MAHLE maintains dominance by regaining IAAF supplier of the year award

MAHLE Aftermarket UK has powered to victory at the IAAF Annual Awards 2019, winning the ‘Car Supplier of Excellence’ award for the second time in three years.

Taking place at the DoubleTree by Hilton, Milton Keynes on 5 December, more than 600 aftermarket personnel – made up of motor factors, suppliers, buying groups, garages and other dignitaries – were there to see the UK’s leading filter, engine components and thermal management solutions supplier take home the top award.

In a time of immense change in the global automotive aftermarket – highlighted earlier in the day at the IAAF conference, also attended by MAHLE – the victory highlights how strongly the MAHLE brand and product ranges are received by businesses throughout the UK.

In 2019, MAHLE Aftermarket UK has further enhanced its support of stockists, responding to the rising demand for MAHLE from garages and illustrating the increased requirement for quality rom technicians.

Results were decided directly by aftermarket professionals, with the industry voting for their preferred supplier via IAAF’s website.

Jonathan Walker, MAHLE Aftermarket UK Managing Director and Head of Aftermarket Western Europe (MEW), said: “We would like to thank everyone who voted for MAHLE Aftermarket and also IAAF for their hard work in championing the independent automotive aftermarket. Winning this award twice in three years is unprecedented and to have so many people in the industry vote for us is incredible. It underlines MAHLE’s commitment and passion for the automotive industry.

“This award is for everyone at MAHLE Aftermarket UK in Bilston who have worked tirelessly in what has been a very challenging year for the trade.”

MAHLE Aftermarket is represented at 25 international locations and several additional sales offices, with its UK head office based in Wolverhampton. The company has around 1,600 employees worldwide.

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Traxx Tyres hosts Independent Tyre Dealer Conference

Leading UK tyre wholesaler Traxx Tyres hosted its first Independent Tyre Dealer Conference at the Cardiff City stadium, (close to the company’s new depot in Bridgend), at the end of November.

Traxx Tyres’ customers and contacts, a number of independent tyre dealers and garages, were introduced to some of the wholesaler’s select brands, including Vredestein, Lassa, Vitora, Atturo and Rema Tip Top. The workshops, arranged by Traxx Tyres, focused on new tyre technology, as well as current products, information on product development, and marketing tools available to the sector.

Traxx Tyres General Manager Mark Darvill explains: “The conference was attended by both existing and new customers, to whom Traxx Tyres had been introduced via a very successful direct mail campaign. There was also an opportunity for dealers and garage owners to meet suppliers and partners at their stalls in the exhibition area. There, they were able to view products and pick up further tips to assist with the day-to-day running and development of their dealerships.”
The event’s keynote speech was given by award-winning ex-tyre shop owner and industry expert Andy Savva (known in the industry as “The Garage Inspector”), who made a thought-provoking and inspiring presentation on how tyre retailers and workshops could make their businesses more efficient, productive and profitable.

The conference’s Q&A panel discussion was hosted by Mark Darvill: key business areas such as marketing, digital and customer service were discussed by several of Traxx’s business support partners. The panel featured representatives from Your Print Solutions, Creative Jam, Astute Media and PECUVi as well as The Independent Tyre Network.

“Feedback on the event has been excellent, with customers saying that it provided the type of information and helpful insights required by independent dealers in the current market situation. We are now already looking at the format for the 2020 event, and we will take it to the road to reach more dealers in other parts of the UK,” Mark concluded.

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BMW and Daimler pull out of multiple car-sharing markets

BMW and Daimler are pulling their car-sharing services from multiple markets, including the UK and North America, blaming rising infrastructure costs and “low adoption rates”.

The announcement comes just months after they had announced that they were investing more than €1 billion (£870 million) to develop and integrate car-sharing, ride-hailing, parking, electric vehicle (EV) charging and multimodal transport.

This included ShareNow, which amalgamated Daimler’s Car2Go brand and BMW’s DriveNow. Both offer app-based, by-the-minute rentals.

However, the German carmakers seem unwilling to invest more into the venture while they are dealing with the huge cost of developing electric cars, according to the Financial Times.

On Wednesday, ShareNow said it would leave the United States and Canada due the “volatile state of the global mobility landscape” and the “rising infrastructure complexities facing North American transportation”.

