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 Automotive

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The success story continues – the updated Audi Q3

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As Audi’s most compact Q model, the Audi Q3 offers all the inherent Q-DNA, but in a more exciting and dynamic package. Since introduction in 2012, the Q3 has sold in excess of 5,000 units locally, making it a top performer in the compact premium SUV segment. With the introduction of the refreshed Audi Q3 range, greater performance, more equipment and a more aggressive design is offered.A new 1.4-litre 110kW entry model is now available for the Q3 with a choice of either a six-speed manual gearbox or a 7-speed S tronic transmission. Both models offer front wheel drive. As the first Audi model to feature the new Q-inspired design cues which will be rolled out to future Q models, the new Audi Q3 features a more imposing 3D-design front grille, revised bumpers and headlights. The rear features new bumpers and taillight design.

Full LED headlights are offered as an option for the first time on this model and are particularly bright and energy-efficient. Audi offers them in combination with the dynamic turn signals integrated into the likewise redesigned LED taillights. These intuitive turn signals illuminate sequentially within two-tenths of a second from the inside out in the direction the driver intends to turn.

The base model of the new Audi Q3 has a curb weight of just 1,385 kilograms, with the dimensions relatively unchanged from the previous model. It measures 4.39 metres long, 1.83 metres wide and 1.59 metres high while the wheelbase remains unchanged at 2.60 metres.

The Audi Q3 offers plenty of space at all five seating positions. In its base configuration, the cargo compartment of the Audi Q3 has a capacity of 460 litres; by folding down the split rear seatbacks, this can be increased to 1,365 litres. Roof rails and a new, extensible luggage compartment cover are standard.

The two TFSI and one TDI engine boast higher output combined with reduced fuel consumption and CO2 emissions have been reduced by as much as 17 percent. The first of the petrol engines is a new 1.4T FSI now available for the first time in the Audi Q3. It produces 110 kW of power and 250 Nm of torque and will be available locally in both manual and S tronic guise.

The second petrol engine on offer is a 2.0T four-cylinder unit producing 132 kW of power and 320 Nm of torque. This model features Audi’s legendary quattro system and will only be available in S tronic transmission.

On the diesel front, there will be a 2.0 TDI engine offering 135 kW of power and 380Nm of torque. It will be available in July 2015 and will feature the quattro system and S tronic transmission as standard. A 2.0 TDI 110 kW front wheel drive S tronic model will be available in 2016.

The chassis of the redesigned Audi Q3 combines agile handling with supreme safety, and comprehensive fine-tuning has enhanced comfort even further. Audi drive select enables the driver to adjust key technology modules to suit his or her personal preferences. Wheels range in size from 16 to 19 inches in diameter, and the suspension has been tuned for high rolling comfort.

The new Audi Q3 features a generous list of standard equipment. With respect to driver assistance systems, the secondary collision brake assist is standard and a host of other systems available as options. With Audi side assist, a yellow LED indicator illuminates in the housing of the outside mirror if another vehicle is in the blind spot or is approaching rapidly from the rear. Audi active lane assist works with video cameras that detect the lane markings. It gently intervenes in the steering to help the driver return to the lane if he or she comes too close to a line without indicating.

The Audi RSQ3

The Audi RS Q3 has also been updated with the rest of the range. The compact performance SUV is now more dynamic than ever. Its 2.5 litre, five-cylinder engine now produces
250 kW (22 kW more than the previous model) and 450 Nm of torque. The top model in the series now accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.8 seconds on its way to an electronically governed top speed of 250 km/h. An RS exhaust system with a switchable flap adds even more volume to the unmistakable sound of the five-cylinder engine.

The seven-speed S tronic, which transfers the power to the quattro drivetrain via a new hydraulic multi-plate clutch (5th generation), has also been refined for even faster gear changes. The lower gears are closely spaced for sporty response while the seventh gear is tall to save fuel.

Numerous design details illustrate the special status of the dynamic top-of-the-line model. On the exterior, the distinctive bumpers are particularly eye-catching. Sport seats are optionally available in Fine Nappa leather with diamond quilting; red needles sweep across gray dials in the instrument cluster; and the driver information system offers a special RS menu with lap timer and displays for both oil temperature and boost pressure.

The improved Audi RS Q3 will be introduced locally in August 2015.

