Official Mouthpiece of

20 36 40 45 71 91

It’s All Smoke & Mirrors Slaughtering Scapegoats Good is the Enemy of Great Cash Rhino Taking Parts to Newcastle Zaugg adds the Midas touch

The

Phoenix

Taking Charge of the Future
South Africans are an innovative lot and have pioneering blood coursing through their veins. The problem is that we tend to take our abilities and achievements for granted, as if it is our divine right to do things first and do things better, and that it is no big deal for us to lead the way. Our history is littered with deeds of derring-do, as our forebears cocked a snoot at obstacles that would have broken lesser nations, as they always found a way to do it, or made a plan, from our trekking days through to scaling the heights in mining, exploration, medical science, conservation, business, sport, you name it. We tend to take charge of our future with little fanfare and a minimum of fuss.

ne recent example is portrayed on our front cover this month. The AGM battery is a first in the southern hemisphere, so take that Brazil, take that Australia, and take that wherever you are south of the equator, the Springboks have done it again, and led the pack as usual. First National Battery, who were not coincidentally South Africa’s first battery manufacturer, has taken the lead again in being the first company in the southern hemisphere to manufacture AGM batteries. AGM stands for Absorbed Glass Mat, which is undoubtedly the battery technology of the future, now that hybrid vehicles are becoming old hat and stop-start technology is being introduced into modern vehicles. OEMs are knocking on the battery manufacturers’ doors and the aftermarket will soon be making its siren call. Read more on page 12. All good and well. But an unfortunate corollary, or by-product, of South African’s propensity in pushing the envelope, is the darker side of fascination with “alternative” product , or to put it more

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bluntly, cheap rubbish masquerading as automotive parts. As our new democratic nation struggles to find its feet, this is a growing problem. This problem can be partly blamed on economic necessity, but the more likely culprit is our tendency to approve bloodymindedness, developed as we embraced pioneering habits, struggle credentials, and liberation over education. The short term consequences, similar to the anarchy after the French Revolution, can be dire, as illustrated in our AAMA Alert article on page 20 – read this to become a little bit wiser. One would think that ABR’s articles are all about boom and gloom. Not in the least. We offer various fare, which can be savoured from page 1 to page 92, all spiced with words in action. We are the must read of the month for the automotive aftermarket, and our webpage is rapidly becoming the fix of the day for the busy and inquisitive executive. ABR is the magazine for all seasons, so turn the page and get your fix!

Whilst this issue of ABR is jam packed with information, our monthly contribution cannot do justice to the wealth of information available on a daily basis, so don’t forget to get your daily fix on our website. Make sure that you make regular visits to www.abrbuzz.co.za
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September 2010

Contents

20 40
2 8 12 16 18 20 22 26 28 30 32 36 38 40 42 43 45 48 50 The Phoenix What’s the Buzz Cover Feature Personal Profile Show TIme AAMA Alert Product update Auto Topical Frankly Speaking Entrepreneurship The Chery Story Tony’s Take Weighty Issues Life Goes On AIDC Quiz Tyre Talk Wilde Things Intelli-Driving Tyre Safety 52 54 56 58 62 64 65 66 68 70 71 80 81 82 86 88 90 91 92

12 48 78
Customer C.A.R.E. Workshop Update Vehicle Launch Top Class Topics Capricorn Insights Burford on Brands e-CAR The Golden Triangle Launch Update Industry Update Partinform Vehicle Evaluation Consumer Protection Act Workshop & Diagnostics Two Wheels The Fink Fast Wheels Midas Sport The Last Writes

The publisher and contributors have done their best to ensure the accuracy of the articles and cannot accept responsibility for any loss or inconvenience sustained by any reader as a result of information or advice in Automotive Business Review. The information provided and opinions expressed in this publication are provided in good faith and do not necessaraly represent the opinion of the publisher. No article may be reproduced in any form without the prior written permission from the publisher, except for the quotation of brief passages in reviews.

Publishing Editor Graham Erasmus Cell: 083 709 8184 Editors at Large Alwyn Viljoen Paul Collings Intelli-Driving Editor Eugene Herbert Correspondents Beeton, Frank Borlz, Baron Claude Burford, Adrian Foster, Gavin Gamble, Austin

Horne, Gerhard Hogg, Gilbert Keeg, Howard McCleery, Roger Phitidis, Pavlo Twine, Tony Wilde, Fingal Published by Trilogy Publishing Advertising Sales Marlene Erasmus Cell: 082 837 2668 E-mail: bigheart2@iafrica.com Graham Hudson-Lamb Cell: 083 325 4146

E-mail: bigheart3@iafrica.com Editorial Office 81 Alma Road, Wendywood Tel: 27 11 656 2198 Fax: 27 11 802 3979 E-mail: bigheart@iafrica.com Website: www.abrbuzz.co.za Subscriptions and Data Management Trilogy Trading & Promotion P O Box 69 Wendywood 2144 Tel: 27 11 802 6020 Fax: 27 11 802 3979 E-mail: bigheart2@iafrica.com

Design and Reproduction j. Kraft Information Design cc Tel: 012 997 6946 Fax: 012 997 6987 E-mail: jackie@kraftinfo.co.za Printing Business Print Centre, Pretoria

Official Mouthpiece of

4 Photo Credits: Quickpics • Motorpics

What’s

the

Buzz?

RENAULT SPONSORS KNYSNA HILLCLIMB

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enault South Africa and The Knysna Hillclimb have confirmed that Renault will be the title sponsor of the 2010 event, to be held at the Simola Estate from 22 to 24 October.

In a first for a local car manufacturer, Renault will also use the Hillclimb as the launch platform for several exciting new models, due for their local debut in October. This will allow the brand to actively participate in the event throughout the weekend. “Renault has a rich heritage of participation in a broad spectrum of motorsport, as well as producing exciting performance models under the Renault Sport banner,” says Xavier Gobille, Managing Director of Renault South Africa. “In that regard, the Knysna Hillclimb is a perfect match for the Renault and Renault Sport brands, which will be among those showcased during the event. We are looking forward to a close and mutually beneficial relationship with the Hillclimb and its organisers. Involving public with the product we have to offer is key to our business.” Knysna Hillclimb organiser Ian Shrosbree says the confirmation of Renault as the title sponsor of the Knysna Hillclimb is a great boost for the event. “Renault has shown a great deal of faith in the event by taking up the title sponsorship – it highlights the foresight and sporty genetics of the company. “This ethos is a good fit for the Hillclimb which, although only into its second year, is already one of the most talked about and popular events on the motorsport calendar.”

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2010

What’s
BIG INTERNATIONAL INTEREST IN AUTOMECHANIKA SOUTH AFRICA
There was a great deal of interest by international exhibitors in the Automechanika South Africa promotional booth at the recent Automechanika Middle East automotive aftermarket trade fair in Dubai. The next local event will take place at Expo Centre from March 9-12, 2011. The director of the SA event, Philip Otto, manned the display personally and says he had strong interest in his event both from countries and companies that participated in the inaugural Automechanika SA in Johannesburg, last year and those that were not there, “The feedback from those who exhibited in Johannesburg last year was very positive and it was great that a major automotive country such as France, which did not participate last year will have a national pavilion in 2011, while Malaysia that had only two companies display their wares in 2009 will have a national pavilion next year”. He added that the nine South African companies that exhibited in the SA pavilion in Dubai were positive about their participation and did substantial business deals.

the

Buzz?

NAAMSA COMMENT ON THE CO2 VEHICLE EMISSIONS TAX REGIME EFFECTIVE 1ST SEPTEMBER, 2010
Reacting to an announcement by National Treasury that the CO2 new vehicle tax regime, originally intended to apply to new passenger cars, would with effect from 1st September, 2010 be extended to include light commercial vehicles – Mr David Powels, President of the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (NAAMSA) said that the decision was alarming and would result in negative and potentially serious consequences for the South African vehicle manufacturing, importing and distribution sectors as well as associated industries. A further matter of great concern was the impact of the additional taxes on buyers of new cars and new light commercial vehicles. The additional cost to consumers would, on average, be of the order of about 2,5%. Based on current sales volumes, the incremental tax burden amounted to about R1,6 billion per annum in respect of new cars and would probably add a further R800 million additional taxes in respect of light commercial vehicles. There was no doubt that an increase in the tax burden of around R2,5 billion would depress sales volumes and production and will have negative implications for employment levels in the vehicle and component manufacturing industries. In line with international developments, NAAMSA accepts the principle of environmental taxes to improve air quality and safeguard the environment in South Africa. Unfortunately, the planned CO2 tax regime as currently structured will fail to achieve the intended objective. The application of the CO2 tax regime is also inequitable in that it discriminates against buyers of new motor vehicles. If Government was really serious about penalising emissions (a proxy for fuel consumption) the authorities should introduce an environmental levy on all fuels, petrol and diesel.

POWERFUL BUSINESS FOCUS FOR AUTOMECHANIKA SA 2011 CONFERENCE PROGRAMME
The Retail Motor Industry Organisation (RMI) has announced that a major two day RMI Conference will be staged during the Automechanika South Africa. In announcing the RMI’s Conference agenda for Automechanika SA, Jeff Osborne, CEO of the RMI, stated that there were a number of pressing issues and great opportunities in the industry which need to be focused on and that the RMI Conference will address a number of priority issues; these include the need for training of skilled manpower to serve the growing shortage of especially technically qualified manpower and business challenges that the modern day entrepreneur has to contend with. Coupled therewith is the need for the industry to become more proactive in promoting the motor industry as a career of choice for school leavers, college and university graduates. ”The RMI firmly believes that the motor industry as a lucrative and stimulating career destination does not receive the recognition it deserves, mainly due to a combination of lack of knowledge about opportunities in the industry and archaic perceptions of the nature of the industry”, said Osborne. A technical skills competition for motor mechanics, motor body repairers and spray painters underpinned by MERSETA is also in the offing, with the winners representing South Africa in the 2011 World Skills Contest to be held in London later in the year. It is expected that the new Consumer Protection Act and its implementation will also receive detailed attention during the Conference. Giving further impetus to the RMI Conference will be complementary sector-specific seminar sessions catering specifically for members of RMI Constituent Associations .

KenKen 8 x 8
How to Play: Like Sudoku, even though difficulty may vary from puzzle to puzzle, the rules for playing KenKen are fairly simple: For a 3 x 3 puzzle, fill in with the numbers 1-8.
• Do not repeat a number in any row or column. • The numbers in each heavily outlined set of squares, called cages, must combine (in any order) to produce the target number in the top corner of the cage using the mathematical operation indicated. • Cages with just one box should be filled in with the target number in the top corner. • A number can be repeated within a cage as long as it is not in the same row or column. Answer on page 37

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2010

Cover

feature

Leading the Way through Caring
Development in the automotive sector is relatively slow when compared to other fields of industry. The medical field, for example, is constantly improving on the technology used to ensure the health of the average human being. It has reached the point where robots, instead of human beings, are used to perform elaborate surgical techniques previously thought of as impossible.
ith this in mind we take a look at today’s motor vehicle. It consists of basically the same mechanics as the first example built over a hundred years ago. The various components have stayed more or less the same as well. Sure, as far as components go there have been big developments over the years, but nothing to make you stand back and take notice. Until now, that is. A recent development in the field of batteries is something we should all take notice of. The custodians involved in bringing this new technology to our shores? We have First National Battery (FNB) to thank for that. FNB has had a long and proud history in South Africa. In our country, for the first 30 years of the twentieth century, we relied mainly on imports to supply our automotive industry. All that changed when Mr. J.F. Jackson founded the First National Battery Company in East London, soon to become the leading manufacturer and distributor of lead-acid batteries in South Africa. Quite a big portion of new vehicles, and vehicles exported to other countries, are sold with a battery that came from their factories. They constantly reach sales figures over the 2 million mark. FNB markets its batteries under various brand names, but for the purposes of this article we will only focus on the Exide brand. The new technology used by FNB is simply referred to as AGM, or Absorbed Glass Mat battery. The product is called Enduro and it’s not merely a first for South Africa, but for the entire southern hemisphere. FNB spent a lot of money bringing this technology to South Africa. “Designing, manufacturing and testing a new battery type to the most stringent Engineering specification ever issued by the German automobile manufacturers was accepted as a big challenge by the FNB team and it has certainly led us to a pinnacle of achievement in current lead-acid battery technology. The base of this development was the in-house knowledge gained in producing more than four million VRLA miner cap lamps since 1982 based on AGM technology. This, combined with extensive development work and experience gained from producing in excess of 10 million lead calcium batteries to demanding technical specifications for nearly all OEM’s in South Africa, made this

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development possible,” says Dr Louis Denner, Managing Director, First National Battery Division of Metindustrial Before we explore FNB’s latest project, let’s first take a look at the humble beginnings of the battery so we can better understand how important this new technology is. Benjamin Franklin first coined the term for an electrical storage unit. He had just finished charging an array of glass plates and needed a name for said experiment. “Charged glass plates” seemed a little long, so he settled for the name battery. During the first hundred years of development the battery changed quite a bit. Experiments were done and significant changes to the initial design were made. Gaston Planté is credited with building the first lead-acid battery as we know it today. In 1859 he created the first practical storage lead-acid battery. It’s ironic that the battery we discuss in this article brings us full circle back to Benjamin Franklin and his charged glass plates. An AGM is a lead-acid electric storage battery that is sealed using pressure valves. Electrolyte is absorbed in separators consisting of a sponge-like mass of glass fibres and in the plates. It also uses a recombination reaction to prevent the escape of hydrogen and oxygen gases that would normally be lost in a flooded lead-acid battery. This is particularly good news for cycling applications. Because it is sealed it can also be operated in virtually any position. Need more convincing? In addition to all of the above, an AGM battery is completely maintenance free too. “A product like this is manufactured with much tighter tolerances and process control than conventional flooded lead-acid batteries and FNB is employing state of the art technology in the production of the VRLA batteries based on a mix of imported equipment and equipment designed and made in-house by FNB,” says Dr Denner. What we have here is a big step up from traditional wet batteries. The Enduro works on a recombinant principle. The oxygen produced by the positive plate, which is normally lost in a traditional battery, is absorbed by the negative plate. This means that Enduro never needs to be watered, which in turn means it never has to be opened. Traditional batteries don’t have these pressurised sealing vents as they work on a completely different principle. Having no seal means the liquid electrolyte can spill from a
September 2010

12

Cover
traditional battery which leads to corrosion and eventual replacement. Transporting these batteries has become a bit of a headache since they always have to be specially packed and always installed in an upright position. Enduro has put an end to these problems. “It is a product made to the highest manufacturing and environmental standards that will give the user a product with exceptional performance characteristics and features not offered before by a local supplier. In short, this battery when compared size for size, with traditional flooded batteries will give you a longer life three times the cyclic endurance, at least 30% better high current performance, much better vibration resistance, a spill proof battery that never needs to be opened to top up, and a very long shelf life when stored in a charged state. It is also a product that is ideally suited for Stop/Start systems that are being introduced by car companies to limit emissions of exhaust gases making it a good purchase for these applications that will result in a greener environment,” says Dr Denner. A major advantage of the Enduro is its spill proof and leak proof structure. In addition to a maintenance free lifecycle, it also won’t corrode the terminals and can be installed in virtually any position. Other advantages include: fully air transportable without having to resort to special packaging, completely compatible with sensitive electronic equipment like Stop/Start technology (more on that later) and most of the modern features fitted to a car, and very low to absolutely no gas discharge. This gives it green credentials that traditional batteries can only dream about. Moreover, it’s excellent for starting and stationary applications, superior for shorter duration/ higher rate discharge and superior under cold conditions when fully charged. The unit is extremely rugged and resistant against harsh vibrations. Its superiority is also unmatched when it comes to shelf life and recharge ability and can even be operated in a wet environment. Have a look at the list of applications that are suited to the Enduro: • All of the modern vehicles with electrically operated features and safety systems. The Exide Enduro has no problem keeping the voltage up on a high-end German saloon. • Farmers can use it on tractors, or any other kind of harvesting equipment. The sealed unit is also perfect for forestry, like the plantations we have in Mpumalanga. • Being longer lasting makes it perfect for our public transport sector. Owners of taxis, buses, etc will find it particularly useful. • Owners of customised 4x4’s will enjoy the many installation options of the Enduro. Because it is completely sealed it can be installed in any position you wish. The normal batteries on 4x4’s and diesel engine vehicles are prone to failure because of the harsh vibrations they face. This leads to early replacement and irritation on the consumer side. Enduro will take care of this problem once and for all.
September 2010

feature

Inside the Enduro AGM Battery

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Cover
It seems then that the Enduro is the answer to every conceivable battery problem. The traditional battery has a few major flaws, each one addressed by this new technology. Flooded electrolyte batteries can spring leaks, only operate in an upright position, have a shorter shelf life, cannot be installed near sensitive electronic equipment and have fewer shipping options. None of this is a problem for Enduro. Exide Enduro is not hindered by the ni-cad plague known as “memory.” After shallow discharge cycles the unused portions of the electrodes remember the previous cycles and are unable to sustain the required discharge voltage beyond the depth of the previous cycles. This is quite a nuisance since the only viable solution to this problem is a complete discharge of the battery, after which it needs to be completely and slowly recharged. AGM technology does not share this trait with ni-cad batteries. Absorbed glass mat batteries also have the green credentials to make it in the modern world. The Enduro is particularly well suited to cars that are fitted with Stop/Start technology. This system, when fitted to a vehicle, will turn off the engine when it stops and restarts it again when the driver’s foot leaves the brake pedal. It is estimated that around 2.8 million vehicles fitted with this system will be produced worldwide in 2010 alone. Stop/Start is a seemingly simple idea, but one with great rewards. It is calculated that the fitment of such a system to any car will see fuel consumption lowering by 3% to 5%. With fuel prices going through the roof, one can see how important this Stop/Start technology is set to become. On the flipside, carbon emissions are also reduced by up to 20%, depending on the vehicle. A big chunk of the importers and manufacturers in South Africa have already noted their interest in Stop/Start systems. The list currently consists of Ford, Mini, BMW, Nissan, Audi, Volkswagen, Mercedes Benz and Peugeot. As previously mentioned, FNB is the first manufacturer to offer this technology in the Southern hemisphere, so things are looking good for them. The reason the Enduro is so well suited to this task is twofold. A Stop/Start system needs a deep-cycle resistant battery that must be well charged even when the engine is idling or running at lower engine speeds. The pressure on

feature
the battery, when continuously called upon to start the engine, is immense, but Enduro just shrugs this off. It’s also robust enough to keep on powering such necessities as headlights, electronics and air-conditioning when the engine is switched off. AGM batteries are, however, not limited to Stop/Start technology. It seems as if manufacturers are constantly developing systems to save fuel and cut down on emissions. The one factor that does however stay the same is the use of AGM batteries. “Stop/Start and regenerative applications require a battery with very good partial state of charge ability requiring many charge and discharge cycles rather than the conventional deep cycle ability,” says Louis Denner. Most of the hybrids on sale today make use of AGM technology and it’s gotten to a point where you can’t tell the difference, in performance, between a conventionally powered vehicle and a hybrid. These futuristic applications are quite interesting, but you might be wondering what Enduro can do for you today. Owners of 4x4’s, boats, diesel engine vehicles, caravans or solar powered equipment will find it useful. Enduro can cope with the heavy demands that they make and will keep on doing it for a longer time than a conventional battery. As previously mentioned, AGM batteries have high starting currents (up to 30% more current than conventional battery) and are suitable for deep-cycle applications. Perfect for a diesel engine car that demands a high starting current or for prolonged use in a caravan. The most important application is relevant to anybody with a modern car. A modern vehicle tends to be more luxuriously equipped than most houses. Standard on most cars we find things like electric windows, air-conditioning, sound system and airbags. Remember, this kind of kit tends to be standard on entry-level models. This already puts immense pressure on a normal battery to keep up with everything the average consumer demands. Higher up the scale we find things like electric seats, massaging function, high-end surround sound systems, media interfaces and even internet. These things cause excessive drain on conventional batteries. The Exide Enduro’s ability to deliver a higher current makes it a necessity for these applications. Even if you’re only upgrading the sound system on your car with amps and subwoofers, you need something like this to keep you off the side of the road. Hybrids and Electric vehicles are undoubtedly tomorrow’s technology. The evolution of battery technology in the last decade alone is astounding. Now, that technology is available to any consumer in South Africa. We have FNB and their brand Exide to thank for that. Their slogan, “Through Caring We Lead,” has never been truer. They cared enough to spend a massive amount of money to make AGM available to us and because of that, they are the undisputed champions of their field.

