With the current 8th Generation 992 911 range being the ultimate epitome of what is the modern 911 still is, even the purist arguments that endlessly rant on about electric steering, turbocharging and water cooling have been humbled now. The 991 and 992 have proven to be thunderously focused drivers cars with very little to wish for even in more plebian entry-level models. A statement not so true of 911s of old. These days even a standard Carrera is good for a sub 3.5 Zero-100 time. The modern view of the Stuttgart manufacture, with a specific focus on the ‘Turbo‘ element, is more indicative of trim levels in Porsche speak given the whole Carrera range has a turbo and the EV Taycan doesn’t even have a combustion engine. This may all sound a bit doubtful and anti-climatic for the 1980s 930 Turbo nostalgia but the Wider body and the historic rear-arch mounted intercooler intakes make the distinctions very clear.
Mounted in the Rear is an all-new 3.8Litre Twin-turbo Flat-Six engine with 478kWs and 800Nm, Through Porsche Traction Management AWD system via an 8-Speed PDK gearbox. With launch Control Active 0-100 will be dispatched in 2.7 Seconds and 200 in less time than it takes to read about the drivetrain or 8.9 seconds, with a 330Km/h top speed.
The Turbo S model benefits from the revisions to the aerodynamics and enhanced track characteristics, the front axle is 42 mm wider and 10 at the rear. Porsche Active Suspension Management with a 10mm drop in ride height and Sports Chassis comes standard with active cooling air flaps which channel air into and underneath the car. Like the rest of the range, a staggered wheel set up featuring 20/255/35 in the front and a healthy 21/315/30 at the rear.
The Cabin gains a new PCM infotainment centre with a 27.6cm screen, GT sports Steering wheel, Carbon trimmings and accenting. The Sport Chrono Package comes standard with the Track Precision app and Bose Surround System standard.
Porsche 992 911 Turbo S pricing in South Africa
Prices starting just over R3.5Million rand for the Turbo S Coupe without options and inclusive of a 3/year Drive Plan. Deliveries South Start in early May.
VWSA recently made use of the Premium drive information session and catch up to South African Media and the motorist was in attendance. The Premium drove told us one clear thing with respects to the dubbed Premium products and product range nevertheless. While combining the event to be introductions to the Dark Label versions of the Toureg, smaller sibling the Tiguan and the Lesire bakkie of the year Amarok Grand Canyon powered by the 190kW 3.0TDI v6 that makes it the most rapid and Amarok in V6 still the most desirable in class. The fact of the matter is VW is smashing it with respects to South Africa and the market. The T-Cross is the best selling in class beating very good offerings; Kia Seltos, Hyundai’s Creta and H2 Haval’s as the value offering.
The understanding that 22.7% of all vehicle sales was VW’s tally. The year ahead is very clear with the mission towards autonomy. Throughout the year various test Golf 8 mules have been spotted Globally and even in S.A, following its 2020 Q4 launch.
GOLF 8 GTI, GTE AND GTD
With Golf 8 in standard and GTI, GTE and GTD having being revealed ahead of their official Geneva debut. The GTI boasting 180kW and 370Nm with a performance pack variant with a likely 221kWs, with both units receiving power from the familiar EA888 powerplant with a 6-speed manual as standard and the option for an updated drive-by-wire DSG box. GTE will also keep its 1.4Litre turbo petrol with the electric motor assistance and the duo is good for a GTI matching 180kW and 400Nm.No acceleration or performance figures have been revealed for the performance variants, which interestingly enough will be the first offerings to reach our shores with Golf 8. The swansong for the Mk7.5 GTI platform the TCR which was confirmed for March will arrive before the new model later in the tyre with a few of the 300 units making there way to South Africa with a 700k plus price tag, 5.6 Second 0-100 and 264Km/h top speed.
Tiguan and Toureg Black Edition
The recent “Black style pack” offering to the Tiguan and Toureg offerings have allowed for slight tweaking to the familiar faces, that transform and add some serious aggression and volume to the vehicles. In Tiguan guise, the R-Line kit takes on black air intakes, a new updated front grille, black window trim and side-mirrors, black roof rails, and sports suspension. 19″ Sebring” alloy wheels remain the only option for the comfort, while the larger 20″ Suzuka alloy defaults the Highline.
