leading exporter of vehicles. Ayanda Vilakazi, Marketing and Communications Manager of the Coega Development Corporation, said the investment by FAW followed the recent visit by President Jacob Zuma to China where he signed bilateral trade and investment agreements between

- Roy Cokayne

the two countries. Vilakazi said FAW’s decision to invest in the Eastern Cape was prompted by Coega’s location, the proximity of the Port of Ngqura, the logistical solutions on offer, the availability of skills in the Nelson Mandela Bay Metropolitan area and support mechanisms offered by Coega. “FAW’s decision to build the plant in SA is significant, as it will be one of the biggest manufacturing investments by a Chinese entity in the country so far. The arrival of FAW in the Eastern Cape also adds to the existing list of automobile manufacturers in the province, including VWSA, GM SA, Ford and Mercedes Benz,” he said. FAW SA is a joint venture between the FAW Group in China and local businessman Richard Leiter, FAW SA’s MD. Abbas said FAW Group in China owned a majority shareholding in the local company but declined to comment on the shareholding split. Established in 1999, the CDC is wholly-owned by the SA government. The Coega IDZ is one of the country’s premier locations for new industrial investments.


NEWS FORUM

AutoForum - April 2012

Comparative vehicle mobility costs study released - Roy Cokayne

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he cost of owning a vehicle in South Africa is high, according to an international mobility study conducted by WesBank. The study involved seven countries, including two developing countries. The purchase price of the specific entry level vehicle used in the study was most expensive in SA at R149 900, and cheapest in China at only R101 093. In the other countries included in the study it cost R106 529 in the United States, R120 480 in the United Kingdom, R129 425 in Germany, R135 453 in Australia and R127 540 in Brazil. But to highlight the variation in costs faced by consumers, the study compared the operating costs of this entry level car in different regions to the annual salary of a public school mathematics teacher with five year’s experience.

Brazil’s gross national income per capita was higher than SA’s, but the annual salary of a maths teacher was lower. He said they had always maintained that mobility costs in SA were a lot more expensive than in developed countries. The study showed that mobility costs in first world countries were a quarter of

is not my domain”. He said the most important factors influencing the cost of ownership in SA were labour and transport costs; economies of scale; interest rates; taxes and compliance; and government incentives. According to de Kock, despite SA’s interest rates being at a 30-year low, they

South Africa was the second most expensive of the countries surveyed The cost of owning a vehicle in South Africa was equivalent to 95% of the annual salary of a mathematics teacher, the second most expensive of the countries surveyed. It was most expensive in Brazil, where it was equivalent to 122% of a maths teacher’s annual salary. By comparison, it was equivalent to only 23% of a maths teacher’s salary in the United States, 26% in Australia, 33% in both the United Kingdom and Germany, and 68% in China. However, the annual salary of a mathematics teacher was R157 122 in SA, which was higher than both Brazil at R112 985 and China at R149 641. Chris de Kock, Executive Head of Sales and Marketing at WesBank, said the results of the survey were not surprising, although it was surprising that the total mobility cost of owning a vehicle in Brazil was higher than SA. De Kock said

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the cost in SA and Brazil. De Kock said consumers in developing countries were hit with “a double whammy” in terms of the costs of owning a car, because cars were cheaper in the developed countries included in the study than the developing countries, while the income per capita in developing countries was less than that in the developed countries. The ownership and operating costs monitored in each region, based on driving 60 000 km in three years, included the initial purchase price of the vehicle; fuel and maintenance costs; government taxes, levies and licensing; insurance; cost of finance; and the fixed residual value. De Kock said the study did not go into the reasons why cars were cheaper in developed countries “because that

were very high compared to developed countries. He said interest was a big component of the cost of owning a car and consumers in the US were paying between 5% and 6% interest on vehicle financing deals, compared to between 11% and 12% in SA. De Kock said SA fuel costs compared favourably with other countries in the survey and were the second cheapest of the countries surveyed at R9.93 a litre, following the US at R7.36 a litre. The UK had the highest fuel cost at R20.05 a litre. “From the study, it appears that while the mobility costs for vehicle owners in SA are reasonably high when compared to other countries, this is due more to economic factors rather than higher margins along the supply chain.”


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Timing Kit PAGE 29


AutoForum - April 2012

NEWS FORUM

MEC for Economic Development Qedani Mahlangu and AIDC CEO Barlow Manilal chat to learners from Ngaka Maseko High School in Pretoria at the AIDC Careers Day.

Getting learners geared up for the motor sector

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ecently, the AIDC hosted a Careers Day to help encourage Grade 9 learners to select subjects that will lead them to careers in the automotive and manufacturing industries. The day forms part of the Talent Pipeline project, which provides career guidance to children from previously disadvantaged schools with a view to addressing the skills shortage in the manufacturing and engineering fields. The Career Day provided Grade 9 learners with information on automotive career choices at a time when they need to select their subjects for Grade 10. The pilot project involved learners from 5 schools, who were addressed by Gauteng MEC for Economic Development, Qedani Mahlangu. She commented: “The automotive and manufacturing sector is a large contributor to Gauteng’s economy. As more learners pursue careers in the automotive and manufacturing industries, Gauteng’s economic development potential increases exponentially.”

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The targeting of Grade 9 learners was significant as they are about to select their subjects for matric, which in turn would influence the range of careers open to them upon completion of their studies. According to AIDC CEO, Barlow Manilal, the organisation is actively involved in assisting learners through its various programmes. One of these is the AIDC ESDA, which assists unemployed learners to obtain qualifications and skills required by the automotive and manufacturing industries. Last year ESDA graduated over 700 learners as artisans, learnership students, interns and trainees. The AIDC also recently launched a series of web-based support services to the automotive industry, including a data repository for retrenched workers in the automotive sector. The AIDC is a subsidiary of Blue IQ Investment Holdings (Pty) Ltd, which is in turn, an agency of the Gauteng Department of Economic Development.


AutoForum - April 2012

NEWS FORUM

FB and driving = a lethal combo

I

t’s not surprising news really. We always knew that driving while using a cellphone was dangerous, and it’s not really rocket science that using a smartphone while driving is not ideal either. But new research out of the UK has found that using smartphones for social networking while driving is more dangerous than driving drunk or being high on cannabis behind the wheel. Despite this, the British safety charity IAM (Institute of Advanced Motorists) found that 8% of drivers in that country admit to using smartphones for email and social networking while driving – equivalent to 3.5 million licence holders. Just looking around while stuck in traffic on SA roads, it’s clear the trend is pretty universal. Back to the UK survey, which found that twenty-four percent of 17-24 year old drivers – a group already at higher risk of being in a crash – admit to using smartphones for email and social networking while driving. The IAM and TRL (Transport Research Laboratory) used DigiCar – the latter’s car driving simulator – to examine the effects of young drivers using smartphones to access Facebook. In every test of driving performance, young people who were using Facebook while driving were badly affected. When sending and receiving Facebook messages: • Reaction times slowed by around 38% and participants often missed key events; • Participants were unable to maintain a central lane position, resulting in an increased number of unintentional lane departures; and

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• Were unable to respond as quickly to the car in front gradually changing speed. When comparing these new results to previous studies, the level of impairment on driving was found to be greater than the effects of drinking, using cannabis and texting. Using a smartphone for social networking slowed reaction times by 37.6%, while texting slowed reaction times by 37.4%. Hands-free mobile phone conversation slows reaction times by 26.5%, while cannabis slows reaction times by 21%, and alcohol (above UK driving limit but below 100 mg per 100 ml of blood) slows reaction time by between six and 15%. Alcohol at the legal limit slows reaction times by 12.5% The IAM is calling for that country’s government to implement action to highlight the dangers of using smartphones behind the wheel, and believes that phone manufacturers and social network providers also have a key role to play in spreading the message. IAM Chief Executive Simon Best commented: “This research shows how incredibly dangerous using smartphones while driving is, yet unbelievably it is a relatively common practice. If you’re taking your hand off the wheel to use the phone, reading the phone display and thinking about your messages, then you’re simply not concentrating on driving. It’s antisocial networking and it’s more dangerous than drink driving and it must become just as socially unacceptable.”


