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Monday, February 25, 2013

2014 BENTLEY CONTINENTAL FLYING SPUR COMES OUT






The brand new Bentley Continental Flying Spur promises to glide into the 2013 Geneva International Motor Show in ultimate luxurious style, with more of everything than ever before. Bentley’s biggest-selling four-door model ever just got better.


I drove the previous-generationFlying Spur back in 2006 and thought it was heaven on wheels, bar a few minor details like switchgear borrowed/ shared with the Volkswagen Touareg. Other than that it was the ultimate super luxury sedan I’d ever tested. And possibly the thirstiest.

Come 2013 and we have this. Newly sculptured from the bottom up, the new Flying Spur carries only the sun visors, grab handles, armrests and some of the controls from its predecessor, despite having 600 new parts. Some of these parts, like the bonnet and front fenders, are made from aluminium. This is contributed to a shaving of 50kg off the old model, despite additional kit and a more rigid body.

All the luxuries one can think of are included, such as handcrafted wood veneers, leather opulence, heated seats front and back, WiFiconnectivity through the car itself, a touch screen remote infotainment system with a 64GB hard drive that connects DVDs, SD cards, USB devices including iPods, tablets and HDMI devices.

The new Bentley Flying Spur is equipped with a 6.0-litre twin turbo W12 (two V6s stuck together to form a W shape) spurred on by an 8-speed ZF gearbox. All power goes to all four wheels. Said power is 460kW and 800Nm of torque. Bentley has tested the car to show a 0 – 100km/h take-off time of 4.6 seconds and top speed of 322 km/h. Not bad for a 2.5 tonne road orchestra.

MCLAREN P1 HYBRID: POWER DETAILS OUT!




Finally McLaren Automotive has released detailed information on the engine and powertrain to be used by its next hypercar, the McLaren P1. The most interesting aspect of the engine is that it will be a hybridsystem and deliver an astounding amount of power, translating into sensational road performance. Put on your seatbelt and brace yourself for the numbers.


Using the same, but highly revised 3.8-litre twin turbo engine as the MP4-12C’s, McLaren is now able to gather a total of 674kW and 900Nm of torque. This is thanks to 542kW and 720Nm at 4000rpm credited to the petrol V8, while an electric motorthat’s mounted onto the engine itself, contributes 132kW and 260Nm of instant torque. The associated gearbox is a 7-speed double-clutch affair that sends all power and torque to the rear wheels. No numbers have been released yet, but the “lesser” MP4-12C can skip from 0 – 100km/h in a mere 3.3 seconds under ideal conditions.

Because this is a hybrid car it means there is a battery pack somewhere backing up the engine and providing electric power when needed. For the P1 this battery is located under the undercarriage and weighs only 96kg. The petrol engine will recharge it while in motion and it can power the P1 completely for up to 10km in slow-moving traffic. Moreover it can be recharged from a wall power socket from empty to full in about two hours.

The hybrid hypercar seems to be the next flavour of the month as Honda (NSX), Porsche (918 Spyder) and now McLaren announce plans to semi-electrify their next godly creations.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

2013 NISSAN GT-R TRACK PACK ARRIVES






It’s not often that a company can recreate a legend. But Nissan has done just that, with the current GT-R everyday supercar which shattersall perception of what a supercarshould look, feel like and do. Now they have released the GT-R Track Pack edition, a car for those who live beyond normal roads.


Khayalami race track was the scene on a Saturdayafternoon, where a small group of motoring hacks gathered to listen, take note and drive off in prepared GT-Rs. A short presentationon the car and its features greeted the small throng, before being set on the loose in awaiting cars.

Some of the things said at the presentation included the fact that the car retains its 397kWof power and 628Nm of torque from a South African perspective (they get 405kW in Europe). The engine is also the same 3.8-litre twin turbo V6. Don’t think for a minute that this is not enough though.

