OESAA urges technicians to sign up to Autoinform Live with ‘limited spaces’ available

Original equipment manufacturers and industry ambassadors to host weekend event

The Original Equipment Suppliers Aftermarket Association (OESAA) is urging technicians to snap up tickets for Autoinform Live, with limited spaces now available for the live training event in Wolverhampton.

On the weekend of the 6th and 7th November, original equipment manufacturers and industry ambassadors will descend on the GTG Training Academy.

Hayley Pells, a member of the OESAA garage forum and renowned figure in workshop circles, has joined the presenter line-up.

She will propose a pathway for technicians tasked with servicing or repairing electric vehicles (EVs).

The process is one that is tried and tested in her own workshop and will be demonstrated during the live training sessions that Autoinform Live is famous for.

Meanwhile, TMD Friction has also signed-up to exhibit.

The brake manufacturer will be showcasing GaraShield, an advanced software platform for workshops, which it exclusively distributes in the UK.

Using GaraShield, every aspect of a vehicle service or repair can be digitally managed, tracked and recorded – for complete transparency and peace of mind. It also encourages best practice compliance.

Hive and MAM Software will also be presenting their products and technologies behind them, so with GaraShield being added to the mix, technicians thinking of investing in garage management, workflow process and quality control systems will be well catered for.

OESAA chairman, Nigel Morgan, said: “The additions of Hayley and TMD Friction will add different dimensions to what already promises to be an engaging and insightful event.

“Both will bring unique qualities and messages, which will be invaluable to visitors when they return to their workshops.

“Autoinform Live is gearing up to be an event to remember, so technicians can’t afford to miss out on the plethora of training available – I urge them to sign up now.”

For further information, please click here.

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GS Yuasa traction range gains momentum for European market

Coverage for all makes and models providing reliable power and hassle-free performance

GS Yuasa have announced the launch of a new range of traction batteries for the European material handling market.

The launch sees the manufacturer expand upon its class leading Japanese traction battery range with an all-new line up of European DIN and BS sizes.

The new range of individual 2V cells, full tank solutions and accessories utilise the very latest technology and premium Japanese engineering for maximum quality and long life.

Available in 24, 48 and 80 volt solutions, the extensive range provides coverage for all makes and models providing reliable power and hassle-free performance.

The new European sized range is available as a fully plug and play solution, meaning it can be easily integrated into a wide range of applications.

All batteries offer low maintenance, minimised water consumption and quick charging.

They are supplied in a high durability, dip coated tray and are fully recyclable.

As an original equipment supplier, GS Yuasa are trusted by engineers worldwide.

Their traction batteries are the preferred choice to the Asian materials handling market, and GS brand traction batteries are still widely referenced for their unrivalled quality many years after discontinuation in Europe.

James Hylton managing director of GS Yuasa Battery Sales UK said: “We’re delighted to have launched our traction range in Europe and offer our world-renowned quality and long service life to the materials handling industry. 

“Our experienced engineers have developed this range using their extensive knowledge of traction technology to ensure the highest performance and reliability.

“We are already receiving a huge level of interest from materials handling suppliers and manufacturers who are delighted GS Yuasa have returned to the European market”.

An optional Air-Mix system enhances electrolyte mixing, prolonging service life and reducing the risk of stratification and premature battery failure.

The system brings a number of additional benefits including a 20 per cent reduction in energy consumption during charging and reducing overall charge times by 30 per cent.

A fully integrated filling solution makes maintenance quick and easy while an optional LED indicator means electrolyte levels can be checked with just a glance.

For further information, please click here.

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TyreSafe releases free assets for garages to promote tyre safety

Tyre Safety Month reminds motorists of the crucial role tyres play for safe and effective braking and cornering during

TyreSafe, a UK charity dedicated to raising awareness of the importance of correct tyre maintenance and the dangers of defective and illegal tyres, has launched this year’s annual October-long Tyre Safety Month by asking Britain’s motorists ‘What’s Stopping You?‘.

Regular tyre safety checks reduce the risks of an incident while on the roads but an estimated one-in-five drivers have never checked the tread on their tyres, a startling number which rises to one-in-three among young drivers.

Checking and maintaining tyres also reduces the cost of motoring as underinflated tyres will wear quicker and cause the vehicle to use more fuel.

To educate drivers on the importance and benefits of tyre safety, TyreSafe has developed impactful, and realistic depictions of scenarios involving families, loved ones and young drivers to resonate with a range of audiences and highlight the potential stakes of driving on defective tyres.