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In the News Tenneco Targets Serious

R

Off-Roaders with Rancho

ancho’s® RS9000XL range of shock absorbers targets outd oor enthusiasts towing a boat or caravan or serious off-roaders who seek the perfect formula for the ultim ate ride.

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Rancho®, which together with Monroe ®is a brand manufactured by Tenneco for the South African mar ket, is a global leader in performance suspension systems, shock absorbers and off-road accessories. Rancho’s superior, time-tested nineposition adjustability, combine d with longlasting polyeurethane bushing s providing a consistent performance over a longer period, was developed with serious off-roaders in mind. The 18mm diameter piston rod, liquid metallic finish, Nitrogen gascharged shock includes a protective boot . The award winning wireless MyRIDE® remote Tuning System used in conjunction with the RS9000XL range, illustrates Rancho’s commitment to developing products that maximise the enthusiast’s experience on- or off-road. Designed for a wide-range of driver profiles – from the casual enthusia st to the dedicated off-roader — the new wireless remote Rancho MyRIDE® Tun ing System makes it easy for any driver to adjust the ride from firm to soft and any where in between, making ride control simple and precise from the comfort of you r cab. Further features of the MyRIDE ® handheld wireless controller include one-touch tuning – easily installed in abo ut two hours with basic tools; plug and plays – no programming required,; a quiet air compressor, control module, airlines and fittings and easy to follow instr uctions. ‘Tuning’ your shocks for you r needs…. Why adjust the shocks? The Rancho® shock setting sele cted is subjective and dependent on what the driver’s preferences are, wha t you are using the vehicle for and the terrain you are covering. How do you adjust your Rancho® shocks?

The setting adjustment is mad e by rotating a knob located on the exte rior of the Rancho® RS9000XL shock, from setting one (softest) to setting 9 (har dest). This is done while the shocks are still on the vehicle. What do the settings mean? • Settings 1 to 3 are similar to the original manufacturers shock settings • Settings 4 to 6 are similar to the Monroe Gas-Magnum settings • Settings 7 to 9 are for max imum control Which setting should I use

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The settings between 1 and 5 give great on/off road flexibility, while sett ings 5 to 9 give high on-road performanc e and towing / loading flexibility. Can I adjust the shocks from inside the vehicle? Yes. The award winning wireless remote Rancho® MyRIDE (Par t number RS999705), system enables the user to adjust the shocks settings from inside the vehicle cab while on the mov e.

components, visit www.goranc ho.com or contact Tenneco South Africa on 011 574 5603, or email to plutz@tenn eco.com About Tenneco Tenneco is a $7.2 billion glob al manufacturing company with headquarte rs in Lake Forest, Illinois and approximatel y 24,000 employees worldwide. Tennec o is one of the world’s largest designers, manufacturers and marketers of emissio n control and ride control products and systems for the automotive and commercial vehicle original equipment markets and the aftermarket. Tenneco markets its products principally under the Monroe® , Rancho® Walker®, Gillet™ and Clevite® Elastomer brand names. • Rancho Premium Elite: 4x4 connoisseurs – a tri-tube, heavy-d uty gas designs with 9-way adjustability on the move.

The unit comes with four preset settings as well as the MyRIDE® cust om setting where you can set the shocks to suit your unique needs. The pre-set sett ings are: • Highway = front 6 and rear 3 • Sport = front 8 and rear 6 • Load/ Tow = front 6 and rear 8 • Off-road = front 4 and rear 4 These systems have a THREE YEAR unlimited kilometre warranty against manufacturing defects - excludin g competition use. For more informa tion about Rancho suspensions, shocks and other

For more information abo ut Monroe shock, spring s and other components, visit www.monroe.co.za or contact Tenneco South Africa on 011 574 5603.

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NEWS FORUM

AutoForum - April 2012

Why buyers avoid certain cars

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D Power recently released its latest US Avoider Study for 2012, which found that more than 40% of new-vehicle buyers in that country who avoided a particular model due to quality or reliability concerns say they based their opinions on conventional wisdom or common knowledge rather than personal experience, reviews, ratings or recommendation. The study, now in its ninth year, examines the reasons consumers fail to consider or avoid particular models when shopping for a new vehicle. Perceptions of vehicle reliability have consistently been highlighted as a prominent reason for avoiding a particular brand or model. The study finds that, among buyers who avoid a particular model due to concerns about quality and reliability, a sizable proportion – 43% - say their avoidance was due to the perception that the brand’s vehicles, in general, are known to have poor quality/reliability. A smaller percentage, 38%, based their avoidance decision on ratings and reviews, while an even smaller proportion - 14% - based their decision on prior ownership of the model. The fact that so many new-vehicle buyers may be basing their opinions about quality and reliability on preconceived notions, rather than concrete information or data, researchers say, demonstrates how important it is for automakers to promote the quality and reliability of their models, said Jon Osborn, Research Director at JD Power and Associates. For some brands, namely those that have created marked improvements in their quality and

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reliability in recent years, it’s even more vital to tell their improvement story, rather than just waiting for perceptions to change over time. According to Osborn, it is also important for consumers to challenge their perceptions about what they may think they know about the quality and reliability of a particular model. The automotive industry has undergone significant quality and dependability improvement during the past decade, and fierce competition has created an environment in which only the strongest brands and models can survive. Although a brand or model may have had a poor reputation for quality or reliability in the past, actual quality or reliability performance may have improved since then. Seeking reviews and recommendations from trusted sources is particularly helpful in making consideration or avoidance decisions. The study also finds that the percentage of buyers in that country who avoided imported models because of their origin has increased to 14% in 2012, the highest level since the inception of the study in 2003. Conversely, the percentage of buyers who avoided domestic models due to their origin has declined to 6%, a historically low level. The decline in avoidance of US models due to their origin reflects a buyAmerican sentiment that surfaced as the economic recession led to domestic job losses and adversely affected major US institutions such as the Detroit Big Three, said Osborn. In addition, the quality, dependability and appeal of domestic models has improved during the

past several years, as well, and this may also be a cause for declining avoidance. The study finds that fuel mileage is the most influential reason for purchasing a particular vehicle model in 2012, surpassing the influence of other key reasons such as reliability, the deal and exterior styling, which were the most influential purchase reasons in 2010. With the emphasis on the importance of fuel mileage affecting both the automotive market and consumer purchase decisions, certain alternative fuel vehicles, the Chevrolet Volt, Nissan Leaf and Toyota Prius, captured much attention from new-vehicle buyers. While both fuel mileage and environmental impact were among the two most-often-cited purchase reasons for each of these models, there were marked differences between the models for the next-mostcited reason. For the Volt, the image the model portrays is a prominent reason for purchase, while buyers cite low maintenance costs for the Leaf and reliability for the Prius. Among buyers who avoided the Volt, purchase price was the most-oftencited reason, while the most prominent avoidance reason for the Leaf and Prius is exterior styling. For the Volt and Leaf, a notable proportion of buyers cited the models’ small size as an avoidance reason. For the Prius, performance is a prominent reason for avoidance. The 2012 Avoider Study is based on responses from approximately 24 045 US owners who registered a new vehicle in May 2011. The study was fielded between August and October 2011.


