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  • The New Kia Picanto reimagined
    Uploaded 2 years ago

    The New Kia Picanto reimagined

  • Cracked Windscreens: The Dangers
    Uploaded 1 week ago

    Cracked Windscreens The Dangers

  • Diesel VS Petrol: What’s The Difference And Which Is Better?
    Uploaded 1 week ago

    Diesel VS Petrol Whats The Difference And Which Is Better?

  • Big Changes In Drunk Driving Laws: What You Should Know
    Uploaded 1 week ago

    Big Changes In Drunk Driving Laws What You Should Know

  • Car Security: Three Essentials Every Car Owner Should Have
    Uploaded 2 weeks ago

    Car Security Three Essentials Every Car Owner Should Have

  • 5 signs that you need to visit a car repair workshop
    Uploaded 2 weeks ago

    5 signs that you need to visit a car repair workshop

Uploaded 2 years ago

The New Kia Picanto reimagined

The New Kia Picanto reimagined

Kia Motors South Africa entered the A-segment market back in 2004 with the boxy Picanto, which if we are honest didn&rsquot capture the market&rsquos attention in quite the way the South Korean brand wanted.

This changed with the unveiling of the second generation Picanto in 2011, which also resulted in global sales totalling 1.4-million units. Now though, there is a new Picanto and I travelled to Cape Town to find out if it has what it takes to remain one of the most popular Kia models to date.

Design

The first generation Picanto was a bit of a hit and miss in terms of styling. The second generation however featured a more youthful yet modern design which seemed to be just what the public wanted.

New Picanto Exterior

This new model builds on that with a seemingly more mature design, the result of a collaboration between Kia&rsquos design centres in Namyang, South Korea and Frankfurt, Germany. 

The front end features strong, straight lines which run horizontally across the front of the car There is also the trademark tiger-nose grille and new headlights as well as a distinctive line down the side and around the wheel arches. At the rear, the Picanto features a revised bumper and taillights. The engineers have also increased the width of the C-pillar which now stands more upright than that of the previous model.

Interior

When I got into the Picanto, I was impressed with the layout of the dash. I immediately got a sense that Kia were trying to play the premium card.

New Picanto Interior

This is due to the stylish design of the dashboard which features a snazzy satin chrome-effect strip, the new top mounted infotainment screen and nicely designed climate control dials. The instrument cluster also features a more up-to date look with the same going for the steering wheel.

About that infotainment system

As mentioned, one of the cabin&rsquos standouts, on high spec models that is, is the seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system incorporating Bluetooth, USB and Aux inputs, as well as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Lower spec models make do with a 3.8-inch monochrome TFT LCD display. 

The drive

On the launch, I got the opportunity to put the Picanto through various scenarios which included navigating the narrow streets of the Cape Town CBD, as well as heading out into the wine lands to fully exploit its talents.

There are two engine options available a 49kW/95Nm 1.0-litre three-cylinder and a 61kW/122Nm 1.2-litre four-cylinder. While they might not be the most powerful motors around, the Picanto does weigh less than the previous model, with the former motor also benefitting from a new cooling system and shut-off valve.

All models are fitted with a five-speed manual gearbox as standard with a four-speed automatic optional on some versions.

From Start to Smart

At launch, the Picanto will be available in a choice of four trim levels mimicking those of the Soul. The base Start gets a two-speaker Bluetooth enabled sound system with USB and Aux inputs, trip computer, dual front airbags and air-conditioning but importantly, does not feature ABS while the next step up Street receives front electric windows, remote central locking and ABS.

Building on this, the Style adds a four-speaker sound system, steering wheel audio controls, projection type headlights with daytime running LEDs, 14-inch alloy wheels and automatic lights. At the top of the range, the Smart benefits from 15-inch alloys, Bluetooth with voice activation, electric rear windows, bi-projection headlights, the aforementioned infotainment system, leather wrapped steering wheel and gear knob, reverse camera and rear parking sensors.

Conclusion

After spending time with the new Kia Picanto, I can conclude that it remains an attractive option within the A-segment. I like the styling, the features and the range of new colours. I also found the ride and handling impressive considering its size.

It&rsquos no high speed cruiser though and did feel a bit out of its comfort zone when rushed. Considering one? I would, especially when the price remains virtually unchanged from the previous model. 