The question What’s Stopping You? not only reminds the motorist of the benefits and importance of tyre checks but also carried the literal message that, as the only point of contact between the road and the vehicle, it is tyres which are crucial for safe and effective braking and cornering.

The campaign incorporates the powerful acronym ‘A.C.T. – Air pressure, Condition, Tread’ to further imprint the three elements of basic tyre safety checks on the driver, as the closing message on each video and a feature on static visuals.

Stuart Jackson, TyreSafe chair, said: “While we campaign year-round to raise awareness of tyre safety, this October’s Tyre Safety Month campaign is particularly powerful in how is depicts the real risks and high stakes of not regularly checking your tyres.

“There really is no excuse for ignoring tyre safety -you’ll help keep yourself, your passengers and other road users safe, particularly as the winter months and more challenging driving conditions approach.”

Garages can support the campaign by using a range of assets on tyresafe.org, materials include videos and images to be used on social media.

For further details, please click here.

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Ring responds to MOT demand

UK warehouse stocked and ready to support workshops

Ring Automotive has responded to the MOT rush season by bolstering its availability of lighting products at its UK based warehouse in Leeds.

With an anticipated 60 percent of all annual MOTs due to take place between now and December this year, Ring has invested further in its capability and infrastructure to ensure motor factors and garages throughout the UK and Ireland receive an uninterrupted supply of Ring, OSRAM and NEOLUX products.

With ‘lighting and signalling’ the biggest cause of MOT failures, Ring has ensured its state-of-the-art warehouse in Leeds – which has been in operation all day, every day throughout the pandemic – is capable of shipping both emergency and customer orders.

Fast delivery is also key as it ensures quicker access to the best performing and selling products from all three brands.

Ring has a wider range of bulb dispenser stands available, helping workshops access the correct bulb for the right vehicle in the quickest time possible.

Working closely with motor factors and stockists throughout the UK and Ireland means the company has also been able to put bespoke packages together to suit every customer’s requirement.

Jeremy Rochfort, business unit director at Ring Automotive, said: “The past 18 months – through the coronavirus pandemic and Brexit – has further focussed our attention on ensuring customers receive the best possible service, making ordering and delivery from us as efficient as possible.

“For the automotive aftermarket, it’s essential for any supplier to ensure that they are easy to work with and we have achieved this by investing in our product ranges, breadth of lighting technology and, product availability.

“This, coupled with the support our sales and customer service teams provide to our customers and workshops, means we are the ideal partner to assist customers in the upcoming autumn-winter season.”

At the UK headquarters in Leeds, Ring Automotive has Quality Assurance (QA) facilities, allowing the company to test all products on-site.

For further information, please click here.

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ZF invests in Oxbotica to deploy autonomous passenger shuttles in major cities

Partnership agreement to develop level 4 self-driving system for autonomous shuttles to transport people and goods

ZF is systematically expanding its expertise in the future field of autonomous driving in line with ZF’s “Next Generation Mobility” strategy.

ZF has signed a strategic partnership agreement with Oxbotica, a global leader in autonomous vehicle software, to develop a level 4 self-driving system which will initially be deployed in passenger shuttles in major cities around the world.

ZF and Oxbotica will develop a level 4 self-driving system that can be integrated into various vehicles including Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS) shuttles to provide on-demand passenger and also goods transportation vehicles in urban environments.

The two companies share a joint vision for the future of mobility and the transformational potential that autonomous technology can have across multiple industries where people and goods move.

The autonomous shuttle market will grow substantially over the next 10 years with the potential to increase access to mobility, improve road safety, reduce congestion, and boost productivity.

As part of the collaboration, global automotive technology company, ZF has invested in Oxbotica and will take a seat on the company’s advisory board with a five per cent share.

The two companies started working together in 2019, with Oxbotica completing integration of its autonomous vehicle software with ZF’s ProAI, an AI capable automotive-grade compute platform, and ZF’s Full-Range Radar.

Ahead of the autonomous shuttle deployments, ZF and Oxbotica will work closely together to continue to develop the technology and on validation and verification of the integrated self-driving vehicle system.

Torsten Gollewski, executive vice president for autonomous mobility systems at ZF said: “The entry investment of five per cent underlines our confidence in Oxbotica’s capabilities.

“Together with Oxbotica, we are developing self-driving systems for autonomous people and cargo mover addressing the current challenges in public transport and logistics.”