Body repair insight

In association with BodyShop News Asia and Australian BodyShop News

Contents “Disruption” 2011 Top 36 Trend for Claims and Collision Repair

38

SAMBRA OHS course

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AutoForum - April 2012

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AutoForum - April 2012

BODYSHOP NEWS

BODYSHOP NEWS

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“Disruption” 2011 Top Trend for Claims and Collision Repair

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new report based on the US collision repair and claims industries has found that in 2011 disruptions were the primary cause of delays and higher costs in the sector. CCC Information Services has released the latest version of its annual Crash Course report, which explores the key trends and business drivers impacting the automotive claims and collision repair industries. CCC, a provider of software and services to the auto physical damage industry, compiles the report by drawing upon its extensive data warehouse of auto claims and repair information. “‘Disruption’ is the central theme for the 2012 Crash Course report, because it, more than any other concept, defines how a broad range of factors impacted the automotive claims and collision repair industry,” said Susanna

Gotsch, Lead Analyst for CCC Information Services Inc. “Some disruption is good, if you consider how technology has interrupted otherwise linear processes and made us more efficient. However, other disruptions such as the devastating tsunami in Japan, the flooding in Thailand, and the significant catastrophe activity in 2011, negatively impacted the entire parts supply chain, depleting inventory and driving up costs.” The 2012 Crash Course report examined these and other factors, including the continued impact of the global economic meltdown of 2008, and the many technology innovations changing consumer expectations. It aims to also provide insights as to how repairers and carriers can continue to compete in today’s environment.


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AutoForum - April 2012

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AutoForum - April 2012

COMMERCIAL

BODYSHOP NEWS

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SAMBRA OHS course

S

AMBRA recently announced in its latest newsletter that the organisation’s governing board has now developed a Guide for Employers covering all issues related to Health and Safety in the workplace. According to SAMBRA, the industry specific guide has been developed for its members based on the proposed National Occupational Health and Safety Bill, which is yet to be signed in. The guide’s main focus is on making employers in the sector aware of what the law is, how they are accountable for the health and safety of the people who come into contact with the business – those who are employed by it as well as those who may be affected by activities in the workplace – as well as to ensure compliance with OHS Legislation. To help members fully get to grips with all the details, it is offering the course free of charge to SAMBRA associated shops. The Regional Manager of each region will soon liaise with members regarding the finer details of the courses to be presented. Each delegate attending will receive a guide and Certificate of Attendance of the course.

The courses yet to take place are as follows:

• • • • •

25 April and 10 May 2012: Pretoria 3 and 4 April 2012: Cape Town 11 April 2012: Bloemfontein 17 April 2012: Port Elizabeth 19 April 2012: East London (East London still to be confirmed) • 8 May 2012: George (George still to be confirmed) • 24 April 2012: Midrand • 15 and 17 May 2012: Johannesburg • 22 May 2012: Durban • 24 May 2012: Pietermaritzburg For more details please call your regional contact:

• • • • • • • • • • •

Highveld Region (Johannesburg) Michele Geyser — 082 560 6619 Northern Region (Pretoria) Raoul Spinola — 082 932 0468 Free State (Bloemfontein & Northern Cape) Hendry Basson — 083 274 1911 Western Cape (Cape Town) Brione Schoeman — 071 855 8773 Eastern Cape (Port Elizabeth) Hendry Basson — 083 274 1911


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Business Forum

AutoForum - April 2012

Business insight

The generation game

I

was inspired to write this article after a fellow ‘Baby Boomer’ was discussing his difficulty in seeking employment. He could not even get an interview- mostly being told, in no uncertain terms, that he was too old! Now here is a man with more work experience than most of our politicians put together, and at the prime age of Fifty fell victim, like so many other hard working loyal ‘Boomers’ to the mass retrenchments accredited to our last recession! So What’s a Boomer, Anyhow? Glad you asked. Stated very simply, the demographers, sociologists and the media define ‘Baby Boomers’ as those born between (and including) 1946 and 1964. In 2012, that would make us between 48 and 66 years old. Many of us (Yes I’m one!) went to work for a company, worked our way up the ladder, and are now enjoying the fruits of our labours. We will retire in a few years, and live a life of leisure, or embark on a second career. (Well maybe some of us!) But many of us are entrepreneurs, and have never worked for a big company. Many of us plan never to retire. I cannot find any accurate statistics for South Africa (Can anyone help me?) In the USA there are about 75 million boomers who represent about 29% of the population. So what effects are the boomers having on the economy? In 2012, the economy in the USA IS the boomers, and are also the vast majority of the work force (again I cannot find qualified information

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- Graham Bush

for South Africa). The huge growth in the US economy since the 90s is due, in large part, to the 75 million ‘Boomers’ working up to their peak earning and spending years. To a lesser or greater degree, the economy’s finally bouncing back, and many South Africans are starting to feel a bit more optimistic. But the nation’s ‘Boomer’ group remains in a recessionary void. The first of the boomers started to hit retirement age in 2011. And they’re not coasting gracefully into the golden years. The entire nation lost it’s drive during the recession that lasted from 2007 to 2009. (This is another discussion on it’s own, as many feel the recession hasn’t finished). But the once-upbeat Baby Boomers seem to be taking the longest to shake off the blues. I have read some surveys that state that about 80% of boomers say they’re dissatisfied with the way things are going in the country, a higher proportion than any other age group, younger or older. Part of that may be natural, since people in their 50s tend to deal with the highest amounts of stress and show the lowest satisfaction levels. A major midlife job crisis The overall job market is getting a little better, but middle-aged workers are not part of the revival. Workers between the ages of 45 and 54 are still losing jobs and this is worrying given that these are people in their prime earning years, and

they also ought to be at peak levels of expertise in their fields or careers. Yet they are not yet participating in the jobs recovery, perhaps because their pay requirements are too high in an economy where employers still are not willing to bring back the most expensive workers. Many are most likely middle managers whose ranks were severely thinned during the recession, or construction and manufacturing workers who still can’t find work, and may never be able to in their current fields. Why Is It So Hard For Middle-Aged (and Older) People To Find Work? A relatively small number of job seekers are looking for scarce senior positions, which don’t come on the market that often. Their job searches can last many months. (I have this on good authority from a whole host of fellow Boomers!) A much larger reason is age discrimination ... but that’s another way of saying that firms have a preference for younger workers. And that is generally because they perceive that older workers are more expensive and less productive than younger ones. It’s true they usually cost less. A company could have two twenty-five year olds at almost any level for the price of one fifty year old. Some older workers make the mistake of pricing their services based on what they used to get, rather than what the competition is offering. Another company misconception is perhaps those two younger workers can work

Graham Bush is one of Southern Africa’s leading retail gurus, and over the past 30 years has inspired thousands of businesspeople.
He has a relaxed style, and along with his humour delivers powerful and motivational talks and presentations. www.thebushkitchen.co.za


over weekends on a project with no fuss over missed rugby games! (Well, we Baby Boomers have PRV!) I believe that another misconception is that company’s feel that the skills of the younger generation could be more up-to-date than the fifty year old whose computer desktop is littered with every file they’ve ever worked on. Certainly some older workers haven’t stayed current on the knowledge and skills necessary in their industry today. When a business doesn’t hire them, that’s not discrimination -- that’s expected. Shame! A recent article in Fortune Magazine reported that when consulting giant Watson Wyatt Worldwide asked over 700 CEOs at what age people’s productivity peaked, they said on average - 43. And that means they view anyone older as a potentially overpaid, underperforming drag on the company. What a load of bovine droppings! The other major reason it’s harder to find a job in middle age and beyond is simple supply and demand. The number of 55+ workers has increased substantially over the last twenty years. For the 45-54 year old group, the increase is almost double. If a company is looking for a new employee with experience and set skills, the 45+ candidate pool is now almost twice as large. That’s good for employers but bad for those looking for work. What to do Today’s Baby Boomers have to counter the notion that they want to get paid more than they are worth, that they aren’t productive, and that they’re out of touch. They should do their homework to understand what reasonable compensation is, be able to argue for their bottom-line value, and be up to speed with everything new that’s happening in their industry. They also need to argue for the unmeasured value they will bring. Whether in an office or on the shop floor, improved quality can mean bad decisions avoided, time-wasting dead ends never pursued, expert guidance provided to younger colleagues, or a better work environment created by a skilled and experienced manager. Those are the competitive advantages of a - dare I say wise? - older employee. Or just wait… There’s long term upside for middle aged and older workers. Remember the “Baby Bust” that followed the Baby Boom? The Baby Bust grew up to be Gen X. Born from 1965 to 1977, that generation is relatively small compared to the Boomers before them and Gen Y following them. The good news for older job seekers is that there may not be enough Gen Xers to fill all the jobs currently held by the Boomers. Gen Y is big but won’t be ready to run things for another twenty years, meaning that there should still be opportunities for younger Boomers and older Gen Xers to fill the gap. So while the job picture for mid-career workers may be mediocre - at best - in the short and medium term, look for it to improve in the years ahead. But stay flexible and knowledgeable - you’ll probably need it!