Price

Picanto 1.0 Start - R134 995

Picanto 1.0 Street - R149 995

Picanto 1.0 Style - R159 995

Picanto 1.0 Style AT - R172 995

Picanto 1.0 Smart - R179 995

Picanto 1.2 Start - R150 995

Picanto 1.2 Start AT - R163 995

Picanto 1.2 Street - R165 995

Picanto 1.2 Style - R175 995

Picanto 1.2 Syle AT - R188 995

Picanto 1.2 Smart - R195 995

A five-year / unlimited km warranty is standard across the Picanto range with a service plan being optional.

Article written byJustin Jacobs - 09.06.2017 Autodealer.co.za

Uploaded 1 week ago

Cracked Windscreens The Dangers

Cracked Windscreens The Dangers

We all know that windscreens aren't cheap to replace and you'd rather just hold out with a bit of damage to it than to have to deal with the extra expenses that fixing it will bring. But is it safe to drive around with a crack in your windscreen, and if so, to what extent? Here are a few key things you need to know about windscreen damage and what you can - and should - do when faced with a cracked or chipped windscreen. 

Is It Safe To Drive With A Cracked Windscreen?

This depends on several factors, including the following

1. Size

If the crack is small and doesn't cover a large portion of your windscreen, it should be safe to drive with it for a while. Small cracks are also easier to repair or patch up to keep it from worsening or growing larger.

2. Position

Small cracks on the passenger side of the car are generally safer as it doesn't distract the driver as much as one right in front of them. This is because it creates much less of a distraction and visual obstruction, which may very likely draw the driver's attention away from the road. 

3. Severity Of The Damage

If your car's windscreen was battered and left with numerous chips and cracks, you'll have to replace the entire unit. This is also the case if you have a crack that extends beyond a few centimetres or a chip that's left a large fragmentation or even a hole. 

4. A Rapidly Spreading Crack

Cracks can rapidly worsen due to temperature changes causing the glass of the window to expand and contract. Patching up the crack right away may prevent this but always consider the good possibility that it won't hold indefinitely. 

While windscreens can and do crack, you won't have to worry about glass shattering and falling on you. This is because windscreens are made to remain structurally intact in case of a break, to keep you safe. If you do get a cracked windscreen, it's best to get it assessed by a specialist, just to be safe. Book your car service at Imperial Select.

Uploaded 1 week ago

Diesel VS Petrol Whats The Difference And Which Is Better?

Diesel VS Petrol Whats The Difference And Which Is Better?

Most vehicles offer a diesel version of their models, but do you know what the differences are and why it might matter when you decide what fuel-efficient car to buy? We look at the main aspects to consider. 

Cost Of Diesel VS Petrol Vehicles

Diesel vehicles are always more expensive to buy than their petrol-based counterparts. This is because diesel engines are technically and mechanically more complex and typically require specialised maintenance. However, diesel vehicles consume significantly less fuel than petrol ones - in fact, you're looking at a saving of between 25-30% on fuel expenses if you often drive long distances. Another benefit of diesel vehicles, in particular 4x4s, is that they have a lot more pulling power than petrol versions. So if you're looking for a powerful and fuel-efficient bakkie or SUV, a diesel would be your best bet. If you are aiming at getting a smaller vehicle that won't need serious power to just drive around to work and back, you'd be better off getting a petrol model. 

The Future Of Diesel And Environmental Impact Something To Bear In Mind

Due to rising concern about air pollution and goals to improve emission ratings for vehicles of all kinds, diesel has come under scrutiny in recent years. While both diesel and petrol are fossil fuels which create toxic emissions as by-products, diesel is significantly more harmful and toxic to humans and other organic lifeforms. Inhaling diesel fumes have proven to drastically reduce human lifespan and yet many South African consumers choose to invest in and drive diesel vehicles because of their lower fuel consumption rates. Should diesel engines become penalised locally, we're very likely to see the resale value of diesel vehicles plummeting, in stark contradiction to their current reputation for generally returning more cash to your pocket than a petrol vehicle would once you trade it in or sell it. 

South Africa isn't likely to see these strict regulations implemented for quite a few years though, so, for now, the choice of whether you want a petrol or diesel version of the local selection of fuel-efficient cars is still very much up to you. 

