Valeo Service, awarded “Best Supplier of the Year 2016” by Groupauto International Trading Group

Valeo Service has been awarded on October 19th during the GroupAuto International suppliers meeting held in Faros – Portugal.


Hans Eisner, President and CEO of the 8.5 billion sales International Trading Group presented this prize to Eric Schuler, President of Valeo Service and his managing team. The reward is the symbol of GAU’s recognition for an unparallelled overall performance in terms of long-term partnership and the supplier’s capacity to deliver outstanding products and services for passenger cars and trucks. Over 50 suppliers were competing in 5 categories: “Logistics” “Marketing” “Quality”, “Sales” and the most coveted “Best Supplier of the Year”.

Valeo Service has been particularly congratulated for its ability to support and care for GroupAuto International expansion around the world with each one of the 35 GroupAuto members. The aftermarket specialist, strengthened by the new 2017 Valeo Service “We Care for You” strategy sets the rules for the future by furnishing a flawless value added partnership and will continue to support the upcoming new GroupAuto members, namely China and Mexico.

Autoparts celebrates 25 years in business

Autoparts UK, one of the fastest growing motor factors, has reached its 25th anniversary of trading in the automotive aftermarket.

After reaching this milestone, the motor factor is investing more resources in order to raise awareness of its exclusive brands, products and services such as its Loyalty Link rewards programme, all of which are designed to support the running of an independent garage.


The business began in 1991 as part of dealership group Arnold Clark and has since grown at a considerable rate, now operating a network of 12 sites throughout Scotland, Northern England and the Midlands.

In 2010, Autoparts UK moved into a new head office – the 70,000sqft Albion Parts Centre – which holds over 60,000 parts and holds a stock value of more than £2.5million.

In 2015, Midwest Motor Factors became part of the network. The company employs 80 staff and has more than 40 vans across a five branch network throughout the West Midlands.

To commemorate its anniversary year, Autoparts UK is planning a number of events and initiatives, starting with its sponsorship of the IAAF conference, the industry’s largest automotive aftermarket event of the year.

Craig McCracken, Autoparts UK Group Factor Manager, said: “This is an incredible accomplishment for Autoparts UK and we must thank the support received from customers and suppliers as part of our journey. We have always tried to excite customers with automotive parts supply, bringing to their attention the very latest products and services to ensure they remain competitive.

“As we proceed with our rapid growth plans, our aim is to continue to provide independent garages with the best products and brands in the market, coupled with exceptional service at all times.”

Two VMs announce scrappage schemes FIAT introduces new Swap Programme

A new end-of-year campaign, designed to help customers swap their current Fiat car for a new one, has been launched by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles UK.

Called ‘The Big Swappage Deal’ the initiative offers drivers an extra incentive to trade in their current vehicle, with a range of extra ‘swappage’ bonus offers on top of any value the participating Fiat dealer has put on the customer’s car.

The deal covers the entire range of Fiat models – except the new 124 Spider – and includes the award-winning 500, the 500L and 500X, as well as Tipo, Panda, Punto, Qubo and Doblo.

‘The Fiat Swappage Scheme will appeal to customers with cars of any age, make or model,’ said Paul Runza, brand manager Fiat UK. ‘However the offer is still available for customers who do not have a part exchange vehicle – they will be eligible for a Swappage cash discount.’

Vauxhall relaunches Scrappage Scheme

Vauxhall has relaunched a scrappage scheme intended to encourage drivers to trade-in older, more polluting cars for models that are more environmentally friendly.

It is offering customers up to £2,000 towards a new car if they trade-in a vehicle registered before 31 December, 2016 for scrap.

The Scrappage Allowance scheme covers Astra, Mokka, Mokka X, GTC, Zafira Tourer, Insignia and Cascada models and runs until the end of the year.

Leon Caruso, Vauxhall’s retail sales director, said, ‘We are pleased to welcome back our Scrappage Allowance Scheme, helping customers to fund their new car with up to £2,000 for their old model. Not only can customers potentially receive more for their outgoing model, but they can also use this in conjunction with some of Vauxhall’s great finance offers, making their new Vauxhall even more affordable.’