These new systems are also referred to as micro-hybrid functions. BMW recently developed a new system to work in conjunction with their Auto Start Stop function. Naturally they used AGM batteries. It seems as if AGM technology is at the forefront of all reduced emissions developments where batteries are needed. You can’t talk about batteries in vehicles without referring to hybrids and full-on electric transportation. The Advanced LeadAcid Battery Consortium (ALABC) is a research consortium originally formed in 1992 to advance the capabilities of valveregulated lead-acid batteries. “FNB is a member of this international organisation whose aim is to pioneer development work with lead-acid chemistry in hybrid electrical vehicles,” says Denner. “Part of their current work is focused on using AGM VRLA batteries with enhanced carbon additives to the negative plate of the battery for such applications.” According to ALABC the “task for the battery in a hybrid electric vehicle is particularly demanding as it is required to operate from a partial state of charge so that regenerative braking energy can be accepted efficiently.” As we already know, this is just one of the many positive attributes of an AGM battery. The high current of an AGM battery will also ensure that hybrid’s perform in accordance with their petrol/diesel stable mates.

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2010

Personal

profile

Q&A
by Roger McCleery

JOHN JESSUP

In the 60’s people said “The Japanese are coming” referring to their bakkies, cars and motorcycles. Now they are No 1 in the world. Then it was the Koreans, who would never shape, they said. They are now 4th biggest in the world. Now you hear “The Chinese are coming with their cars, bakkies, MPV’s, SUV’s and heavy trucks”. With the biggest vehicle market in the world and benefitting from the vehicle technology all around them, it will take a fraction of the time the Japanese and Koreans took to get established and to take on the Western Hemisphere companies. Initially our Government opened the doors to Chinese vehicles that lacked spares and service. Quick bucks were made by some non-motoring importers, but generally they were gone in a short time. Now the Chinese and their South African franchisees realise that they are up against the established motor companies in South Africa and need experienced South African motor men to handle their businesses to head up their franchises. Such a company is Geely with a well constituted all-South African Board and a died-in-the-wool and fired-up experienced motor man, John Jessup (63) heading up the company as CEO.
So what investors make up the board, John? 50% is Hallmark (The listed Cargo Carriers is a sister company ) with around 20 Toyota, Mercedes Benz, Chrysler, Jeep, Nissan and Hyundai dealerships as well as a large interest in the SA GWM importer/ distributor. 50% is the Hassim family with Rayhaan Hassim, a director of 54 companies including 6 motor franchises, the Magic group of hardware stores, a big interest in Aucor and many others. The way forward for Geely? Having been in the motor industry all my working life, there is only one way to be successful, that is to do the basics right. Have the right range of vehicles to suit the times and back this up with parts and after-sales service to both customers and your dealers. By motor industry standards, we are basically starting from scratch, with no baggage. For the 2000 units of the previous Geely CK Models in operation around the country, we have R4m worth of parts. I have given instructions that if just one vehicle is off the road and we cannot supply the parts locally, they will be airfreighted in from China at our expense. How big is your dealer organisation? We have 12 dealers currently, with another 12-15 to be added in the major cities and bigger towns. Also we want to appoint service dealers in the smaller areas. All will have access to parts, warranty and trained mechanics to work on our cars, which are pretty straight-forward. What does the new range of vehicles look? We have just launched the new Geely MK 1,5 and 1,6 Sedan and MK2 Hatch 1.5. These cars are packed with features. You can name just about anything. Our new Geely has got it. Plus all the most important safety features, including ABS on top models. The most surprising thing about the MK/MK2 Range is the price. These are B/C segment sized vehicles in recommended retail price range between R100,000 and R120,000 including VAT. Good news – the first parts order is already here in the country as well. What other models are due? Well, in the under R80,000 to R90,000 range we have the Geely 1.3 LK coming early next year. It has great styling. You can see immediately why it has Panda badging in China. It too is packed with all the features and safety items in the MK, including ABS and airbags in all the right places. Later next year, a D-segment Geely hits the South African market. This high quality sedan will also be exceptionally well specced and well priced. All our vehicles carry a 3-year 100 000km warranty. Bakkies/SUV’s? A luxury double cab is under development. A medium sized SUV could also become available to us. On a personal level, how did you get into the motor industry in South Africa? After graduating from UPE with a consumer psychology degree, I spent two years with VW and a further two years with GM. Then it was on to Leyland, and in fact I joined Leyland on the same day as Basil Landau, the new CEO. We had a great team but were let down by the demise of the parent company in the UK. You then moved to the Reef? Yes, to BMW for 18 years, the last six on the Board with a portfolio of Marketing Sales, After-Sales, Dealer Development, Motor-cycles and BMW Finanz. Then I joined Nissan where I spent some ot my happiest times. 8 years in Marketing, and eight years in Dealer Development. This continued until I took a voluntary package last year and then did some fascinating contract work for them in South Africa, Egypt and Nigeria. Where did you go to school? In PE at Walmer Primary and Victoria Park High School. What did you want to do after school? My Dad was an engineer and I thought I wanted to follow in his footsteps and maybe design cars, although there was not much opportunity in South Africa. The vocational people said I should do some kind of social/business science. That, thankfully, is what I ended up doing. Although I must add that I was fortunate enough to be very involved in the styling and design of certain vehicles. Into sports? I did a lot of sports at school. Cricket was my passion when younger. I later did athletics, tennis and squash, but surfing was my life at school and university. Nowadays it’s golf. But I’m also a fitness enthusiast with regular gym with a personal trainer. Did you have a mentor? Yes. Ronnie Meatchem at Leyland and BMW, who taught me about products, dealers, people and the real world of the motor industry. As somebody I really admire, Carlos Ghosn, CEO of Nissan and Renault worldwide, for his very clear communications, modern processes and brilliant leadership skills. Married? I have a daughter, Anna, who is an advertising graduate and does work for the large agencies. When are you going to retire? I haven’t thought about it. Geely has come along and given me a great opportunity to set up a car company and to make it really work, and then we’ll take it from there.

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2010

Show

Time

WATS receives WARM Welcome on a Chilly August Morning!
The WATS (Workshop Aftermarket & Technology Show) Media & Exhibitor/Visitor Breakfast Launch, hosted at the proposed 1st time Venue, Ilanga Estate Bloemfontein, received a very WARM welcome from everyone present.
hose in attendance were for the first time exposed to the evolution, vision & mission of the WATS Expo’s and where it slots in so well with other show offerings in South Africa. Much enthusiasm & excitement for the forthcoming first time event reverberated throughout the breakfast. Technology & Training is always at the forefront of everything WATS exhibits; however, parts, component suppliers, Garage Equipment, tools & IT suppliers are always there, fulfilling their never ending important roll. With the continued & much valued support of the RMI, in the form of Louis van Huyssteen & his team, Merseta, Capricorn and other loyal WATS exhibitors, this inaugural expo will prove to be of great value to Motor Industry Members throughout the Free State. Entrance is FREE! – visit www.wats.co.za to register as an exhibitor or visitor or contact Miranda on 082 9680 214, admin@wats.co.za or Johann on 082 5515 061or Email: info@wats.co.za

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Ready to roll: Members of the team at the breakfast, from left to right Louis van Huyssteen,Gerhard Slabbert, Miranda de Bruyne, Johann de Bruyne and Giel Steyn.

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2010

ALERT
AAMA CREATES AWARENESS OF THE ISSUES OF THE DAY

Counterfeiting – it’s all Smoke and Mirrors
In the April 2010 issue of ABR, our AAMA Alert covered the curse of counterfeiting in the automotive industry, and our call for an industry conscience. We ended off with the noble statement that conscience should always trump profit, and the interesting conclusion that businesses run on ethical lines ironically last longer than those run on purely self-seeking lines, i.e. conscience equals long term sustainability.
The enigma to all this is that sometimes businesses sell counterfeit product without being aware that the product is not kosher. The product may walk like a duck, and quack like a duck, but it may not be the genuine article, in both latent physical properties and performance. Thus, retailers and maybe even wholesalers could be selling a product that they are not aware is counterfeit. If one looks up the definition of counterfeit in Wikipedia, you get “a counterfeit is an imitation, usually one that is made with the intent of fraudulently passing it off as genuine. Counterfeit products are often produced with the intent to take advantage of the established worth of the imitated product”. This is true, but does not hit the nail on the head. Better definitions are “representing by imitation or likeness; having a resemblance to something else”; or “to carry on a deception; to dissemble; to feign; to pretend”. A very good example of this are Toyota Quantum wheel bearings, currently been sold by various wholesalers, that look perfectly okay from the outside, but inside are in actual fact seriously deficient. ABR spoke to Richard Pinard of Top Class Automotive, a well-known bearing boffin in the industry, and a spokesman for good quality. Richard explains that when bearings have to carry a heavy load, then the linear contact of the bearing to the housing is critical. Thus, in the mining industry, spherical rollers are used, and in commercial vehicles, tapered roller bearings are used. As the Quantum is a heavy vehicle when carrying its full load of passengers, the load carrying capacity of the wheel bearing is very important, so the OE and correct replacement bearing needs to have tapered roller bearings and not ball bearings. The rule of thumb is that for lighter loads and higher speeds, ball bearings are used (e.g. thrust bearings or bearings in alternators), whereas for heavier loads and relatively lower speeds, tapered roller bearings are used. The consequences of using ball bearings in the Quantum wheel bearings are shorter lifespan and even worse if the bearings seize. The problem is that the customer cannot see the inside geometry, so he/she is at the mercy of the wholesaler/retailer. Richard says that the best advice he can give spares shops and workshops is to only buy from reputable wholesalers/retailers such as AutoZone and Midas. Richard also advises technicians to ensure that when fitting wheel bearings they always adhere to the manufacturers’ torque settings. The impending Consumer Protection Act will provide protection, but only after the fact, and only if the wheel bearing is taken apart for inspection, which is difficult and expensive, as once the bearing has been disassembled, it is no longer functional.

New wheel bearings: ball bearing type on top, tapered roller bearing type at the bottom

Disassembled wheel bearing – tapered roller bearing type

Disassembled wheel bearing – ball bearing type

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September

2010

Product

update

World Leading Teroson Products Now Available in South Africa
As someone in the auto body repair or auto glass replacement business you may have already come across the Teroson name and wondered how you can get these top quality products in South Africa.
ou need wonder no more. The product is now available through Henkel South Africa (Pty) Ltd, the globally respected adhesive and sealant manufacturer. Which means these products will be as easy to get as any other Henkel product. Teroson products are designed to meet the OE specs of the makers of cars, trucks, buses, railway carriages and marine craft. Teroson automotive body repair products allow vehicle body repairs, conservation and additional protection that add factoryquality finish to just about any job. The Teroson range includes solutions for a wide range of applications including sealants and adhesives for metals, glass and plastics, under-body coatings and sealants, and products for metal reinforcement and acoustic improvement. Anyone in the windscreen replacement business will quickly come to appreciate the almost-instant bonding times that are a major feature of these products. Faster bonding means productivity gains, reduced costs and increased profitability. With research activities conducted through a worldwide scientific network covering the fields of biology, chemistry and engineer-

Y

ing, Henkel is in a unique position to develop innovative technologies. The number of employees working in research and development at the Company’s sites around the world in 2009 was around 2,800, the majority being deployed in Germany and the USA. The results of this investment are seen in constantly improving products in the existing portfolio, as well as regularly launching exciting new products into the marketplace. Henkel currently holds more than 8,000 patents, with 5,000 patent applications pending. Additionally, the Company has around 2,300 registered designs safeguarding its intellectual property. Teroson was founded by entrepreneur Theodore Ross in 1896, in Mannheim, Germany, to manufacture and distribute industrial and household cleaners. Later, with an eye on the infant automotive industry, Ross saw the future for his company and, in 1924, launched his first products for this market with his son as the sole field salesman. Henkel acquired the company in 1991 and immediately embarked on a modernization and regional expansion programme. Today, Teroson is fully integrated into the Henkel group.

For more information contact Henkel South Africa on 011 617-2400

the

Buzz?

BUDGET RENTAL’S NEW KING SHAKA AIRPORT FACILITIES PART OF R80-MILLION INVESTMENT
Budget Car and Van Rental’s R20-million investment in new, state-of-the-art facilities at the impressive new King Shaka Airport, near Durban, is part of a two-year, R80-million investment in new facilities and premise upgrades by the rental company, which is part of the McCarthy Group, a division of the Bidvest Group Limited. Speaking at the official opening of the new facility, the chief executive of McCarthy, Brand Pretorius, said that this is a clear indication that the McCarthy and Bidvest Groups have full confidence in the potential of the car rental industry in South Africa. “We are enjoying significant benefits to our business, even now that the FIFA Football World Cup is something of the past. Bidvest is a demanding investor and it has given its full support to this project, which is a flagship for the Budget Car and Van Rental brand,” added Pretorius. “We are looking forward to growth in all sectors of the car rental industry and believe the exposure South Africa received from staging the World Cup will play an important role in growing international tourism”.

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September

2010

Product

News

Special Bolts for Higher Bolt Forces
Innovative Development Needs No Retorquing For economic reasons, engine builders developed head gaskets in the 80s that do not require retorquing. The assembly of cylinder heads without having to retorque the head bolts represented a technical innovation for series production. Similarly, when replacing a head gasket, torquing in several steps was no longer necessary. This objective was only achievable through optimum matching of all Stretch bolts are designed so that they can be elongated beyond their elastic limit into the plastic region without problems. When a specific tightening torque has been reached, the bolts are turned further through a defined angle, which pre-loads them into the plastic region. Consequently, no retorquing is necessary. the components involved. A tight, compound joint of engine block,cylinder-head gasket, cylinder head, and head bolts. Stretch Bolts Stretch Bolts Bolts that are tightened beyond their elastic limit (yield point) into the plastic region ensure high and uniform bolt clamping forces. An important prerequisite for reliable sealed joints without retorquing. In this respect, stretch bolts offer decisive advantages over rolled shank bolts. By reducing its shaft diameter, the bolt is able to respond elastically to dynamic sealing gap movements, i.e. adaptation is greatly improved. Torque-angle Method In the first step, the bolt is snugged down to the cylinder head by means of a pretorque. With the second step, the so-called torque or tightening angle, the bolt is tightened into the plasticregion, i.e. beyond its elastic range. Using the torqueangle method, the variations in bolt clamping force lie in a range of ±10%. Using the simple torquing method with several steps, the variations will be within ±30% of the calculated bolt clamping force. The reasons for this lie in the dispersion range of torque values and the overall coefficient of friction, i.e. the friction occurring under the bolt head and in the threads.

Agent in South Africa – INTRADE Tel: 011-432-2667 • Fax: 011-432-3005 • E-Mail: intrade@iafrica.com

the

Buzz? Bridgestone tyre surveys reveal a high number of dangerously underinflated and smooth tyres on the road

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he latest in Bridgestone South Africa’s nationwide surveys of tyres shows that there is still an unacceptably high level of motorists driving on tyres that are considered dangerous and needing to be replaced. The most recent survey, conducted in Rustenburg reveals that 20% of motorists in this North West Province town are driving on tyres that are below the acceptable tyre pressure level of 1.8 Bar. Even more concerning was the fact that 8% of the tyres examined were found to be at pressures of less than 1.5 Bar, which is considered to be extremely dangerous. Of the 309 vehicles 5% had tyres that were considered unsafe in terms of tread depth or damage and 2% had one or more tyres without valve caps. In 11 surveys conducted around the country since 2007, during which more than 16 000 tyres on over 4 000 vehicles have been inspected in eight major metropolitan areas, just over 78% of all the vehicles inspected were at or above the acceptable tyre pressure level of 1.8 Bar. “Although there appears to have been a general improvement since we started the surveys, the statistics remain alarming,” said Bridgestone’s public relations manager Mandy Lovell. “Too many motorists are not checking their tyre pressures regularly or replacing worn or damaged tyres. “The percentage of Rustenburg motorists whose tyre pressures fell within the ‘extremely dangerous’ categorisation, that is less than 1,5 Bar or above 2,9 Bar, is cause for concern as it is the highest we have encountered so far in all of our surveys. “What we learn from these tyre surveys is that there is still a need for educating motorists about the critical role tyres play in vehicle handling and driver control. Underinflated and damaged tyres are a major contributory factor to the high number of crashes on our roads,” added Lovell.

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2010

Auto

Topical

The Air is Free, But you Pay to Breathe it!
by Tony Twine, Senior Economist, Director – Econometrix (Pty) Ltd

As this article goes to print, the next round of the recurringly stalled talks on a climate change agreement to be put in place once the imminent sunset of the Kyoto protocol takes place will have reached a conclusion in Cancun, Mexico. South Africa had been one of the few minor heroes of the previous round of talks in Copenhagen, and we suspect that it is building up a head of steam for the last chance to replace the Kyoto protocol before that agreement terminates.

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ne might speculate forever about the timing of the emissions tax on new cars being introduced as the sun fades on the Cancun conference. Additional interest is certainly pricked by the recent quiet revelation that the tax on emissions of R75 for each gram per kilometre above 120g/km will be subject to VAT, raising it to an effective emissions tax level of 10.5 or R85.50 per g/km over 120g. Well, we might be entitled to think, the fiscus needs all the tax that it can raise, so this is not particularly surprising.

necessary to stay in business when National Treasury puts its proposals on other emission taxes on the table, possibly to be implemented in either the 2011 or 2012 budgets. Carbon dioxide, where Eskom and Sasol are both major contributors within the South African scenario, is likely to be joined by carbon monoxide and the family of nitrous oxide products and other emissions which are generated by industrial processes as different to each other as manufacturing paper to filling landfill sites. There are many potential cash cows, all with a trail of methane production behind them. Is the available income from taxing new vehicle sales, whatever may be included or excluded from the list of types and applications, really that urgent in terms of the budgeted tax receipts that it will generate? To be honest, this hardly seems likely to be the case. An emissions tax of 1 cent per litre on petrol and diesel sales would raise about half the budgeted 2010/11 revenue from the seven months during which it will be effective this fiscal year. This may be less politically acceptable because of the reach that such a tax would have across income bands, instead of being concentrated in its impact on upper income earners. But a 2c/litre tax would look more insipid in the international clean air debate than being able to claim that South Africa has the lowest threshold for new vehicle emissions tax, set at 120g/km.

Following Copenhagen, all the international image that South Africa can muster will be grist to its diplomatic mill for both Cancun and anything that is to follow. And what is to follow is probably the big prize. The last climate change conference scheduled before the Kyoto protocol runs out of currency is set for, you guessed it, Durban, South Africa late in 2011. For the South African government in general, and the foreign diplomatic service in particular, having the Kyoto protocol succeeded by an agreement creating the Durban protocol must look like a prize that makes FIFA World Cup 2010 look like an under 10 schools soccer tournament. A bit of tax, especially if it lands squarely on the shoulders of the rich, rather than the poor, is a small price to pay for such potential fame and glory. In the opinion of the writer, we should all expect to see any commercial, industrial or household activity, including the Sunday afternoon braai, that is capable of emitting anything into the atmosphere, to come under National Treasury’s magnifying glass between the dates of the Cancun and Durban conferences, which are expected to be a little over a year apart. At the time of the Durban conference, don’t be too surprised to see Department of Health inspectors clamping down on the strength of the bunny chow sold to visitors.

