Fo­ton to bring its SUV to SA

The Witness - Wheels - - MOTORING -

FO­TON, one of the largest and most suc­cess­ful ve­hi­cle man­u­fac­tur­ers in China, is set to make its first foray into the South African sports util­ity ve­hi­cle (SUV) mar­ket next year when it launches its com­pet­i­tively-priced Sau­vana.

The Sau­vana was well re­ceived dur­ing its de­but at the Shang­hai Auto Show this year and has just been launched in the U.S.

the Sau­vana is the first ever SUV to fea­ture a Cum­mins en­gine, with the same 2,8-litre turbo-diesel that pow­ers the Fo­ton Tun­land driv­ing the sport ute.

Like the For­tuner and Ever­est do with the Hilux and Ranger, the Sau­vana shares the chas­sis and run­ning gear of the Tun­land bakkie.

The twin wish­bone in­de­pen­dent front sus­pen­sion and a fivelink con­trol sys­tem for the solid rear axle has been un­der­go­ing lo­cal eval­u­a­tion in South Africa for over 20 000 km in ex­treme con­di­tions since early this year and is per­form­ing ex­tremely well.

It will be sold lo­cally with a five speed man­ual or a six-speed au­to­matic trans­mis­sion. Stan­dard fea­tures in­side in­clude an in­fo­tain­ment touch­screen and steer­ing wheel-mounted au­dio and cruise con­trols. Lux­ury fea­tures ex­tend to key­less en­try and key­less start­ing, sun­roof, au­to­matic cli­mate and cruise con­trol.

“The Fo­ton brand is making steady progress into the South African ve­hi­cle mar­ket as we ex­pand the range and we are con­fi­dent the Sau­vana, which will com­pete in a ma­jor seg­ment of the lo­cal SUV mar­ket, will as­sist in grow­ing sales vol­ume,” said Mike Scarth, who is re­spon­si­ble for sales and mar­ket­ing of Fo­ton pas­sen­ger and light com­mer­cial ve­hi­cles in SA.

Prices will be an­nounced closer to the lo­cal launch. — WR.


The Fo­ton Sau­vana is head­ing to SA show­rooms next year.

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