Nampo 2018 proved yet again why the annual Grain SA event is one of South Africa’s premier shows, and the biggest of its kind in the southern hemisphere
Unfortunately, Nampo 2018 was bigger than we could ever have space for in FOCUS … but we met up with a few exhibitors at the show, so here is a taste of what went down.
FAW SA showcased everything from its soon-to-be launched long-haul JH6 to the new 8.140 full automatic – with the notable vehicles like the FAW 33.420FT and
FAW 28.330FL in between.
“Nampo is a big deal for us,” says Pieter Janse van Rensburg, FAW SA regional general manager. “This is the largest show of its kind in South Africa and its footprint is perfectly in line with three of the most important sectors for us: construction, short and medium-haul and agriculture.
“At FAW we strive to create partnerships with our customers. We attend Nampo every year to promote our products and create awareness with current and prospective customers,” he adds.
This was certainly the case, as each truck model on display was made available to show-goers at special Nampo pricing – a FAW 8.140 with manual transmission was even sold from the stand on the opening morning.
The soon-to-be-launched FAW 8.140 automatic makes use of a torque-converter Allison transmission.
“This lowers fuel consumption and reduces maintenance costs for operators. Fleet owners are moving away from manual gearboxes, due to driver abuse and human error,” explains Johan Du Plessis, FAW dealer principle at FAW Isando.
Van Rensburg adds: “FAW trucks are simple, yet safe. We use highly specialised components that are on par with the best available in the industry. All FAW trucks are sold at very competitive prices, due to the capabilities of the Coega assembly plant, but the biggest factor for us is that our customers reap the benefits of low cost per kilometre.”
“Nampo is an integral part of our marketing strategy and is the ideal place to get close to our customers in their operating environment. We give them the opportunity to experience the products first-hand by seeing, touching and sitting inside them,” he concludes.
Firestone South Africa is a permanent participant in the Nampo Harvest Day Festival, where it has a fixed structure to host visiting farmers and share detailed information on its range of agricultural tyres.
“Agricultural tyres are a speciality field, and we pride ourselves on having many skilled and knowledgeable specialists on hand to advise farmers on the best tyre choices for the terrain and their specific application,” says Thandeka Ngoma, chief marketing officer at Bridgestone South Africa.
This year the company introduced an element of fun to its stand … it hosted the Firestone Karaoke Kombis.
The two Volkswagen (VW) Kombis, a restored 1972 Brasília Kombi and a brand-new VW Kombi that was made available with support from Volkswagen South Africa, offered a selection of English and Afrikaans tunes to choose from. At Nampo all the participants – singing old and new karaoke songs – jumped into the new-school bus, while the old-school kombi acted as display vehicle.
More than 250 visitors to the show signed up to sing from the Firestone catalogue of over 30 000 songs. In each case, the aspiring singer or group would choose a song, sign, jump in and sing their hearts out, before receiving a link to their performance on the internet.
“Over the past few months, the two Karaoke Kombis have travelled far and wide to entertain fans and visitors to different music events and festivals. The #FirestoneKK visit to Nampo has proved to be one of our most successful campaigns to date, thanks in some part to the popularity of the Firestone stand and the number of visitors that came to view our agricultural tyres,” says Ngoma.
“MAN has been supporting this event for more than 20 years, and every year our investment and presentation just gets better,” comment Ian Seethal and Gerard Kalil-Zackey of the MAN Automotive marketing team. “As South Africans, we can be very proud of this event. Everyone enjoyed world-class offerings from a multitude of industry sectors.”
While the company displayed numerous vehicles, the star attraction at its stand this year was an interesting old MAN farm tractor, which attracted a lot of attention… “This fantastic specimen is the pride and joy of long-standing and super-successful professional haulier, Junior Jack Transport. Jack de Jager kindly permitted us to showcase the unit at this year’s event. Baie dankie Mnr de Jager!” the men explain.
As for the actual trucks, MAN displayed six vehicles from its TGX, TGS, CLA and VW ranges.