Then add to the picture some rumours which emerged methane like from the wastelands of Pretoria during the middlemonths of the year, that it would not just be new passenger cars that might be subject to an emissions tax, but also car derived and one tonne pick-ups. Are we being cynical in noticing that mini-busses were absent from the rumoured list? O well, that still fits the picture of a revenue hungry fiscus, with the gently mooing cash cow of the motor industry presenting itself as a noble target, especially as only rich people buy new vehicles. Now add to this picture the fact that one of the country’s largest petroleum players is researching all sorts of automotive and industrial emission generating activities, and one gets the distinct feeling that they may be lining up the defensive chatter

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September

2010

Frankly

Speaking

by Frank Beeton

Sounding off on the Global Motor Industry
run-out is imminent. Volkswagen’s “New Beetle”, which kicked off the retro movement in 1998, has very little in common with its inspirational forebear, apart from the basic shape, even the trademark rear-mounted air-cooled engine is nowhere to be found. Production is now well past one million units, but there is talk of a replacement model in 2011. Fiat’s more recent Nuova 500 has followed a similar pattern, with a front-mounted engine instead of the original rear-positioned unit, but, despite being considerably larger than its predecessor, the new 500 has somehow captured its “feel”, and early signs indicate marketplace success. The marque that was possibly most committed to a retro styling strategy was Jaguar, under its period of Ford stewardship (1989-2008). By clothing modern platforms and drivetrains in traditional sheet metal shapes, Jaguar sought to exploit, and build on its heritage of fine cars in the 1950’s and 60’s. However, the X-Type, S-Type and XJ Models of the Ford era under-performed, and proved unable to compete effectively with their natural rivals from BMW, Audi or Mercedes-Benz. Eventually, Jaguar came to the conclusion that its products were perceived as “old men’s cars”, and initiated a total change in styling direction starting with the XF, just before the company was sold into the control of Tata Motors of India in 2008. In the Chicago Auto Show in February, 2008, retro styling even entered the world of trucking! Following Chevrolet’s 2005 introduction of the HHR (Heritage High Roof ) van, inspired by the mid-1940’s Suburban van and station wagon, Navistar International Corporation revealed the LoneStar premium Class 8 truck-tractor, which owed its “Advanced Classic” styling inspiration to the International Harvester D-Line truck range of the immediate pre-World War II period. LoneStar featured “conventional” (bonneted) styling in the traditional manner beloved of American truckers, and it was abundantly clear from the launch literature that it was aimed squarely at the owner-driver market. It seems, however, that the main thrust of the retro movement has now passed. Successful retro models that have cemented niches in the market, in their own right, are likely to continue for some time into the future, but the momentum that was built up at the start of the 1990’s has dissipated. There has not been any talk of new retro models for some time, and it will be interesting to see if even successful marques like the Mini are positioned a little further away from their visual roots at each successive model facelift or upgrade.

Just recently, I read about the substantial product enhancements that are being made to BMW’s Mini family as part of its global relaunch scheduled for September 18, 2010. These include all-new diesel engines, new wheels, LED rear lights, revised controls, a retractable luggage cover, new audio/navigation systems, and three new trim/paint/wheel combinations to be packaged as Rally, Classic and Scene.
his started me thinking about the undoubted success of this range since its introduction in 2001 (more than one million units have been sold todate), which speaks volumes about BMW’s reinvention of the Mini brand. Whereas the original product, introduced first with Morris and Austin badges, but eventually moving to its own Mini identity, was a brilliant design which extracted unprecedented levels of performance and economy from a distinctly geriatric Austin engine, the Mini One family which grew out of BMW’s previous ownership of Rover, has never pretended to be anything other than a highly fashionable state-of-the-art product dressed in an ageless body shape that looks familiar in many respects, but is considerably larger than its progenitor. When Alec Issigonis penned the original Mini design in the 1950’s, he decided to combine its engine, gearbox and final drive in one vertically-disposed unit, using engine oil for all lubrication purposes, and placed it transversely across the front of the car. This provided a considerable bonus in interior spaciousness, and set a trend for engine location that still prevails to-day. Inevitably, however, the unconventional mechanical layout resulted in some early reliability issues, and added a degree of complexity that was possibly inappropriate for an entry-level car. While adopting the transverse engine positioning, other manufacturers soon moved the gearbox up alongside the engine, and gave it its own lubrication system. Later, the Mini’s initially simple rubber block suspension was also replaced by the Hydrolastic interconnected self-leveling fluid system originally developed for the “big brother” Morris 1100, which added further complication to the design. The result was that the British Motor Corporation and its successors British Motor Holdings, British Leyland and Austin Rover did not derive the desired level of profitability from what was a successful design in volume sales terms, with almost 5½ million units having being sold in its 1959-2000 production lifespan. The important point about BMW’s interpretation of the Mini theme is that, unlike some other “retro” designs, it has been commercially successful, and there is not the slightest suggestion that it is nearing the end of the road, or that BMW intend to move its production away from the current United Kingdom location. Of the others, Chrysler’s PT Cruiser has also enjoyed success, selling similar volumes to the Mini over roughly the same decade-long timeframe. However, with Chrysler now under Fiat control, it has been decided to discontinue the model, and final

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September

2010

Entrepreneurship

Bootstrapping lifts entrepreneurs to their feet, but is not enough for great businesses to flourish
The principle of bootstrapping is starting up a business from scratch with mimimum help and funding from external sources.

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here are many legendary businesses that started out as a dream in an entrepreneur's eye and that were built on little more than the owner's savings or a small line of credit from a bank. This is the principle of bootstrapping: starting up a business from scratch with minimum help and funding from external sources that were not really meant to gear up a business. But, in reality, most businesses that are founded this way will fail within a matter of 18 months to two years as they start to hit barriers such as an inability to secure the funding they need to tackle larger projects or to hire more people. Often, there problems will be compounded by a lack of capacity for strategic and financial planning. Although a credit card or a small loan from a friend might tide a company over for a few months, few businesses can plan for the longer term without strategic support. Those that don't fail outright will often become trapped in survival mode, existing month-to-month and order-to-order without growing their revenues or the amount of people that they hire.

That is the role that business accelerator support firms have to play in the market. Business accelerators are companies that offer support and assistance in growing early-stage business. They not only work with the entrepreneur to build a bankable business and then support the fund raising effort, but also provide ongoing strategic, management and operational support that helps them to grow into the future.

Some even have back-office hubs that can take on the management of non-core processes for the entrepreneurial business on an outsourced basis. That means the entrepreneur can focus on what he or she is good at, without worrying that the operational or financial aspects of the business are being neglected. Without accurate and reliable financial information, businesses can make costly mistakes. Back-office administration is an often neglected and distracting non-core activity. Accelerators can take care of this activity for companies, thus improving their chances of survival and growth.

Holding out for an angel
Funding is an issue, of course. Venture capitalists may offer funding help to select businesses, but they don't have enough cash to go around. There is a strong role for angel investors to play in this regard. We see angel investors and business accelerators as having complementary roles. Angel investors benefit from working with business accelerators, as the commercial support that the acceleration service offers will improve the chances of commercial success and reduce risks. Ultimately, we believe that supporting start-up and early-stage entrepreneurial companies is critical to the country's future. Small businesses are the engines of growth in any economy - they could help to create new jobs that make up for those lost in sunset industries such as mining and clothing and textiles manufacture. To succeed, however, they need help. It's the rare business that can lift itself up by its bootstraps. Most entrepreneurs need support and funding if they are to achieve their true potential.
September 2010

Carien Engelbrecht, Co-owner Director of Strategy and Business Acceleration for Aurik Business Incubator

Typically, early-stage businesses are too young to qualify for venture capital and cannot afford consulting-based commercial support. This "skill and equity gap" has proven to be the death knell of many an entrepreneurial dream. Many smaller businesses that stumble over these obstacles might have succeeded with more assistance in their early stages. In a South African economy that has shed nearly one million jobs as a result of the global recession the unnecessary failure of a start-up business should be seen as a tragedy. We need to look ways of enabling small businesses with great ideas and a lack of resources to turn into great companies.

Accelerated growth
The challenges that small businesses face are not related only to money. They're often established by someone who is a superb technician or engineer, but who lacks expertise in operations, finance, sales and marketing. In addition, a great business needs good back-office infrastructure to support its growth. Good financial managers, sales representatives and marketing professionals can be expensive to hire. A business accelerator will provide hands-on and strategic help around these areas, giving the business a better shot at success.

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A series of articles on the rise of the Chery automobile

Review of Chery's Market Performance
by Howard Keeg

In the first half of 2010, sales volume in China’s car market surpassed 9 million units, startling the world yet again.
Also in Q2, QQ3’s average monthly sales volumes reached 11,000 units, which directly contributed to Chery’s sales volumes of 308,900 units in H1. In April, the growth rate of China’s car market, which had grown speedily for more than a year, started to slow down. In May particularly, mainstream carmakers’ sales volumes declined. Against this backdrop, Chery products still experienced stable growth. This increased levels of independent brand carmakers’ confidence and accentuated Chery’s indispensable role in the Chinese market.

uring the first half of this year, China’s car output hit 8.4722 million units, up 49% year-on-year, with growth rates going up by 34 percentage points. Car sales hit 9.0162 million units, up by 48% compared to the same period last year, with growth rate increasing 30 percentage points. From the market data we can see that market shares of independent passenger car brands ranked first place from January to June, and that sales volume rocketed to 3.1823 million units, sharing 47.35% of the total sales volume in the Chinese passenger car market. In addition, Chery was shown as the leader among China’s independent car brands, achieving a sales volume of 308,900 units, which shows an increase of 46.25% from the sales volume (211,200 units) of last year, and achieving higher levels as compared to previous corresponding periods.

D

Spotlight: All-round Resurgence in International Market
In H1, China’s car exports indicated an increasing trend, what with the rejuvenation of the global economy in 2010. This is also indicative of Chery’s car sales: in June, Chery’s export volume hit 8053 units, representing a year-on-year increase of 106%. In H1, Chery’s cumulative export volume amounted to 38,107 units, up 154.3% on a year-on-year basis and higher than the growth rate of the domestic market. Chery also came in at number one amongst its counterparts in export volume. During the resurgence phase of international markets, Chery’s prominent performances as compared to its domestic counterparts not only mirrored Chery’s achievements, but also manifested Chery’s huge development potential on the international market. This resulted from its fulfillment to the “Fine Development in 2010” strategy made at the beginning of this year, targeted at “Brand, Technology, Responsibility, Internationalisation”. By the end of Q2, Chery’s total sales volumes in 2010 had surpassed 300,000 units. In the second half of 2010, Chery’s anticipated market performance against a backdrop of declining sales volumes but increasing monthly inventories in the first half, is worth waiting for. Chery’s high-end mainstream products, G3 and G6, will be successively marketed in the second half. During this time, their product line portfolio will be enhanced, having gained further market exposure. This will have a strong impact on domestic medium and high-end markets. Needless to say, with the increase in overseas factory’ production capacity and the development of a sales service network in overseas markets, Chery’s sales growth on the international market will be further accelerated in the second half. Chery’s market pattern will be more reasonable, with the internationalisation of markets, and the brand showing a more favourable development trend.

Q1 - Sales Record Hits New Profile
At the beginning of 2010, the car market in China resumed a reasonable growth period after experiencing a huge increase in 2009. Chery, as the leader among China’s independent brands, achieved sales volumes of 163,500 units in Q1, up 74.6% on a year-on-year basis and hitting a new high as compared to previous corresponding periods. The sales volumes of medium-end vehicles like Tiggo and A3 went up as a whole, and Tiggo’s sales volume hit 5,812 units in January. That being said, Chery QQ3, considered as the “King of China’s Mini Cars”, achieved sales volumes of 19,983 units, showing a robust growth rate. All in all, the fast-rate growth of sales volumes in Q1 are laying a solid foundation for Chery with regards to its annual sales goal.

Q2: Robust Market Performance
Chery’s Q2 sales volumes reached 145,349 units, representing a year-on-year increase of 23.8%. Meanwhile, Chery focused on the fast-growing SUV market, where the Tiggo performed strongly. In Q2, Tiggo’s sales volumes amounted to 12,652 units, showing significant growth as compared to the same period last year. In addition, Cowin achieved sales volumes of 15,764 units in May, with average monthly sales volumes surpassing 10,000 units.

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2010

34

September

2010

Tony’s

Take

The Pseudo-Science of Slaughtering Scapegoats
by Tony Twine

If this was a script for a Sunday morning religious radio programme, it would begin with the explanation that the ancient Jewish community would sacrifice a goat as a symbol of getting rid of all the sins of the community, hence the expression scapegoat, which was short for escape-goat. An array of serious minded South African industrialists appear to have selected the exchange rate of the Rand as their particular scapegoat, but the question burns as to whether the currency or the industrialists are the guilty parties.
If correlation was a measure of causality, the 3rd chart might be taken to indicate that the performance of the real external value of the Rand drives the performance of the accumulated gross domestic product of the G7 countries. What a powerful position the little old South African monetary sector would be in. But it may well be more sensible to suspect that the performance of the G7 economies, as represented by their cumulative GDP, might influence the external value of the Rand, rather than the causality being the other way around. Which takes us to chart 4, which reflects the high level of positive correlation between G7 GDP performance and South Africa’s exports. Will weakening the Rand exchange rate push G7 GDP growth upwards? Probably not, but improved G7 GDP growth will probably push the external value of the Rand downwards. Intervening in the external value of the Rand would simply be making believe that the G7 economies were doing well, which they are not. The problem with intervening in the price of the currency is that, if it is weakened to hide the fact that industries in an economy are weak, the attempt to camouflage the weakness of producers comes back to bite the entire economy in the leg, as the prices of all imports rise.

onsider the sequence of graphics provided with this article. Chart 1 shows the enormity of the task if any meaningful intervention is to be made by any party, including government, in the foreign exchange value of the Rand. With trade in the Rand during the first quarter of 2010 averaging more than US$ 10 Billion per day, one would have to have a very large war chest to try to move the exchange rate in a direction that the market would not want it to move in. Chart 2 depicts the inverse correlation which has probably quelled the imaginations of those in favour of a weaker Rand. Between 2005 and the first quarter of 2010, there is a clear inverse correlation between the real trade weighted exchange rate of the Rand and the absolute level of South African exports. The solution to escalating export values must, therefore, be childishly simple – weaken the exchange rate of the Rand to drive exports upward. Unfortunately, childish might be the operative word. Correlations measure the arithmetic values of sympathetic or antipathetic movements of variable values. They do not measure causality, or what drives what.

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36

September

2010

Tony’s
Could it be that the industrialists on the bandwagon of the anthem for a weaker Rand are perhaps trying to run their business operations in a manner better fitting the period 1979 to 2001, during which the rand only ever weakened on an annual average basis? This provided a “natural” barrier to imports, but really did very little to stimulate exports, or we should have become one of the most powerful industrial export economies in the world. How about this as an alternative that will not impinge broadly on all consumers and foreign investors as heavily as weakening the Rand? Tax the imports of all goods that can realistically be manufactured in South Africa, and subsidise the export of those goods via the tax revenue. O, oops! Sorry, we tried that – it was called the MIDP. It got bombed by a Canberra.

Take

Answer

from page 10

September

2010

37

weighty

issues

by Frank Beeton

The Many Puzzles of the 2010 Truck Market
In all the years that I have been involved with analysing and forecasting the South African Truck Market for commercial vehicles over 3,5 tons Gross Vehicle Mass, the Year 2010 has presented one of the most challenging scenarios to understand, and predict.
19,5%, and Bus sales improved by just less than 79%. This profile was somewhat surprising. There was an expectation that MCV and HCV sales would be “helped” by lastminute SWC preparations, as these distribution class vehicles would be most commonly utilised for delivering supplies to the SWC stadia. With construction of the latter completed well in time for the opening ceremony on June 11th, XHCV volumes, which include construction-specific tippers and truck mixers, could have been expected to moderate. The increase in Bus sales was, however, predictable, given the considerable numbers of vehicles that were delivered to PRASA, Autopax and the Gautrain operation in recent months, even though the 32 specially imported Hyundai World Cup team coaches were not recorded in the NAAMSA market reports. With those results behind us, it was time to look ahead to the second half of 2010. Initially, there had been some fears of a “mirror image” pattern, with the intensified selling rate anticipated just before June being followed by a slump. In the event, however, with the notable exception of Bus sales, this did not happen, so we had to think again. One of the pleasing aspects of the 2010 market has been the stability shown in June and July, two months in which considerable distraction from the selling task was to be rationally expected. As it turned out, volumes of 1 880 and 1 771 units respectively were not far off the peak of 2 150 units recorded in March. This has given us hope that the “mirror image” will not happen, and that normality from August onwards will allow for some margin of growth. Significantly, the substantially improved XHCV performance reflects a more supportive financing environment for these R1 million-plus vehicles. One of the features of the 2009 market, which fell back to levels last seen in 2004/5, was the credit restrictions that severely impacted the sales of premium payload units. During the early months of 2010, we saw an aggressive move by Wesbank into commercial vehicle financing. Prior to this, the “Wheels Bank” had been notably conservative in its engagement with the heavier side of the business, and the change of heart was welcomed in the industry. Several vehicle manufacturers had resorted earlier to offering their own in-house financing facilities to intending purchasers, but the Wesbank move held out promise for those vehicle distributors who did not enjoy this option. While we are resigned to a substantial decrease in bus sales activity in the second half of 2010, our expectations for growth in the total market have become slightly more comfortable. Back in May, Econometrix’ macro economic model was suggesting a total market in excess of 22 000 units, but this will have to be moderated somewhat to accommodate our second-quarter overrun of around 1 000 units. In any event, we believe that most players in the industry will be very pleased if the market were to reach a level of 21 000 units in 2010, which would result in year-on-year growth of more than 10% over 2009.

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uch of the blame can, of course, be laid at the door of the Soccer World Cup tournament, which totally dominated our national life for four weeks in June and July. However, in the run-up, there were so many unanswered questions about the country’s ability to deliver a successful event, and if it could, how many foreign visitors would arrive to watch it. This created a great deal of uncertainty in the local business community, which was duly reflected in a number of published confidence indices as we waited to see what would happen.

To make things worse, the market, which had shown some early signs of growth, flattened out after peaking in March, and refused to exhibit any clear evidence of “panic buying” as local business confronted its SWC commitments. A substantial factor supporting the first half-year’s market stability was to be found in the Bus segment, where nearly 1 000 units were delivered to support SWC activities and the new Bus Rapid Transit projects being rolled out in several cities. At the convenient milestone which presented itself at the end of June, a year-on-year comparison with the equivalent first six-month period of 2009 revealed an increase of 9,3% in overall volume, but, as usual, the devil was in the segmentation detail. While the entry-level Medium Commercial segment suffered a decline of 1,9%. and cruiserweight Heavy Commer-cial sales fell by a more substantial 3,2%, volumes in the premium Extra Heavy segment rose by

38

September

2010

Life

Goes

on

by Austin Gamble

Each month, NAAMSA issues its New Vehicle Sales Report, which provides the unit sales by manufacturer. I find this document a fascinating read, but recently the most fascinating part is the last line, denoted as AMH & AAD.
What is not mentioned is the relentless pressure from the suits in Seoul. In my column in the June 2010 issue of ABR, I quoted CEO Alan Ross, “impossible targets are the way they do business”. This is reinforced by the motivational messages hanging on the walls of Stanley Anderson’s office; the most succinct being “Good is the Enemy of Great”. It is clear that Stanley subscribes to this, as he enthusiastically tells me about Hyundai’s “modern premium” product philosophy, which offers the perfect combination of fresh ideas, novel solutions and top technology, all packaged in a hard to resist value for money lure.

Good is the Enemy of Great

uly 2010 NAAMSA sales were 35 555 units, but when the AMH and AAD numbers are added, the industry total climbs to 41 367. The extra 5 812 units make up a significant 14% of the total. NAAMSA adds a memo breaking this figure down into small cars (2120), medium cars (624), large cars (100), 4x4 recreational/SUV (1 115), and LCV (624). What is left unsaid is that the big elephant in the room is Hyundai. To get more clarity on this egg dance, I visited Stanley Anderson, Hyundai South Africa’s Director of Marketing. Stanley Anderson attributes Hyundai’s success to its range of vehicles, which in the current buying down trend, puts Hyundai in the pound seats. A quick look at the Hyundai website confirms this prognosis. Just look at this range, and the pricing levels: Atos i10 Getz Accent i20 Elantra i30 iX35 H1 Wagon H100 Bakkie H1 Panel Van R91 900 R105 900 – R126 900 R127 900 – R143 900 R146 900 – R169 900 R149 900 – R159 900 R189 900 R189 900 – R229 900 R239 900 – R369 900 R295 900 – R359 900 R148 900 – R176 900 R236 900

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Stanley Anderson, Hyundai South Africa’s Director of Marketing Hyundai’s association with this event has increased the brand awareness and image considerably, with Anderson reporting “a drastic increase in showroom traffic”. He continues, “it was an opportunity to connect with the people, and we leveraged off the Hyundai Goodwill Ball, taking it to all the major shopping centres around the country”.

