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Lexus 2013 GS

Supplier Spotlight November 2012

COLLISION NEWS State Farm Discusses Parts Trader System with GCIA

Benchmark Chrysler Dodge Jeep

The smart for-us: A Fun and Sassy Zero-Emission Rule-Breaker

SCRS to Provide Free Sustainability and Work Safety Classes to Members I-CAR Study Confirms Correlation Between Training And ROI Performance

DEALER NEWS Nissan Americas Supports Partnership with Habitat For Humanity with $1.5 Million Donation Toyota Mississippi Teams Up To Support National Public Lands Day

The joy of the open road, expansive landscapes and a love of outdoor activities made large pickups an icon of the American auto scene. Now, in an age of spiraling fuel prices, increased environmental consciousness and the reality of congested cities where parking is a premium, smart reinvents the pick-up in a surprising new package. The smart brand held the global unveiling of the smart for-us concept pickup during media days at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit earlier this year. smart CEO Dr. Annette Winkler says, "We at smart love pickups - if they are small on the outside, large on the inside, very safe

and extremely comfortable. With the smart for-us, a petrol station is no longer needed." With a wink and a smile, the smart "for-us" turns the automotive world upside down once again, challenging ideas about what today's urban pickup might look like. For the first time, the smart for-us translates the practical load layout of a pickup to the reality of 21st century urban traffic. With its small outside dimensions, it could almost go unnoticed in the bed smart for-us Please Turn to Page 4

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Scion 2013 FR-S

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smart for-us From Front Cover of a typical American pickup. Under the body, it's anything but ordinary: the for-us is agile and lively to drive, with state-of-theart all-electric power from a 55kilowatt magneto-electric motor. The smart for-us has plenty of room for two people and behind them two slits in the cargo bed for the front wheels of two smart ebikes. Electric bikes are range-extending in two respects; The convenient docking station in the cargo bed ensures that the ebike batteries are always charged, and from a trip into town to a nature preserve outing, the smart ebikes enable smart for-us passengers to reach destinations that are out of bounds for cars - for example, park trails and restricted zones in cities.

els which are high-gloss metallic white, while the tridion safety cell has a contrasting tex-

tured grey finish. ready to reach mountain bike terrain The for-us sits about two inches higher than a production smart for t-

a sassy, powerful design Even a first glance at the design study reveals a new capability, yet the for-us remains true to the smart brand - surprising, sassy and capable. With its highcontrast tridion safety cell, the forus is the epitome of smart. At the same time, the for-us pickup wo, makes a powerful design s u g statement, playing on the g e s t i n g macho image of conventionit's ready al mega-pickups. It greets viewers with a friendly, con- The smart for-us has plenty of room for two people and behind them for off-road driving, for fident face and two slits in the cargo bed for the front wheels of two smart ebikes. example, to with a convex, reach mounsensuous body tain bike terrain. At the same time, its shape. The bold extremely short front and rear overhangs look, complete make it relatively small overall. When its with a smart power tailgate opens, the cargo floor emblem on the retracts 11 inches, making the three-foot grille and an cargo area easy to access. underride guard Its wheelbase is 97.7 inches, about that finishes off the front end, is smart for-us Continued on Next Page complemented by body pan4

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November 2012

Inside, the smart for-us is stylish, functional and uncomplicated. two feet longer than the well-known fortwo. Overall, the for-us is 139.6 inches in length, nearly three feet longer than the fortwo, and to emphasize its sturdy look, the track is two inches wider. The smart for-us rolls on Michelin 235 / 55 R18 off-road tires mounted on three-spoke wheels with eye-catching fold-out wing nuts that serve to loosen the wheel nuts. Its parallelogram front and rear lights are striking, with outer rings that serve as turn signals and a row of rodshaped LEDS for daytime running lights. The arrow-shaped lights are reminiscent of drops streaming across an airplane window as it takes off. The modular tail lights can even be opened, revealing storage space for the charging cable or water bottles. an interior that's stylish, functional and uncomplicated Inside, the cockpit design boasts aerodynamic design for exceptional interior ventilation, with taut surfaces in mother-of-pearl white contrasting with brushed aluminum working parts. Stylish yet uncomplicated, the two seats in the concept car are perfectly smart highly functional and easy to customize. Open in the middle, the seat shells are covered with an easily removable yellow fabric, giving them a hammock-like seating feel. The soft yellow seat covers include a deep embossed silver hexagon pattern that emphasizes the car's dynamic look. Instead of a conventional rear-view mirror, an integrated video camera displays the area behind the car

on a smart phone that's mounted on a special bracket above the dash. zero-emission driving fun T h e electric drive of the smart for-us is based on the new fortwo electric drive model, which will launch in the fall of 2012. Thanks to its 55-kilowatt magneto-electric motor, the smart forus is nimble and lively to drive. With 96 poundfeet of torque, the for-us boasts powerful, responsive acceleration and a top speed well over 80 mph. Its state-ofthe-art lithium-ion battery has a capacity November 2012

of 17.6 kilowatt-hours of electric power. The battery can be recharged from 20 to 80 percent in only 3½ hours, and a full charge takes no more than eight hours.n Southern Automotive Journal


SCRS to Provide Free Sustainability and Work Safety Classes to Members Exciting new benefit also incorporates online solution that allows collision repairers to monitor their shop’s green performance in real time. Understanding the importance of waste and energy reduction to the collision repair industry, the Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) is offering free enrollment in a Green Sustainability School to any repairer. The school is an ongoing training service designed to keep body shop professionals up-to-date on green practices and help them pursue excellence in carrying them out. The program is part of the GreenSweep energy and pollution performance program, which SCRS makes available to its membership through an agreement with GRC-Pirk Management Company, an EPA- recognized, registered professional engineering firm. In addition to providing this tremendous performance program to its membership, the Society has been selected by GRC-Pirk to be a primary provider of the free school to the collision industry.

“SCRS has the largest, most comprehensive collection of collision shop owners and affiliate organizations that campaign the benefits of green education,” noted GRC-Pirk Management President Steven Schillinger. “We are so pleased that SCRS saw the benefit of opening this educational opportunity to the entire industry through our partnership, and we look forward to delivering the online green schooling in a manner that has broad sweeping positive impact on the industry.” Produced by KPA Online, Green Sustainability School is an easy-to-navigate series of Web-based, self-guided safety and health-focused training sessions that allow students to learn general OSHA work-safety requirements and how to save energy while protecting the environment. Access to many environmental, health and safety training topics concerning the automotive service and repair industry are provided. Each time a student searches a topic, he or she is given the choice to take a specific course and save a certificate of completion to her or his virtual “record book.” In addition to training, those that Southern Automotive Journal,Inc. P.O. Box 675097 Marietta, Ga 30006-0009 (770) 321-9920 E-Mail Volume 16 Issue No. 11

Southern Automotive Journal (ISSN: 1092-6321) is published monthly by Southern Automotive Journal Inc. P.O. Box 675097, Marietta, Ga 300060009.SAJ accepts no responsibility for the opinions, views statements of the authors or for claims made by advertisers. Views expressed by writers are not necessarily those of the publication. Subscription: $12.00 per year. No representation is made as to the accuracy or the completeness of the information provided by this publication. Entire contents copyright 2011. All rights reserved.