Victor Reinz liquid sealant Victor Reinz is one of the specialists that has been able to greatly reduce the vast number of sealants needed for repairs, with just two products approved for all European and Japanese car makes now able to cover all repair needs. REINZOSIL is a silicone-based, solvent-free, fast-curing, and permanently elastic sealant for use on flat surfaces with sealing gaps, such as on engines, transmissions, axles, cylinder liners, and synthetic parts. It is also suitable for rough sealing surfaces and cracks in parts, boasts high Shore hardness so it can even seal components that are subject to substantial relative movement and vibration, and can stand temperatures from –50°C to +300°C. REINZOPLAST is a non-hardening, permanently plastic polyurethane-based sealant, ideal for fine or finely worked sealing surfaces without sealing gaps in engines, transmissions and axles, including those which may be subject to high static movement and vibration, and in sealing threads. It is also suitable from –50°C to +300°C, and parts assembled can be removed again after extended periods. Technical product properties (temperature range, media resistance, curing time etc.), the application (intake manifold, oil pan, etc.) and the sealing gap are key when selecting a sealant. For the former, Victor Reinz provides users with tables and lists. To determine the sealing gap, a feeler gauge can be inserted into the sealing gap - gaps under 0.1 mm are sealed with permanently elastic sealants, those over 0.1 mm with permanently plastic sealants.

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AutoForum - April 2012

Meetings: An essential management tool or the bane of your life? - Robert Kaiser

Some useful pointers to make it work better #2

I

n our last issue we started the first in this mini series of suggestions and ideas on how to make meetings work better for you and your organisation. Here follows part 2: 1.6 Alternates In some instances, there may be appointed alternates to committee members. The role of an alternate is to take the place of the sitting committee member should he/she be unable to attend and/or perform his/her duties. It is, however, of little use if an alternate member is merely expected to attend meetings without proper preparation; this will only result in an alternate member ending up as a seat

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Robert Kaiser has been intimately involved in the motor industry for the past 25 years. He established Retail Motor Consultants in 2002, a consultancy providing relationship management, marketing and staff recruitment services as well as apprenticeship management programmes and through an associated company, unique Black Economic Empowerment transformation programmes for both large and SME businesses.


warmer at a meeting. Alternate members may also be part of a succession planning strategy. It is therefore the duty of a committee member who has an alternate member to regularly communicate with his/her alternate in order to appraise the alternate of the work of the committee. In this way, the alternate will be up to date with the committee’s work and progress and should it become necessary for an alternate to attend a meeting on behalf of the sitting member, he/she will be able to fulfill a meaningful role.

before the meeting. If such request is done early enough, it will enable the secretariat to, with agreement of the chairperson, include the matter as an agenda item on the meeting agenda and any information which may be required for the proper consideration of such matter could then be included in the agenda. This will facilitate the consideration of the issue by the committee. Should the agenda for a meeting already have been circulated, it is still advisable to submit the request to the secretariat, as a supplementary agenda could possibly be circulated if the chairperson is of the view that it is warranted.

1.7 Quorum Requirements for meetings It is important to note that a meeting is not properly constituted if there is no quorum of members present. In this respect the usual quorum requirements for meetings are 50% plus one of the total membership; however, the constitution or terms of reference of an organisation may have different requirements in this respect. The quorum requirements for meetings underpin the importance of the role that alternate members play to ensure continuity and the necessity for representatives to regularly communicate with alternates. 2.0 Meeting Procedures • •

• • • •

• •

Should it not be possible to give early notice of additional items, it is recommended that the chairperson be advised at the outset of the meeting of the member’s intention to raise a matter under “any other business”, as opposed to waiting to the end of the meeting to raise an issue. The point is to endeavour to give other committee members as much notice as possible of the intention to raise a new issue in order to maximise the opportunity for such matter to be properly considered. Remember that, whatever meetings you may participate in, you have a huge responsibility to adequately represent the interests of your constituency and not to allow a committee to become a mere talk shop, but a dynamic tool for effective management.

Remember that the Chairperson directs proceedings at a meeting. If a committee member wishes to speak, he/she must indicate his/her wish to do so to the chairperson. The chairperson will then give the member an opportunity to speak when it is appropriate. Never interrupt a speaker. Indicate your wish to speak and await the chairperson’s direction. Always stick to the point. Don’t lengthen debate unnecessarily. When you speak, don’t import subject matter which is not relevant to the subject at hand. The chairperson can rule you out of order if you do so. Never become emotional during a debate; a clinical and businesslike approach to the issue at hand is what is required. Be considerate to other committee members in the manner you conduct yourself at meetings. If you make a proposal at a meeting, it requires a seconder. If no one seconds a proposal, the chairperson will not allow it to be carried. Check your terms of reference for any specific requirements, e.g. voting.

3.0 Any Other Business Meeting agendas usually have an item “any other business” towards the end of the agenda. This item is provided to grant an opportunity for members to raise issues which did not feature elsewhere on the agenda for noting/discussion. This could include new matters. Should a committee member wish to raise a new matter, it is always better for a member to communicate his/her request to the secretariat

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AutoForum - April 2012

Too much water yet to flow under the bridge - Colin Windell

O

n the one hand the economists are predicting a slow but steady growth in the vehicle market and on the other hand is Finance Minister Pravin Ghordan who, singlehandedly it appears, has taken on the task of bringing that industry and all those who buy its products to their knees. The ill-conceived and grossly overspent Gauteng Toll setup, the chaotic AARTO being rushed into life and the absolute disdain with which the ruling party treats any opposition to its grand plans is difficult to understand at any time, but worse considering the mess Europe and the US are in. Why, when all that is happening are we seemingly intent on precipitating a disaster of our own when, up until now fiscal policy put in place by Trevor Manual has shielded us from the worst of the fallout? Incomprehensible indeed and I, for one, support the fact the Southern African Vehicle Renting and Leasing Association (SAVRALA) is seeking legal advice about e-tolling. “Following the Finance Minister’s announcement to continue with e-tolling of Gauteng’s freeways in the budget speech on February 22, SAVRALA has expressed its disappointment and has now moved to consider a legal challenge to this action,” says Wayne Duvenage, Vice President of SAVRALA. “Our position has been made clear over the past, whereby the decision taken to toll our urban freeways in Gauteng is nothing short of being dismissive of a number of rights of the citizens of this country. Government’s role is to use its citizen’s taxes wisely, efficiently and to ensure costs are minimised when providing services and the necessary infrastructure to conduct business. This has certainly not been the case here.” “The user pays principal being bandied about as one of the motivations for the

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government’s decision in this regard is weak, inconsistent and flawed. This is not a case of Gauteng’s roads and Cape Town’s roads and Durban’s roads. These are ‘all our’ roads and we should not entertain this charade around why non-Gauteng citizens should not have to contribute to Gauteng’s roads. Gauteng citizens have no problem with the un-tolled freeway upgrades that other cities have enjoyed in the past. To go down this road means that every other city’s freeway upgrades going forward will suffer the same fate, something we know will not be entertained by our fellow citizens. “Our decision to seek a legal route is not being taken lightly or flippantly,” says Duvenage, adding, “We are also receiving numerous calls from other organisations, associations and individuals to support our challenge and are assessing options to incorporate these into a coordinated strategy. “We salute the Minister for apportioning R5,8-billion of our taxes toward the GFIP, but ask why stop at a quarter of the amount required, especially in light of the extra 20c added to the fuel levy?” Chief Director of economic tax analysis at the treasury, Cecil Morgan, says the fuel levy revenue is not earmarked and he could not confirm whether the income would go towards the Sanral bailout. “Our policy hasn’t changed. The Minister has acknowledged the strong public opposition to the move and attempted to quell fears but it is simply not enough. We will continue to call for these tolls to be boycotted,” says Patrick Craven, Cosatu spokesperson. “They can lock me up if they can,” says a defiant Howard Dembovsky, Chairman of the Justice Project SA, a motorists’ rights group. “The e-tags mean nothing to me. I am not in the least bit intimidated by the threats.