The Theta-II GDI (Gasoline Direct Injection) engine which goes into the Sonata available in America. This engine boosts fuel economy by 10%, whilst reducing emissions by a whopping 30%. The bad news is that this engine will not be coming to South Africa anytime soon, purely because of the high sulphur content in South African petrol. This highlights the contradictory and hypocritical nature of the decision by the authorities to tax emissions, whilst not punishing the refineries for not being able to deliver cleaner fuel.

We’re in a good place
A little “lig in die broek” on the commercial vehicle side, but all that is missing in the passenger car line-up is a luxury sedan, and guess what? – the new Sonata is just around the corner! As Stanley says, “We’re in a good place”. Not an understatement, considering the fact that in the first six months of 2010, Hyundai increased its market share by 45%. Having a good range is one thing, but there are other strong factors assisting the surge, not least the sponsorship of the FIFA World Cup.

40

September

2010

AIDC

Quiz

by Roger McCleery

Roger McCleery asks the questions
See how many of these 20 Questions you can answer.
1. What was South Africa’s top selling motor car (for the 3rd month in a row) in July? 2. Name the country that has more oil than all the Middle Eastern regions together. 3. Where was the recent Cars in the Park Motor Show held? 4. Who led the World F1 Championship at the start of the mid-season summer break? 5. Where was he born? 6. Who won the first Formula 1 modern Grand Prix 60 years ago? 7. What was he driving? 8. From what town did the famous Mille Miglia start and finish? 9. What make of British/German car is returning to the World Rally Championship in 2011 on a limited basis? 10. What make of car won the South African Car of the Year in 2010? 11. What Italian motorcycle company wants to sign up Valentino Rossi? 12. KTM Motorcycles have just produced a high performance car with a 2 litre Volkswagen engine? What is this model called? 13. What motor company makes aircraft, cars, power products (engine generators and water pumps), quads and motorcycles? 14. How many motorcycles does Honda make per annum? 15. Who makes Subaru motor cars? 16. Name the new MD of Geely cars in South Africa. 17. What company continued to make the Jeep after World War II? 18. Where was the first traffic light established in the world? 19. What famous Alfa Romeo model is soon to be introduced into South Africa? 20. Name two Indian motor manufacturers represented in South Africa.

Answers on page 90
42
September 2010

Tyre

Talk

Where did all the tyres go?
Stockpiles of tyres now look like an investment.
t used to be that all a farmer needed to do to get a gratis truck load of scrapped tyres was to make one phone call to the nearest tyre factory or local dealer. Tyres that had no life left thus got recycled to be used in embankments, soak pits, woven bakkie-mats or turned-out as cattle feed stations. Nowadays, however, everyone has only a limited supply of old tyres. This while small mountains of scrapped tyres have been noted at cement kilns. Could it be that the industry is readying itself for the new dawn of tyre recycling by stockpiling rubber? This long-awaited dawn will break as soon as the Department of Environmental Affairs announces the start of its approved plan to manage scrapped tyres on rim sizes from 8 inches to 25 inches. The only question which the DEA still has to answer is how much the vehicle owner will have to pay extra on each tyre to fund all this order. Already dubbed the “Green Fee”, (not to be confused with the Green Tax on exhaust emissions), this amount will be levied on all passenger and commercial vehicle tyres which were produced by the subscribers to the DEA’s approved integrated plan. The Waste Tyre Regulation calls on all tyre producers, including both manufacturers and importers, to subscribe to a plan. With the notable exception of the Tyres Dealers and Fitment Association, more than 85% of South Africa’s tyre producers and importers have already subscribed to the non-profit company’s Integrated Waste Tyre Management Plan. The subscribers include Goodyear and Rubber Resources, who crumbs Goodyear reject truck tyres in Port Elizabeth and is currently the only tyre crumbing facility in South Africa. Producers that join the SATRP Plan will only start paying a green fee on tyres imported or manufactured, when that catSeptember 2010

by Alwyn Viljoen

I

egory of tyres is phased into the collection process. Meanwhile, tyre dealers continue to sell tyres with sufficient tread to guys who may or may not have re-grooving tools. Hermann Erdmann, spokesman for the Tyre Dealers and Fitment Association, said this currently “unofficial recycling” formed part of the official plan they had submitted to DEA as it creates hundred of jobs in the informal sector. The DEA did not approve. Albi Modise, chief director of communications at the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA), told ABR that only one of the four plans which the department received had met all the criteria set out in the regulations governing waste tyres, namely the plan developed by Dr Ettienne Human for the section 21 company, SA Tyre Recycling Programme (SATRP). The SATRP is currently issuing tenders to establish registered waste-tyre collection agents and accredited waste-tyre users in each province. A leaflet distributed by the SATRP includes crumbing as one of the many ways to clean up South Africa’s old tyres.

Soon, everyone will be fighting to recycle this tyre.
“Dealers will be able to get rid of waste tyres, without cost to them, waste tyre transporters and processors will create jobs, waste tyre processors will receive a virtually free supply of rubber, roads will be safer and, last but not least, South Africa will boast a cleaner, healthier environment,” reads the pamphlet. The Earthlife Africa Toxics Group begs to differ: The group understands “waste tyre processors” to mean cement kilns and sees crumbing as only the first step to supply the kilns with suitably grated rubber. It has issued its own pamphlet which states: “Burning tyres in cement kilns is not ‘recycling’ or a sound disposal solution. Toxic by-products are created and dispersed to enter the food chain and our bodies. Cement factories in other countries that are permitted to burn tyres and other wastes have been unable to consistently stay within emission limits,” and adds that:“South Africa must, as a signatory to the Stockholm Convention, REDUCE the production of Dioxins and Furans, which tyre burning increases.” alwynjsviljoen@gmail.com is an awardwinning transport and travel writer

43

What’s

the

Buzz?

WATCH OUT FOR ROAD DAMAGE AND ITS EFFECT ON YOUR TYRES
Bad weather can cause potholes of all sizes on many roads including motorways, so truck drivers need to take extra care when driving to avoid damage to their trucks. Tyres are especially at risk, because sharp edges and deep potholes can damage the tread or the sidewalls. "The holes in the road surface mean that tyres and rims in particular suffer," warns Björn Bolze, head of Customer Service for Tyres at Continental Tyre. "Moreover, if the tyres have insufficient pressure, there is a risk that the tyre sidewall will be squashed and damaged. In extreme cases this can lead to tyre failure. Low speed reduces the risk." Bolze says the rims may also be damaged in the process of driving over a pothole - and with expensive alloys, consequential costs may be high. This is a good reason for checking tyre pressure more often than usual in order to protect the tyre and spot creeping pressure loss. According to Bolze, "Taking potholes too widely may endanger cyclists or oncoming traffic. Tailgating the vehicle in front is now even riskier than usual, as loose chippings and/or larger chunks of tarmac may be thrown up from the road - causing damage to paintwork or even cracks in the glass in extreme cases. Brian Clarke, General Sales Manager : CVT at Continental Tyre agrees, “Damage to truck tyres can be caused by potholes, rocks and stones in the road, loose metal objects in the road, the edges of tar on the sides of the road, curbs and loading bay walls and rails and loose nails and other rubbish in delivery and collection yards. “All these hazards can damage and in some cases destroy a tyre. If one of these hazards are run over or hit, check the tyres at the next stop. If it was a major impact, you should stop as soon as possible and check for damage,” advises Clarke. Clarke notes that hitting potholes can result in impact fractures. “Look for up and down splits on the sidewall and cracking across the tread," he suggests. Hitting rocks and stones can cut treads or sidewalls. Sharp rocks can also penetrate the tread and cause deflation or even burst the tyre. “Look at the tread of the tyre for tears or cuts and similar damage as well as cuts and injuries on the sidewalls. Stone cause the same impact problems as potholes so look for the same type of damage. “It is important to always check dual wheels for rocks or similar objects that might have been lodged between them, as this can cause severe damage to both tyres,” notes Clarke. Running over metal objects usually results in tread cut damage and they can also flick up and cut the sidewall. Driving tyres over curbs or brushing against the sides of curbs is one of the most common forms of tyre damage. Driving over curbs can destroy the outer ribs of the treads, while brushing against a curb can result in sidewall cuts and puncturing. “Important for truck drivers to note is that driving in the yellow lines is not only a dangerous driving practice but it can also severely damage tyres. If a tyre is driven off the tar, the outside portion of the tread may get damaged as well as possible damage to the sidewalls. “Practiced drivers should never drive in the yellow lines. They should also ensure they are driving smoothly without harsh braking, rapid acceleration or rapid cornering. This will also greatly enhance tyre life as well as fuel consumption and ensure drivers get their safely,” adds Clarke.

NeilPryde to set sails on two wheels: BMW Group subsidiary DesignworksUSA develops two high-performance road bikes in collaboration with the windsurfing champion.
Whenever equipment for high-performance water sports is the issue, the name NeilPryde immediately comes to mind. The expertise acquired by the company during the past 40 years in the field of sports performance, wind management, aerodynamics and lightweight construction, will soon be available to the cyclist on the road. The leading water and adventure sports manufacturer has ventured into new terrain. NeilPryde has launched two high-performance road bikes, which have been developed in collaboration with the Singapore-based studio of DesignworksUSA, a BMW Group subsidiary. The bikes were presented to the public at the Vatenfall Cyclassics, which took place in Hamburg in August 2010. As is the case with all NeilPryde water sports products, design also plays a significant role in the manufacture of bikes. Whether automobile, surfboard or bike, design is the crucial factor for making a purchase decision. The team at DesignworksUSA regarded the project as a particularly exciting challenge. It was not simply a matter of product design, but all about visually interpreting the successful enterprise’s brand identity within a new industry and significantly and sustainably shaping the future face of NeilPryde on the asphalt. The first two models from the NeilPryde road bike series can be pre-ordered worldwide on the Internet at www.neilprydebikes.com (delivery scheduled to commence mid September 2010).

Don’t let incorrect battery advice cost you money
Thousands of functional batteries are wasted each year due to incorrect advice given to battery owners. Many batteries that are thought to be faulty and that require jump-starting often are not performing efficiently due to a faulty charging system. The battery itself is in perfect working order. Also, simple maintenance procedures can lengthen the life of a battery. Battery Centre’s Marketing Director, Andrew Webb, has the following tips to ensure motorists’ batteries last as long as possible.

Keep it clean and dry - Check the condition of the battery’s terminals. If they are corroded, they need to be cleaned with a wire brush or battery cleaner spray. “Corrosion prevents the free flow of current through the battery, reducing the amount of power available to start the car”, explains Webb. The entire battery should be kept clean and dry to ensure it can deliver maximum power.

Know how to jump-start - Jump-starting incorrectly is dangerous and can cause damage to the vehicle's electrical system. If the vehicle needs
to be jump-started, first check the manufacturer’s guidelines to prevent injury and vehicle damage.

Monitor terminals - Check if your battery terminals are tight. Loose connections result in loss of power. It’s best to check these connections often. Also ensure that the battery fits snugly in the battery tray. If there is movement the connections may become loose. Get it tested - Batteries should be tested at least once a quarter. Battery Centre offers this service for FREE. Batteries should also be tested before
a long trip to avoid battery failure and becoming stranded out of town.

Make sure before you toss it - Batteries that need jump-starting in colder months aren’t necessarily destined for recycling. Battery failure can
be a result of a faulty charging system. Again, visit your nearest Battery Centre and have this checked for FREE. “If a motorist doesn’t have time for battery maintenance, or if they have a high powered vehicle, such as a 4x4 or classic car, we recommend a more powerful battery. The Raylite Ultimate batter, with AGM technology produces 30% more current and requires no maintenance. And it lasts up to 30% longer. Visit Battery Centre for some expert advice from our battery fitment technicians, call toll free on 0800 112 600 or visit batterycentre.co.za”, concludes Webb.

44

September

2010

WIlde

Things

Cash Rhino –
by Fingal Wilde

Treasury’s New Term for the Motor Industry
system is implemented, we’re going to cough up more for those nice gentlemen to get rid of our smelly polluting tyres, with Vat added, of course. The mind has gone beyond boggling, but I am sure that in some smoke filled room in the bowels of the Department of Motor Industry Screwing, new and more devious tax plots are being hatched. Someone needs to stand up and say no more, otherwise before we know it, we shall all be cycling our way to work, and having to scatter when the blue light brigade comes past – yes, the fat cats in government will still be on the road, as they will survive. But we won’t, because the motor industry is no longer a cash cow, it has been added to the endangered species, and can now be called a cash rhino. Maybe I shouldn’t have mentioned cycling – this will give the guys ideas.

ABR’s esteemed contributor on all things economic Tony Twine, did a very interesting article in the April 2010 issue of South Africa’s premier automotive aftermarket publication, titled Déjà vu and the Fiscal Cash Cow, whereby he gleefully dissected the facts about taxation on the automotive industry and the long suffering motorist.
ony analysed all the taxes that our profligate government levies on a vehicle during its lifetime, from factory floor to scrapyard, and he came to the shocking conclusion that the major cost component, by far, for the industry and the motorist is, you guessed it, taxes. A very sad state of affairs, paying for the affairs of state, and the state president, but our fiscus is apparently far from satisfied. It appears that they are all for getting blood out of a stone, because despite the inordinate amount already extorted, yes, you heard me, EXTORTED, from this convenient cash cow, Pravin and his cohorts believe that the well is not yet dry. In September the emissions tax, Vat and all, will come into effect, under the disgraceful subterfuge of environmental concern. Then, after a short period to allow for belt

T

Pravin Gordham is a big game hunter, and is going after the cash rhino. notches to be adjusted, the Gauteng motorist will be stung very severely for having the temerity to drive on the roads already adequately funded from other tax sources. And for those non-Gautengers who are looking on with a smile, enjoy it while it lasts, because this is a sting that will soon be coming to a road near to you. Other nasty surprises are also around the corner – once the tyre waste disposal

Schengen Schadenfreude
nternational travel is becoming increasingly unpleasant, what with the security checks and delays which have become par for the course, and the added ignominy of dreadful organic compounds euphemistically delivered as airline meals. But another torture awaits South African travellers, in the form of the Visa application. Last year I travelled to the UK, and I had to suffer the humiliation of being treated as some sort of criminal, merely because I wanted to visit that blighted isle to see my first grandchild. And they charge you money to insult you! But wait, this was pure nirvana compared to my recent experience with the German Embassy. Simply because I needed to travel to this strange land of leather seated men to attend the Automechanika show (and to assist their economy!), I had to
September 2010

I

once again part with my hard earned money to acquire a Schengen Visa. What an experience. It starts with a shakedown at the security gate, where the security guard offers parking inside in exchange for a small informal fee. Then, heaven help you if you do not arrive exactly ten minutes before time. If you’re early, you’re told to pay penance downstairs until it’s your time. I’d hate to know what happens if you’re late, and I’m not prepared to find out. Once your number is called out, you have to stand for the interrogation, and take some flak from a Rosa Klebb clone with absolutely no sense of humour and the inability to understand the concept of flexibility. Despite the fact that I have been staying at the same bed and breakfast in Frankfurt for some 20 years, the mere fact that I could not provide a postal code

(which could have easily been looked up on the internet, which I did as soon as I was back in the office – you cannot use your cell phone at the embassy!) – made me think that I had mistakenly entered bin Laden as my surname. I had to make the trek to Pretoria once again for this serious offence. I was very angry at the time, but upon reflection I realised that the problem does not lie with the Schengen states, nor the UK, nor the US, nor the Aussies – the problem lies with us. Or more specifically the problem lies with our dysfunctional, corrupt, inefficient, and disgraceful Department of Home Affairs, which issues false passports like sweets. I even wonder how legitimate my passport really is. Sies.

45

Intelli-Driving

by Eugene Herbert

Low Risk Driving produces what most businesses want a better, Triple Bottom Line
Crashing this year will have a direct effect on pushing up costs in the future. Traffic accidents are one of the leading causes of death & serious injury in South Africa. The latest figures indicate that the cost to the Government is anywhere between R 43 million and R 70 million a year Low Risk Drivers on the other hand tend towards 'Y'. That is, they tend not to rush, their overall travelling speeds are lower and their behaviour is demonstrably more socially desirable. Low Risk Drivers are supportive and adaptive. They acknowledge the diversity of road users and consider the needs and weaknesses of others. They look for opportunities to "let people in", and adopt a collaborative rather than combative disposition. They drive more carefully, crash less, and are usually much less stressed. Sometimes, they choose not to drive at all if there is a better alternative. Low Risk Drivers understand how their choices impact on the Triple Bottom Line Financial, Environmental & Social. Not only do they understand the impact of their choices, they are motivated to make a difference So what do you think - a new year’s resolution worth implementing? Till next time - safe driving.

The term Triple Bottom Line refers to optimising efficiencies in three separate, but related areas of management – Financial, Environmental, Social.

C

onsider the following; Driver 'X' is on the road a lot of the time, and operates under steady pressure to meet targets. As a result, 'X' feels the need to rush frequently. Rushing uses more fuel, promotes wear & tear, and increases the likelihood of crashing. This person's operating style has a direct impact on the businesses Triple Bottom Line. If we look in a little more detail, we can see that something as simple as rushing impacts on the TBL in the following ways; rushing uses more fuel, produces more toxic gases, particulates and noise. The increased wear & tear on the vehicle will require more frequent replacement of consumable items such as tyres, brakes, clutches and lubricants. In all of the instances noted above, a clear link can be seen between both the financial & environmental factors. However, what about the social or human impact of rushing? Drivers who feel the need to rush are usually more stressed than drivers who don't feel that way. Stressed drivers tend to be more aggressive, competitive and even combative on the roads. Stress causes higher blood pressure which in turn is linked to heart disease and stroke.

They will be less likely to "let someone in" a socially desirable trait, and more likely to "keep someone out", or, "rush yellow lights" both dangerous habits to develop. Ask yourself this question; if driver 'X' was in a vehicle with your company name on the side, how would you feel about 50 or 100 of these drivers representing you or your shareholders? Your employees' observable behaviour may well be in considerable conflict with your organization’s values. It goes without saying that crashing costs money. Lost time, medical expenses, vehicle repairs & depreciation are all obvious costs associated with crashing. But what about the hidden costs? Work cover premiums and vehicle insurance are tied to past performance.

Drivers who operate under pressure often think more about their own needs when driving, than the needs of others.

the

Buzz?

TOYOTA TEACH PRIMARY SCHOOL PROJECT GATHERS MOMENTUM
Toyota South Africa Motors (TSAM) will increase its focus on the better education of primary school children in rural KwaZulu-Natal, says Jenny Maré, General Manager: Corporate Affairs at TSAM. Speaking during an exploratory visit to a number of schools supported by TSAM, or so-called Toyota Teach Schools, Maré highlighted the company’s focus on education as a cornerstone of economic and political stability. The exploratory visit was dubbed the Hilux Gives Back-initiative, which seeks to acknowledge the important role of employees in rural KwaZulu-Natal in the success of Toyota in South Africa. The Hilux, who recently celebrated 40 years of success in South Africa, remains South Africa’s most popular vehicle and is manufactured at Toyota’s Prospecton Plant in KwaZulu-Natal. “It was the late Dr. Albert Wessels, the founder and CEO of Toyota South Africa that first identified education as a key focal point of our social development agenda. This has remained over the years and although we have various projects that focus on the primary, secondary and tertiary education sectors, we believe that our Toyota Teach Primary School Project or TTPSP remains the flagship of our corporate social responsibility programmes.”

48

September

2010

Tyres
t is also perhaps the right time to mention the overlooked importance of tyre staff throughout the country. In all fleets big or small, heavy trucking or parcel service the tyre staff usually take a back seat. They are commonly on minimum wage, have minimum training, get the worst place on the premises to work in and have lousy working hours, often working weekends too. Most tyre stores are poorly equipped with the minimum basics needed to fit and remove tyres, being dirty, hard manual labour. It should however be more important to the fleet owner, and it should be a job of high skill if done correctly. Skill of course needs to be taught and only well trained staff become highly skilled staff.

and Their Contribution to Safety in Motoring www.bridgestone.co.za

Marcus Haw

This month we continue with the responsibilities of tyre staff in a fleet.