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Jim Tucker Publisher Michele Tucker Editor Contributors Nick Palermo Dennis Martin Ami Vonesh Russ Heaps Michael Winters

November 2012

register for Green Sustainability School are allowed to use Track Green Garage, an interactive program that allows a shop to monitor its green performance from a desktop computer or smartphone browser. This type of immediate access to the facility’s energy and emissions profile is delivered via a secure cloud computer over the Internet. It can also be viewed by the public, who can see how much a shop is saving through real-time, online measurements. Consumers are coming to understand the advantages of doing business with green companies, so they like the ability to make informed choices regarding those with whom they do business. “Successfully completing this curriculum advances the shop’s green profile in the eyes of consumers and regulatory agencies,” added Schillinger. “Adopting sound environmental practices isn’t just the right thing to do; it provides the repairer competitive advantages.” Because the educational material is developed and administered by GRCPirk, a service EPA- recognized thirdparty that is both expert and objective, the program has a built-in credibility that resonates with the general public. Participation in the school can create market differentiation by providing verifiable evidence the shop is taking an active role in making its community a more livable place. “We are grateful to have the opportunity to provide this invaluable environmental education to our industry at no cost,” said SCRS Executive Director Aaron Schulenburg. “Focusing on energy efficiency generates real savings for our members, while helping them to reduce their current environmental impact. Being recognized as a primary provider of green education to the collision industry underscores our commitment to help our members achieve their green goals. We greatly value our partnership with GRC-Pirk and look forward to working with them to facilitate environmentally sound practices throughout the industry, poising it to succeed in the future.”n

Allan Vigil Ford (770) 960-1208 (800) 324-3814 FAX (770) 960-6268 6790 Mt. Zion Blvd Morrow GA 30260

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Gwinnett Place Ford (770) 813-6825 (866) 665-9318 FAX (770) 662-6156 3230 Satellite Blvd. Duluth GA 30096

August 2012 August 2012 September 2012 November 2012 Southern Automotive Journal Southern Southern Automotive Automotive Journal Journal

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State Farm Discusses Parts Trader System with Georgia Collision Industry Association By Nick Palermo George Avery, State Farm's representative to the collision industry, walked into a tough crowd at the September meeting of the Georgia Collision Industry Association (GCIA). Sure, the members are a friendly bunch. But Parts Trader, the electronic partsordering system that State Farm is currently testing and plans to implement nationwide, has both collision shops and parts dealers concerned about the

industry's future. George Avery's job of calming their fears and answering their questions about Parts Trader is an unenviable one. Avery joked about it from the beginning of his presentation. He explained his position as the giant insurer's single point of contact for the collision industry. He said when executives at State Farm announced the position years ago, he lauded the decision. Then it was announced that he'd be that representative.

State Farm representative George Avery explained and took questions on the electronic parts-ordering system (Parts Trader) that has both collision shops and parts suppliers concerned about the industry's future.

But Avery did his job at the GCIA meeting. He presented a list of facts, figures and details of how State Farm came to the decision to try Parts Trader. He outlined some scenarios in which collision industry players could glean some advantages from using the system. Avery showed screenshots of the software to demonstrate how shops would use it to order parts. Finally, the toughest part of Avery's job was taking questions from the audience. He lacked answers to some questions, while others were not well received by concerned collision industry professionals. Those in attendance came from across the southeast region and some are already using the system in test markets like Birmingham, Al. Parts Trader was developed in New Zealand, where it's used now by every insurer. State Farm brought it the U.S. with plans to eventually implement it in all 10,300 shops participating in its Select Service program. Avery outlined State Farm's motivations by running through some numbers. State Farm holds 81 million policies, 41 million of which are automotive coverage. The insurer processes 32,000 claims per day and spends $3 billion annually for repair parts. Avery explained that, company-wide, 63% of claimants use a Select Service repair shop for their collision work. In short, Avery indicated that any savings State Farm realized by implementing Parts Trader would translate into huge savings when applied across GICA State Farm Please Turn to pg. 30

GCIA attendance came from across the southeast region. Some are already using the system in test markets like Birmingham, Al.


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November 2012


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2013 Scion FR-S Brings the Sport Back to the Car

Scion hit the showrooms in June with its 2013 FR-S compact rear-wheel drive sports car. The high-performance coupe is the fifth model to join the Scion family. “The FR-S will definitely be Scion’s halo car,” said Scion Vice President Jack Hollis. “While the brand has been iconic with the xB, adrenalized by the tC, and groundbreaking with the new iQ, the addition of the FR-S expands the brand into a new dimension of driving performance.” Authentic Sports Car at an Affordable Price The FR-S provides the automotive landscape with an authentic sports car at an affordable price, with a MSRP of $24,200 when equipped with a six-speed manual transmission, and $25,300 when equipped with a six-speed automatic transmission that features paddle shifters and Dynamic Rev Management technology. “Scion’s goal was to create an affordable sports car that true driving enthusiasts could enjoy,” Hollis said. “We accomplished that with a starting price under $25,000, which is a total home run for buyers! Add in Scion’s complimentary Scion Service Boost, our dealers’ no-haggle no-hassle Pure Price, and Scion’s network of about 1,000 dealers, and the FR-S is a grand slam.” “Pure Balance” The FR-S, which stands for Frontengine, Rear-wheel drive, Sport; is Scion’s

definition of an authentic rear-wheel-drive sports car with exceptionally balanced performance and handling, compelling style, flexible utility and surprising fuel efficiency. The FR-S is a true “scion,” born into a lengthy history of Toyota performance cars and motorsports. During planning and development, it was most inspired by the AE86 generation of the Corolla, better known as the Hachi-Roku, meaning “8-6” in Japanese. The AE86 was a front-engine, rear-wheel-drive coupe that was lightweight and well balanced, making it a solid choice for driving enthusiasts. Inspired by the AE86, the FR-S is designed around the core goal of achieving “Pure Balance,” which begins with the strategic use of the world’s only flat boxer engine in a front-engine, rear-wheel drive configuration. The engine’s compact size November 2012

and flat shape allow it to be mounted midship and extremely low, giving the car a dynamically favorable front-to-rear weight ratio of 53:47 and a low center of gravity comparable to some exotic supercars. The FR-S’s 2.0-liter, naturally aspirated four-cylinder engine is the result of a joint development between Toyota and Subaru. The partnership begins by combining Subaru’s newly developed, horizontally opposed engine and Toyota’s cutting-edge D-4S injection system,which incorporates both direct and port injection for each cylinder, one injecting fuel directly into the combustion chamber, the other a port injector located above the intake valves. Adopted from the Lexus IS F, D-4S injection is a new technology for the Scion family. FR-S Please Turn to Page 22 Southern Automotive Journal


Nissan's Snug Kids Celebrates A Decade Of Helping Secure The Safety Of Children Nissan kicked off Child Passenger Safety Week 2012 by celebrating the 10(th) anniversary of its Snug Kids program, the automotive industry's first child safety seat fit initiative. Since 2002, Nissan has provided parents and caregivers with peace of mind by offering valuable tools and resources to help determine which child safety seats fit properly in Nissan and Infiniti vehicles, as well as tips on how to achieve a secure fit when installing a rear or forward-facing child seat or booster. "Ten years ago Nissan made child passenger safety a priority and pioneered the Snug Kids program to help parents ensure the safety of their most precious cargo," said Bob Yakushi, director of product safety, Nissan North America. "We are proud to be the only automaker who offers a comprehensive seat fit guide for all of our products with a back seat." To celebrate its decade-long


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commitment to safety and to help arm Nashville-area residents with the tools needed to install child-restraint systems properly, the automakers had certified technicians onsite at its Franklin headquarters to inspect child car seats and offer step-by-step instruction on proper installation. Knowing how to properly secure a child in a correct-fitting child safety seat is one of the most important things that parents can do to help protect their children in a vehicle. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), automobile accidents are the leading cause of death for children ages 1-12. However, the use of a child-restraint system has been shown to reduce fatalities by 71 percent in infants and 54 percent in toddlers, which makes finding the right childrestraint system a vital part of protecting child passengers. Also during the first week of