Tweaks have been executed to improve performance. Such tweaks are things like new high-output injectors that allow for greater control of actual fuel injection, a specially-developed orifice for the turbocharger’s bypass relief valve – which suppresses the rapid decrease in forced induction air pressure, helping to sustain acceleration at high rpm and a new baffle plate in the oil pan, which curbs rotational friction within the oil pan and stabilises oil pressure especially during high-performance driving.

The name of the game here is to improve responsiveness, handling, steering and overall driving enjoyment. As such, the major casualty in all this has been the two rear seats which have been removed. Not that many GT-R owners would notice anyway; they were more suited to 6 year-olds than adults.

These adults demand something greater than just a claimed 2.7 second 0 – 100km/h sprint time. They demand top-shelf handling, now enhanced through modified shock absorber and the front stabiliser specifications, and improved steering response.

Going around Khayalami one could immediately feel the changes at work, with more accuracy at steering, a more responsive engine throttle, but still able to feel as comfortable as if you are in an Infiniti. GT-R Track Pack, which is unique to South Africa, is astounding in its execution. It’s not just seasoned racers who would be able to exploit the GT-R a little farther, but the common man as well.

The Track Pack itself consists of items like 20-inch forged aluminium wheels in a black quartz chrome finish, a muffler made from titanium, new air guides to aid in cooling the brakes, and exclusive carbon fibre Recaro front bucket seats.

Nissan GT-R Track Pack can certainly be enjoyed on an everyday basis, and should, especially in hectic urban city traffic. But for those itchy times when you feel like boastingand showing the laaities who’s boss on the track, it will still be fine. And that is what makes the car so special.


Nissan GT-R Pricing
GT-R Premium Edition (R1 398 200)
GT-R Premium Edition (Amber interior) (R1 448 200)
GT-R Black Edition (R1 448 200)
GT-R Track Pack (R1 743 700)

BIG BOSS OPEL ASTRA OPC RETURNS TO MZANSI






The boss is back (again)! The return of the Opel Astra OPC to South African market signals the seriousness of GM SA about its European brand. The car is the most powerful and hence, exciting in its class, thanks to a new package that includes a 2.0-litre turbo engine.


Force-fed to the front wheels is the 2.0-litre motor that makes 206kWat 5500rpm and 400Nm of torque between 2450rpm and 5000rpm through direct injection. That’s quite a long way from the “normal” 184kW delivered by rivals such as the Renault Megane RSand Ford Focus ST, and further still from the highly popular 155kW Volkswagen GTI. Engaging the engine is a6-speed manual gearbox with one of the most stylish gear levers in the business.

Opel says the Astra OPC will haul from 0 – 100km/h in just 6 seconds, and stop accelerating at 250km/h. According to the company, “key elements that contribute to the excellent vehicle dynamics are high performance struts (HiPerStruts) on the front suspension; the mechatronic FlexRidechassis system; a mechanical plate type” limited slip differential, and the Brembo brakes.

Another class-leading feature is the standard fitment of 20-inch alloy wheels, paired with 245/35 R20 tyres. There’s a multi-plate limited slip differential (LSD) that is said to minimise wheelspin on take-off or under severe cornering. When we drove the previous-generation Astra OPC we noted that it would even torque-steer at 120km/h, something unusual for any car.

That this is a high-performancehatch does not mean it should be limited as far as comfort features are concerned. So they have included things like climate control, power windows, leather interior, sports seats, rain sensors, cruise control, an electronic parking brake and a sound system with a USBport and Bluetooth connectivity, as well as 7 speakers, in case you get tired of the whooshing engine note.

The new Opel Astra OPC is now available from your nearest Opel dealership with a 5 year/120 000 km warranty with roadside assistance. Anti-corrosion warranty is valid for 5 years/unlimited km. Recommended service intervals are 12 months/15 000 km or as indicated by on-board monitor. A 5 year/90 000 km Service Plan is included in the price.