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Standard equipment:

Audi Q3 1.4T FSI manual and S tronic:

  • Xenon plus headlights with LED daytime running lights and halogen rear lights
  • 3-spoke multi-function leather covered sports steering wheel
  • Bluetooth connectivity with audio streaming
  • Voice control
  • Concert radio with pop-up LCD colour screen
  • Audi music interface
  • Driver information system with efficiency programme
  • New-design 16-inch alloy wheels
  • Cruise control
  • Standard seats in cloth
  • Front centre armrest
  • Passive speakers
  • Manual air-conditioning
  • Front passenger airbag deactivation
  • Automatic interior dimming mirror

 

Audi Q3 2.0T FSI 132 kW S tronic quattro and 2.0 TDI 135 kW quattro S tronic:

  • Xenon plus headlights with LED daytime running lights and halogen rear lights
  • 3-spoke multi-function leather covered sports steering wheel
  • Bluetooth connectivity with audio streaming
  • Voice control
  • Concert radio with pop-up LCD colour screen
  • Audi music interface
  • Driver information system in colour with efficiency programme
  • New-design 17-inch alloy wheels
  • Cruise control
  • LED interior lighting package
  • Standard seats in cloth
  • Front centre armrest
  • Audi sound system
  • Automatic air-conditioning
  • Front passenger airbag deactivation
  • Automatic interior dimming mirror

Pricing:

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The Audi Q3 will be priced as per below:

  • Audi Q3 1.4T FSI 110 kW manual: R 402,500
  • Audi Q3 1.4T FSI 110 kW S tronic: R 419,500
  • Audi Q3 2.0T FSI 132 kW quattro S tronic: R 499,000
  • Audi Q3 2.0 TDI 135 kW quattro S tronic: R 515,000
  • Audi RSQ3 2.5T FSI 250 kW quattro S tronic: R 769,500* (August 2015)

* Indicative pricing

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Citroen C4 Picasso 

C4 PicassoC4 Tech

The Citroën C4 Picasso, an award-winning five-seater MPV that has garnered high praise around the globe, has undergone a series of upgrades. More specifically, the model line-up has been augmented with the introduction of a third, turbo petrol-powered derivative, which also becomes the new flagship of the range.

The new range-topper links Citroën’s powerful and efficient e-THP four-cylinder turbo petrol engine to a refined six-speed automatic transmission. The 1.6-litre unit’s power output is a lively 121 kW at 6 000 rpm, accompanied by a full 240 Nm of torque at just 1 400 rpm.

The introduction of an automatic version is the direct result of customer feedback, and adds the convenience and safety of an automatic transmission to the C4 Picasso formula for the first time.

Reflecting its flagship status, the newcomer is offered in top-end Intensive execution only. The result is a full-house features list that leaves the C4 Picasso’s occupants wanting for nothing as far as style, space, convenience, safety and technology are concerned.

The result is a spacious, luxurious MPV with ample pep and an extensive list of standard features. The new model records a 0-100 km/h sprint time of 9.3 seconds, while top speed is impressive at 200 km/h.

That said, the highly efficient engine also achieves excellent fuel consumption, with a combined-cycle figure of 5.6 litres/100 km, coupled to CO2 emissions levels of just 130 g/km.

A key aspect in terms of both performance and efficiency is the C4 Picasso’s low kerb weight. Its lightweight construction has allowed a substantial weight reduction of 140 kg, benefitting both performance and handling, while reducing fuel consumption, too.

Impressively, the top-flight e-THP 121 kW Auto weighs in at just 1 310 kg, which is 12 kg heavier than the e-HDI 85 kW models. Like all current-generation C4 Picassos, the low mass is the result of Citroën’s advanced EMP2 platform, which allows compact exterior dimensions, but with more interior space.

In line with its range-topping status, the list of standard equipment is extensive. Everything is included in the asking price, greatly reducing ordering complexity and ensuring a high-value offering.

Highlights include auto-activating headlights and windscreen wipers, tyre pressure monitoring, ABS, EBD, ESC and SIX airbags, a reversing camera, and navigation. The infotainment system includes Bluetooth connectivity and a 8 GB hard drive-based Jukebox.

Safety is comprehensively addressed via ABS brakes with electronic brake force distribution (EBD) and emergency braking assistance (EBA), electronic stability control (ESC), Hill Start Assist, and a full complement of six airbags.

Advanced active safety features additionally offered by the new C4 Picasso Automatic include blind spot monitoring, and lane departure warning (with visual and active seat belt alert).

The addition of the new C4 Picasso e-THP 121 kW Automatic coincides with a realignment of the range, which now consists of three models – two powered by 85 kW e-HDi Turbodiesels, and the new 121 kW turbo petrol.