“Quite frankly, I – like many people living in Joburg – am seriously considering leaving Gauteng for good as it is being turned into an oppressive, ring-fenced province where democracy has died and you cannot turn your head without being fed on by greedy state entities.” Gavin Kelly, Technical and Operations Manager at the Road Freight Association, said there was still “much water to flow under the bridge.” “There have been some administrative processes that are questionable – from in-house government processes to the consultation process, which was not open and transparent.” So where does this leave the auto industry? According to Luke Morawitz, Senior Ratings Analyst, Coface South Africa, the local motor industry has made steady gains in recovering from the turmoil caused by the economic disruptions of 2008-2009. Going back two years, the improvement in figures released during 2010 confirmed there was a turnaround, a fact reinforced by further improved results in 2011. “Vehicle sales saw strong growth over 2011 spurred by an improvement in global economic conditions. Total volumes for new vehicle sales in South Africa saw an improvement of 15,9% for 2011. This was assisted by a low interest rate environment and higher levels of disposable income,” he says. Sales of new vehicles, including commercial vehicles and trucks, grew by 6,4% to 52 356 units in February as reported by the National Association

Colin Windell is the Editor of Fleet Magazine.


of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa). “The market continues to outperform the industry’s initial estimates of a stable or even declining total vehicle market in 2012. This is especially true in the commercial vehicle market, where we see a continuation of the momentum that started to pick up towards the end of 2010 and which has continued throughout 2011,” says Dr Johan van Zyl, President and CEO of Toyota South Africa Motors. The passenger vehicle market outpaced the overall market by growing by 6,8% or 2 303 units in February. The total aggregated passenger vehicle sales figure was recorded at 34 054 units. “The entry-level market, which includes vehicles in the so-called A, B and SubB segments are continuing to power the overall growth in the market. Many manufacturers recorded very strong sales growth in these markets as people continue to consolidate or cut their

expenses and buy down into smaller and lower priced vehicles. This segment constituted 46% of the total vehicle market in February and continues to be the strongest driver of sales growth in the passenger vehicle market,” says Dr van Zyl. Further strong growth can be found in the commercial vehicle market. The light commercial vehicle market grew by 5,3% to 13 518 units while in the medium and heavy commercial vehicle market all segments performed strongly, with heavy commercial vehicles proving there remains strong momentum in this industry. Commercial vehicles grew by 8% overall, while heavy commercial vehicles grew by 13,3% compared to the same month of 2011. Looking forward Dr van Zyl warns of growing pressure on vehicle buyers’ disposable income, especially with the past and future expected increases in fuel prices and the introduction of extra toll costs in Gauteng.

“We expect these changes will have less of an impact on the total vehicle market for 2012, which we expect to show modest growth. We do, however, expect the vehicle mix will continue to favour smaller and entry level vehicles, especially with the introduction of more attractive options in this market.” During February 36 357 new passenger cars were sold in South Africa. Total new passenger car sales in February increased by 2,7% when compared to the January 2012 market, and by 6,8% when compared to February 2011, bringing the year-to-date February market to a level 7,1% above the same period for 2011. VWSA Sales and Marketing Director, Mike Glendinning, says: “We are confident the demand for new cars will continue to be supported during the year by declining real new vehicle prices and improved affordability with interest rates potentially remaining unchanged for the duration of 2012.”

Gearbox Drivetrain Centre’s new management Gearbox Drivetrain Centre recently sent a mail to the industry and automotive media, to highlight the new ownership of the business. The RMI approved operation is located in Boksburg and has been under new ownership since November 2011. After last year’s settling period, the company is now registered with both RMI and MIBCO and therefore meets all specification requirements. New owner Erik van der Walt is ready to do business in a professional and transparent manner. For more information email him at erik@ net2africa.com or Tel: 011 025 4848.

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AutoForum - April 2012

INNOVATIONS

AutoForum - April 2012

The latest automotive technology

AMT launched at Geneva Show

G

oodyear made use of the 2012 Geneva International Motor Show to launch its newest technology - AMT. Air Maintenance Technology has been under development in laboratories over the past two years, and allows tyres to remain inflated at the optimum pressure without the need for any external pumps, electronics or driver intervention. This, the tyre maker says, means reduced fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. THE INTELLIGENT ALTERNATIVE

Goodyear’s research found that consumers are unconcerned about their tyre pressure, with half of those surveyed not knowing when to check their tyre pressure and one in three motorists admitting they would not be very likely to check their tyre pressure even before embarking on a long trip. For a typical new passenger car, the company believes properly inflated tyres using AMT will save car owners an estimated 57 litres of fuel annually. At the same time, correct tyre

TRADE UNIONS ARE NOT ALL THE SAME ! JOIN MISA AND EXPERIENCE PEOPLE WHO REALLY CARE AND MAKE A DIFFERENCE. Membership is open to all Office -, Stores -, Sales – and Clerical THE INTELLIGENT ALTERNATIVE

employees, Artisans and Apprentices in the Motor Industry. (011) 678 6328, (041) 364 0102, (031) 207 7548, (051) 447 5339, (021) 551 2822

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pressure means optimal handling performance and better wearing tyres. In 2011, the US Department of Energy’s Office of Vehicle Technology awarded a US$1.5 million grant for research, development and demonstration of the AMT system for commercial truck tyres conducted at Goodyear’s Innovation Centre in Akron, Ohio. Goodyear also successfully received a grant from the Luxembourg government for research and development of an AMT system for consumer tyres – which was conducted at its Innovation Centre in Colmar-Berg, Luxembourg. The company has not yet announced when the technology will be available to the public.

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INNOVATIONS

AutoForum - April 2012

AutoForum - April 2012

Volvo in smart charging JV

V

olvo’s Car division recently announced that it is a partner in a research project called ELVIIS – and no, it’s not a plot to resurrect ‘The King’. The Electric Vehicle Intelligent Infra Structure project is in the process of developing a smart onboard concept for controlling, measuring and paying for electricity when charging a vehicle via any outlet.

 The project is a collaboration between the automaker, Ericsson, the utility company Göteborg Energi and non-profit IT research organisation, the Viktoria Institute. The concept allows an EV driver the choice to charge the battery pack via any ordinary power outlet, identified via GPS. It allows for timer and charging amount pre-setting on a touch screen or remotely via a smartphone or tablet. Using the mobile network, the car communicates with the grid and sets the charging scheme in order to support optimal utilisation of the grid and most favourable energy price. Any unintended interruption of the charging process is directly reported to the driver’s mobile phone. The system then directs the cost for each charge to the car owner’s personal utility bill. The concept is developed on a generic communication platform to make the technology globally applicable.