“The TGX and TGS derivatives are suitable for the long-haul aspects of agriculture. For express fresh-fish transport that needs a fast turnaround time and high average road speeds, the TGX 26.540 is a benchmark solution.
“The two TGS models are suitable for a variety of long-haul applications, including high-volume game or livestock transport. The tipper, crane truck and cattle-body units fulfil missions in those particular fields,” explains Neels Holtzhausen, area sales manager for the Free State and North West provinces.
“The VW 17.250 has proved to be a very popular farming vehicle. As a solo drop side it is able to carry anything and everything needed to be moved around the farm, or between farms. Add to that the side extensions and it becomes an ideal unit for transporting livestock such as sheep, goats or cattle. With its 35-t gross combination mass, it pulls a two axle draw-bar trailer with ease.”
Nissan displayed a full array of pickups and commercial vehicles, including a special new version of its popular NP300 Hardbody with the 2.5 TDI four-cylinder turbodiesel engine. This new flagship model is available in 4×4 double-cab guise.
“The new Nissan NP300 2.5 TDI 4×4 Double Cab is perhaps the best proof of our close relationship with the agricultural community. The model was created after we received feedback from farmers and dealers in rural communities on the need for a diesel-powered off-road capable NP300 double cab,” says Xavier Gobille, MD for sales, marketing and aftersales at Nissan Group of Africa.
At the show, it was fitted with additional equipment to create the Rogue Special Edition.
“While the new model will be welcomed by farmers, we are sure it will also find favour with budget-conscious families and outdoor enthusiasts. It is by no means a stripped down bakkie as it features ample specification levels, yet it will be one of the most affordable 4×4-model double cabs in the market when it is launched,” says Gobille.
Nissan also showcased its entire range of pickups at Nampo, including the new Navara 4×2 double cab, the ubiquitous NP200 and the heavy-duty Patrol Pick-Up.
Vivek Acharya, senior manager sales and marketing, trucks and buses, Tata Motors, explains that the brand’s vehicles are suited to the agricultural industry because they are rugged and simple to maintain.
“The 1518 and 813 are our biggest sellers. They are used mainly in this sector where the roads are bad. Operators like their heavy-duty aggregates, simple engineering, ease of maintenance, and the fact that they are hard workers,” he says.
Tata also showcased the 1623, which competes directly with products from Japan.
“The 7,5-t vehicle has a Cummins engine and Eaton transmission. We also have a 1216 with seven-metre long body and six-tonne capacity; it is good for anything from moving hay to catering. It is also cheaper than our recently introduced Ultra (which was the stand’s centrepiece).”
Finally, Tata displayed the new Daewoo Maximus, which starred on the cover of issue 4.
“The biggest attraction is the trusted driveline fitted to this truck, but people also like the look of it … it looks like a transformer!” he laughs.
While you can read more about the Toyota stand on page 32, it featured an attraction of a different kind… Players from the Toyota-sponsored Cheetahs rugby team were on hand to meet and greet visitors to the stand.
We spoke to Neil Marais (fly half), Nico Lee (centre) and Tom Botha (prop). “It’s the first time we’ve been here … this place is big! It’s amazing to see how much walking you have to do!” they said.
Big news at the UD stand was the Quester CDE330 6×2 with Allison 3200-series fully automatic transmission. The Allison 3000 and 3200-series automatic transmissions are currently being phased in across the Quester range.
“We are now introducing four additional eight-litre Quester models with the Allison transmissions and later we’ll add three additional models with 11-litre engines. Those will have the 4000-series Allison,” explains Eugene Fourie, marketing pricing manager.
Attracting even more attention at the stand were the Croner models, fitted with cattle bodies and draw-bar trailers.
“We’re receiving queries for the replacement of the UD 35 and 40, but those will only arrive around September,” says Paul Sales, regional sales manager for Limpopo, Mpumalanga and North West. He explains that UD Telematics was also widely publicised at the event.
“It’s available standard on the Quester and Croner, and the next-generation Quon will have it when it arrives in 2019. Customers get it free for the first year and pay a small monthly fee from the second year. It offers track and trace and, although there is no recovery service, the system has helped to recover nine stolen vehicles already,” he says.