The business also said it would leave Brussels, London and Florence due to “low adoption rates”.

Despite boasting 90 million users of its “mobility services”, which include ride-hailing and charging apps, the companies have thus far failed to make car-sharing profitable, reports the FT.

DriveNow and Car2Go, which had already pulled out of more than a dozen locations, will continue to operate in 18 European cities, including seven in Germany.

It says the number of customers in London and demand for its car sharing service was below expectations and lower than other Share Now cities.

The company also blamed local factors, citing the high costs of operation and the different circumstances in the individual London boroughs.

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Additional Supplier seats on IAAF Council

Supplier Category: Two Seats Available. 
Following the IAAF Council meeting held on 21st November, it was agreed that due to the growth in membership of this category, a further two seats would be allocated for supplier members to sit on the IAAF Council. Members are therefore invited to nominate themselves or other candidates for these seats; but, whomever is nominated, please ensure that the person is willing for their name to go forward.

Distance Seller Category: One Seat Available. 
In addition, and to reflect changes in the distribution structure, the IAAF Council will also be introducing a new category for those companies specialising in distance selling, or sales via the Internet, which will have one seat on Council. The following criteria will apply to this category:

  • UK distribution centre and call centre based in the UK
  • Web shop able to deal with Retail and Trade customers alike
  • Have a credible and documented Warranty Policy
  • Compliant with The Consumer Contracts Regulations.

If you feel you meet these criteria and would be interested in a seat to represent this category, you are invited to nominate yourself or another candidate for this seat. As with any nomination, please ensure that the person nominated is willing for their name to go forward.

Other Information. 
Council Member candidates should, preferably, be principals, directors or very senior managers of the companies for whom they work. Importantly, they should have sufficient authority to commit their companies to specific action agreed by the Council without reference to any other person in their company.

The closing date for nominations is close of play on 6th January 2020. If you would like to make a nomination, please download the form below. If you would like to nominate more than one person, please photocopy the form as required. Nominations should be emailed to the IAAF Office.

To download the Component Supplier nomination form click on the link below.

Council Member Nomination Form (Component Supplier)

To download the Distance Seller nomination form click on the link below.

Council Member Nomination Form (Distance Seller)

Completed forms should either be emailed to [email protected] or posted to the IAAF Office marked COUNCIL NOMINATION.

Should more nominations be received than there are seats available, then a ballot will be held.

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IAAF Office holiday opening hours

The IAAF would like to wish all readers of the eBulletin a very Happy Christmas and a prosperous 2020.

The IAAF Office will close at 4.00 p.m. on Friday 20th December 2019 and will not reopen until 9.00 a.m. on Monday 6th January 2020.

If you need to contact the office over the holiday period, you can leave a voicemail on 0121 748 4600 or you can email [email protected]. You will receive a response early in the New Year.

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GS Yuasa highly commended as runner up for two high profile industry awards

GS Yuasa Battery Sales UK Ltd were recognised at two prestigious automotive aftermarket award ceremonies last week. The market leading battery manufacturer was awarded runner up for both the Independent Motor Trade Factors Association Ltd (IFA) Car Supplier of the Year 2019 award and The Independent Automotive Aftermarket Federation (IAAF) Car Supplier of the Year 2019.

James Hylton, Managing Director of GS Yuasa Battery Sales UK Ltd, collected the awards and commented: “We are proud to be awarded runner up for the prestigious Car Supplier of the Year awards from both the IFA and also the IAAF. And to be recognised by our customers and the industry as a top supplier.

“We always strive to be number one for service and supply and this recognition reflects the hard work of all of our dedicated staff. Just missing out on the top spot this year means our team will be working even harder over the coming twelve months to make sure we are front runners for the awards in 2020.”

IFA Car Supplier of the Year 2019
GS Yuasa was recognised as runner up for IFA Car Supplier of the Year 2019, having won the award in both 2017 and 2018. The IFA are one of the largest factor buying groups in the UK.

The award is voted for by the Directors and Members of the IMTFA and is awarded for achieving a class-leading standard of service and commitment. The award was presented at the IFA Annual Awards Dinner in County Kildare on Saturday 30 November.

GS Yuasa has been supplying IFA members with OE quality Yuasa and GS automotive, commercial vehicle and motorcycle batteries since 2008.