E-GOLF & ID.3
The move to electrification by VW in South Africa is growing to be a huge movement and investment from VW into support and infrastructure. This is garnered the need for a fleet of Press E-Golf’s and the Later 2021 launch of the ID.3 EV vehicle. The idea is the E-Golf and launch of WE Connect intelligence vehicle connectivity will usher the era of smarter cars with remote access to diagnostics and vehicle information. This being key to EV ownership given the need for access to charging and how this process is intuitive.
Facelifts are always rather puzzling to me, as they often suggest that a model is truly beginning to age. This task is made harder when the facelift in question is of a product that is Jag’s F-type. The issue, it’s a tremendous sportscar, stonking engines and the exhaust note cut with an élan that is carbon monoxide symphony. The F-type is a very emotive experience, with this strange bond and connection that links you to the car and places you in the cockpit with the accelerator as some metaphorical musical bow and the strings being played belonging to your heart, ultimately a very characterful car scoring the one-too punch K-O with beauty and grace.
The facelift brings a subtly to the face, with soft lines that effectively contribute to the athletic prowess. J-shaped LED matrix lights technology with the new bonnet and updated grill create a familiar face to the rest of the Jag Line up.
Internally the key changes are the updates to the infotainment system through a new 12.3-inch Digital instrument cluster with the standard, Apple Carplay and Andriod Auto connectivities. Optional Meridian sound systems enhance the sound experience further, and having sampled this in the pre-facelift it’s a hefty thing and rather worth the extra investment, given when equipped it makes clear the other great noises this car is capable of making through the stereo system.
The F-type range remains the same comprising of the 2.0Litre turbocharged 4-cylinder, 3.0Litre Supercharged V6 and more meaty JLR 5.0Litre Supercharged V8. All engines now are mated exclusively to an 8-speed automatic transmission. The power outputs remain the same starting off at 221kW and 400Nm for the four-pot, 283Kw and 459Nm in the V6. The 5.0litre V8 offers a more performance-oriented 331kW and 459Nm, dashing form zero – 100km/h in 4.4 Seconds and one to a full chat of 285km/h, likely remaining the pick of the bunch before the full-cream ‘R’.
The ‘R’ Receives an update to the power figures and now produces 423kW and a colossal 700Nm. 0-100 is dispatched rapidly at the rate of 3.7 seconds, and top speed is rated at 300km/h. Updates to the chassis and driving dynamics have resulted in 20-inch diamond churned alloy wheels with gloss black finishes. Other updates include new adaptive dampening, springs, stiffer knuckles and anti-toll bars in efforts to improve the ability to change direction. Standard through the range the active exhaust system which allows for ‘quiet starts‘ on V6 and V8 models.
The first year of production will yield the F-Type First Edition and will be a more exclusive model for the first year. F-Type will arrive on our shores in 2020, as both Coupe and Convertible. Pricing has yet to be released locally
Land Rover’s Special Vehicle Operations unit has created what they have dubbed the most capable Discovery ever. Making use of JLR’s famed 5.0-litre Supercharged V8 boasting 386 kW & 625 N.m, the All New Discovery takes on some important modifications in the interest of go-anywhere characteristics. The major changes include an increase in ground clearance, a suspension lift, increased wheel articulation and larger walled all-terrain focused tyres. Further adjustments include the use of an enhanced version of the Terrain Response 2 System with Active Roll control, through the Hydraulic Active Roll Control system.
Launched at the Frankfurt Motor show, it will fall into the current Special Vehicle Operations range in amongst the SVAutobiography and the Range Rover Sport SVR and will be built at the SVO technical centre in the UK as from early 2018.
The list of 4×4 goodies is long and comprehensive and will include the usual in premium off-roading in the form of active and electronic centre and rear locking differentials, Hill descent control, Electronic Traction Control, Adaptive Dynamics, All-Terrain Progress Control and variable ratio electric power-assisted steering. The familiar ZF eight speed auto with variable speed transfer box has also undergone minor revisions to allow for the software to work best with the new changes The SVX will sit on a set of beefy 275/55 R20 Goodyear Wrangler all-terrain tyres on forged aluminium alloy wheels.