The range kicks off with the C4 Picasso e-HDI 85 kW Seduction Manual. The 1,6-litre turbodiesel engine under the bonnet has a rated maximum output of 85 kW at 3 600 r/min, combined with a torque peak of 270 Nm at just 1 750 rpm. The gearbox is a six-speed manual.

Next up is the e-HDI Intensive Manual, which employs the same turbodiesel drivetrain, but together with the enhanced specification associated with the Intensive package.  Wheels on the Seduction model are 16-inch, while the Intensive gains 17-inch alloys.

Another hallmark is the presence of dual displays – a 7-inch touch-screen display that centralises all core vehicle functions for convenient, intuitive access, and a configurable 12-inch display (on Intensive model only) that replaces conventional instrumentation and can be customised in a variety of ways to suit personal preference or lifestyle.

The EMP2 platform’s efficient packaging allows up to 537 litres of boot space, while the reduced weight has both environmental and dynamic benefits. The result is a vehicle that is more agile, yet offers the refinement and comfort Citroën cars are famous for.

The new C4 Picasso models can be ordered in a choice of five colours: Polar White, Ruby Red Metallic, Arctic Steel Metallic, Teles Blue Metallic and Shark Grey Metallic, Inside the Seduction model the Ondulice cloth in two-tone black/Ardoise grey is standard, while the Intensive versions feature a black/pearlescent grey colour scheme.

The uniqueness and broad appeal of the C4 Picasso is underscored by the long list of rewards and accolades it has received around the world since launch.

From Australia and Argentina to Spain, Argentine, Germany, the UK, Portugal, France, Bulgaria, Ireland and more, the C4 Picasso resonates with an ever-increasing family of products. In South Africa, the C4 Picasso was one of the nine finalists in the 2015 Car Of The Year Contest.

“The Citroen C4 Picasso has always been a unique, stylish offering in what is broadly considered the MPV segment,” says Francis Harnie, managing director Peugeot Citroën South Africa.

“The realigned range, topped off by a new automatic turbo petrol model, and featuring a comprehensive list of standard features, translates into exceptional comfort levels, a spacious interior and flexible load options,” Harnie added. “Value added pricing means that our Citroën C4 Picasso represents exceptional value, too.

 

Pricing

The recommended retail prices of the Citroën C4 Picasso range are as follows:

 

e-HDI 85kW Seduction Manual                                                 R325 900

e-HDI 85kW Intensive Manual                                                  R345 900

2-THP 121kW Intensive Auto                                                    R369 900

 

Pricing includes a three-year/100 000 km warranty, a five-year/100 000 km service plan, as well as roadside assistance. There is an option to upgrade to the FreeDrive or five-year/100 000 km warranty extension.  Services are at 20 000 km/1Year intervals on the petrol model and 15 000km/1Year intervals on the two diesel derivatives.

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ALL-NEW TOYOTA HILUX

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Re-defining Tough

 The eighth-generation Toyota Hilux was officially unveiled in Bangkok today, marking the start of sales of the all-new model in Thailand …and it’s certainly been worth the wait.

 One of the world’s best-known and best-loved nameplates, Hilux first hit dealerships in 1968, selling over 16 million in more than 180 countries. This year we will celebrate a million units sold in South Africa alone.

Completely re-designed from the inside out the all-new Hilux ushers in a radically luxurious interior wrapped in a sophisticated, chiseled new body, offering exceptional on-road performance and new technologies while remaining true to its core values of uncompromising off-road ability and, of course, legendary toughness.  

But what does “tough” really mean? That’s the question we at Toyota asked ourselves when faced with the mammoth task of creating the eighth-generation Hilux.

We realised that toughness doesn’t just come from the vehicle; it comes from the people inside. Whether you’re battling your way up a muddy track or negotiating the rigours of the urban jungle, reducing the stress of driving is just as important as withstanding the elements. That’s why the new Hilux, while improving on the model’s characteristic ruggedness and performance, redefines toughness by being more occupant-focused and easier to drive than ever before.

To truly understand what our customers expect from us and the challenges they face on a daily basis, our development teams travelled the globe from Caracas to Kommetjie, getting direct feedback from customers and driving on a wide variety of different roads to get a feel for different usage conditions. To gain inspiration for the eighth-generation Hilux, the development team drove in conditions ranging from rough, muddy forests to deserts with temperatures exceeding 50°C and flooded roads in the rainy season. Sometimes they came up against even harsher conditions than expected, which brought home the need to develop an even tougher Hilux.