November 2012

October, Nissan offered a Child Passenger Safety Technician (CPST) course at its training center in Cool Springs, Tenn., for area first responders. During the fourday course, firefighters and emergency medical technicians (EMTs) learned about crash dynamics, injury prevention strategies, and child-restraint selection and installation. Participants who completed the training received national certification and will be able to offer seat-check days to residents in their own communities. Snug Kids Please Turn to Page 33

DOJ, FTC Hold MostFavored-Nation Clauses and Antitrust Enforcement, Policy Meeting Recently, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) held a workshop on Most-Favored-Nation (MFN) Clauses and Antitrust Enforcement and Policy in Washington, D.C. Prior to the workshop, the DOJ and the FTC noted: "The most commonly used MFN provisions guarantee a customer that it will receive prices that are at least as favorable as those provided to other buyers of the same seller, for the same products or services. Although at times employed for benign purposes, MFNs can, under certain circumstances, present competitive concerns. This is because they may, especially when used by a dominant buyer of intermediate goods, raise other buyers' costs or foreclose would-be competitors from accessing the market. Additionally, MFNs can facilitate collusion and stabilize coordinated pricing among sellers." The workshop included seminars and panels on the economic theories regarding MFNs and the harms and efficiencies they involve, the empirical evidence on effects of MFNS, legal treatment of MFNs, the use of MFNs in the real world, and how thinking about MFNs has evolved and where it might go.n

I-CAR Study Confirms Correlation Between Training And ROI Performance A sobering research statistic was emphasized at the recent I-CAR Industry Event, highlighting that training has a direct correlation to business performance. In 2011, initial research by I-CAR and participating Industry Training Alliance members uncovered that of the 69% of collision repair facilities that did not train, 7% went out of business. What these shops did not realize is the bottom line impact that a modest investment in education and training can deliver. To better identify this link between training and operational performance, I-CAR set out to conduct additional research in 2012. At the Industry Event, Jeff Peevy,

I-CAR Senior Director of Field Operations and Segment Development, shared that key performance indicators (KPIs) of specific repair shops were studied over an eight-month period during which shops took role-based training from the I-CAR® Professional Development Program™ (PDP). The results were startling and unmistakable. 100% of the participating facilities saw increased monthly revenue, with half of those shops averaging a 5% increase, and the other half averaging more than a 10% increase in revenue. Additionally, on average, touch time improved by 45%, Customer Service Index (CSI) scores improved by over 5%, and cycle time improved by 14%.

“As we continue to research the impact of training on KPI performance, we will translate this knowledge into curriculum offerings that support business improvements while contributing to the delivery of a complete and safe repair,” Peevy stated. “I-CAR has a strong commitment to the vitality of the InterIndustry and believes indisputably that knowledge and education are the foundation for excellence.” I-CAR will keep the Inter-Industry informed of ongoing research and findings that touch on the linkage between training and shop performance, along with how this information becomes incorporated into future course offerings.n

Johnson Controls Opens Automotive Battery Recycling Facility in Florence, South Carolina

Johnson Controls, Inc., recently announced the opening of its Florence Recycling Center for automotive batteries. The facility expands Johnson Controls' presence in Florence with a capital investment of more than $150 million, representing 250 new jobs, and 1,000 indirect jobs in the area. Currently, 200 employees are working onsite as the facility ramps up production. To acknowledge the plant's launch, a grand opening event was held at the facility with more than 300 area leaders, community members and Johnson Controls' team members in

attendance. South Carolina State Sens. Hugh Leatherman, Yancey McGill and Kent Williams were in attendance, as well as Representative Terry Alexander, County Council Chairman K.G. Rusty Smith and Florence Mayor Steve Wukela. "We're proud to bring a recycling facility to Florence, resulting in a strong capital investment and many jobs to the area," said Alex Molinaroli, president, Johnson Controls Power Solutions. "We are appreciative to all those who helped support us along the way and we look forward to a strong continued relationship with the Florence community."

The facility, located directly off of US-76, on Paper Mill Road, will recycle 132,000 metric tons per year, or the equivalent of more than 14 million automotive batteries. It sits on a 685-acre site near other major corporate leaders such as Roche Carolina and SmurfitStone. Johnson Controls developed 36 acres of the site for construction of the facility and adjacent parking areas, with the remaining acreage undeveloped. Portions of the site will be permanently Johnson Controls Turn to Page 34

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All-New 2013 GS Combines Luxury and Evocative Lexus Design Philosophy Lexus raised anticipations when the all-new GS debuted at the 2011 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. The new 2013 GS combines bold, dynamic styling, precise handling, innovative technology, and a spacious interior. “The 2013 GS is the new Lexus,” said Mark Templin, Lexus group vice president and general manager. “The whole package comes together in one great looking sports sedan and shows the GS offers the best of all worlds with its performance, connectivity and available options that will suit the needs of many drivers.” The new GS conveys an enhanced sense of confidence to the driver, with a redesigned chassis and a wide, strong stance that inspires and rewards driver participation with crisp and precise handling. Engineers developed a more spacious interior environment while leaving exterior dimensions virtually unchanged to ensure excellent maneuverability. Richly endowed with world-class features and premium details, the new GS is supported by advanced, performanceenhancing technology that makes it more than just a luxury car. The 2013 Lexus GS 350 is available in rear-wheel drive (RWD) or all-wheel drive (AWD) configurations, and can be equipped with the available Premium, Luxury or F SPORT packages for greater personalization. The GS 450h was the first hybridpowered luxury sport sedan to enter the market when it was originally introduced for the 2007 model year. Today, it is part of Lexus’ five-vehicle hybrid line-up, more than any other luxury brand. Engine/ Transmission/Drivetrain/ Performance The new GS powertrains have been enhanced for 2013 to provide better fuel economy and more respon14

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Drive Mode selector. In addition to the Normal mode, the following settings let the driver customize the driving experience: ECO mode revises throttle mapping, seat heating, and climate control systems for better fuel economy. In ECO mode, meter lighting changes to blue. SPORT S

New F SPORT package enhances

sive performance. The engagement and visual character. GS 350 is powered by an advanced 3.5-liter V6, four cams, and four valves per cylinder engine with dual Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i). At 306 horsepower, it is one of the most powerful base engines in the segment, as well as the only one with both port and direct injection. It propels the GS 350 from 0-60 mph in 5.7 seconds and at the same time, boosts its fuel mode revises throttle mapping and economy to projected EPA-estimated transmission shifting priorities to fully ratings of 19 mpg city, 28 mpg highway exploit the capabilities of the powertrain. and 23 mpg combined. In SPORT S mode, meter lighting changes Acceleration from 30 to 50 mph to red. can take just 3.0 seconds, and improved SPORT S+ mode (available with F intake and exhaust sound characterisSPORT and Luxury packages) engages tics via an intake sound generator and handling enhancements via a sport setoptimized muffler chamber complement ting of the adaptive variable suspension, the bolder, more energetic personality steering system, and Vehicle Dynamic of the new GS. The six-speed sequential Integrated Management (VDIM) togethshift automatic transmission comes with er with the powertrain enhancements of paddle shifters and sport driving funcSPORT S mode. tions for enhanced driving pleasure. The 2013 GS 450h incorporates The transmission incorporates improvements to its hybrid powertrain many features adopted from the Lexus and is equipped with a second generaIS F high-performance sedan — includtion Lexus Hybrid Drive system. ing faster shifts, earlier torque converter With a total system power output lockup and downshift throttle blips — to support four driving modes that can Lexus GS Please Turn to Page 26 be operated by toggling the new Lexus November 2012