I

the country. It is time for fleet owners to become proactive as they carry the real responsibility. Road safety as well as tyre safety begins with the basics; like the maintaining of clean rims which allows the tyre to seat cleanly and surely in the rim flange. Basics like keeping the tyres themselves clean and preserving their longevity. Basics like using a torque wrench instead of long pole on the end of a wheel spanner. The basic use of air tools to mainly loosen wheel nuts, and never to tighten them with. Many small basic factors which enhance the safety of your fleet, and will make sure that you save money in the long term. But getting the basics right requires staff training. It is up to fleet management to get the training right. What one wants is tyre staff that understands and knows what to do, how to do it and very importantly why it should be done. This should include everything from the tyres themselves, through to the ancillary components, to a basic understanding of the wheel and suspension components which have any effect on the tyres. Again this requires training. The correct approach to tyre management, which is barely practiced anywhere, should not be underestimated. Tyres are what keep the wheels rolling and the business going. Your tyre staff is directly and indi-

rectly responsible for the safety of your vehicle and your transport personnel’s safety. They could also be responsible for the death of some innocent road user. Don’t underestimate the worth or importance of your tyre staff. We as South Africans in the transport industry, in all its various shapes and forms, need to take on a new approach. We are too often complacent and should rather start making changes to the way we do business. With our history of road accidents and breakdowns in the transport sector in general, it would seem wise to look to ourselves and try and improve matters. Instead we carry on as before, doing things as they have always been done, and generally hiding from the consequences. It’s time to change. The consequence of poor tyre maintenance is road accidents. The consequence of poor tyre staff is poor tyre maintenance. Take the lead and train your tyre staff. Give them the recognition they deserve. Accept that they are working with safety critical items and they are carrying huge responsibility. Give them that responsibility and let them own it. You will reap the benefits of safer, more reliable and more economical running of your fleets. And you’ll be a leader in your field and hopefully start a trend. A trend of safety, particularly Tyre Safety.

We’ve often said that tyres are all that keep vehicles on the road. Vehicles in fleets are worth a fortune. In most cases, tyres in a fleet are the third highest running cost. It does not make sense to take the most safety critical product on your vehicle, which is your third highest cost, and give it to the people considered the least trained. They are normally expected to do the best job they can, at all hours including the weekends. Tyre staff should carry more status and they should be well trained to become highly skilled in working with life saving components. They need to understand what they are working with. They need to understand the importance of their responsibilities. The way things are currently, it is unrealistic and unfair to expect professional work from any tyre fitter in

50

September

2010

the

Buzz?

CONTROL INSTRUMENTS LAUNCHES WARRANTY CALL CENTRE FOR WHOLESALERS
Control Instruments Automotive, the subsidiary of JSE-listed Control Instruments and the manufacturer and supplier of Gabriel shock absorbers, has launched a retail warranty call centre and careline for all Gabriel aftermarket products. “While the call centre is aimed at Gabriel’s retail partners to provide a swift warranty claim process, it will be beneficial to consumers and channel partners as well,” says Sean Staley, brand manager for Gabriel. “The call centre will provide a streamlined process for all retail outlets to log information for warranty claims during and after hours and receive an immediate response and authorisation and will include a stock shortage care line service.” Staley says the company is ISO 14001, ISO9000 and TS standards approved. “This puts us in good standing with the requirements of the pending Consumer Protection Act (CPA) which is aimed at protecting the consumer. Much of the CPA legislation is already adhered to in terms of the Gabriel’s internal safety, quality control and warranty standards. Safety has always been a key issue in the manufacture of Gabriel products and the CPA will protect the consumer from unscrupulous suppliers and private products”.

American Tyre Technology now in South Africa!
It’s finally arrived…a world-class tyre sealant technology that will save your company large amounts of money and time! Air-Seal tyre sealant is an Aramid based product (as used in bullet proof vests) that does not separate or solidify. Punctures are instantly repaired, without the use of gum, latex, glues, or cork, ensuring that idle labour and machine downtime is avoided. Our tyre sealant offers – • State-of-the-art fibres • Strength - A final seal provided by strong fibres, providing an airtight plug. • Suspension stability - A high performance sealant that will last for the life of the tyre • The only product used by the British, American Army and other large companies. • Inertness – sealant will not react chemically with any part of the tyre/wheel assembly • Corrosion protection – effectively inhibits rust and corrosion • Prevention of flats from large punctures • Extended tyre life • Eco friendly If your business has tyres working for you we will be able to help make a difference. For more information please contact us on info@airseal.co.za or visit our Website on www.airseal.co.za or contact Willie Breytenbach at 083 324 2983
September 2010

Customer C.A.R.E. Programme
– sponsored by Federal-Mogul

MODULE Fifteen: THE FORMALISATION STAGE – CONTINUED

The Hut System
epending on the size and complexity of the firm, each hut could also have smaller huts within the main huts. This must be the decision of the leader of that specific main hut. This is not a subsistence kraal, which only makes Ecstasy seat covers for its own use. This is a highly competitive kraal, selling premium quality seat covers at a competitive price, professionally marketed to people outside of the community. To do this, the entire kraal is collectively responsible for adding value to the product that it imports/manufactures, markets and sells. Therefore, even though our first priority is to look after our individual huts, and to sweep in front of the hut, we must always take cognisance of the fact that whatever we do impacts on the other huts, in some way. So we need to speak to the other huts (COMMUNICATION), and we need to allow them to sometimes help us sweep in front of our hut, and vice versa; they will sometimes need us to help them to sweep in front of their hut (CO-OPERATION). With this bit of common sense, it does not take a rocket scientist to realise how important the two C’s apply in this scenario: COMMUNICATION and CO-OPERATION become critical. This is known as the C2 cardinal rule. Our brooms can no longer be traditional – they will all need to have more than one handle! To facilitate this process, we need to identify every important task in each hut, and to designate responsibility, e.g. who is going to collect the wood for the fire, who is going to build the fire, who is going to light the fire, who is going to look after the fire, who is going to collect the water, who is going to boil the water, who is going to carry the hot water, who is going to use the water, who is going to clean the ashes, etc., etc., etc. This is a painstaking, but important task, which is actually quite simple once you’ve put your mind to it. But still time consuming. The people doing these tasks may not all come from the same hut, so the person who is in charge of the hut that the chief activity falls under, has to coordinate these activities, with the requisite co-operation from the other huts that need to be involved. Now we need 3 C’s: COMMUNICATION, CO-OPERATION and CO-ORDINATION, better known as the C3 cardinal rule. With C3 being of vital importance, we need to have regular meetings; in the kraal vernacular, Umhlanganos; to dovetail all of

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these activities, in our search for excellence (apologies to Peters). We have no option, as we have to strive for perfection, because there are other kraals who are also adding value to their seat covers, and we are competing for the same market.

The 21st century hut system would look something like this -

DISCUSSION POINTS
1. Rate the communication, co-operation and co-ordination that you are currently experiencing in your company. Discuss. 2. Take a relatively simple process in your company, that requires input from various departments, and break it down into its respective tasks. How would you do it differently utilising the HUT system. Discuss. 3. Is perfection attainable? Discuss. 4. Do you like competition? Discuss.

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Workshop

Update

Making South Africa a Better Place
“It is in your hands to create a better world for all who live in it, and to make a difference,” the clarion call from Madiba, is the point of departure for this campaign, and making a difference to the citizens of Springs is Mohammed Abed. This was in evidence at the first official opening of an AutoCrew workshop in Africa, situated at 100 Second Street in Springs. Mohammed was motivated to open an AutoCrew workshop from his experiences as a used car dealer. He found it difficult to find a professional workshop in Springs which could meet his exacting requirements, so he started to look around for an alternative, and this he found in the AutoCrew concept. His research convinced him that this was the best workshop concept available, and the backing of the Bosch organisation is what clinched the deal. AutoCrew Springs is now open for business, offering repairs to all vehicles under the expert eye of Service Manager Kobus du Preez, someone who has had extensive experience on Volkswagen, Toyota and Ford vehicles. Kobus and his team, comprising David, Sipho and Emmanuel, promise good service at affordable prices, with a warranty of 3 months/ 10 000km on all work done.

Wednesday 4th August 2010 was an auspicious day for South Africa, with the launch of a new initiative calling for South Africans to respect the country’s laws and to lead by example. The Lead SA call to action was created to remind every South African to challenge negative perceptions, to follow the rule of law and help change the country, and to put into effect former president Nelson Mandela’s call to the citizens of the country to be proactive about improving their lives.
Mohammed Abed receives his certificate of appointment as the first AutoCrew in Africa from Dave Stalker, representing Robert Bosch South Africa, Automotive Division. Dave told the attendees that the AutoCrew workshop concept is important to Bosch, and that they looked forward to a long term close partnership with Mohammed and his team. He pointed out that the AutoCrew concept is not new, having been established in Germany over 30 years ago, and which has now a wide footprint across Europe. He sees this concept as perfect for South Africa, with its emphasis on technical competence, high standards, and the backing of a wellknown brand and an iconic international organisation. With the Bosch philosophy that the customer is the most important person in the business, Dave reiterated that AutoCrew Springs would be an asset to the community, as it would offer consistently high technical service, with standards and equipment continuously being monitored through quality audits.
September 2010

Dave Stalker, Mohammed Abed, Kobus du Preez

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the

Buzz?

RMI CHALLENGES GOVERNMENT’S CO2 TAX PLAN
South Africa’s Retail Motor Industry organisation (RMI) has lent its full support to the urgent call by the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa) for Government to reconsider aspects of vehicle emissions tax, scheduled for implementation on September 1. Jeff Osborne, CEO of the RMI, says it is imperative that issues regarding the introduction of the tax are resolved, including Government’s abrupt decision to extend its reach to incorporate light commercial vehicles (LCVs). Further, he says motor industry sources have indicated that VAT could be payable on the tax – which will be incorporated into the selling price of the vehicle – effectively upping the cost from R75 g/km over 120g/km to R85,50 g/km. With regard to the LCV issue, Osborne says: “Currently, there is no internationally applied test-method for determining CO2 emission levels on LCVs. Accuracy in this respect is essential. On what criteria will Government base its tax system? Engine capacity alone cannot be used as a guideline, contrary to what National Treasury officials have indicated. Further, to contemplate charging VAT on emissions tax is iniquitous – yet some manufacturers in the industry have been informed that this will be the case”.

Training and development plan to enhance the overall skills and the knowledge base of BBBEE suppliers
Ford Motor Company SA and the AIDC have jointly conceived a training and development plan to enhance the overall skills and the knowledge base of BBBEE suppliers. The Gauteng government has committed R105-million to this supplier incubator and skills enhancement project. "There is a need to focus on localising as many of the components as possible, enabling sustainable development of local component manufacturing and not just the assembly of imported components. Following a drive to include local content in vehicles, there has to be a larger supplier base of required competences, which is currently lacking," says AIDC CEO Barlow Manilal. The establishment of an incubation centre to nurture black-owned component suppliers at Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa heralds a new way of stimulating the establishment of black-owned small and mediumsized enterprises in industry. This Gauteng provincial government initiative, supported by Blue IQ and the AIDC will enable industry to reduce business costs, experience growth in local volumes and potentially reduce the overall cost to produce vehicles in South Africa. The incubation centre will help to: develop existing BBBEE suppliers; assist companies to achieve the aims to increasing the sourcing of components from local suppliers; support the pairing of BBBEE companies with its Tier 1 suppliers.

CHEVROLET TO INCREASE VOLT PRODUCTION CAPACITY BY 50 PERCENT
On 30 July 2010, General Motors said that thanks to strong public interest in the Chevrolet Volt, the 540km extended range electric vehicle, it will increase U.S. production capacity of the ground breaking new car by 50 percent, from 30,000 units to 45,000 units, in 2012. The announcement came as U.S. President Barack Obama toured the Detroit-Hamtramck facility, where the Volt is being produced for sale later this year. “The Chevrolet Volt provides drivers with the latest technology, outstanding innovation, and something no other electric vehicle can provide – peace of mind,” said Edward E. Whitacre, Jr., GM Chairman and CEO. The Volt offers a total driving range of about 540km and is powered by electricity at all times. For up to the first 60km, the vehicle drives fuel- and tailpipe-emissions-free using electricity stored in its 16-kWh lithium-ion battery. When the Volt’s battery runs low, a gas-powered, engine/generator seamlessly operates to extend the driving range another 480km on a full tank.

September

2010

Vehicle

Launch

by Howard Keeg

Tweaking the Bravo – a Stunning Enigma
It stands head and shoulders above its peers, and yet does not come even close to the sales of the market leader. The variance is a mind boggling anomaly. With a lower price, more power, more torque, superior acceleration, bigger boot, equal if not superior quality, and a 30 000 km service interval vs. the new standard 20 000 km, and other extras, for some reason the Bravo does not influence the normally canny consumer. A stunning enigma.
ased on this, it is a good question to ask whether the consumer is rational or irrational. Consumer behaviour theory used to accept the theory of the "rational man" model of decision making. The whole point of economics is that people make decisions by weighing costs and benefits in a rational manner. The consumer's objective is simply to select a set of product quantities that maximise satisfaction (or utility), subject to available income. But this ignores dynamics such as personal paradigms and perceptual distortion, risk tolerance, and power relations. This behavioural component should exercise the minds of the marketers, so that they can influence the purchasing decision process.

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Making a difference
The Fiat Bravo is a classic case in point. Prior to its revamp, the Bravo was already close to perfection and comparatively superior to the market leader, so the stunning new Fiat Bravo Sport will most probably not make a difference, which equates to a long haul for the marketing team to change the dynamics. Cosmetic changes aside, the most notable difference is a softer ride and a reduction in noise. The 110kW 1.4 T-Jet engine continues to inspire, and the big and stunning 17” alloys can even be upgraded to even bigger 18” stunners. Otherwise, there is simply no reason for Fiat South Africa to change anything, except the mind-set; i.e. perceptual distortion, risk tolerance, and power relations; of the South African motoring consumer.

17” stunners

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September

2010

1

Top

Class

Topics

No Need for Dirty Hands
The modern automotive technician is now seen as an automotive doctor, and when he or she interacts with customers, dirty hands are a no-no. That is why Permatex® has introduced waterless hand cleaners for working hands.

TopClass MD, Richard Pinard

Permatex’s fast selling Fast Orange® line features a broad selection of formulas and sizes for removing the most difficult dirt, and they’ve been doing it for over 50 years, and have become in America the hand cleaner of choice for the hard working technician. Wherever hands are getting seriously dirty, there’s a place for Fast Orange, because the hard working technician needs clean hands to do other daily chores, and he needs a waterless hand cleaner that really cleans – without turning his hands into sandpaper. He needs the strength to remove grease, grime, paint, adhesives and all other dirt his working hands get into, plus conditioners to prevent cracking and drying out. In South Africa, Top Class Automotive focuses on the Permatex Fast Orange Smooth Cream Hand Cleaner, available in a 14 oz. plastic tub, and a 4.5 lb. container (product codes 33013 and 33406); and the Permatex Fast Orange Pumice Lotion Hand Cleaner, available in a 15 fl. oz. bottle, a 15 fl. oz Brush-Up® bottle with nail brush, a half gallon bottle with pump bottle, and a one gallon bottle with pump (refs. 25116, 25113, 25217 and 25218). Note: one fluid ounce = 29,57 millilitres, one gallon = 3,785 litres, one oz. = 28,35 grams, and one lb. = 0,454 kg.

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ince 1909, quality Permatex® products have been used in workshops, garages, and at racetracks around the world. Behind these products is the understanding that the automotive technician’s needs is Permatex’s primary concern. Innovation through research and development is a Permatex hallmark, and hand cleaners, whilst being considered a “soft” product, is one of the areas within which Permatex excels.

The technician who presents a professional image has the world in his hands...

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2010

by Howard Keeg

me exhaust double chro smacking Lip

pipes

A Pulsating Experience
Two months ago I had the pleasure of test driving the Citroën DS3 for a week, and I gave it a glowing report, because it is a very good car. This obviously pleased the powers that be, because for this issue I can describe my feelings towards bigger brother, the DS3 Sport, the muscular but sexy beast that pleasured me for another week.
he publicity blurb says that the DS3 forges a new path… by placing desire at the heart of the motoring experience. I agree, particularly with the DS3 Sport – its 1.6 THP 16v 115kW and 240Nm mill is an experience whether you are tootling along city roads, or powering down the freeway, and best of all, when you take flight on the national roads. What really impressed me was the phenomenal torque this six speed vehicle has. You can cruise at 2 500 rpm at 120 kph, and if need be put your foot down at these revs, and this beast responds! This equates to incredibly good fuel consumption for the power on hand, and whilst it is heavier than its smaller sibling and thus not as thrifty, the trade-off is really pretty decent. And R255 000 is a pretty decent price as well. But it is the muscular sensuousness of this car that really stirs the desire. Just take a look at the accompanying pics, and I use the words of the press release to get the juices going. Even the name of the site where the DS3 is built is enough for me. Imagine having a car that was assembled in Poissy. This alone evokes sensations and the desire to ram the car into low gear and to thrust up the highway to heaven. For this we will need to buy the optional leather gear knob at R438.50, but before we get carried away, we need to pull up the leather handbrake, and to keep the double

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chrome exhaust pipe throbbing in anticipation. Before we get onto the glistening road, we need to use the connecting box to get your blue teeth connected with the USB socket, and to get into the swing of things by running your fingers over the dashboard to get the “soft touch” effect. Use all your senses for maximum effect, and I quote, “with its sculptural styling and striking lines, the DS3 exudes enormous appeal. It is a truly distinctive vehicle with a strong personality built on original creations including a ‘floating’ roof, a ‘shark fin’ that lends vigour to the waistline, and recesses on the nose housing LED lights”. You want more? How about this, “the sophisticated instrumentation – with three conical dials on the cluster – driver-focused commands, low-set driving position and body-hugging seats lend a cockpit feel”. I don’t know about you, but I’m exhausted, so I leave the climatic last words to Citroën, “this is an expressive object that stirs the desire to travel. Taming the road so that only driving pleasure remains”. When you want to stop, the brakes will do the job, “the CITROËN DS3 is fitted with a particularly safe braking system, including a host of standard-fit features such as ESP, ABS, electronic brakeforce distribution (EBD) and emergency brake assist (EBA). This equipment helps drivers in the most difficult situations, including loss of grip”.

Just look a t those hea d side rubbin lights and chrome g strips

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Insights

A Cut above the Rest
Ribeiro Motors cc, situated at 82 Voortrekker Street Alberton, is an institution in this residential town, south east of Johannesburg. Having plied his trade in both Alrode and Alberton for the past 25 years, owner Tony Ribeiro is well known to the motorists of southern Johannesburg and its surrounds, having built up a reputation for quality workmanship and good old honest service. Ribeiro Motors is also the place to go for precision skimming of brake discs, both on and off the car, plus brake drums and flywheels. Thus it is not hyperbolic to make the statement that Ribeiro Motors is a cut above the rest.

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ony Ribeiro values his independence, but is acutely aware of the need for assistance from a larger organisation when it comes to the purchase of capital equipment and the procurement of replacement parts, with as little hassle as possible. It was this desire for a helping hand, with few strings attached, that attracted Tony to the Capricorn Society co-operative concept. In 2001, he was one of the first members to sign up for the South African chapter of the society, and he soon grew to appreciate the benefit of one account for all his purchases, seamlessly sourced via the Purple Pages. He now affectionately refers to Capricorn as “my Big Brother, but not my Boss”. This neatly encapsulates what Capricorn Society is all about – a helping hand, but not a heavy helping hand! Perfect for the workshop that wants to retain its independence.

