I’m one of those people who’s always liked the French. Their lack of sentimentality, and hence lack of diplomacy has always rubbed me up the right way. I was on the Paris Metro once and being a bit lost, was waiting in line at an info kiosk to ask for some assistance. In front of me was an American Family. The American Family. The American Family with fanny packs and fat where other people from other nations don’t have fat.
For those behind the wheel, road blocks are the worst nightmares on the road. Police play solving traffic puzzles, while we bang on the guy in front taking nap with a bumpy four-wheeler. But according to Cape News, South African government departments are gearing up for a checking spree on December 4 to stage better road puzzles.
If you survived the financial crisis and have money in the bank for a new car this year, how about the new Lexus LX570 that has just been announced in South Africa. Coming with exceptional off-road credentials, yet keeping its luxurious SUV appearance, the new Lexus LX570 benefits its occupants with every conceivable feature and typical Lexus refinement.
From what we’re hearing the LX570 hides a 5,7-litre V8 engine under the hood that sports a whopping 270 kW at 5,600 rpm and a peak torque of 530Nm at 3,600 rpm. This monsterish powerplant is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission and a full-time four-wheel drive system. Convinced? In South Africa, the new Lexus LX570 will cost a steep R1,085,000.
Check out the press release and more pictures, after the break.
Lexus LX570: The Ultimate Luxury In Four-Wheel Drive
Lexus welcomes its most capable off-road vehicle to South Africa, the Lexus LX570. With exceptional off-road credentials, the urban prowess only a Lexus could offer, ample power and presence, the LX570 will provide the status and image of the ultimate luxury SUV.
Engineers set out to build the most capable off-road vehicle ever produced without sacrificing the level of luxury expected of a Lexus. The LX570 offers the very best of off-road capability, yet benefits its occupants with every conceivable feature and typical Lexus refinement. It’s everything you’d expect of a Lexus and so much more thanks to its versatility of performance.
“We’re having a busy time of bringing a multitude of new Lexus products to South Africa, appealing to a constantly broadening variety of segments and customers,” says Kevin Flynn, General Manager of Lexus SA. “The latest LX570 brings yet a further dimension to the Lexus line-up in the wake of the recent introduction of our performance sedan, the IS-F. Not only is the LX570 a formidable off-road vehicle but in true Lexus style it offers luxurious accommodations of a first class standard.”
A full array of standard luxury amenities are on offer including: four-zone independent climate control, Lexus HDD Navigation System, Mark Levinson Sound System with 19 speakers and six disk DVD changer and rear seat entertainment, Smart Access keyless entry system with push-button start and more.
The LX570 luxury SUV adopts characteristics of the brand’s L-finesse design theme. The wide grille, with its “arrowhead” corner treatment, character lines integrated into the bumper, and large projector headlights convey a distinctly purposeful look. Pronounced wheel arches add an element of ruggedness to the elegant profile. Standard running boards fit closely to the body for an integrated appearance.
Inside, the LX570 is just as inviting with ample space for up to eight passengers and their cargo. The first-in-class standard power-sliding second-row seat slides forward and back for passenger comfort and cargo storage versatility. The second-row seatbacks provide a convenient 40/20/40 split and have been specially engineered to make tumbling it forward easy for anyone. A power retractable third-row seat is standard. The split rear tailgate features an electrically operated door on which the window and tailgate sections can be opened and closed using the key card or switch on the instrument panel.
The LX570′s 5,7-litre V8 delivers the punch and towing power demanded in this segment. The powerplant produces 270kW at 5,600 rpm and peak torque of 530Nm at 3,600 rpm. The V8 is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission designed to handle high torque while performing with Lexus quietness and smoothness. A sequential shift mode allows the driver to select gears manually. Even at very low speeds, such as trail driving, the transmission operates smoothly and imperceptibly.
The LX570′s transfer case provides full-time four-wheel drive that is equally adept at handling the rigours of slippery, muddy conditions. A 2.618:1 low-range ratio is available for challenging driving surfaces. The system uses a TORSEN® limited-slip locking centre differential to distribute power 40:60 front-to-rear, directing more power to the wheels with the best grip should slippage occur.
Four-wheel Active Traction Control (A-TRAC) employs both brake and throttle intervention to help control wheel spin. Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) helps maintain directional control during cornering and can be disengaged via the “TRAC off” switch.
The Crawl Control feature provides improved throttle modulation when manoeuvring over rough, uneven or difficult surfaces. Hill-start Assist Control (HAC) helps provide additional control for off-road driving by helping to keep the vehicle from rolling back while starting on a steep incline or slippery surface.
The LX570’s highly capable chassis is equipped with an advanced electro-hydraulic suspension system with four-wheel Active Height Control (AHC) and Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS). The high-mount, independent double-wishbone front suspension allows for nine inches of total front wheel travel for outstanding articulation over rough roads and obstacles. The four-link trailing-arm rear suspension retains the solid-axle configuration for strength and durability.
The Adaptive Variable Suspension system responds to the different inputs and spring rates, and it adjusts the shock absorber damping force to provide optimal handling and comfort for on-road or trail driving. AVS provides three modes to control the spring rate and shock absorber damping force.