Contact us at Imperial Select to book an appointment at our car repair workshop.

Uploaded 1 week ago

Big Changes In Drunk Driving Laws What You Should Know

Big Changes In Drunk Driving Laws What You Should Know

During a recent public announcement on 24 January, Transport minister Fikile Mbabula announced that there will soon be a drastic change in South African drunk driving laws, which will impact anyone who drives under the influence of alcohol. The current law permits driving if your blood alcohol level is less than 0.5%, but due to the high accident rates on our roads, this has now been revised to enforce an absolute zero-tolerance policy. As of June this year, anyone drinking and driving, regardless of how little they may have had to drink, will be breaking the law. This means that you won't legally be allowed to drive if you've drunk any alcohol, even getting behind the wheel after just one tot of whiskey will carry serious consequences. 

How Will This Impact Drivers?

From June 2020, if you test positive for alcohol, regardless of what fraction of a percentage it may be, you will be fined a minimum of R2000 and could face a two-year jail sentence on top of that, depending on the particular circumstances at the time. Drivers will have their drunk driving offences on their permanent criminal record and could very likely have their driving license suspended or entirely revoked. This clampdown on drunk driving comes in conjunction with the new point demerit system that will be implemented later this year, leaving a very tight margin for error for motorists in the country. For example, should you be caught driving after drinking and possibly committing a traffic offence at the same time, you'll have to face the good likelihood that you may not only be fined but also arrested and lose your license as a result.

What Are My Alternative Options?

Your best and the only real choice is to not drink at all if you know you'll need to drive anywhere. Otherwise, select a friend to be the designated and completely sober driver, or get an Uber to transport you if you're planning on a night out. Alternatively, you could just stay at home and have a braai and beer there without worries - just be sure to have your friends stay over or catch a cab home.

While these new laws will cause inconvenience for many South Africans who enjoy a casual beer after work before heading home, the aim of these new policies is to improve safety on our roads and reduce the alarmingly high fatality rates we see each year. 

Uploaded 2 weeks ago

Car Security Three Essentials Every Car Owner Should Have

Car Security Three Essentials Every Car Owner Should Have

Being a proud car owner, you do your best to keep your car clean, safe and running smoothly. Unfortunately, there are times in life when the unforeseen happens, leaving you either having to fork out money for repairs or insurance excess from a claim, or perhaps even being in an accident where you are not the responsible party. Aside from being a responsible driver and car owner, there are a few extra things you can do to keep yourself safe on the roads or even while you're away from your parked car. Here are a few things which will give you even greater peace of mind when it comes to car security on and off the road

Get A Dash Camera

While they were initially not so commonplace, having an onboard camera in your car to record everything while you drive is fast becoming a very wise investment and precautionary measure in South Africa. Most countries in Europe have entirely banned the use of dashcams in vehicles due to extremely strict data protection laws, but locally there hasn't been any such development - and this means you'll benefit from having one, while it's still legal here. Car accidents, fender benders, collisions with pedestrians or any other road incidents where your car is involved always carry the possibility of being implicated in an offence you weren&rsquot involved in or were not responsible for. Having footage of the incident can be of immense value to help you prove your innocence, contest a liability claim or be irrefutably excused from having involvement in the incident. Dash cameras aren't very expensive to buy, but they could potentially save you a huge amount of money and inconvenience in future.

Tracking Devices

Our country is equipped with a network of very advanced vehicle tracking and recovery services that are able to constantly keep an eye on your car, even when it's not in transit. Having a tracking device installed will give you complete peace of mind that you'll always know where your car is and if there's any tampering or suspicious activity happening to it while you're not there. Another bonus benefit of having a tracker is that it will bring down your car insurance premiums quite significantly. 

'Smash-and-grab' Window Film

A security investment that South Africans have trusted for many years, getting your car windows coated with the protective smash-and-grab film will help prevent unexpected attacks while on the road, keeping you and your loved ones safe. Most glass installation companies offer this service and after application of the treatment, you can drive with the confidence that your windows will not shatter if impacted and you are much less likely to suffer theft or hijacking. Because the film coats both the inside and outside of your car's windows, you won't suffer injury from glass shards because the film keeps the glass contained even if it shatters.