Opel Astra OPC Pricing
Six-speed manual (R435 000)

ALL-NEW 2014 JEEP CHEROKEE REVEALED





The brand new 2014 Jeep Cherokee is coming to town. Well, Geneva 2013 International Motor Show to be more precise. Thereafter to the US market, and then the world. And this is what the car looks like.


At our very last Jeep Cherokee launch about 4 years ago, the company said the car had been redesigned to accentuate its masculinity, to look more like a “man’s Jeep” than the previous 2001 edition. This time it seems, they are back to the feminine look and feel.

Cherokee’s most direct rival is the Land Rover Freelander because of its similar combination of interior comfort and off-road prowess. Other players in the segment include the Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Volvo XC 60, although these have less bundu-bashing capabilities. Jeep says the car is up to 45% more fuel-efficient than the incumbent, although no figures have been given.

DATSUN RETURNS TO MZANSI IN 2014



As mentioned in IN4RIDE last year, the Datsun brand is coming back to South Africa in 2014. Nissan South Africa says it will introduce the first Datsun-branded new car in the country since the company started phasing it out way back in 1981.


Datsun used to be one of the strongest brands we had, with cars like the Stanza and the 240/ 280 Z enjoying huge successes with buyers. It was a sad day when Nissan swallowed it into itself, as at the time Nissan was not as big as Datsun was.

“The return of Datsun is integral to our expansion in fast-growing markets where there is a mushrooming upwardly-mobile segment,” said Vincent Cobee, corporate vice president at Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.  “Datsun’s key values – accessible, reliable and modern - are designed to accommodate the needs and aspirations of this target group, just as it did for similarly optimistic customers in Japan, America and a large part of the world during most of the 20th century.”

At the moment we have no idea what kind of positioning Datsun will take up, whether for instance, it will be what Skoda is to Volkswagen (solid product, less features/ premium and price). What we do know is that their first product will be a sedan of some kind, due in Mzansi before the end of 2014.

All three Nissan car brands; Nissan, Infiniti and Datsun will exist and be marketed alongside each other.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

AUDI A4 ALLROAD FOR ALL MZANSI ROADS






On motoring launches we scribes get to explore the more arcane, secluded passages of tarmac in our country. If one has the time, a healthy balance on the fuel card and a keen sense of adventure, traversing the nation's roads could be quite rewarding indeed.

The Western Cape played host to the unveiling of the Audi A4 allroad two days ago.

We put it through its paces on some sinuous mountain passes and obscure dirt tracks - truly testing the idea behind the moniker: a car for every terrain and occasion.

What makes it so special?
Now the allroad isn't anything revolutionary, Audi gave us a product with the allroad treatment way back in 2001 - in the form of the A6. It offered a meaner, more rugged spin on the Avant wagon format.

In the four-ring emblem line-up, there is certainly no dearth of Sport Utility Vehicle offerings and quasi off-roaders. You've got the little Q3 at the bottom of the scale, the medium-sized Q5 and the behemoth Q7 at the top..

Let's go 50/50
The allroad is a well-executed compromise - a nearly perfect paradox on wheels.

It is a product for the buyer who wants a sporty, car-like driving position and handling to match. But with a bit of extra competence for those unforeseen circumstances where the tarred road deteriorates into a rocky trail.

And not forgetting the roominess and practicality of an estate car.

Awesome on all roads
We doff our hat to the beefier A4 wagon, is handles the rough stuff with aplomb.

Driving at freeway speeds on surfaces almost akin to cobblestone paving, the allroad retains its composure superbly and seems impervious to rattles and squeaks.

The ride height is elevated a little more than the standard Avant model (180 millimetres exactly), the suspension is supple and soaks up the effects of the surfaces beneath.

But then you point it in the direction of Sir Lowry's Pass, with its tummy-turning twisty sections and the butch German wagon laps it up with eagerness.

It glides along confidently and imparts a sense of solidity, thanks to that standard all-wheel drive system. The steering wheel is light at low, city speeds and stiffens up assuringly when you're pushing freeway-worthy digits.

Inside - so plush, no fuss
Hop inside and it's business as usual: quality that simply can't be faulted.