Safety was a prime focus area in the development of the LX570. It therefore comes equipped with 10 standard airbags, including driver- and front-passenger knee airbags, front and second-row seat-mounted side airbags in the outboard seating positions, and side curtain airbags for all three rows. All eight seating positions feature three-point seatbelts. The second-row seatbelts integrate pre-tensioners for the outboard seats and an ELR (Emergency Locking Retractor) seatbelt for the centre seat.
Safety is further enhanced by features such as Active Front Headrests and the standard dual-swivel Adaptive Front lighting System (AFS).
The multi-terrain ABS system determines road-surface conditions and automatically optimises lock-up control, selecting the suitable ABS profile for on- and off-road driving surfaces. Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) ensures balanced braking force between the front and rear wheels, while Brake Assist (BA) provides auxiliary force to assist the driver during emergency braking
“The Lexus LX570 affirms the brand’s status as an authority on dynamic luxury, without sacrificing anything in the way of performance or off-road abilities. It’s everything you could possibly desire from an SUV,” concludes Flynn.
Auto fanatics are aware that the Pagani C9 is slated to go public before this year’s end and it will come with a whopping price tag (€900,000) but what is more of a mystery is the shape it will adorn. There are no certain images available which is why C9 prototype spy images gain a lot of importance. Speaking of spy shots, here’s something happening in South Africa — two C9 prototypes spied in Johannesburg, one inspired by the Zonda F, while the other one featuring a rear belonging to the Zonda R territory. Even the typical Pagani quadpipe has been retained plus there are holes drilled for a dual pipe set-up so we are not quite sure what the end product will embrace. The Pagani C9 is expected to house a 700 PS 6.0L V12 engine which will generate up to 1000Nm of torque. Looks neat, don’t you think? [Images by WCF]
Offenders on the road who make a mockery of the traffic rules and ignore others, will now have a grim situation to deal with. That’s because the folks from Rager have launched a SMS-based anti-road rage service that aims to promote safer driving. As per Carmen du Preez, marketing manager for Rager, it is a “road management service which will pass the problem back to where it belongs, the offender.
People looking to report offenders will need to simply text their complaint to 34792 and the anonymous SMS could promote safer and more courteous driving. The best part about anonymity is that road users (both the offender and the offended) can interact with one another.
Rager is well equipped to keep track of regular offenders through crowd-sourced input and in cases where an offender becomes a serious hazard; the relevant authorities can be notified and the matter escalated. Rager may be an SMS based service but it does not endorse texting while driving and therefore an informative online site has been created where visitors can read the ‘Rules of Rage’ and monitor recent rage posts. People looking to apologize for their offense can do the same using the website. Another feature, ‘rave’ is being developed to compliment each other on good and courteous driving behavior.
The new Lexus IS250C is the second coupe-convertible that the brand has added to their stylish range of luxury vehicles. Shares the headlights, bonnet, door handles, and exterior mirrors with its sedan version, the IS250C has the fastest operating three-piece folding hardtop as well as the greatest amount of luggage space offered by any of its competitors in the market.
Crafted on the L-finesse design characteristics of the IS sedan, the new Lexus IS250C gets the eye with the front overhang which has been enlarged by 15mm to perk up the aerodynamic competence when driving with the top down. Speaking of which, the car ships with a lightweight aluminum hard top which utilizes 13 motors and 33 sensors with the roof converting the IS250C from coupe to convertible in a mere 21 seconds.
Specs wise, under the hood there’s the same 2,5-litre V6 and six-speed automatic transmission that outputs 153kW (205 hp) at 6,400rpm and 252Nm of torque at 4,800rpm.
The IS250C comes with a four year/100,000km full maintenance plan and should retail at R550,200.
The hype these days when it comes to transportation is about the new South African Electric Car that impressed everyone during the Paris Motor Show. Dubbed The Joule, the six-passengers car is incredible. It goes 250 miles with one charge, does 0 to 60 in like 4.8seconds and is estimated to cost some from $22,000 to $28,000 when released somewhere in 2010.
South Africa’s domestic car market won something, when Keith Helfet joined the staff at Optimal Energy after designing Jaguar’s F-type concept and the XK220. His experience speaks for itself, and the fact that he’ll use it on the local market is a big advantage.
Back to the Joule, it’s going to be built in South Africa mostly from domestic pieces and will include two potential drivetrains. First one and the most likely to be used, is an electric motor turning the front wheels, while the second option includes individual electric motors turning the rear or all four wheels. For these, it will pack one or two lithium-ion batteries that should keep it running for either 125 or 250 miles.
With a “simple, elegant lines and [a] self assured stance”, with regenerative brakes and “all modern safety features such as side impact protection, ABS and airbags”, I’m pretty sure the Joule will be a hit when released on the market. – via Wired (images copyright : Optimal Energy)
Mercedes-Benz has launched series production of the new Mercedes-Benz C-Class sedan in its plant in East London, South Africa. Thabo Mbeki, President of the Republic of South Africa, visited the plant on Thursday to celebrate the production start and investments into the new facility. Together with the President, Rainer SchmÃ¼ckle, Chief Operating Officer of the Mercedes Car Group, Dr. Hansgeorg Niefer, Chairman of the Management Board of DaimlerChrysler South , Joachim Follmann, East London Plant Manager and numerous stakeholders gathered at the plant to commemorate the occasion.