Paul Newman, co-founder and CTO of Oxbotica said: “Partnering with ZF in developing an on-road passenger and goods transportation solution is an important milestone in Oxbotica’s commercial autonomy strategy.

“Our product will bring new options to cities and transport operators around the globe who must solve the complex mobility challenges of the future.

“The way people and goods move is changing.”

For further information, please click here.

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Gritter driver shortage could see roads become more dangerous this winter

Major routes likely to be prioritised over rural roads, reports suggest

Motorists are being warned of more dangerous roads this winter because of a shortage of gritter drivers.

Main roads, major bus routes, emergency service locations and school routes are expected to be prioritised and gritted over other roads.

With the current shortage of drivers, it is feared that many rural routes may suffer as a result.

Cllr David Renard, transport spokesperson for the Local Government Association, said: “While most councils have been able to keep services running, some may find that their gritting services are affected in the same way that some have seen waste collection services impacted.

“As they do every year, councils will be working proactively to plan ahead and ensure that their winter services are as resilient as they can be.

“Councils are keen to work with Government and partners to support more training for these demand sectors, however this is a lengthy process and does not alleviate the short term pressures on frontline services.

“Fast inflating HGV driver salaries in the private sector risks exacerbating issues in the public sector, with the rises potentially creating a retention as well as a recruitment problem for councils and their contractors.”

It has been reported that snow could be expected in the coming weeks, as well as a much colder winter, meaning gritting roads will be more crucial than usual.

The Government is currently running a HGV training scheme, aiming to quickly recruit 5,000 drivers.

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NGK-sponsored Wolverhampton Wolves crash out of Speedway’s Premiership play-offs

NGK Spark Plugs logo featured on team riders’ race suits

NGK-sponsored Wolverhampton Wolves crashed out of Speedway’s Premiership play-offs at the semi-final stage with a disappointing display at Peterborough.

The Parrys International Wolves were beaten 52-38 at the East of England Arena – their heaviest defeat of the season – which resulted in a 98-82 aggregate scoreline.

Wolves started brightly by winning the opening three races, however the Panthers reined Wolves in to reach the final where they will face Belle Vue.

Wolves team manager, Peter Adams said: “As you saw from the first four or five races we were well up for this, but once Peterborough discovered their gating gloves it was game over.

“For four or five races on the bounce they were electric from the starts and we just had no answer to that. They were superior from the starts and on a track like this, where passing was at a premium, it’s very difficult to cope with that.

“It’s very disappointing but we’ve lost to a very good team who are going to take some beating in the final.”

Ignition and sensor specialist NGK Spark Plugs (UK) Ltd is a major sponsor of Wolves with the company’s logo featured on all the team riders’ race suits, around the track and in each home meeting programme.

In addition, all the riders have been given NGK paddock mats and chairs.

For further information, please click here.

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Suspended sentence for drunk mechanic who took and crashed customer’s car

Mercedes in for body and brake work but ended up colliding with another vehicle in head-on crash after being taken from workshop

A mechanic who took who crashed a customer’s car into another vehicle while drunk has been handed a suspended prison sentence, a 120-day alcohol abstinence programme where an electronic tag will be fitted to his ankle to measure his intake, ordered to attend 15 rehabilitation sessions with the probation service and to pay £750 compensation.

The 28-year-old tried to overtake two cars “at speed” and then struck another one which was coming in the opposite direction.

Both he and the driver of the other vehicle had to be taken to hospital where a blood test, taken 90 minutes after the crash, found the defendant to be almost twice the drink-drive limit.

Derby Crown Court heard how Lukasz Zelechowski has no recollection as to why he chose to take the Mercedes which was in for body and brake work.

Zelechowski received an eight-month jail term, suspended for two years.

Judge Shaun Smith QC said: “You helped yourself to a car that was being repaired, you had the keys but not the permission to drive it for your own purpose.

“You attempted to overtake two cars and then crashed into another car.

“Ironically, you suffered far more serious injuries than he did.”

Zelechowski pleaded guilty to charges of aggravated vehicle taking, drink-driving and driving without insurance.

He has no previous convictions of any kind and since the incident has been fixing the car he stole and crashed free of charge for its owner, who attended his court hearing.

Auto Torque has partnered with Garage Wire to bring you all the latest aftermarket news.

Visit the Auto Torque blog to catch-up on the latest industry news.

