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Visitors hail a weekend of racing, culture and music at ‘Road to Ad Diriyah’ event in Jeddah

Time: November 26, 2018      

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Mohammed Karkashan and wife Halla Tajaldeen were getting the feel for Formula E with daughter Lana and Leen Hedery at the Road to Ad Diriyah Roadshow. (General Sports Authority)
  • ‘Road to Ad Diriyah’ was an event full of motorsport magic, which gave thousands a taste of racing, live music and culture
  • The first of ten annual races, the ‘Saudia’ Ad Diriyah E-Prix will kick off the fifth season of ABB FIA Formula E

JEDDAH: A high-speed weekend on the Jeddah Corniche began the countdown to the start flag dropping for the ‘Saudia’ Ad Diriyah E-Prix in three weeks’ time.
The ‘Road to Ad Diriyah’ was an event full of motorsport magic, which gave thousands a taste of racing, live music and culture due to hit Ad Diriyah on the outskirts of Riyadh next month.
The first of ten annual races, the ‘Saudia’ Ad Diriyah E-Prix will kick off the fifth season of ABB FIA Formula E, and at the weekend people flocked to the Jeddah roadshow event to secure their tickets, and try professional racing simulators and see the new, faster Gen2 Formula E race car.

Mohammed Karkashan and wife Halla Tajaldeen were getting the feel for Formula E with daughter Lana and Leen Hedery.

“It is fantastic that Formula E is right here in Jedda and I think the race in Ad Diriyah will be a great experience. It is cool that Formula E is coming to the Middle East”, he said.
At the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Ad Diriyah, the track is taking shape, preparing for electric racing machines to blitz through 21 turns and bends.

Music stages will host six global acts and cultural and entertainment zones will allow all to experience modern and contemporary artistry. Tickets are already on sale from only SAR 395, and more information can be found here.
At the Jeddah event, hopefuls also tried their hand at racing in the qualifying for the ‘ABB FIA Formula E Road to Ad Diryah’ eSports championship. Osama Omar Alkaseeh was very happy with his qualifying race laps and thought they might just be good enough to make him one of the finalists invited to Ad Diriyah to battle it out live at the ABB FIA Formula E-Prix.

Osama Omar Alkaseeh tries his hand at qualifying for the ‘ABB FIA Formula E Road to Ad Diryah’ eSports championship. (General Sports Authority)

“This is so fun. Saudis love cars and motorsport, and we are addicted to racing, so this is a perfect game for Saudi. I think everyone should try it.” Osama said.
For more information about ‘Saudia’ Ad Diriyah E-Prix including schedule and tickets, click here

 

This article was first published in Arab News

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Saudi Arabia’s motor federation chief Prince Khalid inaugurates Formula E event on Jeddah corniche

Time: November 22, 2018      

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After attracting more than 6,000 people in Khobar two weeks ago, the ‘Road to Ad Diriyah’ is ready to show the people of Jeddah the excitement of Formula E (General Sports Authority)

JEDDAH: The president of the Saudi Arabian Motor Federation Prince Khalid bin Sultan Al-Faisal Al-Saud inaugurated the touring E-Village ‘Road to Ad Diriyah’ in Jeddah — an event stopping at various points around the Kingdom to promote the upcoming Saudia Ad Diriyah E-Prix in December.
After attracting more than 6,000 people in Khobar two weeks ago, the ‘Road to Ad Diriyah’ is ready to show the people of Jeddah the lightning fast Gen2 Formula E car, let them race in world class SAR250,000 professional racing simulators, see them fly in the interactive Icaros VR experience and enjoy an outdoor cinema by the sea.
Prince Khalid said: “As we gear up to host the historic race, we are always making sure we engage with Saudi families through exciting events that include sports, entertainment and cultural activities. This is going to be an amazing weekend. We have got so much lined up for the people of Jeddah. We have taken everything that went well in Khobar, where over 6,000 turned up, and made it even better. I am confident that we will have a record turnout in Jeddah, and we are really looking forward to give people an experience to remember.”
The event in Jeddah will also mark the second appearance of the ABB FIA Formula E Road to Ad Diriyah, an eSports championship with a total prize of SR1,000,000. The two best in Jeddah will be invited to Ad Diriyah to compete in the live finals on the Saudia Ad Diriyah race day.
The ‘Road to Ad Diriyah’ is also the chance for the people of Jeddah to secure a ticket for the historical E-Prix, as they will be sold on-site at the Corniche.
The ‘Saudia’ Ad Diriyah E-Prix is set to be the biggest ever festival of racing, culture, live music and entertainment in Saudi history. Spanning three days from Dec. 13-15, it will see the race cars of the future blitz through the historical streets of UNESCO World Heritage site Ad Diriyah, as well as global superstars performing live music on stages throughout Riyadh.
The ‘Road to Ad Diriyah’ event will be open Thursday from 4 pm. to 11 pm., and Friday and Saturday from 12 pm. to 11 pm. There will be activities for all tastes, as well as food and drinks and music. Entrance and activities are free.