Jaguar Land Rover Special Operations Managing Director John Edwards had this to say about the SVX;
“SVO designers are embedded within the Land Rover team and have worked with our engineers to unleash their own passion for adventure to create another truly desirable and versatile vehicle in the Land Rover line-up.”
SVO Director Mark Stanton Added;
“The SVX product line gives us a fantastic opportunity to deliver the ultimate Land Rover all-terrain capability in a dynamic and distinctive manner, creating a rugged and versatile SUV that the whole family will love: effortless, unstoppable and connected, whatever the terrain.
“Discovery SVX is designed to reward off-road driving enthusiasts with the next level of all-terrain capability, without compromising comfort and practicality.”
Land Rover Discovery SVX Pricing and Availability in South Africa
With the Current Disco range starting at R980 000 for the base S and climbing all the way to the R1 314 000 HSE LUXURY, expect the price to be between R1.5 million and R2 million. Expect models to arrive bright and early in 2018.
In 2013, TVR was taken over by entrepreneur Les Edgar. The brand needed a revival and this man took up the challenge, promising to keep in line with the brands rich heritage of sports cars.
It’s been four years since TVR’s new administration walked in the door and TVR have now released their first car since the takeover and it’s called the Griffith. This car is all about the Spirit of Driving which is shown by a front engined 5.0 V8 with power driven to the rear wheels via a 6-speed manual gearbox. This, along with the TVR Griffith’s 50:50 weight distribution and full ground effect aerodynamics thanks to a flat floor means that the new TVR has all that’s required to be a very exciting car indeed. We can’t forget it’s weight at just 1 250 kg which was made possible due to a carbon composite structure and body panels.
So what does all this result in? Well TVR have not released exact figures but after the Ford Coyote 5.0-litre V8 has visited Cosworth for a bit of fiddling, mainly a new flywheel, clutch, dry sump lubrication system and ECU tuning, we can expect a power to weight ratio of 400bhp/tonne, a 0-100km/h dash of under 4 seconds and top speed that will eclipse the 200 MPH (320km/h) mark. So in short, it’ll live up to everything we have expected from TVR over the years.
The exterior has been designed to be striking but also extremely efficient. It still features the classic sports car look – it actually looks like a very modern TVR, taking styling cues from the previous TVR Griffiths’. It really does look great and has some epic features such as side exit exhausts and large frontal air intakes. Perhaps the most striking aspect of the new Griffith is the rear end – its wide, low and mean and many a fast car will be spending time behind the TVR Griffith so of course it needs to look the part.
You won’t find any steering wheel doo dabs, reversing which whatss or Bang and Kardon sound systems here either, the TVR does feature a much tidier interior than its predecessors, but it is still very basic. One can expect a TFT instrument display, keyless entry and rotary controls for ancillaries such as A/C, as well as lots of suede.
TVR Griffith Pricing
The TVR Griffith will cost 90,000 Great British Pounds which equates to just over R1.5 million of our South African Rands. Production will only start in late 2018, with deliveries taking place in early 2019 – a long time away then, but definitely worth the wait!
The Hybrid MINI is here: MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4
Greener transport, less congestion and autonomous vehicles seem to be high on the priority list of many countries and manufacturers in 2017. While there are arguments for all three, the former seems to be the one that you can’t really argue with. Emissions & increased Diesel tax is the talk of the town in many big cities and this should and is worrying many car manufacturers, such as BMW. A staggeringly high percentage of BMW cars sold in Europe are Diesel and while we love them because they provide good fuel economy, the environment doesn’t seem to have as much love.
One way this can be helped is with Hybrid vehicles, such as the new MINI cooper S E Countryman ALL4 – the first Hybrid MINI. Powering this hybrid car is a 3-cylinder turbo petrol engine and an electric motor which provides a combined power output of 165 kW. With 100 kW coming from the combustion engine and 65 kW from the electric setup which also provides 165 Nm from a standstill! The combustion and electric system work together, with the combustion power being delivered to the front wheels and electric to the rear. This creates an ALL4 or 4 wheel drive system.