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ASA Speaks with NLCRA Regarding State Farm Pilot Denise Caspersen, manager of the Automotive Service Association's collision division, recently attended a Northwest Louisiana Collision Repair Association (NLCRA) meeting to present to its members the "facts to date" regarding the State Farm electronic parts ordering application. The State Farm pilot is currently taking place in Birmingham, Ala.; Tucson, Ariz.; Grand Rapids, Mich.; and Charlotte, N.C. Following the NLCRA August business meeting, Caspersen discussed the verified facts about the pilot along with clear statements of concern from repairers, based on ASA member feedback to the association. During the three-

hour meeting, repairers and suppliers in the Northwest Louisiana area asked follow-up questions and expressed their concerns with the pilot and its potential impact on their relationships with suppliers and consumers. "We are very thankful to Denise and ASA for bringing to collision industry professionals of Northwest Louisiana, East Texas and South Arkansas such a timely discussion of the facts concerning this pilot program. Everyone gained tremendous insight from the up-to-date facts and ASA's continuing investigation of the pilot program. We feel complete and open disclosure of those facts by all parties involved is critical," said Bill

Burnside, secretary-treasurer, NLCRA. "When all the facts are present, good decisions can be made." Caspersen said, "ASA welcomes the opportunity to speak with repairers and suppliers on this important industry issue. To date, the majority of the industry has a negative view of this pilot. The facts, the pilot results, and most importantly, the concerns of repairers about how this application will affect their business, are what remain vital to ASA. We will continue to work with as many parties as possible to find the answers our members require. ASA is now focused on a timeline in which results of the pilot will be provided."n

SCRS’ RDE Program Receives Sponsorship Support from Every Major Brand of Automotive Refinish Collision repairers look for many things when attending industry functions to ensure there is value that will contribute to their success when returning home from the event. One of the factors that helps to identify the caliber of an event is the turnout and sup- port of highly recognizable companies who engage in these industry programs to help provide the greatest level of opportunity and support to the industry. The Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) is proud to announce that early Repairer Driven Education

(RDE) registration numbers, unprecedented exhibitor turnouts and a staggering display of support from collision industry organizations further cements the fact that the 2012 SEMA Show is the destination for collision repair professionals this fall. In addition to vehicle manufacturers, aftermarket and recycled parts supply companies, equipment manufacturers and repair and refinish industry associ- ations, SCRS is thrilled to include all five major brands of automotive refinish companies as sponsoring supporters of this year’s RDE program.

In addition to the generous support from PPG, BASF, DuPont Performance Coatings, Sherwin Williams and Akzo Nobel, each company will also have an exhibitor presence at the SEMA Show for customers interested in meeting with the companies and ex- ploring their products. “We have been extremely proud to work with SCRS, sponsoring what we consider to be one of the most relevant and inspiring education forums available RDE Program Please Turn to Page 34

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Nissan Americas Supports Partnership with Habitat For Humanity with $1.5 Million Donation Over the past seven years, Nissan Americas has provided $8 million to Habitat for Humanity International in support of its efforts to build affordable, sustainable homes in partnership with families in need of decent housing. Today Nissan Americas announced a $1.5 million donation to expand its longstanding partnership with Habitat for Humanity in the Americas. Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., based in Yokohama, Japan, today also announced a new global partnership that will invest $1 million in Habitat building projects in India, Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines and Vietnam. "Nissan has been working with Habitat in the Americas for many years, building energy-efficient homes with dozens of families," said Bill Krueger,

vice chairman, Nissan Americas. "Now that Nissan has identified Habitat as a global partner, we will have a broader platform through which we can give back to the communities where our customers, dealers and employees live. Our support will help to address growing social concerns about the lack of affordable housing for people everywhere." "We are so grateful for Nissan's dedication and commitment to affordable, sustainable housing," said Jonathan Reckford, CEO of Habitat for Humanity International. "The broad support that Nissan provides - including funding and product donations and employee-dealer engagement - makes it possible for us to help families around the world build the foundation for a better life."

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In the Americas, Nissan will fund the construction of homes in Arizona, California, Michigan, Mississippi, Tennessee, Texas and Toronto, Canada. The company is funding grants and providing Nissan vehicles to 10 Habitat affiliates that make commitments to sustainable construction practices. Habitat will use a portion of Nissan's donation to conduct sustainability "summits" for Habitat affiliates and their local communities. Nissan funding also will support the annual Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter Work Project in Haiti in November. Six Nissan employees will join 500 international volunteers to help build 100 Habitat homes in partnership with Nissan/Habitat Please Turn to Page 33


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Online Technology Makes It Easy to Register for 2013 National Auto Body Council Golf Event Fundraiser

Participants and sponsors eager to be part of the National Auto Body Council’s (NABC) Annual Golf Event Fundraiser will find it easier than ever to register for the event, scheduled to take place Wednesday, January 23, 2013. Thanks to technology recently implemented on the National Auto Body Council website (www.autobodycouncil. org), online forms are now available for players and sponsors wishing to participate. They simply click a link, fill out the form, and submit it. These web-based tools not only make it less of a hassle to participate, but ensure that the relevant information is received almost immediately by the NABC administrative office. Having a direct digital path in place greatly reduces the chance of any errors, as well. Online submission also allows for additional functionality not previously available. The most significant example is a running list of sponsors and their chosen sponsorships maintained and automatically updated. This way interested parties can see an up-to-date display of the opportunities available to them and waste no time securing the ones with the most appeal to them. “It was important for the National Auto Body Council to make it as easy as possible for interested parties to sign up for participation as well as sponsorship, and these new changes to our website make that a reality,” said National Auto Body Council Fundraising Committee Co-Chair David Merrell of PartsTrader. “We again expect the event to sell out and remain excited to promote the positive image of the industry.” The Annual Golf Event Fundraiser will again take place at the Tahquitz Creek

Golf Resort in Palm Springs, California in conjunction with the NABC’s open board meeting, which will take place the previous day, January 22. The event is open to both individuals and teams, and will be played using a four-person scramble format. Breakfast will be served at the course prior to the 10 a.m. shotgun start and the event will conclude with a buffet reception, awards ceremony, and prize package drawings.

November 2012

Transportation will be provided to and from the conference hotel. To access the online registration forms, click the “Click Here for More Information” link in the Golf Fundraiser banner on the NABC website’s main page, then scroll down and click the link for the registration form of choice. You may also print out a PDF version of the form for the purposes of faxing or traditional mailing.n

Southern Automotive Journal


FR-S From Page 11 The D-4S system uses the direct injectors at all engine speeds. Both the direct and port injectors are used at certain engine speeds and under certain engine loads to help fill out mid-range torque. The D-4S is also a key technology that reduces vehicle emissions. FR-S heads utilize dual variable valve timing, making adjustments to the intake- and exhaust-cam timing to help optimize power, torque, and fuel mileage. The D-4S system, partnered with a high 12.5:1 compression ratio, results in an impressive 200 horsepower and 151 pound-feet of torque. Despite the engine’s powerful 100-horsepower per liter, the FR-S has EPA-estimated ratings of 34 mpg on the highway when paired with the automatic transmission, and EPA-estimated 30 mpg with the manual transmission. The flat-four mates with either a sixspeed manual or a six-speed automatic