This article was first published in Arab News

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Women drivers to take the wheel at Saudi E-Prix

Time: November 21, 2018

An unprecedented number of women are to compete against male counterparts in Formula E s hotly contested Rookie Test for up and coming drivers being staged in Saudi Arabia the day after the inaugural Saudia…

An unprecedented number of women are to compete against male counterparts in Formula E’s hotly contested ‘Rookie Test’ for up and coming drivers being staged in Saudi Arabia the day after the inaugural Saudia Ad Diriyah E-Prix.

On December 16, following Formula E’s first race in the Middle East at the stunning Unseco heritage site of Ad Diriyah on December 15, female drivers will line up against male rivals on the grid to take part in the official in-season test for the forthcoming season of the FIA ABB Formula E Championship.

The ‘Rookie Test’ has seen the local promoter work with teams to encourage more female participation – with the results being one of the most exciting, diverse and competitive line-ups seen in motor sport.

The list consists of a varied group of up-and-coming talent along with well-known faces, including the first Emirati female racing driver, the youngest winner of the British GT Championship, a former Andretti Formula E driver and a member of the FIA’s Women in Motorsport commission.

Amna Al Qubaisi, will be competing in the test with Envision Virgin Racing. The UAE-born driver has had a steep progression in her career so far, starting karting aged 13, and going on to win the UAE Rotax Max Challenge Championship before more recently competing in Formula 4 with Prema Theodore Racing.

Al Qubaisi said: “I’m very proud to be representing women in general and Arabian women in particular. This test drive is another stepping-stone towards my dream of a professional career in motorsports and thanks to the continuous support of Kaspersky Lab, this dream will eventually come true.”

Princess Haifa bint Mohammed bin Saud Al Saud, secretary general of the organizing committee for the race, said: “Through the increased participation in and hosting of world-class sports within Vision 2030, we want to inspire the young people of Saudi Arabia towards greater achievement and taking an active role in every part of life.

“In this light Formula E is a natural fit for the future that we are trying to create for young people in so many ways, such as renewable energy and diversifying for economy. It is also a platform for women to show their skills and we are delighted to host a landmark occasion for Formula E and global motorsport.”

The DS Techeetah team has recruited Tatiana Calderon to get behind the DS E-Tense FE19 for the first time on track on December 16. The Colombian is no stranger to single-seater racing, having competed in the FIA European Formula 3 Championship, before taking the jump to GP3 in 2016. Her current role is as official test driver for the Alfa Romeo Sauber.

“When the promoter approached us about the opportunity to offer a test session to a talented female racing driver at the first in-season test, we jumped at the opportunity. We immediately started thinking about drivers that would be suitable for the test, and Tatiana was on top of our list. She’s incredibly talented and we think she’ll do a stellar job at the test with the experience she is able to bring,” said DS Techeetah team principal, Mark Preston.

Swiss racer Simona de Silvestro, who previously competed in the FIA ABB Formula E Championship’s first two seasons and today races in Australia’s Supercars Championship, will drive with the Venturi team in a new Venturi VFE05. Spanish driver Carmen Jordá spent two seasons in Formula 1 as a development driver and will drive with the Nissan e.dams team in Saudi Arabia in a Nissan IM01.

Meanwhile, British racer Katherine Legge, a Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy driver and who has impressed regulars in Nascar during 2018, will drive with Mahindra Racing in a Mahindra M5Electro on her first outing in a Formula E car since 2015.

