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Automotive News

ZF starts production at new East London axle plant 

By: Irma Venter     4th September 2019 ZF Lemförder South Africa’s new plant in East London has started production of front and rear axles for its customer, Mercedes-Benz South Africa (MBSA). MBSA – a member of the Daimler group – is investing R10-billion to gear up for production of the new generation C-Class at its nearby plant,... 

Jimmy died with his integrity intact, Ford Kuga fire inquest hears 

By: News24Wire      4th September 2019 Reshall Jimmy died with his integrity intact when his Ford Kuga went up in flames, after speculation he had been on a gambling binge or had had an altercation with a group of mystery men were proved wrong, the inquest into his death heard on Tuesday. But the mystery remains: Why did he not get... 

KLT acquires Brits plant, eyes East London expansion

By: Irma Venter     3rd September 2019 Chassis manufacturer, the KLT Group, has acquired the AVMY Steel Science pressing, welding, assembly and e-coating plant, in Brits, in the North West province, in a deal worth roughly R30-million. The move forms part of the Indian group’s production expansion and diversification programme in... 

KLT acquires Brits plant, eyes East London expansion

New-vehicle sales continue to decline; exports set new record 

By: Irma Venter     2nd September 2019 South African new-vehicle sales continued their steady downward trend in August. Total sales for August declined by 5.1%, to 45 537 units, compared with the same month last year. 

New-vehicle sales continue to decline; exports set new record

Fuso launches fresh product assault; expects flat 2019

By: Irma Venter     2nd September 2019 The South African new-truck market will show only a 0.8% improvement this year, forecasts Daimler Trucks & Buses Southern Africa (DTBSA) CEO Jasper Hafkamp. The domestic new-truck market reached 23 162 units in 2018. 

 Fuso launches fresh product assault; expects flat 2019
The Fuso FI12-170R

Ford recycles 1.2-billion plastic bottles a year for vehicle parts

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     30th August 2019 Ford Motor Company promotes the production of environment-friendly automotive parts and uses recycled plastic bottles to manufacture underbody shields for vehicles. “The underbody shield is a large part and, for a part that big, if we use solid plastic it would likely weigh three times as much,”... 

Ford recycles 1.2-billion plastic bottles a year for vehicle parts
Plastic bottles

Willard Batteries to start beach clean-ups next month as part of ‘Big Blue’ battery campaign 

By: Marleny Arnoldi     30th August 2019 Automotive battery manufacturer AutoX with one of their leading brands Willard Batteries will on September 7 host the first of its beach clean-ups, which form part of the company’s “Big Blue” limited edition battery campaign. Together with environmental organisation The Beach Co-Op, Willard is... 

Willard Batteries to start beach clean-ups next month as part of ‘Big Blue’ battery campaign
Willard Batteries' limited edition batteries since 2013

Development of South African EV ecosystem critical, says Nissan  

By: Irma Venter     30th August 2019 It is critical that the South African government creates an enabling environment for the adoption and uptake of electric vehicles (EVs) in South Africa, in order to catch up with global players, says Nissan Africa-Middle East-India connected cars and intelligent mobility coordination regional... 

Development of South African EV ecosystem critical, says Nissan

Virginia project to stimulate local gas economy

By: Cameron Mackay     30th August 2019 Alternative fuels investment firm Renergen’s Tetra4 Virginia natural gas project, in the Free State, will produce liquefied natural gas (LNG) in 2021, with a Phase 2 expansion being planned. Tetra4 is a natural gas and helium company, which Renergen acquired 90% of in December 2015. 

Virginia project to stimulate local gas economy
DOMINO EFFECT Once the plant is built and producing commercially, it will inspire confidence for other project developers to bring similar projects on line

EVs present economic and sustainability opportunities for SA

By: Schalk Burger     30th August 2019 Electric vehicles present economic and sustainability benefits for South Africa by offsetting fossil fuel imports and improving air quality, while providing potential storage and grid balancing benefits as the use of renewable energy grows, says electric vehicle and smart mobility company... 

Ctrack Logistics Barometer shows encouraging upward momentum 

By: Irma Venter     29th August 2019 Vehicle tracking and telematics provider, Ctrack, has joined forces with economists.co.za to create the Ctrack Logistics Barometer. The Ctrack Logistics Barometer aims to be an accurate co-incident indicator of the state of the South African economy, particularly in terms of the goods economy,... 

Ctrack Logistics Barometer shows encouraging upward momentum
Mike Schüssler

Netstar unveils ‘connected vehicle’ partnership with Toyota

By: Natasha Odendaal     29th August 2019 Telecommunications and information technology company Allied Electronics’ Netstar subsidiary has stepped up its Internet of Things ambitions with plans in place to bring about a unique “connected” vehicle solution in partnership with automaker Toyota South Africa. Following the launch of its... 

Motus weathers buying-down trend, looks to acquisitions in Aus, UK 

By: Irma Venter     28th August 2019 Current economic conditions are forcing South African consumers to buy down when it comes to vehicle purchases, moving either to pre-owned, entry-level or smaller cars, says Motus CEO Osman Arbee. Motus operates across the automotive value chain through four business segments, namely import and... 

