Midrand – After last year’s successful running of the first SA Festival Motoring, which saw more than 51 000 petrolheads visit the Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit over its five days, the decision was made to make the massive car show a biannual occurrence. But now organisers have come up with a new event with a clear cut focus on actual test drives of new models, to bridge the gap to 2018’s Festival proper.

The new SA Motoring Experience powered by the SA Festival of Motoring, to give its full name, is a shorter three day event and won’t feature all the live musical performances and non-motoring related sideshows, but instead sees expanded opportunity for showgoers to get up close and personal with vehicles from participating brands.

This somewhat smaller instalment is scheduled to take place from September 1-3, again at Kyalami where visitors can drive or be driven around the circuit in a variety of latest models. But test drives won’t be limited to the track, as an expanded 4x4 village will offer the chance to sample offroad-oriented vehicles on a bigger scale, and the newly opened Skid Pan will be available to experience cars on a slippery surface.

Aside from the test drives, the SA Motoring Experience will also feature a Galleria exhibition area – where visitors can discover, test and buy many products from the automotive industry. Of course there will also be a food court for refreshments, and a kiddies play area to keep youngsters entertained while mom and dad are busy scouting new vehicles.

"We are excited to announce that WesBank will again be our headline sponsor on the back of the success of the 2016 event, with the mutual vision of serving and investing in the motor industry, the relationship has grown from strength to strength,” says Konstantin von Vieregge, CEO of SA Shows Messe Frankfurt.

The 2017 event gains international flavour with the announcement that Will Kinsman, Head of Motorsport Content at the Goodwood Festival of Speed and Goodwood Revival, has confirmed participation as the principal judge of all motoring content at the SA Motoring Experience.

"I am sure that Kinsman will be amazed by the calibre and depth and breadth of collectible vehicles on display at the SA Motoring Experience" added von Vieregge.

The inaugural 2016 event saw hundreds of collectible vehicles on display and Kinsman's participation this year will provide South African collectors of vintage, veteran, historic and classic vehicles with a unique opportunity to present their precious assets to a panel of international and local experts – to crown SA's cream of the crop collectable.

"Having attended the 2016 Festival of Motoring as a visitor, I was delighted to witness the enthusiasm and interest in motoring shown by the South African public,” says Kinsman. “I am very excited to be part of the 2017 event, and to see how it evolves going forward."

An added bonus for SA Motoring Experience visitors is the co-location of the Johannesburg Boat and Water Show which will offer an opportunity to view the latest boats and jet-skis on sale as well as offerings from leading watersport, dive and fishing exhibitors.