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COMMERCIAL

AutoForum - April 2012

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UD leads Japanese XHCV attack - Dave Scott

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ne thing to recognise in the UD truck brand is that the local company culture is as straight as a bullet – top management are a bunch of engineers, not accountants or MBAs. They’ve been here over 50 years (UD Trucks, not the engineers) and make no bones about where they want to be in extra-heavy trucks in the years to come. UD Trucks clearly stated objectives are to gain a 12% share of the extra-heavy segment and to grow their volumes in African export territories for which they are responsible. And all this will come from the New Generation (NG) UD Quon which has 14 variant models for the Southern Africa market

and 61 variants in left and right-hand drive for the export territories, 12 countries in sub-Saharan Africa. The NG UD Quon has become a premium truck and tailored to suit African conditions – its new spec enhances this even further. What’s the size of SA’s extra-heavy (XHCV) truck market? At its peak, close to 14 000 units and appears to be heading that way again after the 2009 world economic crisis. And what position does UD Trucks own of the lucrative and highly competitive XHCV segment? By 2008 this was a very respectable 13,1% share, but by 2011 this had declined to 9.4%, thus a declared intent to reach 12%, or a 28% increase in market share over 2011, is quite a stretch among 26 competitors who all want a 10% share as

Dave Scott is a member of the S.A. Guild of Motoring Journalists, and is a monthly contributor to the press on transport and trucking related subjects. In 2002 and 2003 Dave Scott was the S.A. Guild of Motoring Journalists winner of the category ‘Business Motoring’. As a member of the S.A. Institute of Tribology he takes a keen interest in the application of lubricants to road transport maintenance and the cost of ownership. His key writing focus is on fleet management including the technology of trucks and road transport.


minimum – someone out there is forecasting a 260% market!

UD Trucks have always had a position as no-nonsense vehicles ever since they gave up the 2-stroke Uniflow Diesel engine in favour of in-line 4-stroke engines. During the eighties and nineties of the last century, UD faced down the local content challenge and made a success of ADE engines – by 1993 around one in five trucks sold in South

Africa was from the UD stable, branded in those days as Nissan Diesel. It’s this

engineering heritage that continues and having been in the extra-heavy SA market for over 40 years ensures UD a slice of this pie. But how big should UD Trucks be in the SA market? They’re aiming for over 12% of the XHCV segment and have been there before. UD Trucks is

also following the power trend – the 440 horsepower 6X4 model certainly established a solid reputation followed by 460hp and now 490hp. More Nm at lower rpm Johan Richards, UD Trucks SA CEO, points out that ‘Over a 10-year period truck power has drifted up to around 454hp average for line-haul units’ – at 490hp UD’s NG Quon is ahead of the race. However, it’s the torque that does the job. The previous UD 460 equipped with the GE 13TD engine produced 2256Nm @ 1200rpm whereas NG Quon now has a Euro 3 Group engine produced at their Ageo Plant in Japan that produces 2448Nm @ 1050rpm – it’s a dramatic change for both torque increase and the rpm point of entry on the torque curve. All the models in the range have been fitted with the GH13 series, which was developed by UD Trucks using Group engine technology. The UD Trucks GH13 engine is a 12 777 litre in-line 6-cylinder turbo-intercooled

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COMMERCIAL VEHICLES engine operating on unit injector fuel delivery at 2000bar pressure….eishhh!

AutoForum - April 2012 gross combination mass (GCM) models running over 50t GCM are fitted with a Voith hydraulic retarder all of which can produce up to around 3000Nm of retardation effort!

payment is made to a Dealer or Supplier, on behalf of the customer.

GVM & HP badging

Driver controls

An array of reports is also available Here’s a small innovative feature that through UD Trucks Managed Maintereally impresses - the remote-activated nance, ensuring that customers stay draining of the engine’s fuel filter waterup-to-date with the latest information of Increased mass ratings trap. A driver will be alerted by the each vehicle in their fleet. These include UD Trucks Southern Africa has immulti-function display on the instrument proved the mass ratings of its XHCV NG the maintenance status of vehicle, a cluster that the water-trap needs drainvehicle history report, as well as a cost Quon range ing, which a driver can do by simply savings report. All previous repairs are pressing a button conveniently mounted monitored and one on the dash. account is reThis tends to be MODEL INCREASED RATING BENEFIT quired – this avoids overlooked by Increased D/T (legal) to 56 000kg GW26 410 TT multiple creditor drivers and is an Increased GVM to 30 000kg tipper requires accounts with issue when on the CW26 370 DT high GVM for off-road conditions different dealers road if one has to Increased D/T (legal) to 45 000kg CW26 370 FC and consolidates stop to externally maintenance infordrain the waterImproved ‘V’ rating of 25 700kg All 6x4 models mation under one trap. Competitors (was 25 500kg) – result of front axle increase heading. please note! Improved ‘V’ rating of 16 700kg (was All 4x2 models 16 500kg) – result of front axle increase Managed MainteSafety rules New legal 7 700kg front axle rating nance is automatiAnd there’s no All models (was 7 500kg) cally available on compromise on all its new Quon safety systems. extra-heavy vehicles sold from March Claiming an ‘Industry First’ – While the NG Quon is equipped with 2012. All a customer has to do is esManaged Maintenance drum foundation brakes all round and tablish a line of credit with UD Trucks UD Trucks Financial Services manages suiting both on and off-road conditions Financial Services. This system absorbs the new UD Trucks’ Managed Maintein Africa, the braking systems are EBS the admin pain that goes with tracking nance service. It’s a unique monitoring (Electronic Braking System) controlled maintenance and provides expertise system that controls vehicle maintewith ABS (Anti-lock Braking System) so often missing in judging work nance and the repair costs involved, and ASR (Anti-Slip Regulation known carried out. on behalf of customers. It’s not a better as traction control). The 370hp maintenance contract where customfreight carrier and dump truck are the 1962 saw the first UD truck in South ers pay every month and their vehicle only ones to be equipped with ABS Africa. After 50 years the truck and its maintenance consumption is tracked excluding ASR and EBS. service offering has come a long way. as a ‘burn-rate’ against the contract. Now part of the Volvo truck group, there Vehicles are managed by detailed Adding to the acronymic alphabet soup are massive advantages to be taken mandates from the customer and they on braking systems is a new Extra from a reported R&D budget of over 240 determine business rules that apply to Engine Brake or EEB, which offers million USD – we are starting to see it every maintenance scenario. 1470Nm of braking torque at 2 300rpm in UD Truck specifications containing (redline is at 2 100rpm). The EEB design far more than can be listed in this brief With UD Trucks Managed Maintenance, specifically utilises both exhaust and overview. Competitors should go and the cost of repairs and maintenance compression strokes of the engine conduct some mystery shopping – they is directed and controlled through a to slow the vehicle down, enhancing will be astonished. detailed scrutiny process, before any safer vehicle control on descents and slippery roads. And to top it all the high Distinctve branding

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MSS UD NGQ17

Road to Your Success Product shown in photograph is for illustration purposes only, and is subject to stock availability.