Motus weathers buying-down trend, looks to acquisitions in Aus, UK
Osman Arbee

Toyota, Suzuki to deepen ties

By: , Bloomberg     28th August 2019 Toyota Motor and Suzuki Motor are strengthening their relationship by taking stakes in one another, the latest alliance in an industry that’s facing sweeping changes in technology, consumer preferences and business models. Japan’s biggest automaker will acquire about 5% of Suzuki shares for about... 

SKD production set to start at BAIC plant, CKD to follow in 2020, says IDC 

By: Irma Venter     26th August 2019 Semi-knockdown production (SKD) is “about to start” at the BAIC South Africa (SA) plant in the Coega Industrial Development Zone, in the Eastern Cape, says Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) Automotive and Transport Equipment head Joy Balepile. The IDC is a 35% shareholder in BAIC SA, along... 

 SKD production set to start at BAIC plant, CKD to follow in 2020, says IDC
Photo by Dylan Slater
The BAIC plant in Coega

Fancy a 1960s Land Rover? How about a lookalike made in South Africa 

By: Irma Venter     26th August 2019 Accountant Willie Oosthuizen wanted a rough-and-tumble, simple-to-fix, fun-to-drive, affordable vehicle for use on the family farm near Potchefstroom. Unable to find one he liked on the open market, he turned to building one himself: the Farm Rover, or ANT. 

 Fancy a 1960s Land Rover? How about a lookalike made in South Africa
The Farm Rover

Next phase of taxi recapitalisation gets under way

By: Schalk Burger     23rd August 2019 The revised taxi recapitalisation programme to remove the remaining 63 241 unroadworthy or noncompliant taxis from South Africa’s roads was launched by Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula, in Elandsfontein, Ekurhuleni, on Friday. The initial taxi recapitalisation programme, which was launched in... 

Next phase of taxi recapitalisation gets under way
Photo by Dylan Slater
Taxi being placed into baling machine

Volkswagen to launch EV in South Africa in 2021, urges govt support 

By: Irma Venter     23rd August 2019 Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA) hopes to launch it first fully electric vehicle (EV) in the local market in 2021, should it be able to convince its German head office to bring the vehicle to South Africa. The ID.3 has a price tag of roughly $36 000 and a range of 420 km. 

Volkswagen to launch EV in South Africa in 2021, urges govt support
A camouflaged ID.3

Event creates platform for transport service providers

By: Theresa Bhowan     23rd August 2019 Automotive corporation and Southern African Bus Operators Association (Saboa) member Daimler Trucks and Buses Southern Africa (DTBSA) exhibited and displayed its retail marketing campaign at the Saboa Conference and Exhibition that was held on July 31 and August 1. 

Alternative methods for emissions control created

By: Theresa Bhowan     23rd August 2019 Owing to stringent emission regulations regarding the quality of fuel supplied in South Africa, diesel and alternative fuel engines supplier Cummins South Africa offers engine after-treatment in conjunction with Euro 5 emission engines used in trucks and buses. 

Alternative methods for emissions control created
INNOVATIONS AND TECHNOLOGY Cummins has been using Euro 5 technology since 2010 and Euro 6 technology since 2014

Saboa event discusses national industry, creates brand awareness

By: Theresa Bhowan     23rd August 2019 Industry association the Southern African Bus Operators Association (Saboa) hosted its annual conference and exhibition on July 31 and August 1, during which exhibitors promoted new innovations and technologies, and networked with fleet operators and end-users. 

Saboa event discusses national industry, creates brand awareness
SHOWCASING EVENT Iveco’s focus on safety was highlighted with the launch of its after-market rollover kit

South Africa does not need domestic EV market to produce EVs, says Patel 

By: Irma Venter     22nd August 2019 There is an opportunity to bring battery electric vehicle and plug-in hybrid electric vehicle production to South Africa, without first developing a domestic market and charging infrastructure for these vehicles, says Trade and Industry Minister Ebrahim Patel. Addressing the National Association... 

South Africa does not need domestic EV market to produce EVs, says Patel
Photo by Creamer Media's Dylan Slater
Trade and Industry Minister Ebrahim Patel

Local manufacturing opportunities lie in deeper localisation – Naacam

By: Simone Liedtke     21st August 2019 National Association of Automotive Component and Allied Manufacturers commercial director Shivani Singh believes South Africa’s automotive manufacturing growth opportunities lie in deeper localisation involving tier one, two and three manufacturers, as the majority of components are currently... 

Local manufacturing opportunities lie in deeper localisation – Naacam
Photo by Janine Brown
Rifle-Shot Performance Holdings CEO and co-founder Ian Huntly

M&E Indaba focuses on Industry 4.0

By: Mamaili Mamaila     16th August 2019 For its fifth annual indaba in September, the Southern African Metals and Engineering Indaba (M&E Indaba) will focus on Industry 4.0, as it affects the metals and engineering (M&E) sector. 