IAAF Car Supplier of the Year
GS Yuasa were highly commended as runner up for the IAAF Car Supplier of the Year award at the organisation’s annual award dinner in Milton Keynes on Thursday 5 December.

With 16 companies nominated, the award is voted for by members of the organisation in an online poll. This is the second year in a row that GS Yuasa picked up a gong at the event having won the category outright last year.

The IAAF represents the entire automotive aftermarket chain, comprising manufacturers, suppliers, warehouse distributors, buying groups, motor factors and independent garages.

Members’ interests are protected by the activities of the IAAF, with their views and opinions clearly expressed to the various bodies whose activities affect the day-to-day running of an aftermarket business.

In addition to these awards, GS Yuasa has picked up several other high-profile awards in recent years, including Halfords Supplier of the Year 2016 and Workshop Power Awards Battery Supplier of the Year 2016 & 2017.

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Hella Gutmann Solutions’ success with WhoCanFixMyCar.com partnership

Diagnostics expert, Hella Gutmann Solutions (HGS) and online car repair marketplace, WhoCanFixMyCar.com, joined forces in August to provide motorists with the best diagnostic solution for their vehicles and just three months into the partnership, it’s already proved to be a resounding success.

With its renowned mega macs range, HGS is a global leader in diagnostic technology and the preferred supplier to countless workshops around the world. However, through its association with WhoCanFixMyCar.com many more now have a greater awareness of the brand and have come to realise that HGS is fast becoming the benchmark equipment for the independent.

Since HGS joined the website, 189 workshops now identify as a HGS professional, meaning they all rely on the renowned mega macs 56 and/or 77 devices to safely and efficiently carry out diagnostic test procedures, with many also performing camera and radar recalibration on vehicles equipped with advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS).

The WhoCanFixMyCar.com website shows that HGS professionals have secured more than 4,770 bookings through the site, with the rating of these workshops averaging at 4.6 stars out of five.

Neil Hilton, HGS’ head of business development, said, “The response we’ve had from workshops through the WhoCanFixMyCar.com network has been astounding and we’ve enjoyed assisting these workshops in educating them about diagnostic tool best practice and ADAS realicration, as well as what they can do to prepare for the aftermarket of the future.

“It’s vital that workshops understand the importance of ADAS recalibration because if they don’t have the right equipment, but still work on these vehicles, they can put drivers and their passengers at serious risk. With more and more vehicles now equipped with ADAS features as standard, the industry needs to prepare quickly and educate itself properly.

“We’re pleased that we’ve been able to go directly to workshops and technicians through WhoCanFixMyCar.com because many may not be getting the best information or even be aware of how serious ADAS recalibrating is. So, while it’s an investment for any workshop, it’s certainly a worthwhile one to future proof their businesses.

“It’s been a busy three months with this new partnership, but we’re happy with how popular its been with the workshops and we’ll continue to support the site and educate as many technicians as we can.”

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Latest garage technical evening gears up for winter

Midwest Motor Factors and Monmore Auto Parts have hosted their latest technical evening for independent garages at GTG Wolverhampton.

More than 50 garage owners, technicians and apprentices attended the event, which this time featured presentations by Yuasa’s Ian Newham, European technical training manager and European Exhausts and Catalysts’ (EEC) Stuart Still, business development manager and technical trainer.

The Yuasa batteries brand is the newest brand available at Midwest and Monmore, complementing the range of Goliath batteries also available.

Both motor factors offer Yuasa’s market leading, OE-quality YBX automotive range including conventional batteries to handle the demands of today’s modern vehicles and next generation EFB and AGM batteries, specifically designed to satisfy the fuel saving and environmental benefits of vehicles fitted with emission reduction systems such as Start-Stop.

With almost complete coverage of the UK vehicle parc, Yuasa’s YBX batteries offer superior performance, long service life and the very latest in technology and come with a four year warranty.

Also unveiled at the event was the Padtech Fitting Centre Programme, aimed at promoting the very highest standards in brake pad fitting in the automotive industry.

With free, eye-catching point of sales material available to repairers, garages will have access to the latest in brake pad technology and enjoy generous discounts on the Padtech range.