The scheme also ran last year, when Vauxhall scrapped nearly 15,000 older vehicles. Vauxhall’s scrappage programme also has a provision for recycling parts of pre-1991 models for owners of classic models.

Euro Car Parts celebrates everyday heroes with new TV ad campaign

Euro Car Parts, the UK’s leading distributor of car and LCV parts, is to shine a spotlight on local heroes as part of it’s first-ever television advertising campaign. The commercial will feature a real mechanic from an independent motor trader (IMT) in Glasgow, which is a customer of Euro Car Parts.

Set to Bonnie Tyler’s 1980s classic Holding Out For A Hero, the advert tells the story of a woman driving home to see her parents. Prior to setting off, she visits her local garage where Stuart, an IMT mechanic and the hero of the story, inspects her car. After recommending she change her brake pads, Stuart calls Euro Car Parts – which ensures a speedy delivery of the part so she can be back on her way. This proves helpful later on in the journey, when she is forced to make an emergency stop in front of a flock of wild sheep.

The campaign, which was shot in the Scottish highlands, was produced by the world-famous Ridley Scott Associates, behind classic films such as Alien, Gladiator and Blade Runner. Directing the advert was Jamie Delaney, a talented young director who has won a number of industry awards. Post-production was supplied by the Oscar-winning Framework, which previously provided its expertise to Hollywood blockbusters such as Gravity, Jungle Book and the Harry Potter series.

A key focus of the advert was to a highlight a real hero. The IMT mechanic featured in the campaign works at Drivers Auto Centre Glasgow, a customer of Euro Car Parts. The piece also includes a nod to Scotland’s motorsport heritage, as the majority of the advert was filmed at Rest and Be Thankful – a famous hillclimb just outside Glasgow that was previously used by the likes of Jimmy Clark and Jackie Stewart, and was a stage of the RAC Rally in the 1960s.

Martin Gray, CEO of Euro Car Parts, commented: “The launch of our first-ever television advertising campaign is the start of an exciting new chapter for Euro Car Parts. Through this new creative, we’re highlighting the fantastic work being carried out every day by mechanics and IMTs up and down the country. We are proud and humbled to partner with them.

“We were especially thrilled to secure the services of Jamie Delaney and Ridley Scott Associates. Delaney is a fantastic young talent who was instrumental in giving this advert its cinematic feel, while Ridley Scott Associates has produced some of the most memorable commercials of recent times.”

The advertising campaign is one of a number of new initiatives unveiled this year by Euro Car Parts in support of the independent repairer. Earlier this month, Euro Car Parts announced the launch of Euro Academy, a unique and innovative technical resource designed specifically to support the independent garage.

The business has also announced it will be offering a first-to-market lifetime warranty on a wide range of mechanical parts. The new programme offers peace of mind to customers when it comes to purchasing major units such as clutch kits, rotating electrics and steering racks, as customers can rest assured that they will only have to pay for it once.

Airing from Wednesday, 2nd November 2016, the Euro Car Parts Heroes advert can be seen on channels including E4, BT Sports, Sky One, Channel 5 and Film4.

Sad News

Two figures from the automotive aftermarket who will be sadly missed:

David Bennett

David Bennett, a well-known, well-respected and much-loved figure in the automotive aftermarket, sadly passed away on Saturday 30th October. He was a staunch and enthusiastic supporter of the ADF and then the IAAF, serving on the ADF Council for seven years during the 1990s, four of them as Treasurer, and still offered advice and support to the Secretariat after retiring from Council. During his time as Treasurer he oversaw the reorganisation of the financial reporting function within the Secretariat and also the transition to limited company status.

David had a life-long passion for vintage cars and attended many historic car rallies and was also to be seen at the BEN Cricket Matches. His funeral arrangements are being finalised and will be included in next week’s issue.


Phil Parkin

We recently learned also of the sudden death of Phil Parkin of Butlers Automotive. Phil Parkin was everyone’s friend and a larger than life character in the trade. He loved playing golf and attended many company and trade golf dates, including the IAAF golf days at Worsley Park.

Phil passed away on a golf course in Spain surrounded by many of his friends. May he rest in peace. Details of his funeral, which is likely to be some time next week, are awaited and will be confirmed in next week’s issue.