M&E Indaba focuses  on Industry 4.0
KAIZER NYATSUMBA South Africa needs to be able to produce steel domestically and cost efficiently

VW, Nissan to get ten-year tax breaks for Ghana plants

By: , Bloomberg     15th August 2019 Ghana will offer tax breaks of up to ten years to automakers that set up local manufacturing plants, as the government seeks to attract international companies such as Volkswagen and Nissan. Volkswagen and Nissan both agreed last year to set up auto-assembly plants if Ghana signed off on an... 

Newcomer Zeelo seeks active growth in South Africa’s mobility market 

By: Irma Venter     15th August 2019 Looking to go to that big concert or rugby game, but not keen to drive home after a drink or two, or to travel at night? Newly launched mobility service Zeelo hopes to provide a solution to these conundrums, as well as some other transport questions prevalent in South Africa. 

 Newcomer Zeelo seeks active growth in South Africa’s mobility market

Metair to commission first li-ion battery line in November 

By: Irma Venter     14th August 2019 Metair hopes to commission its first lithium-ion (li-ion) battery production line on November 5, says MD Theo Loock. Metair is an international manufacturer, distributor and retailer of energy storage solutions and automotive components. 

Metair to commission first li-ion battery line in November
Theo Loock

Numsa, Mibco struggle to reach wage agreement

By: Marleny Arnoldi     13th August 2019 Wage negotiations between the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) and the Motor Industry Bargaining Council (Mibco) have deadlocked. Mibco represents workers in the motor sector, including in component companies, petrol stations and car dealerships.  

Numsa, Mibco struggle to reach wage agreement

PRASA demands outstanding debt from Autopax 

By: Irma Venter     13th August 2019 Autopax must pay its outstanding debt by August 15, or the bus service will be refused access to the train stations operated by the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA). PRASA operates the Metrorail commuter rail and Shosholoza Meyl long-distance rail services. 

PRASA demands outstanding debt from Autopax
Park station, in Johannesburg

First Isuzu dealership transforms to 100% black ownership

By: Irma Venter     12th August 2019 Bates Isuzu Shelly Beach is becoming the first 100% black-owned Isuzu dealership, in addition to being 65% woman-owned. The third-generation, family-run business had been operational since 1937. 

First Isuzu dealership transforms to 100% black ownership
Sipho Mdanda

Nissan, BMW in talks to pull South Africa into electric car era 

By: , Bloomberg     12th August 2019 Nissan Motor, BMW and Volkswagen are among carmakers in talks to bring the electric-car revolution to South Africa, as the nation’s auto-factory floors risk being left behind in the global switch to greener vehicles. The industry is preparing a unified stance on electrification to present to the... 

Nissan, BMW in talks to pull South Africa into electric car era

Oven temperature critical in automotive manufacturing

9th August 2019 For successful paint cure, irrespective of the paint chemistry being used, it is critical to measure and control the temperature of the car body as it travels through the oven. 

Furnace-firing ceremony for Bulgaria-based group

9th August 2019 Industrial organisation Şişecam Group continues its investments in Bulgaria where it operates in flat glass, automotive glass, glassware and chemicals business lines. 

Furnace-firing ceremony for Bulgaria-based group
INCREASED LABOUR Şişecam Group aims to contribute to the Bulgarian economy by increasing labour force participation

Improving efficiency, safety and profits with specialised equipment

By: Mamaili Mamaila     9th August 2019 There is a big opportunity to improve safety, efficiency and cost savings when it comes to kiln maintenance, says cement kiln equipment and bricking-machine manufacturer Bricking Solutions MD Heather Harding. 

Improving efficiency, safety and profits with specialised equipment
ACTION PLAN It is critical to implement a detailed and consistent plan of action, ensuring the safety of all persons during large, intricate, and complicated projects

Fuel Economy Tour to crown real-life fuel consumption winners 

By: Irma Venter     7th August 2019 WesBank and First National Bank have joined forces to sponsor a Fuel Economy Tour of South Africa. The WesBank Fuel Economy Tour, for standard production passenger cars and light commercial vehicles, will take place from November 12 to 16. 

Fuel Economy Tour to crown real-life fuel consumption winners

Three scenarios for EV uptake in SA; spark missing for the best one, says Jaguar  

By: Irma Venter     6th August 2019 There are three possible scenarios for electric vehicle (EV) uptake in South Africa, says Jaguar Land Rover South Africa (JLRSA) dealer network director and electrification project leader Brian Hastie. EVs are projected to make up around 50% of all global new light-duty vehicle sales by 2040, up... 

 Three scenarios for EV uptake in SA; spark missing for the best one, says Jaguar

Global aluminium demand set to outpace growth – Fitch

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     6th August 2019 The global aluminium market is likely to experience a number of deficits over the coming years as solid demand growth, driven by the construction and automotive sectors, outpaces production growth, says Fitch Solutions Macro Research. Fitch expects the global primary aluminium market to remain... 

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