Everything is presented in a typically clear, clinical Audi kind of way. Although the A4's interior hasn't changed since its launch in 2008, things still look contemporary and feel rather upmarket.

Of course, you will need to fork out if you want all the cool stuff - like that Google Earth navigation system and a massive panoramic sunroof.

Dynamic engine duo
There are two derivatives available, the 2.0T FSI petrol (155kW and 350Nm) and the diesel 2.0 TDI (130kW and 380Nm).

We spent more time with the latter and found it effusive once it gathered some steam on the highway, with the turbocharger doing its thing and the abundance of torque kicking in.

You can only have Audi's semi-automatic S Tronic transmission, which shifts cogs with ease, but is less eager to oblige when you want to do things manually. Green highlights include automatic stop-start and energy recuperating technology.

Priced for a premium lifestyle
One cannot shy away from the fact that the allroad's suit-every-lifestyle virtues are not cheap.

Pricing kicks off at R433 000 for the 2.0T FSI and the diesel is R438 000. If you go wild with the optional extras you could end up paying nearly half a million for the privilege of ownership.

But what you get is sublime, near faultlesslevel of engineering. In addition to capability for all seasons and all surfaces - whether it’s whooshing past some sweeping scenic passes, or leaving clouds of dust on a filthy dirttrail.

Prices are inclusive of Audi's five-year/100 000 kilometre maintenance plan.

Audi A4 allroad Pricing
2.0 TFSI (R433 000)
2.0 TDI (R438 000)


STORY BY BRENWIN NAIDU

VOLVO REFRESHES S60, V60, XC60






In what can only be described as a product onslaught, Volvo South Africa has promised to introduce a new range of S60, V60 and XC60 models into the country around the fourth quarterthis year. These are not all-new versions, but merely facelifts. I say merely with caution, because revisions are quite noticeable, even under the skin.


Let’s start with the exterior where Volvo has redesigned a number of items. The front grille is new, and wider, LED lights are evident at the rear end, and there are new integrated taillights. Volvo is really on a roll now, and it looks like they are making all the right moves.

Inside, there are upgrades such as new upholstery colours, new wood inlays, a new headliner, and the silk metal frames around the air vents and light controls.

Probably one of the coolest items on the list is something called Sensus which is Volvo’s iDrive/ MMI. It uses a 17.8cm touch-screen that can even be operated while wearing gloves. Apparently that’s a world first. I wouldn’t say, since I’ve never tried. Nevertheless it has things like in-car internetwhich turns the car into a WiFihotspot through its own dongle or through your smart phone. You can then use the internet while the car is stationary or share it with passengers.

While there is no confirmation of exactly which engines will be kept or dropped from the local lineup, it’s interesting to learn that a D2 with 84kW exists, and is said to average around 4.1 litres per 100km of diesel for both S60 and V60. The 1.6 GTDi , a petrol, is also interesting in the T3 (110kW) and T4 (132kW).

The new facelift Volvo 60 range appears at the 2013 Geneva International Motor Show in the next couple of weeks.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

AUDI RS Q3 BREAKS OUT!






Audi has become the first of the premium car makers to offer a high-performance version of its smallest crossover SUV, the Q3. Called the RS Q3, the little fuming frankfurter has very promising numbers, and dare I say, a very promising future in South Africa when it lands here hopefully around October or November.


But first it must appear for the first time in public at the 2013 Geneve International Motor Show,which Audi promises it will. The RS Q3 looks like a mean bastard, appearing with extensive external kit like a honeycombfront grille with the word “quattro” across it, just like in the new RS 6 Avant and RS 7 Sportback, sporty side skirts, a different front and rear bumper and a rear diffuser. RS cars normally feature two oval tailpipesbut this one only has one, probably because of its stature in the range.

It still comes running in standard 19-inch wheels though, and you can spec that up to 20s if you are so inclined. The interior as you can see, is stunningly attractive, with lots of leather, aluminium and some alcantara bits adorning things. Check how stylish the seats are in that cross-stichstyle.