Tony Ribeiro specialises in German vehicles, so it was no surprise to see two BMW’s side by side

Of course, Tony also loves the incentives and the Year End Function, where he can network to his heart’s content. Networking has become a critical element in today’s frenetic world with its fast technological changes, as in this informal forum new trends can be picked up early. For example, Tony’s son Angelo, who has joined the business, is part of the new generation of

technicians, who stay abreast of the latest technical info and fitment techniques via the internet, and valuable web sites and related subjects are exchanged at such functions. Tony has also noted that technicians are gravitating to two distinct areas of expertise; the technician who analyses and diagnoses, and the guys with more hands on and mechanical aptitude who do the dismantling and assembly/fitment, similar to a doctor nurse relationship. It is this enquiring mind and observation skills that has kept Tony at the head of the pack, and a big reason why he joined Capricorn Society. When asked if he would recommend Capricorn to other workshops, his reply is a no nonsense “Yes - definitely!”

Ribeiro Motors is both spacious and spotless

To join Capricorn Society Limited call André Changuion on 083 287 3498 or e-mail him at andre.changuion@capricorn.coop or visit their website on www.capricorn.com.au

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Burford

on

Brands

Mazda Mania
by Adrian Burford

I have to confess to having a soft spot for Mazda and it is therefore strange that after featuring nearly 30 brands in this column over the last three years, we are only now getting around to Mazda.
crown. Mazda’s past in South Africa is a fairly long and tortuous one: imports started in the 1960s by Illings, a subsidiary of the McCarthy Group. At R1 646 the 1200 which arrived in 1970 was really a car for bottom feeders, but they were extremely rugged and you still occasionally spot them wheezing around. Illings ultimately disappeared in the Sigma conglomerate, which became Amcar, and with the formation of the South African Motor Corporation (Samcor) out of Ford and Amcar in the mid-1980s, we entered an era of badge engineering. Samcor officially became FMCSA in 2000, the culmination of the 1994 announcement that Ford had acquired a 45 percent equity in Samcor, buying shares from Anglo American Corporation and the employees trust set up when Ford disinvested from SA in 1988. Mazda provided most of the platforms – simply because they were the better cars. Today, while Ford and Mazda have passenger car ranges which are largely unique (though the Mazda2 and Fiesta bear more than a passing resemblance under the skin) the light commercials are essentially one and the same. Mazda has, despite the ups and downs, remained a solid player in the market, though today it should arguably be having an even bigger impact on the sales charts especially with the Mazda2. Maybe the range needs a latter-day replacement for the RX2…

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suppose we all have a favourite, usually a direct result of what we learnt to drive in and what was our first car – they’re often one and the same. I learnt to drive in a Ford Cortina bakkie, but my first car was my dream car: a Mazda RX2. For those who weren’t around in the 70s and 80s, the RX2 was Mazda’s rotary-engined compact performer and ultimately the gene donor for the RX7 and, more recently, the RX8. I grew up on a diet of Kyalami race meetings so seeing the cacophonic little car in action in Lodge Group One and Star Modified racing was already deeply engrained in my synapses by the time I reached driving age. While my wealthier mates were getting Golf GTis and the poorer ones were getting handme-down Datsuns 120Ys, all I wanted was an RX2.

I can remember it coming into sight for the very first time on a Wintery day in 1985. Actually, I heard its wailing first, which was almost inevitable with a rotarypowered Mazda. Then it burst into view. Sideways. R2 000 later it was mine. But as a result of my first experience of this thirsty (it drank like a dipsomaniac on overdrive) little beige machine with the extrovert exhaust, I thought that was the way one drove all the time and believe me, I did. As it turned out, my first race car was a Capella Rotary of a slightly newer vintage and yes, I drove that sideways too. It was a good tactic and the following cars invariable thought I was about to crash out and

backed off in anticipation of the impending drama. It was a measure of the forgiving nature of the car that spins were infrequent and it is with some sadness that I note there is now just a single rear-wheeldrive car in the Mazda stable – the MX-5. But that’s one more than most rivals and the automotive world is front-drive for all but the premium brands. Mazda was one of the first Japanese brands to go frontwheel-drive for their C-segment car, launching the FWD 323 in September 1981, a full three years before the Corolla followed. In 1982, about 30 000 of these small Mazdas were sold – nearly double that of the Golf I! If you wanted something larger from the Mazda stable then you went for the popular 626, and both these badges ultimately live on in the shape of the Mazda3 and Mazda6. We also have the excellent Mazda2, a former winner of the Wesbank SAGMJ Car of the Year

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2010

Small Investment, Big Returns
All the adjectives that describe Hamish Kiddle start with a P. Passionate, Precise, Patient, Polite, all equate to Hamish being a Perfectionist and a People Person. These attributes have all contributed to the success of Car & Truck Auto, based in Geduld Street, Sasolburg.
nother word that Hamish relates to is Profit. Not in the greedy sense, but in terms of sustainability. To survive, businesses need to make a profit, and Hamish readily admits that “If I hadn’t made the change to e-CAR, I would not have survived!” He adds that becoming a member of the fastest growing workshop concept in South Africa was the best thing that he ever did, as he turned a small investment into big returns. And the motorists in Sasolburg readily agree, and are voting with their feet. Or more accurately, Customers are the lifeblood of every business, they are voting with their cars. Car & Truck Auto has and thus they require special care and special seen an increase of 200% in turnover since Hamish communication joined e-CAR some three years ago. The wise folk of Sasolburg are aware that a motor car is a big investment and that when they take their vehicles for a service or repair they look for a workshop brand that represents quality, assurance, peace of mind, value for money, and all those good things associated with a top class brand. Those good things include technical training, a 24 hour technical help line, first rate diagnostic equipment (Hamish says that Bosch is the best you can buy!), branded quality parts, a national network and a national warranty, and an empathy with the customer. Empathy is the currency Hamish deals in, and he treats every customer as special. He says that “people do not want to take their car to a ‘spanner’; they want to feel special and have peace of mind”. Thus he wants to be better than other workshops, and not just treat customers as a number. In comparison, he says, “We do a better job, and a more caring job, which ensures that our customers keep Hamish has installed a TV screen in the reception area for his customers coming back”.

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To join the fastest growing workshop network in South Africa and to add a new dimension to your business, contact Wilfried Langenbach at 086 000 3227 (086 000 ECAR)

September

2010

65

Robert

Bosch

A series of articles on the versatile FSA 720/740/754 series

The Golden Triangle – KTS, ESI[tronic], and FSA

Engine Electronics, an Exponential History
The basic concept of the internal combustion engine has been the same since it was first discovered all those years ago. The fuel is delivered into the internals of the engine where it’s ignited. This creates the power necessary to create movement. It’s actually a lot more complicated than that, but for the purpose of this article we will only be looking at the way fuel is delivered into the combustion chamber.
arlo du Plessis, from Cencar Centurion, took some time to explain the evolution of fuel supply systems to ABR. First up we have the carburettor. This system was used on engines we now refer to as homogenous motors. The carburettor sucks up fuel and air and this mixture is then compressed before it ignites. The system worked with points and condensers, which we now know is the weak link in the system. As these parts wore out, the spark changed and grew increasingly weaker. After this realisation, the conventional carburettor system was removed and replaced with a “motronic” system. This was basically the same carburettor system with the inclusion of one single injector. It was once again referred to as a homogenous motor since the one injector was relied upon to deliver fuel and air to all four (engine dependant) cylinders. Carlo remembers this as the time when engines started using an electronic ignition system. “We called them shutters and windows inside the distributer. These shutters and windows would trigger the igniters which triggered the coil.” The previous generation technology relied on weakened points and condensers to do this job, but the new system proved that a fuel delivery system could be reliable. “This reliability stems from the fact that none of the parts touch each other, which means we don’t have the same wear and tear,” says Carlo. This was, however, still not good enough for the various engine engineers around the planet. The next generation technology called for an injector per cylinder. On a four cylinder car you would have four injectors and so forth...

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“The good thing about the injector-percylinder system is the fact that it sprays sequentially,” says Carlo. “So when a piston needs fuel to suck in, it sprays from that specific injector.” This gave way to two very important steps up from previous technology. First of all, it used a lot less fuel that the single injector/carburettor system. Secondly, it was also a massive step forward in engine cooling technology. The fuel stays in the exact same place, but the air moves around the engine to where it’s needed. This was particularly good for the cooling of the intake valve. The injector-per-cylinder system, for the very first time, made a fuel delivery system “manageable.” “Now you have a computer box, which means for the first time the engine can think for itself,” says Carlo. “The carburettor couldn’t think for itself. It just delivered the same amount of fuel and air to the same cylinders. With this new system, it’s not happening.” This made it easier to pinpoint a fault in the delivery system. You have an ECU (Engine Computer Unit) that can measure the amounts of fuel given to the engine. According to Carlo, “you can retrieve this information from the ECU and it will tell you, for example, that piston number four is not receiving enough fuel from the injector.” The boffins then took it one step further. They started adding a coil per cylinder to manage the spark. On a four-cylinder engine you would now have four coils instead of the normal single unit. “So now the ECU can see that at coil one the engine is either sparking, or not sparking,” says Carlo. Basically this means the ECU can pick up if any unused fuel is left over after the injector did its job.”

Carlo du Plessis of Cencar Centurion, relies heavily on the Golden Triangle of the KTS, ESI[tronic], and FSA Bosch equipment That’s why they did it. They moved it in a direction to save fuel and to save the environment. The only way you can do this is to monitor the movement of the fuel through the ECU box.” To make the engines even more efficient, they brought out the new FSI engines. This stands for “Fully Stratified Injection.” This motor has a homogenous mode, as well as a stratified mode. The stratified mode only pulls in air to the engine, which means the compression is much higher. “Only when the cylinder pushes up, the fuel gets delivered,” says Carlo. “On those cars it’s running even lighter on fuel, but it also goes a lot quicker.” These developments have made a huge contribution to emission reduction. It has proven that we don’t necessarily have to resort to electricity, or other means of propulsion, to reduce our carbon footprint.

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2010

Launch

Update

Launch Displays at the Nelspruit Motor Show

by Matthys Ferreira

Even the lowest cost modern car technology will shame many more expensive cars of yesteryear. The secret in maintaining these cars to perhaps last as long as some of the older generation cars; requires appropriate diagnostic equipment and tools.

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aunch Tech Co. Ltd was founded in 1992 and has since become a global player in the automotive industry providing equipment and service solutions for mechanical workshops and service centres. These include diagnostic tools, wheel aligners and balancing equipment and auto transmission fluid changers. They currently have more than 400 distributors in 60 countries and are ISO 9000:2000 and QS9000 compliant. Launch Technology S.A. (Pty) Ltd, a branch of Launch Tech Co. Ltd, was established in South Africa in 2000.

Shane van Zyl with Hans Coetzee at the Launch exhibition at the Nelspruit Motor Show.

The X431 is a mobile, light and very portable unit which, when plugged into the electronic system of your car, can be used to run a general diagnostic check on the vehicle's systems or it can be used to verify the operation of specific components as per your instruction. It is even possible to shut a specific cylinder down by using electronic input via the X431. If, and Hans Coetzee (Launch Marketing Manager), Hunter Zhang (General it should not be if, you have a non-negotiable approach towards Manager), Jacky Li (Managing Director) and Shane van Zyl (Technical doing it right the first time, then you cannot do without a vehiSales Consultant). cle diagnostic tool - having one is an imperative! The X431 offers amongst others: analysis of sensors and actuators and much The parent company employs over 250 research and development more, all in the palm of your hand. The X431 comes with a 16engineers who develop and or adapt manufacturers’ software for pin connector that incorporates a BMW 16, Can-Bus II, OBD II application in their products. Says Marketing Manager Hans and Smart OBD II plugs amongst others. The X431 also offers a Coetzee, "From a development point of view, we are never behind print-out facility. the manufacturers by more than 18 months. We teach technicians how to apply and utilise our equipment to optimise productivity At a price of R38 000 excluding VAT, you will receive a powerful and affect quality repairs and servicing of their customers’ cars”. diagnostic tool to be used on a wider range of motor vehicles than Launch Technologies recently participated in the Nelspruit Motor what any other diagnostic tool offers and best of all, if you own a Show, now in its fifth year, to introduce, amongst other equipprevious generation X431, you will attract a substantial discount ment, their new X431 Master. "We have been at the show since if you were to upgrade to the Master. If business is about making the beginning and we have been seeing the results of our presence money, then using the right product for the right application is since year three. Of the service providers who use Launch prodthe methodology to support it, and Launch should be your preucts in South Africa, 70 per cent of their equipment requirements ferred supplier. are met by the company”, adds Coetzee.

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Industry

Update

Lower Premiums for SA’s Motorists
Compulsory Vehicle Insurance will
Good news at last for the South African motorist. The government’s plans to make third party vehicle insurance compulsory for all South African drivers is likely to lead to a reduction in motor insurance premiums for those motorists who are already paying to insure their vehicles.

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ccording to Leigh Friend, Johannesburg Regional Manager for MUA Insurance; the executive home and motor insurer; the fact that more vehicles will be insured means that there will be a bigger premium pot for insurers. “Ultimately what this means is that lower premiums will be passed on to consumers, as the losses of the few will be compensated by the contributions of the many.” This could not have come any sooner. With the standard of driving down and a rapidly deteriorating infrastructure, accidents are increasing. Friend says that this is compounded by an influx of new drivers with poor experience of the dynamics of driving, plus the alarming increase in unlicensed drivers and the increasing tendency of lapsed professional driving certificates. Friend says the idea of establishing a compulsory insurance body is crucial in a country such as South Africa, where very few motorists currently

insure their vehicles. “Research suggests that South Africa has around 9.5 million motor vehicles, of which only around 35% are actually insured and this figure is expected to drop even further. Compulsory insurance is also critical for the motor industry as it will ensure an element of stability, allowing more repairs to be carried out, with the result that more of the vehicles on the road will be in an acceptable and roadworthy condition.” Friend, who is a member of the SAIA compulsory third party insurance workgroup, warns that while the scheme is still under consideration, people should be aware that there are likely to be limits imposed on costs. “It is highly likely that the maximum amount paid out for repairs may be capped, still leaving those innocent parties with additional repair costs for their own account”. Trade-offs are unavoidable and understandable, but the real challenge will be in the collection of premiums, and the sustainability thereof. Thus, the insurance will most probably attach to the vehicle, rather than the individual. With the fuel levy already overburdened, other avenues will need to be explored, such as an affordable annual premium paid when the licence disc is renewed. To make this feasible, an excess may be required, in addition to the capping of claims.

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2010

PARTINFORM

Taking Parts to Newcastle
It was not a dark and stormy night in Newcastle on Tuesday 10th August 2010, but the wintry north west corner of KwaZulu Natal was indeed dark and cold when the Partinform Automotive Trade Show took place at the Farmers Show Hall. The Partinform members, primarily local manufacturers of quality branded parts, were, by laying out their stalls, bringing the modern equivalent of high quality coal to Newcastle.
ewcastle has bred many luminaries across the political, judicial, educational, sport, business and music firmament – ANC stalwart Mac Maharaj, tenderpreneur Siphiwe Nyanda, musician Lucky Dube, soccer star Sizwe Motaung, judicial export Margaret Marshall, to name a few. Bakkies Botha also hails from Newcastle, which truly puts his town on the sporting map, no ifs or head butts about it! Despite its colonial heritage, today Arcelormittal and hundreds of Eastern owned textile factories dominate the town, so maybe the inverse coal to Newcastle allegory in not so outlandish, as the message of Partinform is “local is lekker”. Colin Murphy, Chairman of Partinform, puts it succinctly, “Imported automotive product can now be found on every shelf of every parts reseller in South Africa. This is a fact of life. The challenge that the automotive aftermarket repairer faces is that there is a massive variance in product quality on offer. Whatever the origin of doubtful parts, it is a conundrum for the reputable manufacturers. AAMA, and Partinform, is about educating the motor trade on the professional benefits of using guaranteed, branded quality parts, and about the need to warn the trade about the obvious dangers of unsuitable parts with regard to vehicle roadworthiness, vehicle longevity, and road safety. There are also the potential consequences of imported product of low quality driving out high quality branded product, in both access to such product, and the destruction of local manufacturing resources, and the concomitant social impact”. With the impending introduction of the CPA (Consumer Protection Act) in October 2010, Colin’s words take on even more significance.
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The Partinform concept is essentially about reputable manufacturers pooling their resources to hold regular trade shows across the breadth and depth of southern Africa, from Cape Town to Musina, and Durban to Windhoek, and taking these important messages to the automotive aftermarket, across the whole spectrum, from distributor right down to the workshop and small repairer. The Partinform road show remains the vehicle of choice for these endeavours, as it is an effective way of talking to resellers and repairers, using an informal atmosphere to convey this message. This is proving to be highly effective, but as Colin Murphy says, “Our work is never done. New entrants to the aftermarket need to be caught early before bad habits set in, and we have to continue with the message, day in, day out, city by city, town by town, to ensure that both the current generation, and future parts professionals, understand the importance of quality, branded product, and get inculcated into this way of life”.

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Partinform welcomes a new member
The Partinform tribe is growing, and some new faces were seen at Newcastle. CI Auto have added their powerful voice to the message of quality branded product, and ABR spoke to the newcomers at the first showing. Nash Misra, Sales Representative; Eugen Jaganna, Sales Manager, KZN; and Mags Nagiaa, Sales Executive, KZN, were happy to spread the word to the automotive parts retailers of Newcastle and surrounds. They see Partinform as the ideal platform for the message of quality, quality, and more quality, which CI Auto is only happy to provide.
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Retailer of the Show
There was strong competition for the “Retailer of the Show”, voted on by the individual members of Partinform, with Mohammed’s Midas taking the vote by a neck from AutoZone Top Parts. ABR had a quick chat with the representatives at the show, and we are happy to report that both of these outlets have a strong commitment to quality parts.

Clint Ince, Marketing Manager, and Ally Dinath, a member of the sales team, were full of praise for the event. They found that Partinform served a useful purpose as it re-inforced what they practiced, in a great networking show. They told ABR that Mohammed’s Midas only sold the best quality parts, and that customer satisfaction was their primary concern. Good news for the motorists of Newcastle!

Partners Pradeep Singh and Pravesh Sewlal from AutoZone Top Parts were impressed with the Partinform concept and commended the organisation of the show, and the right message that it send out. They stated their commitment to eschewing poor quality parts, and their philosophy of quality over quantity. Quality branded product was the way to go, they said in unison. The motorists of Newcastle are in good hands!

Winners Galore
Everyone is a winner at Partinform, because everyone goes away with life changing information. But there many who go away with even more – in the form of prizes donated by the members of Partinform. And the big winner gets to drive a Ferrari racing car at the Partinform Forza Racing Driving Experience at the Zwartkops Raceway on 25 November 2010.

Some of the other prize winners on the night

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Category

Neerajh Ranjithparsadh of Neerajh’s Auto Clinic in Newcastle reacts to the news that he will be going to Pretoria on 25th November.

Co m p e t i t i o n Co r n e r
ABR readers need not despair, because they will also have a chance to win a Forza Racing Experience. Three winners shall be announced in our October 2010 issue. All you need to do is to answer these three simple questions, and fax to 086 6579 289 or email bigheart@iafrica.com:
1. In which month does the Consumer Protection Act take effect?

2. Does the Consumer Protection Act protect consumers from inferior quality parts?

3. What brand features on the back cover of this month’s ABR?

Name and Surname: Company: Position: Postal Address: Contact Tel.no’s: e-mail address:

September

2010

Industry

Update

SUPERIOR, TRUSTWORTHY, ECONOMICAL
Over the last year, AutoZone has reviewed their House Brands offering to the market place. Out of this stringent review has come a bundle of ten House Brands, all geared to serve every need that the market place could have. The AutoZone House Brands offering now includes: AmPro, AutoKraft, Eddies, Elpar, Ecotech, Femo, Spirex, LinX, AutoZone Chemicals and V-DUB. The focus this month is on their topperforming engine parts range, Femo.

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emo is the fastest growing member of the AutoZone House Brands Family. Launched in 2008 and expanded greatly in 2010, this top quality range of internal and external engine components is already a popular brand in the marketplace. Femo parts are designed for a wide range of vehicle makes and models. You can identify the Femo products by their bright and attractive new packaging. The red, white and blue boxes are visually powerful when merchandised together, and will always leave the right impression with the customer.