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The development process also reflected invaluable feedback received directly from Hilux drivers. Some wished they could make long transcontinental trips without worrying about running out of fuel. Others described how hard it is to stay alert and drive safely during grueling long-distance journeys with extended stretches of rough driving. Yet another, who uses their Hilux for forest maintenance work and frequently speaks via radio with the police and fire department, explained how a quiet cabin is essential for communication.

This led the development team to conclude that the new Hilux should not only be tougher but should also reduce stress as much as possible. Above and beyond conventional ideas of toughness, the eighth-generation Hilux boasts ride comfort that makes long, tough drives less gruelling, a quiet cabin that allows communication in any conditions, and enhanced cruising range thanks to improved fuel efficiency.

While all new, the eighth-generation Hilux will build on the current model’s success story in terms of resale value and sheer desirability. Don’t forget that the Hilux was the number one selling vehicle as well as the number one “bakkie” in South Africa in 2014. Into 2015, the current model continues to chart at the top of the bestseller list and it’s worth noting why. The seventh generation has been refined over the years and now offers a high standard of refinement coupled with exceptional value for money. It is still very much a competent package and will continue to remain a very relevant player in this market right up until the arrival of its successor.

As explained by Hiroki Nakajima, the executive chief engineer behind the Hilux (and also a managing officer of Toyota Motor Corporation): “Our entire development concept was centered on ‘redefining toughness’. We aimed to make the new Hilux ‘tougher’ based on a much broader interpretation of that word. The message we want to deliver to our customers is embodied in our slogan for the vehicle: ‘A New Era for Pickup. Every Inch a Hilux.’”

This is echoed by Calvyn Hamman, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Toyota SA: “It’s instantly recognisable as a Hilux, it feels like a Hilux, it drives like a Hilux– only better. Successfully melding innovation, sophistication and extrovert design with fanatical reliability, the all-new Hilux will be the benchmark. The Legend is set to continue.”

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Main features

Newly developed frame and suspension:

  • To achieve both greater capability and unprecedented driving stability, an all-new rigid frame with enlarged side sections and cross members that are larger and thicker have been created.
  • Enhanced off-road performance and comfort thanks to the upgraded leaf spring suspension and shock absorbers.
  • Suspension tuning was also optimised.

Newly developed engines and transmissions:

  • Excellent torque in all rev ranges, with significantly improved torque at low speed thanks to the newly developed 2.4- and 2.8-litre diesel engines.
  • Extended cruising distance enabled by improved fuel efficiency.
  • Reduced engine noise.
  • Balanced torque and fuel efficiency due to newly developed six-speed automatic transmissions with more steps and optimised gear ratios to maximise engine performance.
  • World-first (for a pick-up) – Intelligent Manual Transmission or i-MT supports smooth shifting with rev matching technology.

Serviceability/maintenance:

  • Reduced maintenance and repair time, thanks to enhanced serviceability around the new engine.

 

Please note that the all-new Hilux launches in South Africa during the first quarter of 2016. Full local range and specs will be disclosed closer to launch timing.

 

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Technology & Other Lifestyle

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Acer Delivers 15.6-inch
Budget-Friendly Chromebook

New Chromebook boasts longest battery life – up to 11.5 hours

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South Africa, Johannesburg (April 23, 2015) – After launching the Acer Chromebook 15 line, the industry’s first Chromebook with a 15.6-inch display, Acer today expands this line with a new model, the Acer CB3-531. The new Acer Chromebook 15 features 11.5 hours of battery life, the longest in the industry’s 15-inch Chromebook segment.

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Samsung’s warranties run for a 24-month period across all products and deliver a number of resolutions to meet customers’ demanding lifestyles. These include a Quick Repair Service (QRS), which allows Samsung clients to book their mobile devices in for repairs while they shop, and an online booking repair service, called Cyber Service Centre.

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Sony C4 Selfie Mobile Device

The selfie phenomenon is about to kick up a notch with the introduction ofXperia™ C4 – Sony’s next generation PROselfie smartphone, featuring a best in class 5MP front camera, a Full HD display and superior performance.

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“Following the success of Xperia C3, we are proud to introduce Sony’s evolved PROselfie smartphone,” said Tony McNulty, Vice-President, Value Category Business Management at Sony Mobile Communications. “Xperia C4 caters to consumers that want a smartphone that not only takes great photos, but also packs a punch. Benefiting from Sony’s camera expertise, the 5MP front-facing camera with wide-angle lens lets you capture perfect selfies, while its quality display and performance features provide an all-round advanced smartphone experience.”

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