What you really want to know though is how powerful is this thing right? Well, using the company 2.5-litre turboengine with 5 cylinders, maximum thrust of 228kW and 420Nm of torque are entirely achievable. Underneath is a 7-speedS tronic gearbox and quattro all-wheel-drive (AWD). In the end you are looking at a 0 – 100km/h time of 5.5 seconds, running out of breath electronically at 250km/h. Audi says it will average 8.8 litres per 100km in fuel.

Monday, February 18, 2013

AMAZINGLY FRUGAL CITROEN TECH FOR GENEVA 2013

A new technology from enterprising French car company Citroën will be on show at the 2013 Geneva International Motor Show. The hi-tech stuff of course has to do with using less fossil fuels and possibly saving the planet, if it’s not too late already.


Called Hybrid Air, the system is a full-hybrid solution that combines compressed air with hydraulic power in order to reduce fuel consumption to a barely noticeable minimum. Citroën says the system is suitable for cars in B and C segments, and also LCVs (light commercial vehicles like vans).

A C3 prototype with the technology will be showcased in Geneva. They say it can achieve a phenomenal average fuel consumption figure of 2.9 litres per 100km and 69 g/km in C02 emissions

FERRARI NAMED MOST POWERFUL BRAND


Ferrari is the world’s most powerful brand. And not simply in the opinion of millions of Prancing Horse enthusiasts all over the world or, indeed, the clients that continue to buy the cars built at Maranello year after year, but according to the annual list compiled by leading brand valuation experts, Brand Finance.


Ferrari took the number one spot of the top five most powerful brands in 2013 ahead of the likes of Google, Coca-Cola, PwC and Hermes on a list that includes the 500 most famous companies in the world.  Because of its size, the Maranello company cannot compete with the large multinational brands in terms of overall revenues. However, its brand rating takes into account other financial metrics, such as net margins, average revenue per customer, and advertising and marketing spend, as well as qualitative parameters, such as brand affection and loyalty.  

“It is always a pleasure to top any list and still more so when the competition includes some of the world’s most famous companies. This achievement proves that even in very tough economic times, Italy can still offer the world businesses of excellence,” commented Ferrari chairman Luca di Montezemolo. “Behind this acknowledgement are exceptional products made by equally exceptional men and women. They made it possible and for that I thank them.” 

STORY BY FERRARI

VOLKSWAGEN GOLF 7 NOW IN MZANSI






As I drive the new Golf(mark 7) down in picturesque Port Elizabeth and surrounds, I am reminded of all the bits that make a legend. Like the fact that Golf has never changedits name since the Mk1 went on sale in 1978. One name, one brand, one legend, one Golf. And how, the Golf 7 is here, and I’m behind the wheel.


I notice that everything is pretty familiar here. Familiarity is a good thing as it offers us some type of comfort that all is well, that we are “home”. I felt this way getting into the new Golf 7. Actually, since Golf 5, the car has had a very familiar look and feel, so much so that often the casual observer has difficulty telling Golf 5 from 6 and 6 from 7. Evolution apparently. Boring? Probably not. Because Golf is meant to straddle the thin line between familiar and boring. It’s the biggest-sellingVolkswagen of all time, with over 29 millionsold globally since Mk1. You don’t sell so many cars by dividing opinion.

So it makes sense that the design is quite similar to the outgoingmodel. Volkswagen Group Design Chief Walter Maria de Silva is not a big fan of fussy lines. He prefers the minimalistic look. According to him, a designer should never place a line unnecessarily. And so it is with Golf 7, which looks very mature, but at the same time, quite striking and sharp. From the bonnet the car looks like it is slicing through the air, as if it’s swishingpast traffic, even when it’s standing still. Very dynamic.

