Car of the Year 2020

The 2020 Auto Trader Car of the Year (SA COTY) winners have been announced.

As is usual the winner is out pf reach of 95% of the car buying public. But it is a deserving winner by all accounts. Although I have not driven it I saw it perform at the Simola Hill Climb last year. And what a performance.Yes, it is a SUV. Yes it is a luxury car. Yes, it is expensive. But it really does advance motoring in SA. It is ground breaking. It does point to a possible future for cars, or at least some of them.

The winner is the Jaguar I-PACE EV400 AWD SE. It won the 2019 World Car of the Year, World Car Design of the Year and World Green Car awards. So worldwide a winner. The Mercedes-Benz GLE400d 4Matic was placed second.

To balance things out and make it more real Toyota’s three contenders; (Corolla Hatch, RAV4 and GR Supra) stood tall among a variety of candidates -ranging from small city cars to large-SUV and double-cab bakkies.

Toyota won the following:

Family category winner: Corolla Hatch 1.2T XR CVT

Sports/Performance category winner: GR Supra 3.0T

Third place overall: GR Supra 3.0T

Quite a haul. Well done Toyota.

Other winners were:

Urban Category: Hyundai Atos 1.1 Motion

Leisure Category: Volkswagen T-Cross 1.0 TSI Comfortline 85kW DSG

Lifestyle Utility Vehicles Category: Ford Ranger Raptor

All of the winners this year are deserving, in my opinion.

Next year will be fun with the new Suzuki sPresso and Isuzu and GWM bakkies set to put the cat among the pigeons.

Simola Hillclimb 2019

The 2019 Jaguar Simola Hillclimb was quite a varied affair. This 10th year of hillclimb at Knysna was a real celebration of the decade leading up to it.

Mustang at full throttle at the start of a practice run

I thought the viewing spot just above the Castrol stand between turns 2 and 3 was the best for viewing the runs, except for the Mitchell’s beer stall which was disgraceful. They kept selling vouchers after they knew their equipment was broken but refused to do refunds. Needless to say never a Mitchell’s for me again.

But enough of that. Felt so sorry for Charl Joubert in his Lotus Honda. He lost it in turn three.

Charl making contact with the embankment.

Fortunately he could walk away.

Franco Scribante went on to win the King of the Hill in Class B5 in his 2016 Nissan R35 GT-R with hectic wings on the front. The car not only looked menacing but made quite a noise. Loads of bang for your buck.

.

The I-Pace EV400 electric 294kW Jaguars caused quite a stir as they almost silently pranced up the hill. But without any real sound or smell it just does not do it for me. Call me old school.

Whaaat? Duracells you say? No man. You just wind them up.

Full results at: https://www.speedfestival.co.za/category/results/2019-results/

The Simola Hillclimb is really worth visiting.

There is so much else to see around Knysna that you should stay for two weeks. We stayed at Jungalo guest house in the neighbouring village of Sedgefield, which has a wonderful market to keep the ladies occupied while the lads hit the hill.

Have fun.

#JaguarSHC

Jaguar F-type is coming

Jaguar has confirmed that it will bring an all-new sports car to production; the F-TYPE.

The C-X16 concept showcased in September 2011, will be developed into an all-new Jaguar sports car to be called the F-TYPE, and it will be unveiled in production form later this year.

 

The F-TYPE will launch as a convertible, and a strict two-seater with the focus uncompromisingly on delivering driver reward. A range of petrol engines will be available – including a new power plant family.

Ian Hoban, Jaguar’s Vehicle Line Director said: “The engineering development of the F-TYPE has focused on delivering a heightened level of dynamic driving reward. We are excited about our progress to date and are looking forward to soon being able to demonstrate what we have achieved.”

Ian Callum, Director of Design, said: “A true sports car needs to be pure in both its purpose and its form; to have the opportunity to produce such a car for Jaguar has been a privilege both for myself and for my team. The C-type, D-type and E-type Jaguars were all sports cars that held true to this principle in their era, and the F-TYPE will hold true to that same principle in its time, a time that is soon to arrive.”

The F-TYPE will join Jaguar’s existing range of cars – the XF saloon and Sportbrake, XJ saloon and XK coupe/convertible. Full F-TYPE technical and range details will be announced later in 2012. It will go on sale in mid 2013.