New FERODO pads to bridges gap between braking performance and comfort

Launch follows three years of intensive research and development

FERODO has announced that it has introduced innovative automotive brake pads to bridge the gap between braking performance and high-end comfort.

The new FERODO Fuse+ Technology brake pads feature a highly advanced new friction material that combines the trusted, high-performance braking power of low-steel formulations and the comfort-intensive characteristics of non-asbestos organic (NAO) materials.

FERODO Fuse+ Technology brake pads are the result of more than three years of intensive research and development at the FERODO Tech Centre, Chapel-en-le-Frith, U.K. Fuse+ Technology pads feature a unique combination of more than 20 precisely engineered components that work in concert to deliver unsurpassed braking performance, helping to lower the traditional drawbacks associated with conventional materials.

These new pads also include FERODO’s exclusive zero-copper Eco Friction Technology, which reduces dusting and cuts pad emissions by 60 per cent.

David Coimbra, braking aftermarket product manager at Tenneco DRiV EMEA Motorparts said: “Fuse+ Technology marks the beginning of an entirely new era of braking innovation on behalf of the professionals, racing teams and consumers who rely on FERODO brake pads.

“This exciting new technology eliminates the need to lose certain important braking characteristics to achieve others. Now, our customers can enjoy the best of both worlds.”

FERODO Fuse+ Technology brake pads are available immediately for almost 100 premium-level vehicle models from Europe’s premier automakers, including Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen.

Each set of pads is packaged complete with all required accessories to ensure fast, easy installation.

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Schaeffler announces major update to REPXPERT workshop portal

Complete overhaul to bring major changes and considerable benefits for UK technicians

With its reputation for putting the needs of aftermarket professionals first, Schaeffler continues to do what it does best, completely redesigning its popular REPXPERT portal to provide an even greater resource to technicians, workshop owners and parts distributors.

“After several minor improvements, we are now taking the opportunity to completely overhaul the REPXPERT online portal and relaunch it with a range of major changes, all of which will bring considerable benefits to its many users in the UK and Ireland,” said Marketing Communications Manager, Jeff Earl.

“The new portal, codenamed REPXPERT 3.0, brings together all the information a mechanic needs to carry out their daily work – comprehensive TecDoc based parts catalogue, repair data, product updates and a wealth of technical insight which, thanks to a further improved user interface and global search, are all quick and easy to access.”

Schaeffler REPXPERT brand ambassador, ‘The Garage Inspector’ Andy Savva, added: “Giving garages the tools they need to work professionally, efficiently and economically has always been Schaeffler’s goal, which they constantly deliver on and in fact, surpass in most of their customers’ expectations.

“With the new 3.0 version of the online portal taking things to the next level by adding a significant number of added value features across the board, there really is no reason not to sign up for access to one of the best free resources available to the aftermarket.

“Having what you need in one place is great; but being able to personalise your own dashboard so you have even quicker access to the functions you use the most makes it even better.

“This is one of the new version’s key features, saving time and making problem solving easier.

“Access to the all-important repair data has been improved, as it has now been combined with the online catalogue data, so users can easily find parts and repair info using a common search function.

“Installation videos, tips and advice, common warranty issues, examples of component damage and likely causes etc. can all be found with this intuitive new system, which should make accurate fault diagnosis and component replacement a simple ‘best practice’ process.

“This in turn will help garages become more efficient, improving customer service.

“Accurately identifying the correct parts can also be a problem, so the site now includes access to an updated catalogue system to help reduce selection errors.

“Powered by TecDoc and continuously checked and updated on a daily basis, the catalogue also includes gearbox, HGV and tractor products to cover the entire UK and Irish aftermarket.

“From a garage perspective, loyalty programmes are also an important part of the customer experience, so news that the popular REPXPERT bonus shop is also being revamped will be welcome to the thousands of members that take advantage of the bonus points found in Schaeffler product cartons.

“As well as making it easier to collect points using the voucher scanner on the REPXPERT app, there will also be loads of new products to choose from, including a brand new eco-clothing range, tools and consumables from Laser, plus some cool new Blaupunkt gadgets for use in your workshop office.

“And the news keeps getting better, as the points value needed to purchase items across the whole shop have been reduced – so it will be easier for members to collect the points they need to buy the products they really want.”

More details about the new improved bonus shop will be announced soon.

Information on Schaeffler products, fitting instructions, labour times and much more can be found on the REPXPERT workshop portal, the REPXPERT app, or by calling the Schaeffler REPXPERT hotline on 0872 737 0037.

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