The interior has grown up, featuring really solid build materials that welcome one into the cabin with open arms. Yes there are plastics everywhere; it’s the modern manufacturingprocess and will probably get “worse”. Yet these are plastics one can be proud of. They are soft and look quite durable. One of the items one notices upon entry is the electro-magnetic handbrake, a first for the segment. Some journalists are not too happy with that part, saying it takes away some of its expected sportiness. We don’t see a lot of handbrake turns anymore, especially for a front-wheel-driven car like the Golf so I don’t think that sentiment is justified. In fact, I think it’s quite progressive as it makes it easier for people to use the handbrake and move off from steep hills.

There’s a distinctive premiumfeel, from the dashboard, dials, to the multi-functionsteering wheel. One of my VW pet hates has somewhat been taken care of. The absence of a USB port, which is quite versatile these days, is no longer an absence, but uses a cable system and is located in a compartment that is not quickly visible. Also, it’s only available standard to Highline models. During my drive I didn’t get a chance to check out the Bluetooth function, which is new for Golf. Other than that, the new touchscreenis good, and is standard in 5-inches (12.7 cm) and on higher-specced models in 8-inches (20.3 cm).

Bravo to the product planners who decided to finally do away with the rather lazy (and subsequently thirsty) 1.6-litre naturally aspirated engine, and instead introduce the 1.2-litre TSI Trendline turbo! The new entry-level 1.2 is worth its mettle, delivering 77kW at 5600rpm, and top end torque of 175Nm between 1550rpm and 4100rpm. It emits 114g/km in C02s and comes with a 6-speedmanual. Then we have the popular 1.4 TSI, with two different power outputs, the lowest being 90kW at 5000rpm and 200Nmbetween 1500rpm and 4000rpm. Trendline uses the 6-speed manual, while Comfortlinehas both manual and DSG options. The cars have an acceleration time of around 9.3 seconds from 0 – 100km/h, returning on average, about 5.1 litres per 100km. The same engine can be had for 103kW between 4500rpm and 6000rpm, and 250Nm between 1500rpm and 3500rpm. Lastly there is the 2.0-litre TDI doing 110kW between 3500rpm and 4000rpm, and max torque of 320Nm between 1750rpm and 3000rpm. At launch the 2.0 TDI is only coming with the DSG ‘box. VW says it will average 4.5 litres per 100km, giving it a tank (50 litres) range of roughly 1 100km.

Golf 7 measures 4.25 metres in length, 1.8m wide, 1.45m high and has a wheelbase of 2.6m. Lower range models come with 15-inch wheels, while mid-range ones will sport 16-inchers. The Highline models are standard with 17-inch wheels. While we are at it, we think the GTI will be fitted with 18-inch standard wheels, as it has been for the past two generations. Standard safety features across the board include front and side airbags, an immobiliser, ESP, ABS, ASR, EBD and auto-hold. A full-sized spare wheel is included, and from what we understand, the VW SA executives had to fight for that because in Europe they don’t put as much emphasis on this as we do. They seem to prefer either the thin (Marie biscuit) or the repair kit option. We may even see runflats making their way into Golf within the next two generations…

While it may not be quickly recognisable as such to the casual eye, the new Golf 7 is a brand new car, through and through. It ticks all the required boxes as far as driving dynamics, looks, features, safety and critically, pricing. VW cannot afford to be too expressive with the Golf as it is their bread and butter, so anyone who calls it “boring” may have a point, but the point itself has a point. Another excellent Golf comes to town.


Golf 7 Pricing
1.2 TSI with BlueMotion Technology Trendline (77 kW) 6-speed manual (R233 800)
1.4 TSI with BlueMotion Technology Trendline (90 kW) 6-speed manual (R246 700)
1.4 TSI with BlueMotion Technology Comfortline (90 kW) 6-speed manual (R264 900)
1.4 TSI with BlueMotion Technology Comfortline (90 kW) 7-speed DSG (R279 400)
2.0 TDI Comfortline (81kW) Manual 5-speed (R282 300)
1.4 TSI with BlueMotion Technology Highline (103 kW) 6-speed manual (R293 600)
2.0 TDI with BlueMotion Technology Highline (110 kW) 6-speed DSG (R334 800)

NEW CITROEN DS LINE MEMBER LAUNCHED






The Citroën DS Line has been further enhanced with the addition of its latest member, the DS3 VTi 82 Design.