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transmission. The manual offers quick, precise shifts with a short-throw; while the automatic features aggressive up shifts and sporty rev-matched down shifts that are initiated by steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters. The automatic features Dynamic Rev Management technology that quickly raises the engine speed to help match engine revs to gear ratios on downshifts, limiting driveline shock and adding to the visceral experience of driving the car. The automatic transmission also features Sport Mode that quickens shift timing as well as throttle response. In Sport Mode, the transmission will also hold gears longer at higher revs before upshifting, making it easier to exploit the torque and horsepower in the upper reaches of the rev range. The idea of “Pure Balance” is further realized by the FR-S’s lightweight design and compact size, a combination that allows it to be quick and nimble into and out of corners, with dynamic maneuverability and confident handling. The coupe weighs in at an impressive 2,758 pounds when equipped with a manual transmission and 2,806 when equipped with an automatic. The FR-S is kept to a minimum weight by utilizing an aluminum hood, a solid roof, and by featuring a trunk design instead of a hatchback. The FR-S’s low weight is complimented by a dynamically tuned suspension setup consisting of MacPherson struts up front and a double wishbone system in the rear. Excellent steering feedback and input is provided by Electronic Power Steering November 2012

with a sporty 13:1 steering ratio. Lightweight 17x7-inch alloy wheels and ventilated disc brakes are standard on all four corners. For the sake of experienced performance driving enthusiasts, the Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) and Traction Control (TRAC) can be set in combination of five configurations. The fierce exterior of the FR-S is a solid reflection of its inner power. The profile, inspired by the Toyota 2000GT, reveals a hood and roof-line that is remarkably sleek and low, giving it an aerodynamic shape that channels air cleanly over to the top. The low stance continues to exaggerate the coupe’s menacing face, which is made up of sharp lines, a wide lower intake and angular headlights that house the projector-beam halogen lamps. The aggressive front fenders protrude upward and boast the iconic ‘86’ piston emblem, which highlights the car’s AE86 heritage as well as its unique new boxer engine. The rear fascia sits low and wide, with aerodynamic lower treatments that surround the sporty dual exhaust system. LEDs illuminate the edgy taillights, while center-mounted backup lights finish the muscular design. The FR-S’s interior includes a 2+2 seating configuration that is designed with both form and function in mind. The comfortable yet assertive front seats feature deep bolsters and are mounted extremely low, while the rear seat folds down flat, creating flexible space. It will also come standard with unique FR-S badged floor mats. The large center-mounted tachometer is the focus of the three-gauge cluster and features a programmable shift-indicator, which has a small but intense indicator that lights up when redline is reached. The driver can set the warning to go off in 100rpm increments, starting at 2,000 rpm. A chime can be programmed to sound when redline is approached. Speed is monitored by both digital and analog gauges. The FR-S features a performanceoriented, 365-millimeter diameter, leathertrimmed steering wheel that has both tilt and telescopic adjustment. The soft-skin dash top has a “flat horizon” design, influenced by the simple purity of the Toyota 2000GT dash. At the center of the dash top is a raised rib, which functions as a “centerline” that reflects at the base of the windshield, helping a skilled performance driver intuitively find the center of the car.n


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U.S. House Small Business Committee Holds Hearing on Tax Relief The House Committee on Small Business's Subcommittee on Economic Growth, Tax and Capital Access recently held a hearing titled "Adding to Uncertainty: Small Businesses' Perspectives on the Tax Cliff." The hearing examined how the chance for expiration of the 2001 and 2003 tax relief laws are influencing small businesses' decision making. It also examined where small businesses stand on the Obama Administration's plans to allow the top two marginal tax rates to increase for taxpayers who make more than $200,000 a year or $250,000, if filing jointly. Opening remarks were made by Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Ill.), subcommittee chairman. Testimony was given by Theresa Kern with MA Steel Erectors in Palos Heights, Ill.; Doug Harmon, CEO of Twin City Die Casting Co. in Minneapolis, Minn.; Scott Hodge, president of The Tax Foundation in Washington, D.C.; and Jeffrey A. Porter of Porter & Associates in Huntington, W.V. The witness consensus was that the tax cliff was very troubling for small businesses. According to Harmon:

"If we go over the fiscal cliff, jobs will be lost, our company sales will likely decrease, investment will slow, and our nation's competitiveness will suffer. The president and Congress can prevent this from happening immediately by extending all of the 2001 and 2003 tax rates (including current marginal rates, dividend and capital gains rates, and estate tax relief) for all taxpayers; extend expiring business tax provisions; provide alternative minimum tax (AMT) relief; and find spending cuts to replace a sequestration never intended to go into effect. This would go a long ways to avert America's impending fiscal cliff." Hodge discussed the importance of not raising taxes on small businesses: "As lawmakers consider policies to improve the competitiveness of American businesses, they should not forget that individual income tax rates are just as important to business activity as the corporate rate. The various proposals to raise income taxes on high-income earners, either by increasing the top marginal rate, closing 'loopholes,' limiting deductions or implementing a minimum tax, would fall very heavily on America's non-cor-

porate businesses. These flow-through businesses account for a large percentage of business income and employment in the United States. Raising taxes on them at this time could curtail their hiring and other investment plans, further delaying economic recovery." Porter discussed the need for tax reform: "While this subcommittee is examining the impact of the 'Tax Cliff,' we also urge you to consider how small businesses could greatly benefit from tax reform. Small businesses and their owners face challenges in making long-term decisions as well as compliance burdens when confronted with confusing, overlapping and inconsistent tax provisions. The AICPA (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants) strongly supports Congress undertaking a comprehensive consideration of tax reform in the upcoming year." Porter went on to suggest that phase-outs, different definitions of the same term, retirement plan options and inflation adjustments all needed reform. Please visit ASA's legislative website at to see witness testimony in its entirety.n


Southern Automotive Journal

November 2012

SCRS Announces RDE Headline Presenters for Innovation Forum Discussion at the SEMA Show Innovation and creativity serve as the lifeblood for businesses and industries alike, offering the competitive edge necessary to enhance growth and profit. Businesses that have the foresight to harness those advantages through rethinking products, services, processes, and business models are able to materialize the greatest level of differentiation between the remainder of the market in the eyes of your customer. The SEMA Show is the perfect playground of possibilities to explore and expand how your business serves its customer base, and the Repairer Driven Education (RDE) series is the perfect environment to learn how other successful market leaders harness innovation and creativity as an integral part of their business success.

So how does innovation prosper in the collision repair industry, and how can you foster innovation as a core value that shapes the framework of your business? On Friday, November 2nd at 10:00am, the Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) will feature its second RDE headline presentation, Game Changers - Innovation Forum. This unique discussion will let you into a very personal discussion amongst well recognized innovators and market leaders who explore the fundamentals of how they approach innovative thought, and how that translates into workable business models and ideas. Join Randy Stabler (Pride Auto Body, Van Nuys, CA), Michael Giarrizzo, Jr. (DCR Systems, Mentor, OH), Scott Biggs (Assured Performance

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Network, Irvine, CA) and Gary Wano, Jr. (GW & Son Auto Body, Oklahoma City, OK) for what will be one of the most candid dissections of the heart of business ideas. While the SEMA Show remains the biggest showcase of automotive innovation and business opportunity, this RDE session will showcase the inner mind of innovation and the root of four very unique success stories. “I think attendees are going to be in for a mindstretching discussion on the thought processes and general knowledge that go into changing one’s business mindset,” offered Giarrizzo. A complete listing of all RDE sessions can be found at www.semashow. com/scrs.n

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Lexus GS From Page 14 of 338 horsepower, the GS 450h will accelerate effortlessly from 0-60 mph in 5.6 seconds. Conversely, fuel consumption is expected to be improved by more than 35 percent versus the previous version with projected EPA-estimated ratings of 29 mpg city, 34 mpg highway and 31 mpg combined. Designing the new GS 350 and GS 450h to be both strong and agile was a key focus of the engineering team. They looked to the Lexus LFA supercar for design and dynamic inspiration.