From a standing start the new MINI hybrid relies solely on electric power up to around 80km/h. After this speed the combustion engine is slowly introduced, the driver can however opt to stay on electric power with the eDRIVE switch up to a speed of 124 km/h – pretty impressive. The new MINI Countryman Hybrid has a range of 40 km which is not too bad at all. A car which relies solely on electricity when stuck in traffic or driving around town or commuting to work sounds pretty good to us. What sounds even better is the average fuel consumption, a mere 2.3 litres per 100km.
The big lithium-ion battery is located under the rear seats to save space and will require around 2 hours 15 minutes or 3 hours 15 minutes to charge, depending on the method used.
Cars that fully rely on electric for power are probably the future but for now, range is holding them back. Hybrids are a great option in the meantime and more manufacturers should be looking at this option. There is really no need for combustion engines around the city and I’m sure we’ll be seeing more of these types of vehicles coming to market.
Is it coming to South Africa? We don’t know yet, but with the BMW i3 and i8 already here, we may have a chance.
The South African hatch segment is a very competitive place to be for a car manufacturer. We are seeing new and updated vehicles released on a regular basis as manufacturers compete provide the best package for car buyers.
One of these cars to recently receive upgrades is the Ford Focus. These changes include a new Diesel variant and updates to the styling and driver assistance packages.
Trend Styling Package
The updated styling package refers to the Trend styling pack which is only available on the 5-Door models of the Ford Focus. Changes to this pack include a newly styled bodykit, rear wing, 17-inch multi-spoke with lower profile tyres and a tilt and slide sunroof.
The sunroof is not the only electronic accessory in this pack, as the trend styling pack now also includes Bi-Xenon headlights derived from Focus ST3. These headlight incorporate dynamic beam technology and LED running lights. Finally, the Trend pack includes dual-zone climate control, heated and folding mirrors and privacy glass on the rear.
This is a nice pack to give your Ford Focus that little bit extra in styling and comfort and is priced at R19 984.
Driver Assistance Package
Ford’s driver assistance package has been updated to now include their SYNC 3 Infotainment system. The SYNC 3 is a big update over the previous SYNC 2 system, the 8-inch screen is brighter and now allows touch sensitive gestures. It also includes full navigation in multiple languages and supports Apple Carplay and Android Auto.
This package also includes a rearview camera, Active Park Assist, Lane Departure Warning and Lane Keeping Aid. Costing just R17 089, it could be a worthy upgrade.
New Ford 1.5-litre TDCi turbodiesel engine
The final upgrade to the Focus range is that Ford have replaced the 1.6 TDCi engine with a new 1.5-litre TDCi engine. Producing 88kW and 270 Nm while delivering power via a six-speed manual gearbox. We’re told this engine is much better than the one it replaces – a test will tell.
Let’s be honest, as much as pure petrol heads lament the lack of rigidity in a convertible, the look and feel of a drop top is badass. This is especially the case when it comes to supercars. The Audi R8 is already a fantastic vehicle, offering ridiculous performance figures and an amazing soundtrack. This soundtrack will be even more audible now that the New Audi R8 Spyder gives you the choice of driving around without a roof.
The same V10 engine we’ve come to know and love has been used, featuring 397kW and 540N.m. This figure may seem strange because more press has been given to the R8 Plus model, which has 445kW. The Spyder however pushes out the exact same power as the non – Plus variant, but we’re sure Audi will make a Plus available at some point. That being said the car now dashes to 100km/h in 3.6 seconds which is still a monumental time considering that the Spyder variant will be heavier than the coupe. Heavier doesn’t mean heavier though as the new R8 Spyder uses technology called Audi Space Frame. This a multi-material frame that combines aluminium and Carbon Fibre Reinforced Plastic. The convertible top also only weighs in at 44kgs, so a lot has been done to keep the car light on its feet, ensuring dynamic handling characteristics.