Launched with the latest PureTech petrol engine, the DS3 VTi 82 Design showcases a 1.2-litre three-cylinder model and brings the DS entry-point in at R199 900. The VTi 82 nomenclature, in line with the brand’s conventions, alludes to a power output of 82 horsepower, or 60kW in metric-speak. Four-wheeled sex appeal has never been this attainable.

When it comes to performance the newcomer punches above its weight too, and heralds the arrival of Citroën’s PureTech petrol engine technology - further proof of the Brand’s commitment to ‘Créative Technologie’. It represents a number of advances in terms of environmental impact, driving pleasure and efficiency.

It is possible with this car to achieve fuel consumption levels as low as 4.6 litres per 100 km and with emissions of just 107 grams/km it doesn’t incur any CO2 penalty.

Over and above a frugal appetite, owners of a DS3 VTi 82 will get zippy performance in the urban environment, with the engine response and chassis agility combining to whisk one through traffic effortlessly en route to the open road.

The new addition to the DS3 Line brings the engine offerings to four for 2013: the 1.6-litre petrol models continue unchanged in both the VTi120 and award-winning THP155 (115kW) guises while turbodiesel fans can opt for the e-HDi Airdream 90 engine - introduced late last year and featuring fuel-saving start/stop technology.

Launched almost three years ago, the DS3 has proved to be an outstanding success for Citroën. Over 200 000 units have been sold worldwide, making it a global phenomenon with demand outstripping supply in most markets, proving beyond doubt that modern consumers want a design which is creative, innovative, and individualistic, without compromising on an inspired driving experience.

The DS3 has been the main contributor in steering the overall DS line’s sales to over 300 000 units in three years. Local sales have played their role in attaining this figure with sales of the funky three-door hatch exceeding more than 1000 since launch in 2010.

The bold, distinctively styled DS3 has always dressed from the most fashionable wardrobe, and that continues across all models, thanks to a wider colour palette being offered, with Moondust metallic grey and Infini blue as new additions to the roof colours over and above the Black and White roof options.

A striking three-dimensional effect for the LED lighting of the rear clusters are a key differentiator for the 2013 model year.


Says Citroën’s General Manager, Marketing, Grant Bowring: “The DS3 is a highly desirable car, with unrivalled emotional appeal and now it is far more attainable thanks to the introduction of the DS3 1.2 VTi Design. It is a worthy bearer of the DS signature, and offers the customer a combination style, innovation and technology in equal measure.”

Adding to the pleasure of the actual purchase process are new unique choices when it comes to both the colour and texturing of leather trim, while broader feature combinations allow prospective buyers to drive away with a ‘custom’ vehicle - without a ‘custom’ price.

All this is even more appealing when considering the list of value-adding benefits – including a growing awareness of keen parts pricing, a claim borne out by DS3’s Citroën’s strong performance in the annual Kinsey Report over the past two years where it performed extremely favourably in the supermini sector.

Not that owners will have to worry about parts pricing in the short to medium term, thanks to a four year/60 000 km service plan as standard. Further peace of mind comes in the form of an optional Freedrive programme, in terms of which the service plan can be converted to a full maintenance plan at point of sale.

As part of Freedrive plan the warranty is also extended to the same distance and time levels, leaving the consumer with comprehensive five-year/100 000 km cover which extends to almost everything on the car.

“The DS Line and the DS3 in particular are a massive hit worldwide,” concluded Citroën’s Managing Director Didier Gerard. “With the arrival of the DS3 Cabrio in the coming months, we will present South African consumers with a range of cars which offer unrivalled panache and style with high levels of comfort, control and safety whilst being a pleasure to own and drive.”

Pricing
R199 900


STORY BY CITROËN
//PART 2