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AutoForum - April 2012

Freightliner driveline fest – New Generation Argosy - Dave Scott

You saw it at the Johannesburg International Motor Show – New Generation (NG) Freightliner Argosy was previewed at this event. The actual launch, however, went back to Freightliner’s roots in South Africa – Freightliner’s journey into Southern Africa started in Namibia in 1996 when the first FLB models were introduced and this is where NG Argosy was presented once more, in the dunes near Swakopmund on February 29, 2012. Freightliner was the first truck manufacturer in South Africa to offer standard ABS on heavy trucks back in the 1990s and the first in 2002 to offer automated conventional transmission in standard execution. The tradition for trucking technical innovation continues with NG Argosy – and it’s in the driveline where it really counts towards higher productivity and lower fuel consumption. The cab looks very different with the massive new shiny grill – like a new set of chrome dentures. The main purpose behind the new grill goes around improved airflow that will cater for future needs when more emission controls on diesel engines will generate more heat. Caterpillar engines have long gone from the power-plant offering, it’s now Detroit Diesel or Cummins with horsepower ranging from 500hp (373kw) on the Detroit Diesel to 620hp (462kW) on the top Cummins powered model. Torque also ranges from 2237Nm on Detroit Diesel up to a massive 2800Nm on the 620hp Cummins model. All of this torque gets thrown at the new gearbox – Eaton UltraShift PLUS and this is the new key

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feature inside the NG Argosy driveline. The new transmission will be available in 13 or 18 speed configuration. Initially only the Cummins-powered models will be equipped with this technology, with Detroit Diesel engine models coming on line by the fourth quarter of 2012. An intelligent gearbox that ‘sees’ the road ahead UltraShift PLUS is the result of 25 years of Eaton Fuller Roadranger gearbox automation. Eaton’s twin-countershaft mechanical design remains essentially the same in UltraShift PLUS as in the AutoShift gearbox, but control mechanisms, electronics and software are very different. Eaton points out that UltraShift PLUS is not an AutoShift. Why is UltraShift PLUS so different? To start with UltraShift PLUS now removes the clutch pedal to make this a fully-automated 2-pedal system where AutoShift had a clutch pedal for moving off. But there’s much, much more… • UltraShift PLUS uses sensors to continually monitor data on load, grade and torque requirements to make intelligent shift decisions. The grade-sensor in this gearbox is actually sensing the road ahead before a tired driver would even begin to make a gear-change decision! The UltraShift PLUS grade-sensor not only measures inclines but downgrades as well which means skip-changing where required, a difficult decision for any driver. “This effect is that the truck now almost has eyes, allowing it to see the road,” says Freightliner

Product Manager, Duncan Prince. “It computes gradient, accelerator position and available engine power and then selects the most appropriate gear for the prevailing conditions. The new transmission shift logic is much smarter than anything we’ve had up until now and makes better decisions as to what is the optimal gear shift option.” Intelligent, much faster shift decisions allow UltraShift PLUS to change gear in 40% of the time of the previous AutoShift model, improving grade-ability. All of this translates into exceptional performance with fuel economy. UltraShift PLUS uses an electronically actuated dual-plate, ceramic clutch for superior engagement and control – hydraulics or air are not used to operate the clutch. The dual-plate design can deal with very high torque inputs while reducing clutch diameter and lessening outside speed of the rotating mass to enhance balancing. Eaton actually claim no limitation on gross combination mass (GCM)…hmmm The new transmission also improves dynamic braking. When the truck is running against the engine brake an UltraShift PLUS transmission raises the engine shift downshift rpm by about 20rpm over the existing transmission, offering 15–20% more usable braking capability. AMT has always been criticised in very slow reversing situations.


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AutoForum - April 2012

UltraShift PLUS now incorporates a ‘creep’ feature with no ‘urge to move’ to overcome this problem. The new transmission offers lubrication drain intervals of 480,000km provided the standard gearbox oil filter is replaced every 80,000km. Full synthetic SAE 50 oil must be used to spec PS164 Ref 7 – four lubricant brands comply on the SA market at present. A lubrication level sight-glass means that poking a dirty finger down a drain-plug hole is a thing of the past. This minimises the chance of introducing contaminants into gearbox lubrication. Inside the gearbox four permanent magnetic particle traps capture any metallic particles and remove them from the lubrication system. UltraShift PLUS also incorporates an oil pump for positive lubrication so the gears will never run out of oil on a severe grade.

All this ‘intelligently multiplied torque’ emerges from the UltraShift PLUS transmission to be compounded once more in hyoid-design rear-drive axles that employ ratios appropriate to the differing

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engine torque curves of Detroit Diesel and Cummins engines. It’s not a case of one ratio fits all. As Prince points out – “Detroit Diesel Series 60 engines do not like being lugged continuously below 1400rpm.” The rear-drive set also includes permanent traction control and two differential locks, one in the 3rd inter-axle differential and one rearmost drive axle. NG Argosy is hardly likely to get stuck. The whole driveline engineering concept is about good average speed with fuel economy at max legal GCM. That’s trucking productivity. 5 year/ 800,000km warranty is a new benchmark Detroit Diesel is a Daimler truck group in-house product. This means Detroit Diesel will promote their own product as part of their vertical integration philosophy and profitability. The Detroit Diesel engine warranty is now stated for the ‘base’ engine as 5 years or 800,000km whichever comes first, creating a perception of extensive product confidence. A ‘base’ engine warranty will exclude components such as injectors and turbochargers...read the fine print.

Drivers will appreciate NG Argosy’s standard air-con, electric powered windows and new high-back air-suspended seats for both driver and co-driver. There are other trim upgrades that provide a premium feel to a driver’s home. But there are many more reasons to invest in a NG Argosy. Mercedes-Benz South Africa has been selling Atego, Axor and Actros trucks with a package of specialised bolt-on support services. These service brands include ‘Fleetboard’, ‘Charterway’ and Finance & Insurance – ‘Truckstore’ is still to come being a national in-house used truck trading facility. These services all cover vehicle tracking, management, logistics, driver training and vehicle maintenance. It’s all about managing the risk and now it’s readily available to Freightliner owners as well. There you have it – technically, a worldclass driveline with a range of aftermarket support-service mechanisms. NG Argosy has to be a serious option on any buyers purchase list.


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AutoForum - April 2012

AutoForum - April 2012

Show Time KZN Top Gear Festival We don’t usually devote a lot of space in this magazine to events that are not strictly industry focused, but this time we are making an exception. KZN will be the next city to host the Top Gear Festival, when the popular live event takes place at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban from the 16th to the 17th June 2012. Hosted by the full Top Gear Team of Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, James May and The Stig, it’s sure to be a hit for both motor sector employees and the general car-loving public. The Durban event is touted as being more interactive than previous shows and will also feature a wide variety of other outdoor attractions, situated around the precinct. For more information on ticket prices or to book visit www.itickets.co.za or www.topgearfestival.co.za.

Sandton Convention Centre hosts 4th Tyrexpo Africa

I

n excess of 140 delegates and exhibitors from more than 70 countries met at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg in early March, for the successful fourth staging of Tyrexpo Africa. With attendee numbers up to 2 652 for the three-day show, it is clear that the exhibition continues to establish itself on the calendar of the tyre industry in Africa. “We were very happy with the overall exhibitor response,” commented Rowena Suthers, Sales Director for ECI International, the show’s organiser. “Once again exhibitors were keen to emphasise the quality of the trade visitors attracted to the exhibition and we were pleased to see the show continue to cement itself as a must-visit event for tyre professionals with an interest in Southern Africa.” Comment from satisfied exhibitors included that of Elize Labuschagne from Leaderquip, who said: “We were very busy during the show. We have an established customer base in South Africa and we found that people came specifically to see us. We also found the opportunity to use a hand-held scanner to monitor visitors to the stand to be especially useful.” Dereck Knight, Senior Product Manager at Robert Bosch Automotive stated that the show and the quality of the visitors was very good and he was considering re-allocating his investment in other shows to take better advantage of Tyrexpo in the future. There was some negative feedback, which primarily concerned the venue feedback. Integrated Marketing’s Leonie Potgieter felt that “the quality of enquiries from visitors to the show was high, however, a change of venue, perhaps to Kyalami Racetrack would be preferable”. Show visitor Mark Algar, MD of Transafrica Equipment Company, agreed with Leonie in regards to the

PAGE 62


venue and stated: “My company will not exhibit at this show while it takes place here in Sandton.” Other exhibitors, however, continued to praise the event. “The exhibition, as ever, is good,” said Vicky Patel, Deputy Manager of Export Marketing for Indian tyre manufacturer BKT. “We increased our booth size this year and as a result have seen an increased number of visitors from the local market.” Claudia Kurz from German casing dealer Reifenhandel Kurz commented: “This is the first time we have exhibited at the show and it has been very successful. We were looking for contacts from China, Japan and India but people have come from all over the world.” This sentiment was echoed by Jörg Schäuble from shearography equipment manufacturer SDS-Systemtechnik: “We have received plenty of visitors from overseas but we have also found local retreaders to be interested in our equipment. From that point of view our main expectations of the show have been met.” Particularly pleasing to ECI was increased support from the majority of leading automotive equipment suppliers and a notable increase in interest in tyre recycling, with proponents of the controversial REDISA plan at the show, which did encourage discussion and awareness of the subject. Most Innovative stand design awards at the show went to Rema Tip Top (Platinum), Stamford Tyres (Gold) and TVS Srichakra Ltd (Silver). Encouraged by the continued success of the event, ECI has already confirmed that Tyrexpo Africa 2014 will take place at the Sandton Convention Centre, Johannesburg on 4, 5, 6 March 2014.