also be distinguished by concealed tailpipes for a clean, hybrid look and Lexus’ signature blue hybrid badging. Interior Design Designers created an interior that can easily transport passengers and their luggage in luxury and style regardless of distance. Attention to details such as changing the steering column angle from 23 to 21 degrees and redesigning the seat frame, enabled engineers to

Exterior Design The GS fuses distinctive style with engineering functionality. The signature spindle grille with its trapezoidal contours fully integrates into the aggressive front bumper allowing for efficient airflow. Air inlets located on the outer

edges of the lower grille serve as cooling ducts. This distinctive Lexus design feature combined with deep-set, hightech headlamps with a projector beam design and L-shaped LED daytime running lamps further express the vehicle’s dynamic character. The GS 350 with F SPORT package is outfitted with a unique front bumper and rear lower valence, rear lip spoiler and F SPORT mesh grille inserts. The rear bumper of the GS 350 features a distinctive integrated exhaust diffuser and centered aero fins to help control underbody airflow. Like the GS 350 model, the GS 450h adopts L-shaped LED tail lamps and stabilizing fins in the bumper lower section. The GS 450h can 26

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improve the driver’s seating position for increased comfort, better forward visibility and overall command of the road. Designers also modified the roof shape by employing techniques on the front pillars Standard equipment includes a new energy-saving auto climate control system called S-Flow that uses the occupant-detection system to focus airflow only to the front area where passengers are actually seated, a first-in-class technology. A next-generation Remote Touch with one-push confirmation is standard on all models and enables smooth, intuitive operations control. The Remote Touch allows the user to operate the climate, audio, phone November 2012

controls, optional navigation system and more. The screen menus are selected with a controller conveniently located within easy reach on the center console. Remote Touch also reduces eye movement and helps users operate functions with reduced effort and distraction. A standard rear back-up camera helps add security and convenience. The finely crafted cabin detail is complemented further by ambient lighting that unobtrusively welcomes and guides the user into the vehicle, providing a carefully designed experience. New white LED lights are sequentially lit to illuminate the areas around the doors, center console and footwells. The driver and front passenger will enjoy the clean appearance of the new highresolution central control display. A new analog clock with LED indicators, carved from a single ingot of aluminum for a smooth consistent look, adds a unique touch, at once both modern and traditional. T o complement the aggressive-looking exterior of the F SPORT package, the interior will feature an exclusive design treatment with smooth, striated aluminum trim, unique perforated leather trim, black roof headliner and aluminum pedals. Distinctive F SPORT badging will be showcased on the three–spoke steering wheel. The F SPORT package also features driver and front passenger sport seats with increased lateral support. The 16-way power driver’s seat includes a Lexus-first power adjustable side bolsters and fourway lumbar. To complete the exclusivity of the F SPORT package a striking Cabernet Red leather interior will also be available.n

I-CAR To Serve as Industry “Linking Pin” and Portal For OEM Repair Procedures and Safe Repairs Knowledge I-CAR, the Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair, has developed a “Conceptual Solution Set” that will help the collision repair InterIndustry work more closely with OEMs. This proposed solution set will strive for uniformity and effectiveness of OEM repair procedures and make this repair procedure information, as well as general knowledge required by the industry to perform complete and safe repairs, more easily accessible. In response to the industry request conveyed to I-CAR at the November, 2011 Collision Industry Conference (CIC) meeting in Las Vegas, I-CAR plans to lead this initiative in an effort to expand the value that I-CAR delivers to the industry that it serves. I-CAR CEO & President, John Van Alstyne introduced the solution during the 2012 I-CAR Industry Event in San Antonio, stating that it will integrate five key elements that collectively address the needs identified by the industry. The central element of the plan involves I-CAR acting as the linking pin between the collision repair InterIndustry and vehicle OEMs. It also importantly involves development of the I-CAR Industry Knowledge Portal, which will facilitate the dialog and communication link between the industry and OEMs. Plans include cross-industry council meetings to help guide the initiative, semi-annual repairability summits to address identified repairability issues, online dialogue forums for sharing information and providing feedback and insights, and more. The solution set is to be validated and confirmed through the remainder of 2012 and into 2013, with implementation readiness currently targeted for mid-2013. The five key elements that make up the proposed solution have been outlined as follows: Repairability Council – A council process led by I-CAR that would focus on defining the information needs of the industry, particularly how industry professionals prefer receiving information, refining methods for feedback on repair processes to I-CAR and OEMs, and general feedback on how the overall

gram is working. Industry Knowledge Portal – Accessed through, this centralized one-stop shop portal would link the industry with the various knowledge sources available across the industry and will be the engine behind the Repairability Forum. Repairability Forum – An online environment where the industry can share ideas, issues, and feedback for I-CAR and OEM consideration. A realtime discussion network is also envisioned to help the industry share innovations and best practices. Repairability Summits – I-CAR-led, topic-specific, Inter-Industry problem solving event(s) to resolve repair issues of common industry concern with the objective of establishing best practices for repairs that can be considered by vehicle OEM’s and others. Summits are expected to be held semi-annually. Industry/OEM Linking Pin – I-CAR would increasingly engage with vehicle OEM technical service teams, e n co u r a g i n g uniformity of repair information formatting and availability, providing OEMs with access to information received t h r o u g h forums and summits, as well as feedback on possible enhancements to repair procedures. I-CAR would plan to continue recommending in its core technical training courses that OEM November 2012

repair procedures be followed. Van Alstyne further stated, “We believe I-CAR is uniquely positioned and equipped to effectively perform this role; and by performing this role, will create true value for the industry. It is also important to understand what this initiative is not. I-CAR will not author nor publish repair procedures, however it may support vehicle OEMs with development of repair procedures that they may in turn publish. This is also not about I-CAR resolving industry commercial disputes or taking positions that might favor one entity versus another. It is critically important that I-CAR retain its neutral position on behalf of the industry in order to continue effectively doing its core work in industry education and knowledge building. Over the next several months, we will be working with the various stakeholders involved, as well as Linking Pin Please Turn to Page 33

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S U P P L I E R S P O T L I G H T 28

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by Russ Heaps If the quality of service in wholesale automotive parts is a function of experience, there is good reason Mopar recognizes Birmingham-based Benchmark Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram as its No. 8-ranked parts operation in the United States: a team of parts specialists with cumulative experience measured not in decades, but in centuries. "A lot of us," stated Benchmark parts director Marvin Windham, "have been together for 20 + years." Windham launched his career in parts in 1970, and broke into management in 1976. It wasn't until a five-year stint at a dealership in Arkansas, however, that he learned and honed his skills in wholesale parts. By 1986 he went to work at Drennen Motor Company in Hoover, Ala. When Chrysler included Drennen among the franchise agreements it was curtailing as part of its reorganization in 2009, Windham was managing its highly successful parts department. "I was hired as parts manager at Benchmark when they purchased the wholesale operation from Drennen Motor Company," Windham explained. "Most of my crew came with me." Currently 28 people report to Windham. He said, "Twelve have been with me long term -- many for 20 years or more. We were a perfect match for Benchmark's strong commitment to a 'customer centered' business philosophy." Windham points to several members of his team who were critical to building up Drennen's wholesale

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September 2012

business from scratch, and are still with him today. "Mark Runyan, Raymond Barnett and Larry Bingham were at Drennen in the early days and together we built its wholesale business from zero," he said. Today Windham is Benchmark's parts director, overseeing its retail department, as well as its wholesale operation through Overnight Parts Alliance that he helped found and manages. It represents the wholesale parts operations of 33 noncompeting franchises (28 dealerships.). Consolidating sales, delivery and customer service for all 28 member dealerships under one roof, OPA reduces costs while bringing a high level of experience and professionalism. It also translates into a larger parts inventory. Benchmark has its own warehouse of which roughly 28,000 square feet are devoted to Collision parts. This is in addition to the 10,000 square feet inside the dealership itself. "We carry about $1.6 million in parts," Windham estimated. This wealth of parts helps Benchmark maintain an off-the-shelf fill rate that, according to Chrysler, averages between 83% and 86%. "That's pretty strong," Windham said. Minimizing turnover and retaining experienced, long-term team members doesn't happen by accident. When pressed for his secret for his staff's stability, Windham responded that it wasn't so much a secret as simply common sense.

