Story by Gerhard Botha, Photography by RacePics.co.za
Bernard and Gerhard were the hosts for the day for the breakfast run to Peacanwood Golf Estate via ZF Lemforder SA in Rosslyn.
The morning of 20 November 2016. Here in Gauteng we woke with a fantastic day. This just after Gauteng had enormous storms and a spree of bad weather.
The brief was clear. All to meet at the ZF Lemforder SA factory in Rosslyn at 8:30 sharp.
The trip from Johannesburg was out of the norm as we were traveling to the heart and soul area where some of our Bavarian Machines were born. We did not know what to expect as we entered the parking lot. Here we met up with fellow enthusiasts that took the time to experience this world class plant.
It was a perfect day with an array of cars ranging from the timeless classics to ultramodern Bavarian metal.
In the welcoming area, we were greeted by Pieter and his esteemed team of colleagues that were eager to show us their pride and joy. We were welcomed with an early riser of coffee, juice and muffin.
The CEO Kobus van Straaten gave us a comprehensive overview of what ZF Lemforder SA's position in the market is and to how important they are for our motor industry. It was here where we found out that meticulous attention is paid to the factory and its quality as the majority of their work is a safety part in a vehicle.
We were divided into four groups to conduct the tour through this world class factory. The factory builds a ready to install suspension front and rear for the current BMW factory builds. The plant pre-assembles the front and rear suspension including differential Steering racks, brakes etc. This sub assembly then gets transported to BMW and supplied to a specific chassis number as per BMW’s order. They work on a JIT/JIS (Just In Time) system to supply the parts ordered from the factory. Every 20 minutes ZF Lemforder SA supplies suspension parts to the BMW Factory.
Every workstation had a computerised hub where every part gets logged and every torque setting documented. Here we noticed how perfect this environment is for building suspensions for one of the world’s best German cars. The final check is a photo booth set up to take pictures from the completed assembly and yet again documented for safety reasons. This concluded the tour of this amazing plant.
From here we left to our destination for the day at Pecanwood Golf Estate at Hartebeespoort Dam.
A map was provided to the members that did not know the correct route. In the parking lot, quite a few members showed off their pride and joy cars, and exchanged tips and info. The route from Rosslyn curved through the outskirts of Tshwane and some old farmyards were a delight for our kids.
Near the end of our journey we crossed over the Crocodile river and what a spectacle as some of the sluices were open and the river was flowing rapidly. A bit of a sad sight as we crossed over the dam bridge close to the Golf Estates as the water almost looked like you could mow it with a lawnmower. The green pea soup like water did not look attractive and hope that someone will have the final say to restore this Iconic landmark to its full glory.
So here we are at Peacanwood where the professional staff at the gate were accommodating in showing us the route to the Club House. The Club House Restaurant was recently upgraded and we were greeted with a gastronomic view of foods. The tables were well spaced and offered everyone a space to relax and enjoy the social side. The kids had endless space to play and enjoy themselves.
The restaurant catered for Halaal foods as well and we were satisfied with the arrangement to cater for all. After a few refreshments, some of us had to leave as the School Exams kept parents from staying to long.
In the parking area yet again friends and colleagues gathered for an informal photoshoot and some bragging rights to who’s car looks the best. Here I saw how extremely proud we are to drive this awesome brand and keeping the old classics alive. Thank you, Johann Venter, for showing and driving your pride and joy to this venue and showing off your beautiful award-winning classic.
We are so eager to welcome our next breakfast run members and trust that your experience and passion for the Brand the Club will never ever die.