Lamborghini Urus wins ‘Best Luxury SUV Car’ award

Lamborghini Urus wins ‘Best Luxury SUV Car’ award
Representatives of Samaco Automotive Company receive the award presented at a ceremony at the Jeddah Hilton.
Updated 08 July 2019

Lamborghini Urus wins ‘Best Luxury SUV Car’ award

Lamborghini Urus wins ‘Best Luxury SUV Car’ award

The Lamborghini Urus has been named the “Best Luxury SUV Car” at the National Auto Award 2019, organized by PR Arabia in Jeddah, Samaco Automotive Company, the exclusive dealer of Lamborghini cars in Saudi Arabia, has announced.

The seventh edition of the awards, which were recently presented at a ceremony at the Jeddah Hilton, highlighted and recognized excellence in the Saudi automotive sector. The event was attended by a number of car distributors and specialists, in addition to members of the media.
The Lamborghini Urus won the award after being shortlisted through a public voting process.

The Urus features a 4.0 liter V8 twin-turbo engine delivering 650 hp at 6,000 rpm, maximum 6,800 rpm, and 850 Nm of maximum torque already at 2,250 rpm. With 162.7 hp/l, the Urus claims one of the highest power outputs in its class and the best weight-to-power ratio. The car accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 3.6 seconds, and from 0 to 200 km/h in 12.8 seconds, with a top speed of 305 km/h, making it the world’s fastest 4X4 car. To meet various driving conditions, the Lamborghini Urus features a selection of driving modes, including strada (street), sport, corsa (track), terra (gravel), sabbia (sand), and neve (snow).

Despite the fact that the Lamborghini Urus is an SUV car, it is much lighter than most of its competitors. This is mainly because the Italian automaker used a lightweight body in an aluminum composite design, making the car light as well as strong.

The model’s rear-wheel steering technology provides enormous ease when driving either on low or high speed around the corners. 

Mohammed Raffa, chief executive of Samaco Automotive Company, said the Lamborghini Urus deserves the prestigious accolade.

“This is of no surprise to us, Lamborghini cars are the world’s best luxury cars, and Urus is the last model ever made by this brand. Lamborghini Urus combines antiquity and modernity, it stands next to none in its category, and represents the ultimate formula of the modern car.”

The National Auto Awards are one of the top motorsport awards in the region. Every year, a panel of experts, the public and car enthusiasts take part in the voting to select their favorite cars. Assessments for both the categories are based on a series of stringent parameters, such as price, fuel efficiency, styling, comfort, safety, performance, practicality, technical innovation and build quality.


Saudi solar firm to scale up energy projects in Nigeria

Saudi solar firm to scale up energy projects in Nigeria
Updated 13 April 2021

Saudi solar firm to scale up energy projects in Nigeria

Saudi solar firm to scale up energy projects in Nigeria

Saudi solar energy firm Desert Technologies (DT) revealed plans to provide large-scale financing to electrify villages in the sub-Saharan region, during its participation in a live online conference titled “Renpower Nigeria Investors 2021,” from March 31 to April 1.

Nour Mousa, founder and CEO of DT, discussed projects in solar PV and grid connected electricity access across Nigeria and other markets, among more than 200 high-level decision-makers, market participants and stakeholders from around the world.

The conference provided the participants with an opportunity to learn about the future of the renewable energy market and the Nigerian government’s plans to generate electricity using solar energy and encourage investment in solar energy projects in rural villages to improve education, water supply, health, agriculture, trade and security. 

During the conference, Mousa presented the experience of DT with inspiring insights and ideas. He said that the participation of DT in the virtual event came from its keenness and interest in the African and Nigerian markets, with DT having significant experience in providing solar PV products and solutions to commercial and industrial clients, as well as governmental and nongovernmental organizations. 

“DT is an independent, fully integrated PV solar energy platform with a proven track record as a PV developer, investor, EPC and operation and maintenance contractor, and PV solar panel and energy storage solutions manufacturer. Headquartered in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, operating across Africa, the Middle East and Emerging Asia, DT is a diversified company operating across the value chain of the solar sector,” Mousa said. 

He discussed the business case of Sahara, DT’s off-grid solution that grants sustainable access to electricity in remote and rural areas. Sahara is DT’s containerized solar generator, a very agile and versatile product designed to operate under different conditions. Through this system, small businesses will have the ability to light their shops and power their computers, while other businesses may require power to operate machinery and appliances such as refrigerators and electric sewing machines.

