This Week In The News

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  • The Eastern Cape Development Corporation (ECDC) this week launched the R50-million Automotive Operator Blended Finance Scheme (AOBFS) designed to boost opportunities for micro, small, and medium-sized automotive component suppliers and aftermarket service providers in the province.
    The minimum disbursement figure is R300,000, up to a maximum of R1 million, which will go towards securing buildings, equipment, machinery, stock, accreditation, and employee training.

  • BYD has unveiled two new hybrids that can travel for more than 2,000km on a single tank and battery charge.

  • “Tracker’s data indicates that at a national level, hijackings still dominate, accounting for 55% of all national vehicle crime incidents versus theft at 45%,” said the organization.
    The car-tracking firm also noted that business-owned vehicles are 56% more likely to experience vehicle crime compared to personal vehicles.

  • Ford Ranger crosses one-million local production milestone. Lined-up bumper-to-bumper, the number of Rangers made would stretch from Silverton 5 300 km to the southern Egyptian border.
  • Data from finance house WesBank shows that the average consumer spent R392,174 on a new car in the first quarter of 2024, a noteworthy increase of 24% over the corresponding period in 2019 when the same individuals only paid R316,778 for a new ride.
  • Five years ago, South Africa’s favourite wallet-friendly brand Suzuki offered the mid-range model of the Jimny 3-door for a window sticker of R305,900, as well as the mid-range model of its flagship Vitara for R322,900.
  • Still focused squarely on the affordable end of the spectrum, Suzuki customers of today with the average South African’s budget can pick between the Grand Vitara GL Auto which demands a price of R376,900, the XL6 GLX Auto selling for R379,900, or the base Jimny GL 3-door that is currently on the market for R399,900.
  • The most expensive “vanity ”number plate you can currently get in South Africa goes for a heady R113,619, not including license and registration fees. Back in 2016 a collection of single-character Gauteng plates ranging from “1 – GP” to “8 – GP” sold for a whopping R1.89 million at auction, reported Wheels24 at the time.


Bad news for driving licenses in South Africa

The extension of South Africa’s driver’s licence to eight or even ten years has been in the pipeline for years, but it seems the government is dropping the idea.

Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) CEO Makhosini Msibi confirmed that the proposal to extend the validity period to eight years was not presented to the cabinet for approval.

Msibi said that in the current situation in South Africa, the time frame specifically concerns the health of the driver, including an eye test to verify their vision. “So it remains critical that we maintain that process [the current validity period] until all these issues have been dealt with.”

Outa CEO Wayne Duvenage criticized the decision not to extend the period as “ludicrous,” especially considering the administration and costs associated with the process.

He also mentioned that the decision could have also been motivated by the fact that extending the validity period is a revenue issue for the government.


Auto industry deals big blow to South African economy

The manufacturing sector in South Africa contracted 1.4% during the first quarter of the year, in turn contributing -0.2 of a percentage point to the country’s GDP which only grew by a measly 0.1%.

Of the nationwide manufacturing industry, the segment for motor vehicles, parts and accessories, and other transport equipment was the largest negative contributor.

The sector’s lacking performance is attributed to weaker demand for new vehicles as well as transport parts and accessories, as per Stats SA.


New Toyota Prado in South Africa – Pricing

Toyota has finally revealed the pricing of the hotly anticipated next-generation Prado. The South African pricing for the new Toyota Prado is as follows:

Toyota Prado 2.8GD TX – R1,296,300
Toyota Prado 2.8GD VX-R – R1,448,900
Toyota Prado 2.8GD VX-R First Edition – R1,462,400
Toyota Prado 2.8GD VX-R First Edition Bi-Tone – R1,472,600

Each purchase entails a 3-year/100,000km warranty and a 9-service/90,000km service plan.

2024 Toyota Prado

All of these units are powered by Toyota’s familiar 2.8-litre turbocharged diesel engine, as the 4.0-litre petrol block has been dropped from the range.


Best selling new car brands in South Africa May 2024.

Toyota held steadfast as the country’s top-selling automaker this past May, seeing 8,795 vehicles fly off the proverbial shelves.

1. Toyota 8,795 units
2. VW 4,939 units
3. Suzuki 4,101 units
4. Ford 2,860 units
5. Hyundai 2,185 units
6. Isuzu 1,626 units
7. Chery 1,609 units
8. Nissan 1,522 units
9. GWM 1,205 units
10. Renault 1,110 units

According to Naamsa, the Automotive Business Council, the national elections on 29 May combined with high interest rates put a damper on big-ticket purchases like new vehicles during the month, with the industry subsequently reporting aggregate sales of 37,105 units, a substantial year-on-year decrease of 6,137 units (14.2%).

Vehicle exports performed similarly poorly as domestic new-vehicle sales.
The May 2024 export sales number at 24,235 units reflected a decrease of 5,712 vehicles, or 19.1%, compared to the 29,947 vehicles exported in May 2023.