Dilbagh Gill, team principal of Mahindra Racing, said: “Mahindra Racing is delighted to be taking part in the first 2018/19 ABB FIA Formula E in-season test in Ad Diriyah. We have worked closely with the local promoter of the Saudia Ad Diriyah E-Prix, who are aiming to encourage more female participation, and we are thrilled to be able to field one of the strongest female drivers in the sport in this test, alongside our regular Season Five driver Jerome d’Ambrosio.”
Finally, BMW junior driver Beitske Visser will link-up with BMW i Andretti Motorsport team.

Both HWA Racelab and Geox Dragon are still working to secure female drivers to take part in the test as part of their respective teams.

All drivers will be getting their first taste of Formula E’s second generation of racing technology, which has created cars that can complete the 45-minute races on a single charge while sprinting from 0-100 km/h in 2.8 seconds and hitting 285 km/h.

The Saudia Ad Diriyah E-Prix will be the first time that these cars have ever competed in the world’s premier electric racing category, adding extra significance to the Rookie Test at a time when driver feedback is imperative to the development of their championship challenge.

The closed test will run over two sessions across the day of Saturday 16 December, with each driver allowed one new set of tyres and a used set of tyres for their track sessions. This will follow a three-day festival of world-class motorsport and live family-friendly entertainment including superstars from the global and regional music industry.

Carlo Boutagy, head of CBX and the promoter of the event, added: “Bringing Formula E to Saudi Arabia is a fantastic moment for the culture and community of the Kingdom that is evolving through Vision 2030. Formula E and the teams have taken a remarkable step to put women drivers into such an important test and given them a genuine showcase for their talents at the pinnacle of the electric sport alongside the biggest names in the series.”

The ‘Saudia Ad Diriyah E-Prix’ is the first in a 10-year partnership between ABB FIA Formula E and the General Sports Authority of Saudi Arabia (GSA) and the Saudi Arabian Motor Federation (SAMF).

This article was first published in Arabian Business Community

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Chinese car giant steps up expansion into Gulf markets

Time: November 15, 2018   

Chinese car giant steps up expansion into Gulf markets
The car manufacturer has opened a sales and service centre in the UAE, debuted the GAC Motor brand in Saudi Arabia and launched the GAC Motor GS7 in Kuwait.

GAC Motor, China’s leading automaker, is stepping up its expansion plan in the Gulf region, with launches in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.

The car manufacturer has opened a sales and service centre in the UAE, debuted the GAC Motor brand in Saudi Arabia and launched the GAC Motor GS7 in Kuwait.

GAC Motor’s sales and service centre opened in Dubai after it signed a strategic cooperation agreement with Gargash Group to jointly explore the UAE market.

GAC Motor also recently launched its brand in Saudi Arabia and set up a sales service and experience shop in the country. An agreement has been signed with Saudi dealer Aljomaih Automotive Company (ACC) to build four sales network and service points in Riyadh, Jeddah and Dammam.

GAC Motor also released its GS7 model in the Kuwaiti market this month, the company said in a statement.

Sheikh Ibrahim Aljomaih, vice chairman and CEO of AAC, said GAC Motor cars “will play a big role in changing people’s perspectives about Chinese cars”.

Yu Jun, president of GAC Motor, added: “Just as our ancestors brought the best silk and porcelain thousands of years ago, GAC Motor has introduced high-quality products to Saudi Arabia: the GS8, GA8, GS4 and GA3S.”

At present, GAC Motor has successfully entered eight countries in the Middle East and built a total of 21 sales service centres in the region.

 

This article was first published in Arabian Business

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Video: How the UAE, Saudi Arabia are planning a 5G revolution

Time: November 14, 2018     

The race to 5G is well and truly underway, and the UAE and Saudi Arabia are well positioned to bring the benefits of this new and exciting technology to the Middle East.

5G will enable greater speed, is able to move more data, has a lower latency, and is more responsive, and allows the connection of much greater numbers of devices, such as sensors and smart devices – think of the Internet of Things, including cars, gadgets, medical equipment, security software, and entire homes.

In this edition of Inside AB, Jeremy Lawrence and Lubna Hamdan look at the astonishing promise that 5G brings, but also ask when it will actually be available to everyone.

