The South African automotive industry

An old car

While driving on the N1 national highway, I passed this Mercedes Benz whizzing along at a comfortable 120km/h. Taking a photo while driving would have been tricky, so I handed my camera to Kerry-Anne who opened her window for this shot, almost losing my camera while doing so!

It may be of interest to you that the first Mercedes-Benz, the Benz Velo, arrived in South Africa in 1896, and in 1958 Car Distributors Assembly had the first Mercedes-Benz rolling off their production line.

In recent years our automotive industry has accounted for about 10% of South African exports and about 7.5% of our GDP. That makes the industry a huge contributor, providing stable income to thousands of people. The past two years have however been as difficult for the local industry as they've been for the global one. Fortunately however, the economy is turning and folk seem to be buying cars again... unfortunately I'm not one of those folk. :(

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