Mousa said that Sahara has been designed specifically in response to the critical need of enhancing electricity access in Africa, through micro-grid and off-grid solutions. Sahara is a plug-and-play, stand-alone system, which can support local communities and their development by relieving their dependency on power generated from the grid. 

“With the Sahara series, we are looking at a levelized cost of electricity at about 11 cUSD /kWh provided by the hybrid system, which is already half of what diesel is today. DT is planning to provide finance at a large scale and electrify villages in the sub-Saharan region,” he added.

Despite being the leading economy in the African continent in terms of GDP ($443 billion), the installed electrical capacity in Nigeria does not exceed 12,522 MW (2020), as only 36 percent of the population in rural areas has access to electricity. The federal government hopes to improve the situation through the Nigeria Electrification Project funded by the World Bank and the African Development Bank.


LuLu chairman receives Abu Dhabi’s highest civilian honor

LuLu chairman receives Abu Dhabi’s highest civilian honor
Updated 13 April 2021

LuLu chairman receives Abu Dhabi’s highest civilian honor

LuLu chairman receives Abu Dhabi’s highest civilian honor

Yusuff Ali M.A., chairman of retail giant Lulu Group and prominent NRI (nonresident Indian) businessman, has been honored with Abu Dhabi’s top civilian award.

The prestigious Abu Dhabi Award was given to Ali for his outstanding contribution to the emirate’s business and industry, and support to various philanthropic initiatives.

Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, crown prince of Abu Dhabi and deputy supreme commander of the UAE Armed Forces, presented the award to Ali in Abu Dhabi.

“A very proud and emotional moment in my life. I am really overwhelmed and humbled to receive such a great honor from Abu Dhabi where I have been living for the past 47 years,” said the Kerala-born businessman after receiving the honor.

“It was on Dec. 31, 1973, I arrived in the UAE with new dreams and hopes. I have reached here after seeing many ups and downs and various challenges and I take this opportunity to extend my deepest gratitude to the visionary leadership of this great country, especially His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, crown prince of Abu Dhabi.”

Ali is the only Indian along with other 11 prominent personalities, which include nine UAE nationals, to receive the honor this year. The Abu Dhabi Awards is the Abu Dhabi government’s initiative that recognizes and honors individuals who have selflessly dedicated themselves to support and contribute to the development of the emirate.

Ali, who recently ranked as the richest Indian in the Middle East in the Forbes billionaire list 2021, is also billed as the most influential Indian in the region, thanks to his close relations with the Gulf rulers.

He has received numerous awards, including the Order of the King of Bahrain in 2014, and the British Queen’s Award in 2017. In addition, he is also the first expatriate to obtain a permanent residency visa in both Saudi Arabia and the UAE.


More opportunities at AISJ as school now offers IB program

More opportunities at AISJ as school now offers IB program
Updated 12 April 2021

More opportunities at AISJ as school now offers IB program

More opportunities at AISJ as school now offers IB program

The American International School of Jeddah (AISJ) is the newest IB candidate school in Saudi Arabia.

In January, AISJ received the official notification that their request to offer the IB Diploma Program (DP) was accepted. Their staff is now undergoing training to become certified to teach this curriculum.

This is an important step in deepening the school’s commitment to providing its students with the best possible education. Robert Jackson, AISJ superintendent, said he is thrilled with the school reaching this milestone. “The IB program will complement the stellar components already present in our secondary program allowing for students to have greater choice in their career pathways.”

AISJ is planning on offering the IB DP classes for the 2022-23 school year. In addition to offering the IB DP, AISJ will continue to offer the full suite of pre-AP (Advanced Placement) and AP courses to their high school students. The AP program gives students the chance to take college-level courses, and earn college credit starting as early as grade 9.

While other schools in Jeddah offer the AP and IB programs, AISJ will be the only school to offer both to their high school students. 

“Over the past three years, we have seen our AP Capstone diploma grow by 325 percent. We are projecting that this number will increase in the coming years and felt it was necessary to give students more opportunities at advanced coursework,” Rick VandenBoom, the high school principal said. “IB is a great fit because it will allow our students to pursue the IB diploma, the AP Capstone diploma or students can enhance their university transcript by experiencing a mix of both programs.”

Students at AISJ graduate and move on to attend top universities around the world, including Johns Hopkins, Harvard, King’s College, and McGill.