This article was first published in Arabian Business

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Almajdouie Motors launches Changan CS95 Royal in KSA

Time: November 11, 2018      

The new Changan CS95 Royal model is equipped with various driver assistance systems, and passive and active safety systems.
Almajdouie Motors, the authorized distributor for Changan cars in Saudi Arabia, has announced the arrival of the upper edition of Changan CS95 SUV model to its showrooms in Saudi Arabia.
Changan CS95 Royal model is the flagship of Changan Automobile Company Limited line of products. The car is built on a long wheelbase measuring 2,810 mm.
Mohammed bin Ali Almajdouie, MD of Almajdouie Motors Company — Changan, said: “The ongoing development policy is the backbone of Changan Automobile Company Limited framework strategy to get an outpost in the automotive industry. The company spares no effort to be the first choice of the consumer in all aspects, particularly in terms of technical advancements the ability to operate under different operating conditions.”
The new Changan CS95 Royal model is equipped with various driver assistance systems, and passive and active safety systems, such as blind spot detection, lane departure warning, front collision warning, adaptive cruise control (radar), and others.

 

This article was first published in Arab News

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GAA launches all-new Renault Duster in KSA

Time: November 10, 2018   

At the launch of the all-new Renault Duster

GULF Advantage Automobiles (GAA), the importer of Renault cars, announced the launch of the all-new Renault Duster in Saudi Arabia. The renowned SUV features a powerful engine, an attractive modern design, a comfortable and spacious cabin, in addition to unique functions and unique features to meet the aspirations of its customers in the Kingdom who wish to own a sports utility vehicle at attractive and competitive prices.

The event was attended by Divyendu Kumar – Managing Director, MK Rajkumar – Chief Operating Officer, Sami Nader – Head of Operations and many senior officials in the presence of esteemed members of the media and customers. The guests at the event were able to experience the driving of the new Duster and see all the specifications and sophisticated features of the product.

Rajkumar said: «We are delighted to launch the new Renault Duster to our valued customers in Saudi Arabia. The Duster represents one of the best and latest models introduced by Renault, the world›s largest automaker. It is fitted with outstanding key features to meet the desire and needs at an affordable price. At the same time, the product provides a smooth driving experience on the road and a robust and sturdy off-road experience on all other terrains. This is what will ensure that the New Duster remains a favorite vehicle in the Kingdom and around the world.”

He added, “We are confident that the new Renault Duster will receive great demand just like its predecessors in the Saudi market. Renault has renewed this unique car and upgraded its specifications and features to new levels of performance, making it the best in its class and one of the most popular and best-selling SUVs worldwide. At the same time, Renault is keen to provide the best after-sales service, maintenance and spare parts for its valued customers in the Kingdom. The customer is our top priority here at Gulf Advantage Automobiles.”

The new Renault Duster is one of Renault›s celebrated models characterized by strength, functionality and safety. Its distinctive features add more splendor and elegance. A sports utility vehicle like no other with its unique looks thanks to the addition of a full chrome grid and its distinctive C-shaped LED lights.

The new car is characterized by powerful engines, 1.6 liter 2WD and 2.0 liter 4WD for off-road enthusiasts. It also has an advanced automatic transmission with outstanding performance and significant fuel economy and carbon dioxide emissions to keep pace with the country›s current trends and needs.

The new Renault Duster is equipped with new advanced equipment and modern high-quality systems to provide a comfortable driving experience. The SUV boasts a spacious cabin and a range of features compared to others in the same segment. Some of these features include the Hill Descent Control, a blind spot warning feature, a sophisticated air conditioning system adapted to the region›s environment, a remote engine starter, a Renault smart card keyless entry system, and a state-of-the-art Multi-touch 7-inch screen.

All customers can get the all-new Renault Duster by visiting the Gulf Advantage Automobiles showrooms in the Kingdom or by calling 920006196.