Another thing many people have enjoyed about the R8 is the way the Quattro system works. Unlike other four wheel drive systems, it’s less prone to nose diving provided you give it the respect it deserves coming into corners. In fact the system in the New Audi R8 Spyder can send up to 100 percent of its power to the rear wheels, depending on the situation. Whilst most people won’t exploit their R8’s to this point, it’s good to know that fun can be had for those who’ve watched too much Top Gear.
Besides the lack of a roof, the R8 remains mostly the same – just much better looking. The car comes standard with a host of technology such as Navigation, Virtual Cockpit and front and rear LED lights. Although, you do expect those kind of creature comforts if you’re paying approximately R2.9million for a car. We love it’s look, we love how it sounds, now it’s a matter of seeing if we love how it drives. Judging by the coupe, it should be very exciting.
When we were given the chance to sample the Honda Civic Type R last year, we were all completely astounded by how engaging and raw it was. What Honda had created was a sheer masterpiece in front-wheel drive performance and bore little resemblance to Nora, Albert, Rita and the rest of the bridge club’s favourite runabout – the Honda Civic. Sure you could spot a Civic somewhere beneath the garish wing and blacked out wheels, but these two cars really could not have been further apart. Not only did this vehicle find favour with just about everyone who drove it, it also set an astounding lap time around the Nordschleife, beating the previous FWD champion and setting a blistering time of 07:50.63.
Here we are in 2017 and having had its trophy snatched away by the Golf GTI Clubsport S in 2016, the Type R has returned with a vengeance. Featuring the same 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder motor found in the previous generation Civic Type R, the unit now produces 236 kW but the same 400 N.m as before, all this thanks to a bit of an ECU tune and a snazzy new exhaust which actually makes it sound a bit like a 5-pot, mmmmm. You can have a listen to that at the end of this video.
The new chassis also means an increase in torsional rigidity of an impressive 38% and the torsional beam rear setup of the old Type R is gone, having now been replaced by an independent, multi-link system. What this brings to the tea party is much improved stability and control at speed, as well as a lower, wider and longer wheelbase.
Having set a record time of 07:43.80, it is clear that all of those little upgrades have done their job – it shaved some 3 seconds off the time of the Clubsport S.
Now all that’s left to do is wait for it to arrive in South Africa which should be during the course of 2018. So, in what colour will you be having yours, then?
Where there is a hill to be climbed, someone at some point will endeavor to climb it. Humans do this, it must be in our nature to choose a thing that’s bigger than us and then scale it, only to poke a flag in it once the summit has been reached. One step further than this, though, is racing another human to the top, conquering not only the hill, but your competitor too!
Now in its eighth edition and the fourth to be sponsored by Jaguar South Africa, the Jaguar Simola Hillclimb 2017 promises to be the ultimate showcase of people racing up a hill, as we like to do. Considered by many to be the most prestigious motorsport event in South Africa, the Hillclimb has grown exponentially from its humble beginnings back in 2009 to the local equivalent of the iconic Goodwood Festival of Speed, having had over 14 000 motorsport fans grace the hill in 2016.
The cream of the motorsport crop are to be found at the Hillclimb with legends such as Ian Scheckter, Mike Briggs, Deon Joubert, Leeroy Poulter and Sarel van der Merwe having taken part over the past 7 events. Of course, the cars are important too – nobody would fly all the way to Knysna to bear witness to a running race between Mike Briggs and Franco Scribante…
Porsche 917 and 956, Ariel Atom, various Lotus’, countless Ferraris and the usual brigade of supercars such as the McLaren 650S, Lamborghini Aventador and Jaguar F-Type have all taken part, as well as a handful of Formula 1 cars from a bygone era.
The 2017 programme sees a slight tweak with the King of the Hill event being split into three categories – SuperCar Shootout, Sports Cars and Single Seaters and Modified Saloons. This ensures that competition is fair and that each competitor stands a chance against the other hillclimbers. The fastest cars in each category will then go head to head in a shootout to crown the King of the Hill.
We look forward to seeing all the action from the Jaguar Simola Hillclimb – if the hype and success of the previous years is anything to go by, this year’s event promises to be quite the spectacle!