Move with the times
ANOTHER BIG T
A new Toyota dealership opened in South Morang yesterday, Australia’s 280th. Speaking at the opening of the Gary McMillan franchise, Toyota Australia head Dave Buttner said that despite the supply issues arising from the Japanese disasters, the company is investing in the Australian network. ‘‘It is always pleasing to see valued dealers such as Gary McMillan demonstrating their long-term commitment to the Toyota franchise,’’ Buttner says. The 4000-square-metre site on the corner of Plenty Road and and Wealthiland Drive includes new and used car sales areas and a service centre.
Two Aston Martin Volantes similar to the 1968 Aston Martin DB6 droptop owned by Prince Charles and used by Prince William for his post-wedding cruise to Clarence House are on the block at the same Bonhams’ auction at which Bond replica Astons go under the hammer (see Page 47). Prince William drove new bride Catherine from Buck House in something similar to lots 305 and 325. Bonhams’ estimates: $305,000 and $381,000.
FAIR WEATHER FOR KIA
Kia Australia has set a record monthly market share as it continues to register month-onmonth sales growth in a contacting Australian new car market. The Korean brand’s April market share (2.71 per cent) is the highest the company has recorded since the formation of the KMAu organisation in 2006. The company has sold 7750 vehicles so far this year, up 2.3 per cent, with the Cerato hatchback, Rondo, Soul and Sportage all ahead of 2010 figures.
70 YEARS YOUNG
Veteran AFL legend Tommy Hafey is to be the face of Jeep’s 70th anniversary campaign in a special 60-second TV commercial. The ad shows the 79-yearold on his daily training session at the crack of dawn around the St Kilda beach area. This year marks 70 years of Jeep, which began in the 1940s, and the iconic 4WD brand has released a range of 70th Anniversary limited edition models with stainless steel mesh grilles, a sunroof and leather trim.
A pattern-recognition and movement robot responds to a toy car at the annual European Future Technologies Conference and Exhibition in Budapest. Advances in patternrecognition are leading to better driver aids, such as refined parking assistance systems. The research is also at the core of future car-to-infrastructure safety systems.