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AutoForum - April 2012

SHOW TIME

Auto Maintenance and Repair 2012 - Beijing

- Warwick Robinson

A

SHOW TIME

utoForum once again attended the Auto Maintenance and Repair exhibition in Beijing this February. The show is growing steadily every year and now ranks as the third largest garage equipment show worldwide, catering specifically to the maintenance and repair sectors. This year’s show included an extra hall which brought the floor space total to over 85 000m2.

PAGE 64

As with previous shows, the organisers again provided a business to business meeting area, where interested distributors could meet and negotiate with local suppliers. “We are really happy with the growth of the show over the last few years, and the AMR brand is taking its place amongst the world’s best trade shows aimed at this market,” says Cathy Peng of Traders Link who manage the show. The event took place again at the National Exhibition centre, just outside Beijing. One of the important aspects of measuring the success of the show is the increase in numbers of foreign visitors, with many buyers attending the show to set up new agencies or consolidate relationships with existing suppliers, and get updates on their new product lines. It was also interesting to note the growing number of big name brands usually only present at the European shows, and discussing the show with them, their impressions are also positive. “Spanesi is doing really well right now” says Andrea Bongiovanni of the Italian company, adding that as well as the rapidly expanding Chinese local market, they are focussing on opening up the Indian market simultaneously. The key challenge to overcome is the accreditation, and the most successful route to penetrating this market has been training on the Spanesi systems.

Another brand apparently doing very well is Car-O-Liner. Speaking with Jan Roos the local Managing Director, he explained that the team who started up 5 years ago have done a great job, with numbers on their measuring systems specifically closing in on the volumes being sold in the US. Discussing the growth in the Chinese market with Josan Olssen from Prospot International, who supply American-made welding systems, was quite an eye opener. “The development of the middle tier of repair shops in China is of huge importance to a number of sectors. The local market expansion presents massive opportunities to foreign brands, which are generally perceived as high quality products”, for instance the paint manufacturers who currently supply OEM’s as branded products. “The main concern of many exporters is protection of intellectual property, but this is generally balanced to a large degree by brand equity,” he explained, quantifying the growth with estimated numbers that appear staggering. “We estimate that there are 350 000 workshops, over 100 000 of whom have collision repair facilities on-site, and their productivity is extremely high.” In Beijing alone, one chain of repair shops claim 300 000 repairs though only 39 stores in a single year. Traders Link are very supportive of visitors to the show, and will detail a number of packages for visitors wishing to visit the 2013 installment of the event. AutoForum will carry details of these as and when they are defined, so keep an eye out for news of the next show. Our partner publication, BodyShop News Australia, has also publicised their video of the show for Repairer TV – check it out on http://repairertv. com/#/amr-2012/4562169317.


AutoForum - April 2012

SHOW TIME

Gabriel’s new HDP shock

SHOW TIME

Gabriel launches new heavy duty SUV and 4x4 shock absorbers

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I

n the middle of March, a number of journalists joined Sean Staley, Executive Manager Marketing at Control Instruments Automotive, in the wet and slippery conditions at Off-Road Adventures in the Hennops area west of Pretoria, for the automotive launch of the Gabriel Safari HDP shock absorber range for SUVs and 4x4 vehicles. Sales of the new range have exceeded all expectations in their first two months since initial launch and have received high praise, with enquiries from competitive overseas markets. The Safari HDP is locally designed and manufactured to suit South Africa’s extreme environmental conditions and off-road applications – HDP stands for heavy-duty performance. Tim Skelton - MD of SA Adventure, who has tested the shocks - says that they handle better than any other aftermarket shock he has previously used. “Having tested the Safari HDP in extreme conditions, they provide excellent handling in harsh 4x4 conditions and a smooth ride on normal road surfaces.” Skelton and his staff hosted the event, where a Land Rover Defender and a Land Rover Discovery had each been retrofitted with

HDP shocks. The two vehicles were put through their paces on the 4X4 tracks, giving the attendees the opportunity to experience first-hand the capabilities of these tough new entrants to the marketplace. “The Safari HDP is a robust big-bore shock absorber and comes with a three-year unlimited kilometre warranty,” says Staley. “The HDP is a clear indication of Gabriel’s market leadership in product design, development and expertise in local manufacture.”

The HDP addresses the 4x4 enthusiast and 4x4 workhorse markets. It is specifically designed as an OEM replacement shock for vehicle fleets, agriculture, government, mining, military, construction and medium to smallsize commercial vehicles for all popular makes of vehicles. The ‘beast’ branding used for the HDP reinforces the product’s ruggedness, power and reliability. Gabriel has been in operation in South Africa for over 76 years and has a local manufacturing plant for the shock absorbers sold in South Africa. The range is available at all major fitment centres and retail outlets


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New Releases

AutoForum AutoForum - April 2012 - Nov / Dec 2011

www.AutoForum.co.za

Secure storage for tools on the move Snap-on has announced the launch of a new product that promises to make moving tools a lot easier – the innovative All Weather Mobile Tool Chest. The chest boasts convenient, secure, versatile and watertight storage for tools on the move, regardless of weather, location, or working conditions, and even has a lid that doubles as a seat when the case is open. Gus Hore, Product Manager for Snap-on explains: “The new all weather mobile tool chest from Snap-on is the most durable, most versatile and most functional chest in its category. What distinguishes this mobile tool chest from other competing products is its extraordinary array of standard features. The Snap-on mobile tool chest is designed to be pulled easily by hand with a wide wheel base and a telescoping trolley-style handle. It also comes with sliding drawers that can accommodate foam cutouts for tool control and accountability.” Available in 2 colours - Olive Green (KMC18043NGR) and Black (KMC18043NBK) – other highlights include: • Fully extendable drawers on the brand’s proprietary composite slides and rails, allowing for easy motion and access to the back of the drawers • Loaded drawers can be fully extended so entire contents can be viewed • 22-inch wheel base for improved stability during transportation • Solid rubber wheels that absorb the shock of rough surfaces • Chest can be opened without having to flip box over on its side • Four-bar latch security prevents accidental opening; latches can be opened with one hand • Telescoping trolley handle extends to two positions for added comfort The unit retails at R6 990 excluding VAT. For more details, contact Snap-on Customer Service on 0861 762 766, e-mail enquiries@snapon.co.za or you can visit www.snapon.co.za.

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Monroe – even more shocks for European cars Monroe has announced thats its new online catalogue boasts an extended range of suspension system applications to cover even more European cars, such as Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Opel and Volkswagen. Apart from the newly broadened range available in the 2012 catalogue, the company also plans to introduce additional applications, such as the Audi A1 (front and rear shocks) and the VW Amarok (rear shock) by the end of the third quarter of 2012, plus many more from across the world and in particular, Asia. For more information, visit Monroe South Africa’s online catalogue at www.reachdigireader.co.za/reader/index. php?issueid=259, or via the local website at www.monroe.co.za


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AutoForum April 2012  

AutoForum April 2012

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