To be part of the fitting centre programme, garages need to buy the top 20 pads for just £275+vat. Fitting centres will receive a banner and wall sign promoting the Padtech fitting centre status, air fresheners and checklists to assist motorists on braking inspections.

Group Factor Manager, Craig McCracken, said: “This training event was the most comprehensive yet, as we respond to customer requests to include more information on services and opportunities available to them through Midwest Motor Factors and Monmore Auto Parts. With Winter fast approaching, we want to make sure all garages are prepared for the season ahead to have complete confidence in the brands, products and ranges we have available.”

Every person that attended the technical training event was entered into the prize raffle, this time won by Charlie Whitehouse, apprentice at Macrome’s Garage who picked up a hamper, while two free Bilston F.C football shirts were won by Eurotechniks and C Fierro Garage.

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Aftermarket of tomorrow — what does the electric motor mean for independent workshops?

The advent of e-mobility is often accompanied by uncertainty for workshops. How much maintenance does an electric motor need? What sort of repair volume can be expected? Which are the common models and voltage levels? And how can workshops obtain the information needed to ensure safe, efficient, and fast maintenance and repairs? This is where MAHLE Aftermarket comes in, as a 360° solutions provider with OEM expertise.

MAHLE already offers manufacturers of electric vehicles sophisticated drive solutions with maximum performance. MAHLE traction motors are suitable for all applications: for mild and full hybrid vehicles and for vehicles with a range extender, as well as for purely battery-powered electric vehicles or fuel cell vehicles and even two-wheelers. By continuously expanding its activities in the area of power electronics and drives, MAHLE has been preparing for the mobility transformation for some time—and is paving the way for its aftermarket portfolio of tomorrow.

“The demands on workshops are changing and becoming more diverse. We support them by offering a high level of availability, top quality, and all the services and information they need in the workshop,” says Olaf Henning, Corporate Executive Vice President and General Manager MAHLE Aftermarket.

Thermal management for the battery and drive of electric vehicles will be a particularly important part of day-to-day life in the workshops of tomorrow. The thermal cycle of an electric motor differs fundamentally from that of a combustion engine. The air conditioning compressor becomes part of the powertrain, as it is responsible for the cooling of the battery and motor. The importance of efficiency is especially apparent when traveling in winter. While a combustion engine produces ample waste heat for heating the interior, the energy of an electric motor is barely sufficient to warm up the cabin air. Electric cars do produce waste heat—for example, during battery charging—but significantly less than combustion engines. Dissipating this heat to protect the components, on the one hand, and utilizing it efficiently for air conditioning, on the other, is an important aspect of thermal management. Ultimately, all measures have the same objective: to use the available energy more efficiently in order to increase the cruising range. Thermal management systems of this complexity are new for workshops. For this reason, MAHLE is already working to ensure that repair and maintenance information (RMI), spare parts, diagnostic tools, and service units are available for workshops at the right time. In this way, MAHLE provides specific support for workshops in this new business segment.

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EAG and Suplex announce coil spring supply agreement

Excel Automotive Group (EAG) and Suplex have agreed a deal that sees the Leeds-based company become the exclusive distributor of more than 3,500 coil spring references, following the closure of the Suplex Sheffield warehouse.

Suplex coil springs are either made from high-quality chrome, silicone chrome or vanadium spring steel and are coated with a zinc phosphate coating, which helps prevent them from corroding.

When developing new springs, a technical data sheet is drawn up – which includes all the appropriate parameters. Based on these, a prototype is created, which is then scrutinised by various test procedures, such as metallographic examinations, mechanical material and longevity tests, before a spring goes into production.

EAG’s Tony Bhogal and Managing Director, Adrian Lamb, said in a joint statement: “We are delighted to have reached agreement with Suplex, a company that has established itself with a reputation renowned for quality products. It is no secret that EAG has been looking to strengthen its product offering, supplying an eclectic range of products, and this Suplex deal fits the bill.”

Suplex General Manager, Graham Masheder, added: “Working with EAG is a great opportunity to expand the Suplex product in the aftermarket. Suplex is confident that EAG, a trusted business, will develop the Suplex brand even further, whilst maintaining the needs of its customer and the consumer.”

EAG is stocking approximately 3,500 Suplex part numbers, all of which are accessible on MAM AutoCat and available for same-day local delivery or next-AM national delivery.

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