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"We're just family," he explained. "We've always been family. We look out for each other. They are loyal to me and I'm loyal to them. Loyalty is a big factor here." This, however, isn't just about buddies watching one another's backs. An intense work ethic is expected from and shared by the team. And, when a new staff member comes on board, he or she knows what's expected from day one. "I'd put this team up against anybody in the business," Windham declared. "When I interview a person to hire, I tell them it's something like the Navy Seals. If you are willing to do the training and put in the work, you will get rewarded, but you have to become the best. You are going to have to put in a lot more effort and time. You can't just show up and run out when the bell rings at the end of the day. As with many other professionals at his level, Windham sees his greatest challenge as continuing to grow the business in an environment in which insurance companies and aftermarket parts operations are a source of relentless pressure. It's a pressure that only a large wholesale operation can withstand and overcome. "This business used to be easier and more fun," he explained. "It has definitely changed. Take GM for instance. It used to be franchise protected. Buick could only sell Buick parts and Chevy could only sell Chevy parts. Even a small wholesale parts department in a dealership could make money. Not today. You've got to be big to be in the wholesale business. It takes a lot of infrastructure and a lot of money goes into it." What hasn't changed, according to Windham, is that success still depends on customer service. "If you ever lose focus on the customer," he said, "you lose your edge. You've got to come in every day and earn that customer's business. Even if they've been with you for 20 years, you are one day away from losing them. I tell everybody, don't take them for granted." One new insurance company program in particular has Windham concerned: the State Farm-supported Parts Trader. It's an online parts bidding and ordering system that he believes minimizes the impact of customer service while increasing administrative work for parts suppliers and repair shops alike. "It's based on a New Zealand model," he worried, "that has little to do with how the wholesale parts business works in the U.S. It takes service out of the equation." Having ridden out a dealership closing under him, establishing a new business in OPA, and relocating that business to new facilities in the last three years, it should be no surprise that Windham would like to see some degree of stability during the next year; but that seems unlikely. After what he characterizes as a couple of years of slow parts business because Chrysler Corporation new-car sales were way down, that has changed 180-degrees in the last year or so. "Chrysler turned its sales around," he enthused. "Benchmark is doing great. Sales and market share are both growing. As new-car sales have grown, so has our parts business. And it looks like it isn't going to slow down anytime soon."n

Ken Price Wholesale Sales

888.399.2196 205.909.2196

Tommy Parker Wholesale Sales 866-854-6639 334-514-7640 fax 334-514-7627

888.882.2146 205.909.2146

Mike McCool Wholesale Sales

866.909.2128 205.909.2128

Mark Runyan Wholesale Manager

Doug Thomason Wholesale Sales

800.263.0141 205.458.4619

David Flagg Asst. Parts Manager


GICA State Farm Meeting from page 8 the insurer's massive business. Avery provided an example. He said that parts typically take 0-3 days to reach the repair shop and that 14%17% of parts are returned. Improving parts availability to shops could reduce the overall repair time for vehicles. That means lower rental costs for the insurer, since the customer could get his or her car back sooner. Reducing the repair time by one day – across all of State Farm's claims – would save the insurer $43 million annually in rentals. Avery explained that Parts Trader could result a win-win, benefit collision shops, too. He said that better parts availability – and presumably cheaper pricing – could result in repairing some

cars that are now being totaled. Avery also discussed the high costs and limited availability of specific parts, including safety items like airbags. He said that improving supply chains could allow shops to turn vehicles around more quickly and effectively, improving their bottom lines. Avery's presentation of a static Parts Trader screenshot gave those unfamiliar with the system a look at the interface. The user enters all of the parts necessary for a repair and chooses from

a number of options like part type (OEM, aftermarket, recycled), delivery time and price. Once the bids come back, the shop can create a purchase order for the supplier or suppliers it chooses. Neither State Farm nor the Parts Trader system requires that a shop select the vendor with the lowest price. But Parts Trader would help State Farm to identify shops in its Select Service program with parts costs outside of the norm. And Avery did indicate that lower parts costs was among State Farm's goals with Parts Trader. Although shops could continue to use the same markup percentage on parts, lower costs would mean lower parts revenue for shops. A portion of the spirited question and answer session was devoted

Shane Osborne owner of Osborne Bodyworks in Lilburn, GA. wanted more information about the Parts Trader program and the process.

Debbie Brown with Artcraft Collision Repair is concerned about the use of Parts Trader and the effect on a shops State Farm's score card.

Tim Crawford owner of Highway 280 Paint and Body Collision Center, one of many shop owners and parts managers that made the trip from Birmingham, AL . Rex Truitt, body shop manager at John Thornton Chevrolet asking a question about the parts margins.


Southern Automotive Journal

Dave McBroom from Sunbean Autobody in Jacksonville FL, dad questions about the current pliot programs . November 2012

to explaining this. Shop owners were keen to keep their markup, but concerned about the effects of applying the same percentages to cheaper parts. And Select Service participants were curious about their options should they try Parts Trader and find it unsatisfactory. Avery said Parts Trader would have to show the collision repair industry some value in order to be a success. B u t that seems a stretch as Select Service shops are compelled to use Parts Trader if they want to stay in the program. One collision repair shop owner asked

Above : Will this change the price that State Farm pays the shop or will the manufacturers suggested retail (MSRP) be paid? Bobby Coombs, Strategic Account Manager at Akzo Nobel Automotive & Aerospace Coatings. Jeff Serio with Anthony's Paint and Body Shop in Pelham, AL. one of the State Farm/Parts Trader pliot shop in Birmingham, AL.

November 2012

Avery about her options if she tried Parts Trader and didn't like it. Avery stopped short of saying that if her shop didn't use it, it would lose its Select Service status. Instead, he just said that all Select Service shops would be required to use Parts Trader once it's fully implemented. Still, the message was clear. Throughout the presentation and the question and answer session, Avery returned to the point that Parts Trader does not represent an attempt by State Farm to tell collision repair facilities how to run their businesses. But for now, this GCIA audience seems unconvinced. Just like any other business, shops have relationships with vendors and customers to consider, along with their own welfare and success. If shops find Parts Trader to be more hindrance than help, the system will certainly weigh into shops' decisions about whether or not to participate in State Farm's Select Service program.n

Southern Automotive Journal


Toyota Breaks Ground for V6 Engine Expansion Toyota broke ground today on the expansion that will support increased V6 engine production at its Huntsville, Ala., engine plant. Community guests joined Toyota to celebrate the occasion. “We are so pleased to see our plant grow yet again,” said Jim Bolte, president of Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Alabama, Inc. (TMMAL). “Not only are we adding more jobs and investing in the local economy, we’re also playing a role in Toyota’s philosophy to build more engines where we sell them. I can’t wait to see more Toyota vehicles with our engines here in our community.”

