How to buy a classic motorcycle in SA?

'There are a few things you need to consider,’ writes bike guru Dries Van der Walt.

Top family cars in SA

Wheels24's Janine Van der Post has gone from a 'SpeedQueen' to a supermom. Check out her list of top family cars.

Wheels24 ACOTY 2012 awards

2012-03-14 08:31

ACOTY COMPETITION WINNER: Wheels24 editor Les Stephenson hands over the Jacques Lemans watch to our lucky winner Elsa Strydom and her husband Craig.

Each year, while paid petrolheads (motoring journalists) decide on South Africa's Car of the Year, Wheels24 takes time to praise the boldest, brashest and most fabulous vehicles the local motoring world has to offer in its Alternative Car of the Year awards.

It’s a time to poke fun at that old adage of “what you drive is an extension of your personality” and, despite cars being inanimate objects, people love adding personality to their wheels.

We also offer a prize for our tongue-in-cheek vote; a Jacques Lemans F1 watch worth a thumping R3450. Heck, you used to be able to buy a car for that...

Anyway, our charming watch-winner was Elsa Strydom of Durban who (handily) was in Cape Town with her husband Craig for Auntie Argus's cycle classic so able to pop round to our offices in Cape Town to talk about her ACOTY choices. Strydom, who drives a VW Polo Classic, loves cars and motorsport but, because it's "a man's watch", gave her prize to her husband.

Here are our official winners - and what Elsa has to say about them...


These are vehicles for the manne; the guys who would rather be off-road in the bundu or clocking up lap times on a track… and the winner was McLaren’s MP4 12C

Sexy design, superb handling and breathtaking performance, it is sports-car royalty and owners should be treated as such. Elsa says: “The McLaren is a real man’s car. Nothing says ‘I am grrr’ quite like a supercar.”


Our Chop cars are for those among us who treat roads like racetracks and indicators as optional extras. You're the kind of driver who has a massive, er, ego and needs a vehicle to match. Our Chop car nominees represent the vehicles that may cause heads to shake when you pass, not to mention seething jealousy… and the winner – the awesome BMW 1 Series M Coupe.

BMW's ballistic pocket rocket is such an unabashed sports car-in-disguise that you can't help but tick off boy racers when you rock up in a 1 Series M Coupe. Elsa: “BMW’s are great but they are mostly driven by a guys - which explains a lot."


Some cars lend themselves to being the belle of the ball while others, in our Frock car category, try to compensate by being too butch. Frock-car drivers are fabulous with vehicles to match their out and proud personality… and the winner is – the Mini Coupe.

Mini's designers must have thought "How can we make our Mini, even more fabulous?" when they came up with the Coupe. It's fun to drive but, well, ultimately pointless. The Mini Coupe might as well have tugged the ACOTY 2011 pride float... assuming we had the budget for one.

Elsa said: “It’s so cute but it will be really strange seeing a guy driving one to work."

We’ve also announced our Readers’ Choice awards to coincide with the official SA Car of the Year competition which, by the way will be announced tonight (March 14). Find out which vehicle came out tops!

Full ACOTY votes below:


1 McLaren MP4-12C - 312
2 Hyundai Elantra - 219
3 Audi A6 - 201
4 Ford Focus - 97
5 Chevrolet Ute - 105

1 BMW 1 Series M Coupe - 481
2 Mercedes-Benz S63 AMG - 140
3 BMW 1 Series - 134
4 Lexus CT200h - 122
5 Chevrolet Orlando - 57

1 Mini Coupe - 371
2 Smart ForTwo Cabriolet - 186
3 Alfa Giulietta - 207
4 Toyota FJ Cruiser - 98
5 Peugeot 508 - 72

Inside Wheels24

Opel Astra 1.4T Enjoy auto – understated and smart new hatch

When it comes to the mid-size hatchback choice, there are a few default choices, a few bland ones… and some often overlooked cars. The Opel Astra hatch is an example of the latter, writes David Swanepoel. - Sponsored

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.