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New Sasol GTC cars set for thrills

The iconic Grand Prix Circuit will present a new challenge to the GTC drivers as they tackle the country’s fastest racetrack on June 16.

Suzuki’s new Swift hatch and sedan in SA

Suzuki kicks off its new model assault with an all new Swift hatchback and standalone sedan called the Dzire.

New Hilux offers better safety

2008-09-05 08:45
Due to be unveiled at the Johannesburg motor show

Due to be unveiled at the Johannesburg motor show at the end of October, Toyota’s new Hilux bakkies look sharper and sport upgraded passive safety features as well as better suspension.

The bakkie which built South Africa is due to for a facelift. We take a look at the forthcoming, revised Hilux, just launched in Europe.

Moving away from the soft, unthreatening design employed by Japanese stylists to hide bakkie bulk, the new Hilux features a trapezoidal grille, grey plate bar and redesigned bumper.

Obviously restyling the rear of a bakkie is quite a bit harder than freshening up the front; and around the utility end of the Hilux you’ll see very little differentiation.



Extended cab joins range, proliferation of airbags on double-cab version


The traditional bakkie body styles – single and double-cab – should be joined by an extra cab variant locally; which should prove popular with leisure buyers who travel only with a partner.

Inside you’ll notice the new four-spoke steering wheel with intuitive satellite controls and when you clamber aboard the new double-cab, you’ll settle into contoured sports seats up front in the 3.0D-4D model.

Behind the cabin structure safety has been significantly upgraded too, with dual front and side airbags augmented by curtain airbags for both front and rear occupants in the double cab versions, which heralds a remarkable improvement on the current range.

Suspension upgrades and automatic shifting for 3.0D-4 D


Mechanically engines are carried over with the major new drivetrain feature being a five-speed automatic 3.0D-4 D version which has 17Nm more torque on tap, peaking at 360Nm.

Local diesel quality will probably preclude the 3-litre turbodiesel engine from being derestricted to produce a European spec 124kW.

Ride and handling characteristics (never quite a raised body Hilux strength) should benefit greatly from the new double-row, roller-type rear axle bearings and more responsive valve structure on the front shock absorbers. Top of the line double-cab 3.0D-4D models will have vehicle stability control as standard too.

The new Hilux is due to be unveiled at the Johannesburg motor show in late October.








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