The Femo range is growing daily, and consists of the following products: • • • • • • • • • • Bearings Pistons Piston Rings Sleeves Valves Water Pumps Fuel Pumps Timing Belt Tensioners Timing Kits Timing Chain Kits • • • • • • • • • Clutch Kits Sleeve Assemblies Oil Pumps Gaskets Chain Tensioners Universal Joints Timing Chains Release Bearings Clutch Plates

So why choose Femo? Femo products are of the best quality. Many of the top Femo products are manufactured by the O.E Manufacturers, ensuring excellent quality. The manufacturers are ISO certified, and stringent quality control is conducted in every factory. Added to this, Femo products are good value for money, offering the customer the top quality they require for their business, at a price that they can afford.

So next time you’re looking for top quality, affordable engine parts, turn to Femo. With Femo products, backed by AutoZone, you can’t go wrong!
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September 2010

the

Buzz?

SKF signs a long term contract with Valeo for supply to the new i-StARS
SKF has signed a three-year contract worth around SEK34 million (R33.4 million) with Valeo to supply SKF Rotor Positioning Bearings for the new i-StARS, Valeo's stop-start system. i-StARS automatically cuts off the vehicle’s engine when slowing down under 8 km/h, e.g. when stopping for a red light. The system enables further reduction in CO2 emissions and even less fuel consumption compared to the first generation StARS. i-StARS will initially be used with both manual and automated manual transmissions to equip the new diesel engine family, e-HDi, for the Citroen and Peugeot brands. The SKF solution provides a powerful, accurate, repeatable and durable magnetic field making it possible for the control unit to receive data on the positioning of the shaft which enables the system to stop and re-start the engine at the correct time in a smooth way. “Working in close cooperation with Valeo, and using our engineering knowledge we have developed solutions, to support their innovative and patented stop-start systems. The industry is demanding new technologies and we constantly develop new offers to meet these demands”, says Tryggve Sthen, President SKF Automotive Division. This is the second business awarded to SKF by Valeo for this kind of application. SKF already supplies this solution to the first generation of StARS. Deliveries will start during the third quarter this year.

SKF SOUTH AFRICA APPOINTS NEW MANAGING DIRECTOR
SKF South Africa recently appointed Barry Dailly as the new Managing Director for the local subsidiary of the Swedish multinational Group. Dailly, who has been with SKF since 2007 in the capacity of Financial Manager, took over the reins from previous Managing Director, Gavin Garland, who left South African shores at the end of April 2010 to fill a position at SKF in China. On his appointment, Dailly said “We have the people, the knowledge, the products, the solutions and the will to reach new heights. The future looks good for SKF and our country. I am proud to be the helm look forward to playing my part”.

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Intelli-Driving

South Africa Goes for Gold in the TNT 2010 Drive Me Challenge
The fourth annual international TNT Drive Me Challenge takes place on 6 October 2010 on a military airfield in Valkenburg, Netherlands. For the first time, South Africa will be competing against other TNT operations across the globe, including Australia, China, France, Germany, UK and USA. Representing TNT Express South Africa will be Elliot Tau, winner of the inaugural South Africa competition held on 31 July 2010 at the company’s head offices in Elandsfontein, Gauteng.

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he Drive Me Challenge is different from other driving championships, as the goal is to recognise and reward the skills that are most conducive to effective driving within the industry, primarily fuel efficient driving, safe driving behaviour, and the reduction of road traffic accidents. Thus, the challenge demands expert driver skill to deliver exceptional customer service both safely and fuel efficiently – all in a race against time.

Elliot Tau, together with runner-up Lefa Mathibela (warming up the substitute’s bench), apart from winning some great prizes, will be prepped by MasterDrive for the competition, and in addition will become intelli-driving ambassadors for TNT and the industry. ABR, as South Africa’s premium automotive aftermarket publication, was at the South African leg of the competition, and will be reporting in greater detail in future issues on the international event, and on the important issues and philosophies behind this noteworthy competition.

Elliot Tau receives congratulations from Tim Steel, CEO of TNT Express Worldwide SA.

The 10 drivers, all winners by simply competing, ready to roll.

Personal pride combined with in-cab technology equates to exceptional customer service

Kobus Fourie, Operations Director, and Mary Mashiane, Corporate Responsibility & Quality Manager, worked hard behind the scenes to get South Africa into the international competition

Justine Clackworthy and Eugene Herbert from MasterDrive were part of the judging team

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2010

Vehicle

Evaluation

Xylo – Phone Your Dealer
by Howard Keeg

If you are looking for a rugged, no nonsense cargo carrier, and want it brand spanking new, but don’t want to stretch the budget, I have a simple piece of advice – phone your Mahindra dealer now!

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t R164 900, the Xylo Panel Van offers a lot. It has a spacious cargo carrying area, a proven and willing engine, good fuel consumption, and the little things that make the daily grind a little bit easier, such as power steering, electric windows, aircon and loads of nooks and crannies for those loose bits and pieces. It is the working brother of the Xylo MPV, which was introduced to this country in March 2009 to fill the Toyota Condor gap, according to Mahindra insiders at the time.

Based on the Xylo E2 platform, the Xylo Panel Van’s grunt is delivered by the 2.5-litre m-Eagle CRDe engine and delivers 84kW at 3800rpm and 240Nm between 1800 and 3000 rpm. Being a working vehicle, there are very few frills, but the protective wire mesh that is behind the driver’s cabin could have been placed a wee bit back, as even with my average height I could not get the driver’s seat back enough for absolute comfort, but the tiltable steering wheel did ameliorate this a tad. The centre console is bold and cheerful, and I found that as I drove around town that the vehicle is easily manoeuvrable and easy for the driver and passenger to enter and exit. And the two side doors and back door make loading a cinch.

But I am not the man to give the definitive verdict on Mahindra vehicles, as this was the first that I had for a road test, and whilst a week was sufficient for a reasonable evaluation, it was not long enough to suss out the foibles and fables. Thus, I will leave the long term judgement on Mahindra vehicles to a gentleman I met when I was visiting a client during my Xylo roster. I was parked outside the premises, and he drove up in a Bolero. He enthusiastically walked up to the Xylo and inspected the interior, exterior and engine compartment with relish. Upon enquiry, he revealed that he had driven his Bolero for a good number of years and that it had given excellent service over this period, working hard for 80 000km, and that he was a great fan of this Indian marque. Not too amazing, but his next revelation was – he owned two other vehicles, one a BMW and one a Pajero, and his favourite vehicle was the Bolero! This is only anecdotal and not very scientific, but interesting nonetheless. He may be a quirky sort of guy, but I took him at face value.

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Consumer Protection Act ABR brings you a series of articles on the Consumer Protection Act.

New! Shaka’s safety spear
Alwyn Viljoen explains why selling a assegai in place of an airbag won’t get you sued under the new Consumer Protection Act.
frica’s “Napoleon”, a.k.a. King Shaka, is famous for designing what historians call the short stabbing spear. Shaka called it umkhonto we sizwe, which name the ANC also saw fit to use for its army, ignoring oral history which still whispers how that short despot wielded this assegai to cut open pregnant women and the throats of any old soldiers – except for one man, who was famously “too beautiful”. Manje, I’m not also going to call Shaka a sadistic, gay warlord whose genocides destroyed the flourishing international trade routes of the baKoni and baRoka and left us with a language that has a dozen words for a klap. Considering the new Consumer Protection Act which is being phased in until October 2010, I shall instead be his imbongi and sing the (potential) praises of using his stabbing spear as a uniquely South African safety device in our cars. All a dealer needs to do is to fix that footlong blade so that it juts out of the steering wheel and then explain in graphic detail to the driver what will happen in a collision. Understand I’m only taking a wild stab at the predicted results… but I’m pretty confident the spear, affixed thus, will make our traffic a lot safer. Instead of this practical safety spear, we sell a device designed by a bunch of large Americans who tried to make cars safer by doing what they do best: exude hot air. The airbag started out and still is a political answer to a problem that did not exist for people who do not drive but instead experience "involuntary acceleration incidents". When these people crash into things, they discover that airbags don't "deploy" in super slow motion as depicted on telly. They explode.

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Crash test dummies are the only consumers who won't sue for being sold a hazard like an airbag. People who get hurt like this guy, will.

phased by November, she can take her broken nose and scarred arms to court and sue the pants off everyone involved in selling her a car that contained a hazardous item. Yes, indeed. The new act holds all of us liable for selling her a product that has a proven track record of causing hurt without explaining the dangers. Correct me here, but don’t those bold bits below describe the way in which we sell airbags? Paragraph 61. (1): “The producer or importer, distributor or retailer of any goods is liable for any harm, as described in subsection (5) caused wholly or partly as a consequence of supplying any unsafe goods, a product failure, defect or hazard in any goods; or inadequate instructions or warnings provided to the consumer pertaining to any hazard arising from or associated with the use of any goods. What is more, 61 (3) states “if, in a particular case, more than one person is liable in terms of this section, their liability is joint and several”. This includes the guy who later replaced the windscreen or fixed the bumper. Section 4 of the Act does absolve said sellers and suppliers of some of the liability under certain conditions, but if your sales patter still include the words “airbag” and “safety device” in one breath without a detailed explanation in the client’s vernacular of their inherent hazards, your firm can be held liable for duping the poor consumer. Which is why it may be simpler to just remove all airbags and fix Shaka’s stabbing spear in its place. Everyone will understand its function fluently in all 11 languages.

I have seen several case studies of airbags that smashed in the faces of petite women whose short arms force them to sit too close to the steering wheel. Before breaking her nose, the airbag snapped her wrists while the super-hot gasses dumped a residue of skin-searing chemicals on her third degree burns. Not that any of our ladies have reason for concern. When the new CPA is fully

alwynjsviljoen@gmail.com is an awardwinning transport and travel writer

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ROBERT

BOSCH

The Changing Face of Automotive Repair in South Africa
Howard Keeg takes a look at service and repair options
y growing band of loyal readers will recognise that I am rather pedantic about the issues of automotive repair in South Africa, and they will also know that I am a proponent of first class service. Both of these readers will tell you that I am adamant that the modern car simply cannot be left to the tender mercies of Joe the Mobile Motor Repairer, or the backyard mechanic who is friends with your wife’s hairdresser’s husband’s pool partner. Thus, it was with great delight that I received a press release in mid-August, announcing a maintenance plan for older vehicles out of the manufacturer’s service plan. It is truly a wonderful innovation, and because of the import, I have my editor’s approval to give you this press release verbatim, which is impressively comprehensive. It is worth every word!

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Introducing the Bosch Service Maintenance Policy
A truly reliable maintenance plan for older vehicles out of motorplan
South Africa is primarily a used car market Analysis of the eNaTIS and new car sales statistics highlight the fact that of a live population of 5.5 million cars and 1.9 million LDV’s over 6 million are older than 3 years. (eNatis June 2010 statistics). Furthermore analysts seem to agree that it’s going to be some time before the new car market recovers, with cash-strapped motorists increasingly choosing to buy second hand cars or driving their existing vehicles for longer. What are the maintenance options for older vehicles? While new vehicles are covered by the manufacturer’s warranty and/or limited motor plan, the maintenance and repair support options for owners of vehicles where the warranty has expired are more complex. There are numerous extended warranties and motor plans available in the market, but consumers are understandably wary, with exclusions and fine print often tripping them up when they need the policy most. Furthermore many new vehicle owners do not go back to the OE manufacturer’s workshop when the warranty expires and there is a steady stream of new entrants to the used car market looking for an affordable but reliable local workshop. With a real mixture of workshop experiences awaiting them they are rightly concerned about the costs and reliability of the work that will inevitably have to be done on their car. The problem is that while many vehicles are old enough to be out of manufacturer’s warranty they still incorporate sophisticated components and systems such as ABS, fuel injection and power steering that require advanced diagnostic testing and highly-skilled mechanical and auto-electrical technicians to maintain and repair them – and these skills are not often found at local workshop level. Repairs to these systems are seldom cheaparound R7 500 for a new air-con compressor, R28 000 for 4X4 shocks, etc, and South Africans are not renowned for planned budgeting, least of all for unexpected vehicle repair costs. This is often when they turn to the cheaper, less professional repair options and end up with a bad experience. Now there’s an affordable solution, from the service specialists Not only did Bosch invent many of advanced systems such as ABS and electronic fuel injection utilised in today’s vehicles, but they also developed the diagnostic and testing equipment necessary to maintain these systems in peak condition. As the largest workshop concept in the world Bosch Service is the ideal choice for motorists looking for quality components and reliable repairs to all makes and models of motor vehicles. And now Bosch Service has entered the maintenance policy market with a simple, flexible and affordable product that is underpinned by the professionalism of their Bosch Service workshops. The new Bosch Service Maintenance Policy is a sensible way to meet the unexpected repair costs and maintenance issues that are a part of owning a vehicle out of warranty, but without the hidden pitfalls. The Bosch Service Maintenance Policy – it’s like medical aid for your car Like a good medical aid the Bosch Service Maintenance Policy establishes the risk of covering each vehicle individually based on their model and mileage. But critically, like good insurance products, they do an end-to-end check of the vehicle upfront to establish its prospective repair risk profile. And getting the cover depends on the results. The Bosch Service Inspection Certificate This is what really makes the Bosch offer stand out from the rest. An exhaustive 116-point check-up is done as the first step to accepting the vehicle for cover. The owner visits one of the many Bosch Service workshops around the country for the inspection by Bosch mechanical and auto-electricians using the latest diagnostic equipment. The inspection tests every major component and system of the vehicle including all filters, oil, brake, transmission fluids and additives such as antifreeze (the boiling and freezing point of brake fluid and anti-freeze respectively is also tested). The transmission (including differential and diff locks) and engine (including a compression test) are also examined, as is the air conditioning sysSeptember 2010

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tem. A complete check for oil leaks is also conducted and the braking, cooling, ignition, clutch, steering ands exhaust systems are examined. An 18 point check of the drive line including bearings, CV shafts and joints, alignment and balancing is conducted while a complete electronics diagnostic test is conducted including a battery and alternator test. It’s been described as the most comprehensive inspection in the industry, and there’s a good reason for it because, with the comprehensive cover provided by the Bosch Service Maintenance Plan, the Bosch workshop will basically be ‘adopting’ the vehicle so they need to be confident of its state of repair. A ‘medical report’ is issued to the client, which is extremely valuable in itself, and is also submitted to the quotation centre. Within 24 hours a policy quote is then offered to the owner outlining the plan options and costs available to them. Four affordable ways to extend the life of any vehicle There are 4 plans offered through Bosch service- a Hospital Plan for petrol driven vehicles, another for diesel vehicles as well as an Intensive Care Plan for covering expensive breakdowns and a Comprehensive Cover option that covers up to 100% of all service and maintenance costs. (see blocked insert) Cover is available for vehicles under 12 years old with under 240 000 km on the clock and is payable as a once off payment or by monthly debit order. All Bosch Service Maintenance Policies can be purchased in units of 25 000km intervals up to a maximum of 75 000km, with a 15 month time limit allowed for each 25 000km. Additional cover can be purchased after the policy period or mileage has been completed. Free 24hr emergency roadside and medical assistance When something major does go wrong with a car it seldom happens at home! Every Bosch Service Maintenance Policy includes mandatory emergency roadside assistance to ensure that the owner isn’t stranded at the side of the road. Administered by Emperitus and underwritten by Guard Risk With the global Bosch reputation for quality, service and commitment to excellence, our choice of financial and risk
September 2010

Ewald Faulstich, Director Automotive Aftermarket Division at Robert Bosch (Pty) Limited (sitting), and Rory Conacher, Managing Director of Emperitus, sign a momentous deal.

Key features of the 4 plan options available • Bosch Service Hospital Plan – a mechanical and electrical breakdown plan designed specifically for petrol vehicles. Covers engine, gearbox, drive axle assembly, turbo assembly, engine management system and petrol fuel injection system. Bosch Service Hospital Plan Plus – a mechanical and electrical breakdown plan covers the six major components of diesel vehicles. Covers engine, gearbox, drive axle assembly, engine management system and diesel fuel injection system. Bosch Service Intensive Care Plan – this extended Hospital Plan is the ideal cover for expensive breakdowns and unforeseen wear and tear items. You budget for regular service costs and we cover all maintenance related repairs and part replacement required through normal wear and tear or mechanical/ electrical failure. Bosch Service Comprehensive Cover ultimate cover for all vehicles out of warranty. The plan covers 100% of routine service costs, and up to 100% of all maintenance related repairs and part replacement required through normal wear and tear or mechanical /electrical failure.

• management partners is critical. Emperitus and underwriters Guard Risk share our vision of providing a flexible, affordable and accountable maintenance solution that genuinely adds value for motorists. A trustworthy solution for motorists, car dealers and workshops The Bosch Service Inspection Certificate is the basis for establishing the true value of a vehicle and means that all parties can base their decisions on facts and not hearsay. Motorists can buy and sell with confidence and returns and call backs, a nightmare for second-hand dealers, are eliminated, enabling trust to be built with the customer. The Bosch Service Maintenance Policy is an attractive option to allow individuals, businesses and fleet operations to effectively budget for repairs. •

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What’s

the

Buzz?

2010 EXCELLENCE AWARDS FINALISTS ANNOUNCED
The votes are in, and the countdown has begun. The announcement of the finalists for the fifth annual Focus on Excellence Awards, sponsored by WesBank, took place at the beautiful WesBank building in Fairlands. Scott Byers, the research company in charge of counting the thousands of votes, will now kick into high gear figuring out who will be going home with trophies come November 9 with the winners being names at a red carpet banquet to be held at the Barnyard Theatre in Broadacres, Gauteng. “WesBank is delighted to have supported the Focus on Excellence awards for the past three years. We have always shown great interest in being part of celebrating performance and service excellence and the fact that so many of our industry partners and esteemed customers are here with us today is a tribute to you all,” says general manager of WesBank Corporate Gerald Burton. A large array of categories is represented – from the humble one-ton bakkie to extra heavy commercial vehicles, buses and coaches. Naturally, the country’s premier truck, bus and coach operators are also saluted. In addition to this, awards are presented to vehicle manufacturers who excel in the fields of sales, service and parts support.

Gerald Burton (Wesbank) and Raymond Shultz (Nissan Diesel)

Marja Brunninger (MAN Truck and Bus Africa), Ignatius Muthien (Hino SA), and Charleen Clarke (Focus On Transport)

Stephen Temple (Barlow World), Julio Favia (Bridgestone) and Jon Byers (Scott Byers) Barney Curtis (Fesarta), Nadia Vosloo (Total SA), Marco Gouveia (Cummins), and Paul Kable (Cummins)

The finalists for 2010 Excellence Awards are:
BEST ONE TON BAKKIE: BEST COMMUTER BUS
General Motors Nissan SA Toyota SA MAN Truck and Bus SA Mercedes-Benz South Africa Scania South Africa

Abrie de Swardt (Imperial Logistics) and Derek Crandon (Wesbank).