We hope these tips on how to improve your car security features will help guide you towards making improvements to ensure your own safety on the road. For more information on car security or used cars for sale at Imperial Select, contact us today. 

Uploaded 2 weeks ago

5 signs that you need to visit a car repair workshop

5 signs that you need to visit a car repair workshop

You and your car spend many hours a week together, year after year, and you'd surely want to keep it in great running condition so that it doesn't let you down unexpectedly. It&rsquos a good idea for you, as a responsible car owner, to know what signs to look out for and act quickly if you spot any of them. While you don't have to be a mechanic and know all the complicated details of your vehicle, being able to self-identify certain issues can save you a lot of time and money, so we've compiled a list of the 5 biggest things to be on the lookout for so that you know that you need to get it to the best Car repair workshop in your area.

Electronic Glitches

While they don't seem serious, if you start noticing your car isn't behaving quite the same with the little things like your radio or electric windows, pay close attention. Examples of this are your radio not turning on as quickly as usual, your electric windows opening and closing slower than they should or moving at an erratic speed, or your indicator lights suddenly not keeping pace. These small signs can be a warning that there are further issues with your car's electronics system as a whole, so getting it checked out early might well save you a lot of headaches down the line. 

Your Car Doesn't Accelerate The Same Anymore Or Guzzles Petrol

If you've had your car for long enough to drive it quite consistently and smoothly, but you're suddenly experiencing issues with it over-revving or not accelerating like it always does, there may be something wrong with your car's electronics or damage to the fuel line. In the same line, if you notice that your usual tank of petrol isn't lasting nearly as long as it normally does and you haven't been taking unusually long trips or made any real changes to your driving routine, there may be several causes that need to be looked at. Whatever the issue, it's best to get your car checked out as you'll soon probably be spending the cost of the repairs in feeding your thirsty petrol tank anyway.

Don't Ignore Warning Lights

It seems fairly obvious that you should pay attention when the warning lights on your car's dashboard suddenly light up, as they're specifically put there to help stop your car from suffering further damage and so that you know it needs to be taken in for inspection immediately. They are called warning lights, after all, not suggestion lights. Unfortunately, some people seem to overlook or just ignore the orange warning lights when they appear, and not much longer after that they're probably stuck on the side of the road with serious and sometimes irreparable damage to their car. Check engine lights, oil warning lights and all the other indicators should never be ignored as these are considered critical errors. If any of them go on while you're driving, get to an automotive specialist workshop immediately or pull over your car and call to arrange for it to be collected instead. 

Fog Or Smoke Suddenly Appearing

Unless you're driving through a veld fire or find yourself on a misty road, seeing smoke, fog or steam appearing around your car is a sure sign that you need to stop and find out what the problem is. Sometimes it's not a serious issue and your car is just burning up some excess oil, but most of the time the problem tends to be much more serious. You'll very likely to also smell an odd odour such as something burning, which should be a big sign to pull over immediately... or as soon as it's safe to do so, anyway. Overheating engines need to be stopped and left to cool down as soon as possible as overheating will very likely cause permanent damage to your car, possibly even leaving it a complete write-off from a mechanical perspective. 

Unusual Liquid Leaks, Foreign Sounds And Odd Sensations

The last warning is a triple threat which should not be ignored, even if any of them occur individually. Always check under and around your car when it's been stationary for a while and look out for oil leaks or any other liquids that look suspicious - you may have one of several issues with broken or cracked seals or other components that have broken down. While driving or even idling, turn your radio down and listen carefully for any odd sounds that don't sound right or have never been there before. Anything from rattling to buzzing, scraping or chugging noises are tell-tale signs that something isn't right. Finally, if your car ride feels a lot bumpier all of a sudden, you should get it looked at. It&rsquos quite common on our roads to encounter obstacles and potholes, which may have caused damage to your car's axel or thrown off your wheel alignment. 

As the old adage goes, prevention is better than cure, and while nobody enjoys forking out cash for an unexpected glitch with their car, doing it as soon as possible will save you from a lot of extra expenses if you leave it long enough for the damage to worsen. If you're looking for the best Car repair workshop to entrust your beloved car to, remember that Imperial has service and repair shops around the country and our experts are always happy to help get you back on the road as soon as possible.