MYNM welcomes new MINI Hatch & Convertible

MYNM welcomes new MINI Hatch & Convertible
Updated 12 April 2021

MYNM welcomes new MINI Hatch & Convertible

MYNM welcomes new MINI Hatch & Convertible

Mohamed Yousuf Naghi Motors (MYNM) Company, the official BMW Group importer in Saudi Arabia, has announced the arrival of the new MINI three-door and five-door Hatch and the MINI Convertible. 

The original models in the small car premium segment are moving to the next stage of their evolution. With an intensive makeover for the MINI three-door, MINI five-door and MINI Convertible, BMW Group has confirmed the position of the three models as premium providers of driving fun, expressive design and individual style.

Clear exterior design accents give the new models a purist appearance that emphasizes the hallmark design features. In addition, the innovative multitone roof creates unique individualization opportunities. In the interior, the extensively redesigned cockpit underlines the premium character of the MINI three-door, the MINI five-door and the MINI Convertible. 

Attractive additions to the range of standard and optional equipment, new exterior paint finishes, light-alloy wheels, interior and seating surfaces as well as innovative technology in the areas of chassis, driver assistance systems, operation and connectivity round off the latest update for the BMW Group’s small car models.

A new exterior design language now puts the unmistakable appearance of the MINI in a decidedly purist light. Above all, the enhanced aesthetics ensure that the central design features of the MINI become even more apparent and modern by means of reduction. 

Contrasting colors for the roof and exterior mirror caps are among the most striking design features that have made MINI a pioneer when it comes to customization. In addition to the Jet Black, Aspen White and Melting Silver paintwork, as well as Chili Red for the MINI John Cooper Works, an innovative and globally unique variant of the roof paint finish is offered for the MINI three-door and the MINI five-door. 

The redesigned interior of the MINI three-door, MINI five-door and MINI Convertible is sophisticated, modern and of particularly high quality. 

New to the range are sports seats in the Light Chequered color variant, which complement the Zesty Yellow exterior paint finish. The familiar Black Pearl fabric quality is given a new, expressive check look in hallmark British MINI style. The seams at the transition to the black imitation leather of the seat bolsters feature a color scheme that matches the fabric of the seat surfaces.

The premium look of the hallmark central instrument has also been optimized. An 8.8-inch color touchscreen display, touch-sensitive favorite buttons and Piano Black high-gloss surfaces are now standard features. 

Mark Notkin, BMW Group managing director at MYNM, said: “The new MINI Hatch and Convertible are first and foremost authentic MINIs that have gained even further in personality and substance. They have been refined to emphasize all those things that make MINI what it is: Quality, modernity and identity.” 

“With individual style and personality at the forefront of the MINI brand, these new models offer an enhanced level of customization. With their improved design and power we are confident that MINI lovers in the Kingdom will welcome the latest editions to the MINI collection with open arms.”


LuLu chairman receives Abu Dhabi’s highest civilian honor

LuLu chairman receives Abu Dhabi’s highest civilian honor
Updated 11 April 2021

LuLu chairman receives Abu Dhabi’s highest civilian honor

LuLu chairman receives Abu Dhabi’s highest civilian honor

Yusuff Ali M.A., chairman of retail giant Lulu Group and prominent NRI (non-resident Indian) businessman, has been honored with Abu Dhabi’s top civilian award.

The prestigious Abu Dhabi Award was given to Ali for his outstanding contribution to the emirate’s business and industry, and support to various philanthropic initiatives.

Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of UAE Armed Forces, presented the award to Ali in Abu Dhabi.

“A very proud and emotional moment in my life. I am really overwhelmed and humbled to receive such a great honor from Abu Dhabi where I have been living for the past 47 years,” said the Kerala-born businessman after receiving the honor.

“It was on Dec. 31, 1973, I arrived in the UAE with new dreams and hopes. I have reached here after seeing many ups and downs and various challenges and I take this opportunity to extend my deepest gratitude to the visionary leadership of this great country, especially His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi.”

Ali is the only Indian along with other 11 prominent personalities, which include nine UAE nationals, to receive the honor this year. The Abu Dhabi Awards is the Abu Dhabi government’s initiative that recognizes and honors individuals who have selflessly dedicated themselves to support and contribute to the development of the emirate.

Ali, who recently ranked as the richest Indian in the Middle East in the Forbes billionaire list 2021, is also billed as the most influential Indian in the region, thanks to his close relations with the Gulf rulers.

He has received numerous awards, including the Order of the King of Bahrain in 2014, and the British Queen’s Award in 2017. In addition, he is also the first expatriate to get a permanent residency visa in both Saudi Arabia and the UAE.