BEST SUPPLIER OF TYRE VEHICLE DISTRIBUTOR SERVICES WITH THE BEST SALES Max T Solutions SUPPORT
Freightliner Hino SA Isuzu Truck SA BEST TRANSPORT OPER- MAN Truck and Bus SA Mercedes-Benz South Africa ATOR Mitsubishi Fuso Hestony Transport Scania Imperial Logistics UD Trucks Southern Africa Unitrans Volvo Southern Africa Value Logistics Supa Quick Auto Centres Trentyre

BEST MEDIUM COMMER- BEST TOURING COACH MAN Truck and Bus SA CIAL VEHICLE (GVM 3 Mercedes-Benz South Africa 500 – 8 500 KG)
Hino SA Isuzu Truck SA Mercedes-Benz South Africa UD Trucks Southern Africa Scania South Africa Volvo Southern Africa

BEST SUPPLIER OF FUELS
BP Southern Africa Chevron SA Engen Petroleum Limited Shell South Africa

BEST HEAVY COMMERCIAL VEHICLE (GVM 8 500 – 16 500 KG)
Hino SA Isuzu Truck SA MAN Truck and Bus SA Mercedes-Benz South Africa UD Trucks Southern Africa

BEST BUS OPERATOR
Buscor Golden Arrow Mega Bus and Coach Putco

VEHICLE DISTRIBUTOR WITH THE BEST SERVICE SUPPORT

BEST SUPPLIER OF LUBRICANTS

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ABOVE)
Freightliner MAN Truck and Bus SA Mercedes-Benz South Africa UD Trucks Southern Africa Volvo Southern Africa

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Isuzu Truck SA MAN Truck and Bus SA Mercedes-Benz South Africa UD Trucks Southern Africa

84

September

2010

Two

Wheels

A New Generation of Bikes
Future motorcycle development will focus on safety, comfort and environmental issues rather than speed, says GAVIN FOSTER, who went for a ride on Honda’s new VFR1200F that offers a six-speed dualclutch transmission.
onda has always been a leader rather than a follower in motorcycle technology. While the Brits were still trying to figure out how to stop their single and twin cylinder machinery leaking oil, the Japanese manufacturer came up with 50cc twins, 125cc fours and fives, and 250cc six cylinder Grand Prix winners. Back in 1969 the factory dished up the world’s first true superbike, an oiltight 750cc overhead camshaft machine with reliable electrics, disc brakes and an electric starter, that instantly rendered the British industry with its reliance on a staunch right leg for starting, drum brakes for stopping, and a bag of cement for drying up the oil, hopelessly redundant. Interestingly, Honda also experimented back in the 1950s with coupled front and rear brakes incorporating an ABS system. It would be 30 years before any Honda went into production with linked ABS though. One of Honda’s few technological advances that failed dismally was the two speed automatic transmission offered briefly on their 750 four and 400cc twins in the 1970s. The 750’s engine was detuned from 65 to 47 bhp for the selfshifting version of the bike, which won it no friends, and the 400, although not detuned, was pretty gutless to start with. Both bikes were bad sellers and not much missed when they were discontinued a year or so later. Since then other manufacturers – notably Moto Guzzi and Aprilia – have developed auto transmissions, but none have been over popular in the marketplace. The only twowheelers with auto transmissions that have ever gained ready acceptance with the public are motor scooters that use stepless continuously variable transmissions (CVT) to save inexperienced riders the schlep of learning how to use a clutch and gearbox properly. Honda’s VFR1200, launched in January with a conventional manual gearbox and six months later with dual clutch transmission is a marvellous machine at heart. While its kerb weight of 267 kg (277 for the dual clutch version) is about 70 kg higher than that of a pure sports machine, the big Honda nevertheless

H

manages to feel a lot nimbler than you’d expect, and straight-line performance is also very, very brisk. At the Cape Town launch of the manual version I saw an indicated 267 km/h on the speedometer with more to come, and at Gauteng altitude in July 262 km/h popped up briefly on the speedo before I backed off. The big 1237cc V4 engine dishes up a tad over 170 horsepower (127 kW) at 10 000 rpm and a very useful 129 Nm of torque at 8 750, meaning that the bike, once rolling in third or fourth gear, could probably get by very well without any further gear changes until you had to stop and pull off again. It’s important to remember that the Honda’s new gearbox is not an auto in the usual sense of the word, but a dual clutch system as is increasingly found in high performance cars. Because size is much more important in a motorcycle the Honda set-up uses dual concentric input shafts, one running inside the other, and two inline hydraulic clutches, with a typically motorcycle shift drum rather than the independent shifters found in car units. One clutch serves 1st, 3rd and 5th gears, while the other looks after 2nd, 4th and 6th. The clutches work alternately, allowing each gear to be selected in advance, and the clutches engaged and disengaged simultaneously as the change up or down is effected. The Honda offers automatic or manual shifting, with the automatic option allowing a choice of “D” and “S” modes. In “D” the system makes use of the massive torque produced by the engine, short-shifting and saving on fuel, while the “S” option changes the nature of the beast entirely. Initial take-off feels slightly lethargic but as the initial inertia is overcome all those frisky horses come out to play and you’d better hang on to your hat. If you want to play boy racer you can use a switch on the right handlebar to select “M” for Manual, point the bike towards where you want to go and simply open the throttle. To change up or down you prod the appropriate paddle with your left thumb or forefinger, and the gear-changes are instantaneously effected on demand. The system really works well and the computer doesn’t try to override your decisions unless you really, really try to abuse the rev-limiter. When you come to a stop the bike automatically disengages the drive, so there’s a handbrake operated by a small lever on the handlebar that stops the bike rolling off the sidestand when you park the bike on a downhill slope. At R169 999 the Honda VFR1200F Dual Clutch costs R10 000 more than the conventional six-speeder manual version, which, for those who want what it has to offer, isn’t much because it really works so well. I’m not sure how many will want it though. My gut feeling is that perhaps 5 or 10% of VFR1200’s sold will be self- shifters, because bike people are mostly set in their ways. Then again, I’m not really keen on automatic cars either…

86

September

2010

THe

Fink

With left field. ing out of eth . Our some sort go for som ecided to gnition of co ed s every deserve re Editor”, w o squeeze that does nimals wh tter to the la nse Le tion, so se unusua month’s “ ut a respo uteng Sta one of tho r, per se, b ide on this ndton Ga Sa World dec he is edito se to the gether to art of the er to the d because fore the st s pretty clo anel got to irport, an Not a lett at the oa live er. s be judging p at is. He a few day one winn OR Tamb wisdom th When the 20h30, th ies out of arly June, in his/her ld only be ed in e tly fl ain cusafter there cou got going nius decid ht. Well, the Gautr rt, frequen this brief, ventually rs, out of late at nig bsolute ge patetic so e s ge ea ity, sent o is a peri the airport ally return ure passen cause som ct us” facil editor, wh en and leis ips, he usu ain link to nsport, be eir “conta time utr tra essm g th t of his tr “taking his en the Ga l mode of ther busin nd utilisin minute ou terest and punch wh wonderfu d many o website, a a ntinue an is in this pleased as r us to co him for h utrain.co.z et to use our editor, he was as e www.ga thanking , he has y are vital fo ely taking nse tiv of th parking, iries rtunately ed a respo h30, effec made use ments on ents/enqu Cup. Unfo n after 20 situation, k he receiv ur comm ith attach n that w ee this as yo will not ru Gautrain, d after a w the questio accepting ssengers, Gautrain was so, an about the answering m our pa ditor, not o to read this tion not l. Our e hearing fr bothering vely, but iring why e informa tomer poo appreciate adds som is actually gust enqu pay! All lo do en ot query. ter, early Au al compu years do n riting. We follow-up ompany th a message imperson erating C ence in w low three nse to his p e n o ur experi for a resp ombela O art from a children b to put yo patiently e”. The B o one, ap now that g a great our servic is waiting did you k nse, and n r deliverin respo editor . And improving . Thanks fo utomated and more ! And the !! r its time, self an a s, fares, eir service ng feat fo utrain him ars this is a bus route improve th e engineeri e, Mr. Ga e, it appe erw som g to tion with . You se van der M an alterca lso an awe continuin was asked es to Jack oop after anic was a much for in equal p ails. So oucher go usement s. The Tit to pop its these e-m idas Gift V t the “Titanic” on u ent and am ce at Bombela vets got it ’s R500 M is t, amazem g Kong ri en dun ’t fo onth Fon bewilderm nd the head of the me dicey please don that this m credulity, u Jack. But this basis uff, and so in st po It is on Gautrain, xcellence, the small mmer, to Gauteng e solution to se no one sweated pound ha transport citizens of ase a fifty u e ca and purch r giving th t down be shines. idas store ter. So, fo but it wen n the sun frozen wa his local M unk of ly fly whe to visit e large ch avellers on the chanc that air tr Jack gets ho thinks measure, w Company Operating

Letters to the Editor

And thanks to all those readers who commented on the Phoenix column and Howard Keeg’s article on the Ford Figo, and those browsers who clicked on the AutoCrew button on www.abrbuzz.co.za. These got the most readers’ responses to our August 2010 issue. For those readers such as Norman Mudau and Netshamavu Lufuno, who now want to buy a Figo, ABR cannot help you, but please make a visit to your nearest Ford dealership, and say that Howard Keeg sent you. He eagerly awaits his spotter’s fee.

Win a Midas Voucher
The FINK is looking for letters to the Editor. The more the merrier, and the more thought provoking of these shall find their way into ABR. The best letter will win a Midas voucher to the value of R500. So get out those pens and write to: The Fink P O Box 102 Wendywood, 2144 Or Fax 0866 579 289 Or email:bigheart@iafrica.com

The judges decision, no matter how one-eyed they are, will be final.

88

September

2010

Fast

Wheels

To quote Bernie Ecclestone, the Formula 1 supremo, “If there are no fires in F1, we will light them”. Or words to that effect.
ormula 1 certainly has done that over the last couple of Grands Prix. I know you have to have rules, but stewards come up with new obscure ones all the time with the express purpose it seems to me of closing up the field or wrecking or altering a race. No team instructions, stay a certain distance from the safety car, fines for attending technical inspection late, change of starting grid positions for demeanours like changing engines and gearboxes and drive-through penalties are just some of the race wreckers. Maybe “they” felt it needs all this to make the racing at least controversial, talked about or more exciting. The last three Formula 1 Championship world events suffered from one or all of these. Silverstone was back to its former glory for the British Grand Prix. It had been drastically revised, had lots of new corners and was fast as before. A record breaking crowd pitched up on the Friday, Saturday and Sunday to give the place a great buzz. McLaren was favourite to win but it wasn’t to be. Red Bulls filled the first row. Vettel on pole and Webber alongside him. Into the first corner Stowe, Webber took the lead while Vettel punctured after being hit by Hamilton. Webber went on to lead throughout with Hamilton hounding him just 11/2 seconds behind throughout the race. Ferrari weren’t a happy equipe with Alonso attempting to pass Kubica in his ailing Renault on the grass inside a corner. The stewards with Nigel Mansell as an adviser hit him with a drive-through penalty and out of the points., Maybe it was pay-back time for some reason for Mansell. Vettel was always favoured to win the German Grand Prix at Hockenhaim in front of his own crowd. It was not to be. Ferrari, never to be underestimated, came along with uncatchable cars and that was going to be that. Wrong. Massa, leading for the first time since his huge crash in Hungary in 2009, looked good for a win. Alonso on his tail was fractionally faster but had Vettel closing quickly. The team radio came on to tell Massa “Alonso is faster. Please acknowledge you understand this message.” In code it meant – “Move over for Alonso. He is our best chance of catching up to the leader in the points championship.” That little instruction cost Ferrari a cool

Formula 1 Lights the Fires

by Roger McCleery

F

$100,000. Motorsport is an individual sport, except for speedway and Moto Cross Des Nations which are team sports for your club or country. However, if you have a contract with Ferrari paying huge bucks, you have to do what they tell you in an effort for the team to clinch the world championship title. Nobody really gives a toss about the manufacturers title but the manufacturers themselves. Ferrari helped Massa when he was on his way to a world title and lost by only 1 point on the last lap in Brazil to hand the championship to Hamilton. That could have been a fiddle as well.. Now Alonso has the best chance. Therefore, don’t get huffy with everyone on the podium and at the after-race interviews. These instructions do make nonsense of Formula 1 racing but that is how it is in these big teams, although with hands on the heart they all say “It doesn’t happen.” Slow pit stops, can’t find the right wheels and other little niceties have all been used in the past. The Hungarian Grand Prix in Budapest will be remembered for a few things. Webber taking his sixth career win by a mile thanks to his skill, speed and a safety car intervention. This saw his teammate Vettel lose his initial lead and the race when he headed for the pits. The collision of Kubica and Sutil in the pit road was good. Nico Rosberg, losing his right rear wheel as he drove away from the pit box saw it bounce its way through a host of mechanics waiting for their cars to pit, was dramatic. Fortunately nobody was hurt. Sebastian Vettel, much to his disgust, picked up a drive-through penalty for being too far behind the safety car at the restart. It looked like he was holding the field back to give Webber a chance to clear off. No way could that be the case because these two are at war. Where do they get these stewards from? The reputation-ruining Big Daddy was for Michael Schumacher. He squeezed Barricello against the pit wall as he tried to pass him, going flat out. Schumacher lost a lot of fans doing that. Ten grid spots, a penalty for Belgium, was handed out for that. Webber and Red Bull lead the Drivers and Manufacturers Championship with seven races to go. Lots of fires can still to be lit before the final in Brazil.

Answers
1. VW Polo Vivo 2. USA. It is under Montana and the two Dakotas. There is enough oil for 503 billion barrels. 3. Zwartkops 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Mark Webber Australia Giuseppe Farina Alfa Romeo 158 Brescia Mini 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. Golf 6 Ducati Crossbow Honda 15 million Fuji Heavy Industries 16. 17. 18. 19. 20.

From page 42
John Jessup Mahindra in India Cleveland Ohio Guilietta Tata and Mahindra

90

September

2010

Midas

Sport

A series of articles on Midas motorsport initiatives in 2010

Zaugg adds the Midas touch
ound five of the WesBank Super Series at Phakisa Freeway in Welkom saw Midas Sport enter two cars in class A of the Bridgestone Production car series. Earlier in the year, former V8 Supercar race winner Richard Pinard drove the Midas Sport Lotus Exige, but after the last race he made the decision to join the Subaru team which meant the Lotus was driverless for Phakisa. “The car is prepared by Carel

by Steve Wicks

Former Team South Africa A1GP driver Adrian Zaugg is regarded as a future motorsport star and recent results in GP2 have confirmed he is knocking at the door of Formula One. And at Phakisa on 14 August 2010 he seamlessly moved to production cars to prove his credentials.

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the order. “These things happen in racing,” he pointed out afterwards. Pinard, whose car turned a wheel for the first time at the Zwartkops test, was delighted to have an incident free race and finish sixth just ahead of Zaugg who had fought back impressively. A feature of Bridgestone Production Cars is that there are three races on the day with the first two being six lap sprints with no

Zaugg makes the transition from single-seater to saloon car seem as simple as pie Pienaar’s SP Race Engineering team who also prepare the Subaru Impreza STIs of Hennie Groenewald and Dawie Olivier, so it just made sense from a logistics point of view to run a similar Subaru under the Midas Sport banner,” explained Pinard. At around about the same time Zaugg was holidaying in Cape Town and a meeting with Motorsport South Africa Managing Director Francois Pretorius led to him being offered the Lotus to race. Like any top class driver he jumped at the opportunity, but first ensured it did not clash with any other sponsorship agreements. A brief shakedown test at Zwartkops before the team left for Phakisa was the first opportunity he had to show his class. Thanks to its low weight and short wheelbase the Lotus is well suited to Zwartkops, but no one expected him to lap as quickly as he did. It was also the first chance for the Midas Sport teammates to meet and get to know each other. “He is humble and certainly not like I expected an international star to be,” said Pinard afterwards. “It was also nice to hear him confirm the handling issues I had with the car.” At Phakisa, with its long sweeping corners, the Lotus didn’t have the advantage it had at Zwartkops yet he still managed to qualify fifth fastest. Due to last minute regulation changes, the Subarus were unable to qualify which meant Pinard had to start the Midas Sport Subaru from the back of the grid. Whilst in the midst of a tight tussle in the opening race, Zaugg was tapped by the Audi of Tschops Sipuka and spun at turn three which dropped him down

Richard Pinard gets acquainted with his new Subaru

work allowed on the cars between races as they simply reform up on the grid. Pinard was forced to start race two from the pit lane as he pitted to check a vibration after the first race and this brought out the best in him as he fought back to finish fifth while Olivier won in the Sasol Timken Subaru. “I didn’t expect that, but the car was good and everything fell into place,” explained Pinard as he acknowledged there was a bit of luck involved. Zaugg’s race didn’t go as planned as he was forced to retire from fifth place on the penultimate lap. The final was a 12-lap affair and Pinard’s race came to a spectacular end on lap four when he spun and hit the barriers exiting turn one. “I went in a bit hot and the car got away from me,” was his honest reply. Zaugg’s day of woe continued and this time he retired with gear selection problems but he still smiled. “Sure it would have been nice to get a good result, but it was a last minute deal and I enjoyed myself. There are a lot of nice people here.”

Adrian Zaugg checks his lap times with Motorsport South Africa Managing Director Francois Pretorius

September

2010

91

The

Last

Writes

by Baron Claude Borlz

“For our more discerning readers .....”
The title of this e-mail from the reader said ONLY A MAN WOULD ATTEMPT THIS – I won’t argue because I have done something similar, but with only a 65 000 volts Taser, so the results were not as dramatic, but still something I will never do again!
ocket Taser Stun Gun, a great gift for the wife... A guy who purchased his lovely wife a pocket Taser for their anniversary submitted this: Last weekend I saw something at Larry's Pistol & Pawn Shop that sparked my interest...The occasion was our 15th anniversary and I was looking for a little something extra for my wife Julie. What I came across was a 100,000-volt, pocket/purse- sized Taser. The effects of the Taser were supposed to be short lived, with no long-term adverse effect on your assailant, allowing her adequate time to retreat to safety....?? WAY TOO COOL! Long story short, I bought the device and brought it home. Loaded two AAA batteries in the darn thing and pushed the button. Nothing! I was disappointed. I learned, however, that if I pushed the button and pressed it against a metal surface at the same time; I'd get the blue arc of electricity darting back and forth between the prongs. AWESOME!!! Unfortunately, I have yet to explain to Julie what that burn spot is on the face of her microwave. Okay, so I was home alone with this new toy, thinking to myself that it couldn't be all that bad with only two AAA batteries, right? There I sat in my recliner, my cat Gracie looking on intently (trusting little soul)while I was reading the directions and thinking that I really needed to try this thing out on a flesh & blood moving target. I must admit I thought about zapping Gracie (for a fraction of a second) and then thought better of it... She is such a sweet cat. But, if I was going to give this thing to my wife to protect herself against a mugger, I did want some assurance that it would work as advertised. Am I wrong? So, there I sat in a pair of shorts and a tank top with my reading glasses perched delicately on the bridge of my nose, directions in one hand, and Taser in another. The directions said that a one-second burst would shock and disorient your assailant; a two-second burst was supposed to cause muscle spasms and a major loss of bodily control; and a three-second burst would purportedly make your assailant flop on the ground like a fish out of water. Any burst longer than three seconds would be wasting the batteries. All the while I'm looking at this little device measuring about 5" long, less than 3/4 inch in circumference (loaded with two itsy, bitsy AAA batteries); pretty cute really, and thinking to myself, 'no possible way!' What happened next is almost beyond description, but I'll do my best...I'm sitting there alone, Gracie looking on with her head cocked to one side so as to say, 'Don't do it stupid,' reasoning that a one second burst from such a tiny 'lil ole thing couldn't hurt all that bad. I decided to give myself a one second burst just for heck of it. I touched the prongs to my naked thigh, pushed the button, and...HOLY MOTHER OF....WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION...WHAT THE....!!! I'm pretty sure Hulk Hogan ran in through the side door, picked me up in the recliner, then body slammed us both on the carpet, over and over and over again. I vaguely recall waking up on my side in the foetal position, with tears in my eyes, body soaking wet, both nipples on fire, testicles nowhere to be found, with my left arm tucked under my body in

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the oddest position, and tingling in my legs! The cat was making meowing sounds I had never heard before, clinging to a picture frame hanging above the fireplace, obviously in an attempt to avoid getting slammed by my body flopping all over the living room. Note: If you ever feel compelled to 'mug' yourself with a Taser, one note of caution: there is NO such thing as a one second burst when you zap yourself! You will not let go of that thing until it is dislodged from your hand by a violent thrashing about on the floor! A three second burst would be considered conservative! A minute or so later (I can't be sure, as time was a relative thing at that point), I collected my wits (what little I had left), sat up and surveyed the landscape. My bent reading glasses were on the mantel of the fireplace. The recliner was upside down and about 8 feet or so from where it originally was. My triceps, right thigh and both nipples were still twitching. My face felt like it had been shot up with Novocain, and my bottom lip weighed 88 lbs.. I had no control over the drooling. Apparently I had crapped in my shorts, but was too numb to know for sure, and my sense of smell was gone. I saw a faint smoke cloud above my head, which I believe came from my hair. I'm still looking for my testicles and I'm offering a significant reward for their safe return! P.S. My wife can't stop laughing about my experience, loved the gift and now regularly threatens me with it! If you think education is difficult, try being stupid !!!

Apparently, this picture was taken at the announcement that Caster Semenya was the new Brand Ambassador (ambassadress?) for Mrs. Ball’s Chutney. Careful, Caster, you’re not as safe as you think!
September 2010

92

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