More than 75% of the world's population, including us, drives left-hand-drive (LHD) vehicles, while the remaining 25% drives right-hand-drive (RHD) vehicles. The majority of nations that use right-hand driving are ex- or present British colonies.
Like us, South Africa is one of the few important markets where RHD automobiles are offered. And it's been quite comparable in terms of the kinds of automobiles that are offered there. For instance, the right-hand drive FAW V2 and Sirius were solely built for the Pakistani and South African markets. With the BJ40 plus SUV, BAIC launched its sales activities in both nations. In the same vein, Chery just about simultaneously introduced the Tiggo 4 Pro and Tiggo 8 Pro crossovers in Pakistan and South Africa.
There are other more vehicles that are comparable between the two nations, but buying a car in South Africa has undoubtedly more possibilities than it does here. Additionally, they have considerably higher standards and more sophisticated safety equipment than we have in Pakistan. The majority of low-cost automobiles are either produced in South Africa or imported from India, which is a significant supplier of automobiles to RHD markets.
However, South Africa has a large selection of affordable automobiles, whereas Pakistan has a dearth of such vehicles. These new vehicles are being sold in South Africa for less than ZAR 200,000, which, at the current currency rate, is roughly equivalent to PKR 24.0 lac. We only offer 660cc Suzuki Alto variations in this range as a widely available, mass-produced choice. However, if they are fortunately available in the city where you reside, you could want to think about options like the dated United Bravo, Alpha, or Prince Pearl.
We'll look at a few of the reasonably priced solutions in South Africa that fall within the PKR 24.0 lac (ZAR 200,000) area.
In India, the Hyundai Atos, also known as Santro in our region of the world, was revived in 2018. The Hyundai Atos Motion model, which has a 1.1L engine with 67 horsepower and 99 pound-feet of torque and 5-speed manual transmission, is the ideal option for South African first-time automobile purchasers.
Toyota, which is renowned for being affordable and dependable, offers the Agya hatchback in the South African market. In South Africa, the Agya is touted as the least expensive vehicle offered by Toyota. The entry-level hatchback is offered in a single well-equipped grade with a choice of a manual or automatic transmission. A 1.0 L, 3-cylinder, normally aspirated engine with 67 horsepower and 89 Nm of torque is housed under the hood. Both a 5-speed manual and a 4-speed automatic transmission are available.
The Renault Triber, and more especially its Expression edition, is probably one of the most useful alternatives to have on a tight budget. The seven-seat MPV is equipped with a 5-speed manual transmission and a 1.0L three-cylinder petrol energy engine that produces 70 horsepower and 96 Nm of torque.
Additionally, Indian-made manufacturers are also present in the South African market, so it's not only about the automobiles that India exports to that country. One of these is the Mahindra KUV100, a vehicle that can produce a maximum of 82 horsepower and 115 Nm from a 1.2L engine under the hood. The front wheels receive power through a 5-speed manual transmission.
The existence of the new Suzuki Swift in this price range is perhaps one of the most astounding things. Swift, one of Suzuki's top sellers in South Africa has a GA model that costs only ZAR 189,900, which is equal to PKR 22.57 lac. The Suzuki Swift has a 1.2-liter gasoline engine with 82 horsepower and 113 Nm of torque. The front wheels receive power via a 5-speed automatic gearbox.
The Suzuki Dzire sedan, which is based on the aforementioned Swift model, is even more astounding. The Suzuki Dzire offers the same 1.2L engine as found in the Swift and is available with either a 5-speed manual or a 5-speed automatic gearbox. It is priced from under ZAR 189,900 (PKR 22.57 lac) for the GA model.
South Africa also offers the soon-to-be-discontinued Datsun Go at a competitive price. A 1.2L three-cylinder, normally aspirated petrol engine with 67 horsepower and 104 Nm of torque powers it. Only a 5-speed manual gearbox is used to transmit power to the front wheels. Datsun Go was spotted testing on local roads; therefore Ghandhara was planning to launch the model in Pakistan. However, issues with parent firm Nissan prompted Ghandhara to abandon the Datsun project. Nissan then terminated the brand as a cost-cutting tactic in a number of global countries due to financial concerns.
With a 1.0L engine under its hood, the most recent Suzuki Celerio is also available in this price bracket. The engine has a 5-speed manual transmission and can generate 65 horsepower and 89 Nm of torque, which is sent to the front wheels.
The Kwid is a long-standing customer favorite for entry-level vehicles that is available in the South African market. The Kwid has a small, three-cylinder, 1.0L engine with clever management efficiency and a 5-speed manual transmission.
The Suzuki S-Presso, another affordable vehicle for sale in South Africa, has a 1.0L engine that generates 67 horsepower and 90 Nm of torque. The available transmissions are a 4-speed automatic or a 5-speed manual.
The BAIC D20 is the most cost-effective vehicle currently on the market in South Africa. It is available with a 1.3L engine that can provide 128 Nm of torque and 114 hp of power. The D20 only has a 5-speed manual transmission, which drives the front wheels alone. Despite having the BAIC D20 in its pipeline, Sazgar in Pakistan chose to introduce the very pricey BJ40 Plus SUV in the range of Rs 9.0 million and upwards.
Due to empty rules and excessive protection for the assemblers, Pakistan's vehicle sector has been sluggish to advance. Since the introduction of the new Auto Policy, there has hardly been any market competition, and everything that has been supplied has been geared toward affluent elites with enormous purchasing power.
It occurs largely because there are no constraints in the law governing the forced introduction of automobiles into the nation; rather, it is up to the assemblers' discretion as to whatever product brings them the most profit to get here. One of the reasons that more than 17 internationally defunct automobiles, half of which were introduced in Pakistan years after being phased out elsewhere, are still for sale there.
How long will our car industry be in its infancy, reliant solely on importing the components of internationally obsolete models in order to manufacture them here? Maybe it's time for policymakers to start taking their work seriously.