 

This article was first published in Saudi Gazette

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King Abdullah Economic City launches private car rental service

Time: October 16, 2018   

Part of King Abdullah Economic City in Jeddah. (File photo / AFP)

JEDDAH: King Abdullah Economic City has launched the iDrive, a first-of-its-kind vehicle network in Saudi Arabia.
The new service will provide residents and visitors with the opportunity to rent cars through a special application, via smart devices, closest to their location.
“The service will enhance the city’s economic attractiveness and ease of movement, and will contribute to saving money, time and waiting times for public transport,” said Shadi bin Mohammed Ghumari, CEO of development and civil services at the economic city.
He said the service comes within the efforts of the economic city’s development of the public transport system, that embodies the Al-Haramain train, public transport service to and from Jeddah, highway networks associated with the Economic City, and the city’s transportation service.
Ghumari explained that the iDrive service is available in two tariffs; “Go” and “Super Go.”
No membership fee is required and fare charges start at SR5.
The price of the fare starts at less than 50 halalas per minute during the first 6 hours, then 0.0166 halalah per minute during the next six hours. It is then free for the rest of the day with a maximum distance of 200 kilometers.
He added that the “Super” plan offers more user features and comes with a membership fee of SR30 per month.
Ghumari said, as with the “Go” plan, the fare fee starts at SR5, however, with the upgraded plan, the fare starts from 0.3666 halala per minute during the first 6 hours of the trip, then 0.0166 halala per minute during the next six hours,
It is then free for the rest of the day with a maximum distance of 300 kilometers.

This article was first published in Arab News

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Alwaleed Philanthropies to distribute 7,000 via Aljazirah Vehicles Agencies

Time: October 07, 2018   

Alwaleed Philanthropies, chaired by Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz AlSaud, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Aljazirah Vehicles Agencies, the dealer of Ford and Lincoln cars in Saudi Arabia, to distribute 7,000 cars to various beneficiaries.
The programme offers 1,000 cars a year for seven years.
This partnership initiative will add to the Housing and Car Grants project that began in 2015 and will extend to 10 years, under which Alwaleed Philanthropies has committed to provide 10,000 housing units and 10,000 cars throughout the kingdom, said a statement from the organisation.
Moreover, it was agreed to provide 200 additional cars with special specifications and equipment suitable to transport the people in need, which are with disabilities, it said.
In line with Prince Alwaleed’ s belief in Saudi Arabia’s vision 2030, the initiative has emerged to empower women and youth through securing jobs that will have a great impact on the local economy, it added.
Human resource development is one of the most important objectives of Vision 2030, therefore, an initiative has been agreed to train 100 young men and women in cars and mechanical work. In addition, financing and supporting small car projects for distinguished young people.
The agreement was signed in the presence of Princess Lamia AlSaud, Alwaleed Philanthropies secretary general; Amal Al Kathiri, executive director of the National Initiatives Department, along with Aljazirah Vehicles Agencies representatives – Mohammed Al Kradees, deputy CEO; and Abdullah Alobthani, director of the government sales department in the kingdom.
For over four decades, Alwaleed Philanthropies has supported and spent more than $4 billion on social welfare, and initiated more than 1000 projects in over 164 countries, managed by 10 Saudi females members, reaching more than 533 million beneficiaries around the world, regardless of gender, race, or religion.
Alwaleed Philanthropies collaborates with a range of philanthropic, governmental, and educational organisations to combat poverty, empower women and youth, develop communities, provide disaster relief and create cultural understanding through education. It seeks to build bridges for a more compassionate, tolerant, and accepting world.

This article was first published in Trade Arabia

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Shell remains as BMW’s recommended oil supplier

Time: September 24, 2018   

SHELL-produced premium engine oils to be used for BMW service-fills until 2022.

Shell today has officially renewed its status as BMW AG’s only recommended supplier for aftermarket engine oils in Saudi Arabia for a further three years till end 2022 for all BMW Group brands; BMW, BMW i, BMW M, MINI, BMW Motorrad and Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.The three-year extension will mean that premium BMW engine oils manufactured by Shell will continue to be available to customers at BMW’s dealer network in Saudi Arabia.

This collaboration means that Shell will continue to produce and supply’s BMW’s branded engine oils, which meet the latest BMW engine specifications. These oils will feature Shell’s PurePlus Technology, a breakthrough technology where base oil is produced using a patented process in which natural gas is converted to base oil, also known as gas-to-liquid (GTL) technology.

“We are very honored to work with BMW and supply them with premium engine oils featuring our cutting-edge technology.

We look forward to further strengthen the collaboration as we move forward in our commercial and technical relationships,” said Patrick Carré, Vice President Global Key Accounts of Shell Global Commercial.

This article was first published in Saudi Gazette

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