The $80 million investment marks the fourth expansion for TMMAL since the facility started production in 2003. Total plant investment is expected to reach more than $700 million once the project is completexad. The new facility will increase capacity by 216,000 engines each year, bringing total V6 annual capacity to 362,000. Approximately 125 new jobs will be created, increasing employment nearly 10 percent to 1,150. The increased production will begin in March 2014. Construction will begin in October on the new 300,000 sq. ft. building that

will be added to the southeast corner of the existing facility in North Huntsville Industrial Park. Total square footage at TMMAL will exceed 1.2 million once the facility is completed. Alabama Secretary of Commerce Greg Canfield, U.S. Congressman Mo Brooks, Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle and Madison County Commissioner Mike Gillespie participated in the ceremonial groundbreaking with Bolte and TMMAL Maintenance Team Leader Vance Newton. “The support Toyota receives from V6 Please Turn to Page 34

I-CAR, the Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair, will premiere its new Live Demo course, Blueprinting Process and Damage Discovery (BLU01), during the Technology Showcase at NACE. With the debut of this new Live Demo course, I-CAR will provide an enhanced learning experience to the Inter-Industry. I-CAR is focused on continuously enhancing the student class-

room experience, and thus learning effectiveness. Live Demo courses are designed to provide a more interactive training experience, achieving increased student engagement and learning. Blueprinting Process and Damage Discovery is an interactive course that defines the blueprinting process. Blueprinting is a process that helps improve repair quality while streamlining efficiencies by using a standardized

approach to collision repair planning. The course goes beyond the disassembly of damaged parts and writing damage reports to help students uncover hidden damage that effects the repair process. Demonstrations include a number of quick checks and other techniques that support the process. Implementation tips are also reviewed. During this Live

I-CAR Headlines Technology Showcase at NACE With New Interactive Blueprinting Course

Blueprinting Please Turn to Page 34

Mechanical and Collision Parts In Stock

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Southern Automotive Journal

November 2012

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Nissan/Habitat From Page 19 Haitian families during the seven-day project. Nissan will continue to invite all its stakeholders to participate in the partnership with Habitat for Humanity. Point-of-sale materials in dealerships and communications to consumers will convey information about Habitat activities and engagement opportunities. Consumers who visit the website can click through to Habitat's Linking Pin From Page 27 with our Board, to define the best final solution that meets the needs of the industry and which fits I-CAR’s vision, mission and capabilities. Our goal is simply to be of greater service to the industry we are designed to serve, and we see Snug Kids From Page 12 During the past 10 years, Nissan's safety engineers have dedicated thousands of hours to evaluating hundreds of child-restraint systems by installing them in the rear seats of Nissan and Infiniti products. The results are published in a comprehensive child safety seat fit guide for parents and caregivers.

site,, to make donations or to find volunteer opportunities across the United States. Nissan North America, a recipient of the U.S. EPA ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year Sustained Excellence award, is committed to sustainability. Nissan-sponsored Habitat homes will be equipped with many "green-living" features, including low-flowing plumbing fixtures, programmable thermostats, energy-efficient fluorescent lighting, high-performance windows and

ENERGY STAR(®) appliances. Nissan's partnership with Habitat dates to 2005, following hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Nissan donated 50 Nissan Titan trucks to assist Habitat's response efforts in the Gulf Coast and mobilized employees to assist in home building. Since 2006, Nissan employees have helped to build more than 40 homes across the United States. To date, Nissan's employees have logged more than 70,000 volunteer hours building homes with Habitat for Humanity.n

this service-solution initiative as a great step forward for I-CAR.” As the conceptual solution was created, I-CAR sought input and feedback from the original requesters, which includes the Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS), Automotive Service Association (ASA), Alliance of Automotive

Service Providers (AASP), and Assured Performance Network, plus additional insights from vehicle OEMs and insurers. I-CAR will continue to work closely with these same entities and others as this initiative moves forward. As important progress is made, I-CAR will keep the Inter-Industry informed.n

Nissan's process for evaluating the compatibility of child-restraints in vehicles has been recognized as an industry leader and in 2011, the automaker announced its planned participation in the VehicleCRS Fit Program, a future initiative proposed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Much like Snug Kids(TM), NHTSA's program would be aimed at helping

consumers choose child-restraint systems that properly fit their vehicles and would encourage other vehicle manufacturers to voluntarily assess and recommend at least three current childrestraint models in each category (rearfacing, front-facing and booster) for use in current vehicle models. The agency would then publish the listings at www.

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November 2012

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Johnson Controls From Page 13 protected through a conservation easement. "The steps taken by Johnson Controls to maximize economic impact and minimize environmental effects on our area are commendable and extremely important to our citizens," said Senator Hugh Leatherman. "Throughout the process, many worked with Johnson Controls to ensure that citizens' concerns were heard and that we had the support of entire area. This RDE Program From Page 16 to the industry,” added Domenic Brusco, Sr. Manager, PPG MVP Business Solutions & Industry Relations. “ We are proud to say that PPG customers benefit not only from having the right coatings technology to fit their specific requirements, but that they can also expect a level of service and support that would be Blueprinting From Page 32 Demo course, the instructor uses an actual vehicle to demonstrate technique and engage students in the learning process. Jason Bartanen, I-CAR Technical Director said, “This is the seventh conV6 From Page 32 our community partners and local government officials has allowed our plant to grow and thrive for more than 10 years,” said Bolte. “Most importantly, we thank

was critical in bringing the recycling center to Florence and will help ensure its success." As part of the company's commitment to environmental stewardship, Johnson Controls will minimize its environmental footprint within the state by protecting sensitive habitats, managing habitat for wildlife, participating in the S.C. Department of Natural Resources Stewardship Program, and storm water management. Since the 2011 groundbreaking, Johnson Controls has worked closely

with area leaders and citizens to integrate itself into the community through efforts with the United Way, the development of Project H.O.P.E. and fundraising work with Harvest Hope Food Bank. "Johnson Controls' new facility has already had a positive catalytic effect across the region," said Francis Marion University President Fred Carter. "Through the process of developing the new center, the company's leadership has established a strong sense of collaboration and cooperation. We're delighted to welcome our new neighbors."n

expected of a world leader. We believe that supporting SCRS’ RDE program at the highest possible level further amplifies the program and helps us to bring innovation to the surface.” “It has been a very gratifying experience to watch the industry support for our programs grow with such veracity over the past several years,” added SCRS Chairman Aaron Clark. “As a repairer, I

am always excited to attend our event because I have never failed to bring home information that helps my business. As part of the hosting organization, I’ve never been so humbled by the show of support we have experienced from these companies and all our attendees who have returned year after year. All of us at SCRS are deeply appreciative of that support from our membership.”n

secutive year that I-CAR will bring the Technology Showcase to NACE, but the first time we have been able to bring an I-CAR class to the show floor. We believe that this year’s offering will be very valuable to attendees. They will be able to witness firsthand how the blueprinting process can minimize supplements and

increase productivity in a collision repair facility,” Bartanen continued, “We are also thrilled to add “Blueprinting” to the Live Demo course category. With the addition of this course, I-CAR is further demonstrating its commitment to developing courses that are not only relevant, but also engaging for the student.”n

our team members for their commitment and hard work. They are Toyota’s greatest assets, and we are lucky to have each and every one of them on our team.” TMMAL currently assembles 4-cyl-

inder, V6 and V8 engines for eight of 12 Toyota North American built vehicles. TMMAL is the only Toyota plant globally to produce these three types of engines in one facility.n

OVERNIGHT PARTS ALLIANCE, LLC Quality Aftermarket Collision Replacement Parts Radiators Hoods Head Lamps Tail Lamps Fenders Grilles

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November 2012


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November 2012 Southern Automotive Journal  

Southern Automotive Journal provides news trends and perspectives to professionals in the automotive collision industry including, independe...

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