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Keep Customers Legal The latest hands-free solutions

Sky High

Vibe's GT-R takes things to a new level

Dealers Speak Out

MAY 2010

What they want from suppliers






How Autoleads are looking to consolidate their number one status

14-15 – VIBE GT-R


A high-end Japanese car that can take Vibe to new audiences

16 – THE FUTURE OF MOBILE ELECTRONICS Pondering where mobile electronics will be in a few years time



M.E.N asks dealers what they feel makes a good supplier


The latest Bluetooth hands-free solutions that you can offer



The Certified Installer Programme continues to be a great success



Beyond your own website, how can the digital age help you?


How an unusual project car can get people turned onto Clarion

38 – QUARTIX OFFER A PROFITABLE FUTURE News about Quartix’s Pay As You Go vehicle tracking

40 – V.C.E GUIDE







A closer look at the impressive Cobra UK Limited


Latest products and news, plus some great dealer events


06-12 – NEWS



Pondering the many positives within this industry

An in-depth look at fitting the new Nokia CK-200 car kit



A new venue, but did the audio market benefit from the move?


The premier trade suppliers to the mobile electronics industry


Making friends on public transport and the Gadget Show Live

Charlotte Body PUBLISHER Tel: 01268 754 897 or 07903 944666 Fax: 01268 754429 email: Andrew Mills EDITOR Tel: 07730 542263 email: Lucy Poet BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER Tel: 01268 754 897 or 07951 698873 Fax: 01268 754429 email: Peter Johnson ART DIRECTOR e: t: 01268 754 897


01332 669920 In partnership with:

Charlie Crocker DESIGNER Tel: 01268 754 897 Fax: 01268 754429 email: Shauna Peters ADMINISTRATOR Tel: 01268 754 897 Fax: 01268 754429 email: If Creative Media publish any supplied text or photographs by way of contribution to the magazine, you automatically and hereby grant Creative Media a perpetual, royalty-free, irrevocable, non-exclusive right and licence to use, reproduce modify, publish, translate, create derivative works from and distribute such text or photography into any from, medium or technology now known or hereafter developed. In addition, as between you and Creative Media, you assert and waive any and all moral rights in such text or photography. The views and opinions expressed by any contributors (including advertisers) to the magazine are not necessarily those of the magazine and should not be taken as such.

June Issue will be distributed 10th June 2010 Mobile Electronics News magazine is a supporter of the Mobile Electronics & Security Federation and the Mobile Media Specialist Association





have a page detailing the seminars that will be happening this month to help dealers get to grips with their new tracking products. If you sold turbos,

There’s something that I’ve noticed since working on this magazine

suspension or bodystyling parts do you think you’d get the same kind of back-

and I tend to bleat on about it to just about anybody who will listen.

up from your suppliers? It’s very unlikely.

Having been around the aftermarket virtually all of my working life, this revelation only really became apparent after taking over the reigns at

Ultimately, all this boils down to is that as a dealer of mobile electronics you’re

Mobile Electronics News and getting under the skin of this industry. This

in a very professional market. Multi-national companies like Alpine, Kenwood,

thing is something that dealers should really take time to recognise and

Motorola, Cobra, Clarion, Parrot and more support the industry, helping to

utilise to the full, and it’s the realisation that those of you working in the

not only supply top class products but also to add to the professional aspect

mobile electronics industry are really very lucky.

of the market. With the M.E.N Awards and M.E.N Expo there are also valuable events for your industry that are quite unique, all of which means that if any

Ok, so you may not buy that completely, especially if your sales have been

retailer is going to survive and succeed it should be you. You just need to

dropping over the last few years, but bear with me. If you were a seller of

make sure you make the most of the support all of these companies offer you.

performance tuning parts you may also have suffered from the economic climate, yet the support from your suppliers would have been microscopic

With that same attitude, M.E.N magazine is also here to help you, not only

in comparison. In the mobile electronics industry, the thing that really stands

allowing another way for suppliers to tell you what they’re upto, but aiming to

out is that your suppliers know how important you are. It’s not that they’re

empower you with the knowledge to succeed. In this issue there’s a look at

just really nice people (although that’s often the case too), it’s because they

the latest hands-free kits, news from companies like Cobra and Scorpion plus

understand the mechanics of business, and know that if you, the dealer,

an attempt to see what this market will look like in the future. Hopefully in the

experience success then they will too.

nearer future you’ll be making sure you use all the help offered to you though, making sure your business is around in ten years time to deal with whatever

How does this manifest itself you may wonder. Well, look at how audio

the industry faces then.

companies build demonstrator cars, not only creating interest in the products that you sell on the pages of major magazines or at car shows, but also often offering them as support for your open days. Then there’s the investment that

ANDY MILLS Editor Mobile Electronics News

many companies put into helping your business with seminars, the likes of Celsus and Four having held these in recent months. Even in this issue Scorpion

may copy.pdf 1 20/04/2010 11:29:40


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NEW MODEL ARMY REACHES 200 When a new van is launched onto the market, it means a busy time for the

in the team at Locks4Vans set to work, stripping down the locking system

Locks4vans development team as the company prides itself on offering

of the new van. As usual, the priority was to retain the original function

a security solution for every van on UK roads. However, the new Hyundai

and with the help of CAD drawings, after two days they came up with the

iload van somehow slipped through the net until the Government Car and

design. The internal driver escape is left intact to ensure compliance with

Despatch Agency asked Locks4Vans to come up with a slam lock solution

safety requirements and internal shielding of vulnerable mechanisms acts

for that particular vehicle. Locks4Vans managing director, Chris Batterbee,

as a defence against screwdriver attack. The slam lock for the Hyundai

commented, “Even though we have developed nearly 200 individual locks

iload van is available in a comprehensive kit, with all the fixings and

over the past six years since Locks4Vans was formed, somehow we had

detailed fitting instructions.

overlooked the new Hyundai. We were delighted the Government Car and Despatch Agency came to us to design this new lock.” Developers

Contact: Locks4Vans, 01474 560077 or

PAMA AT GADGET SHOW 2010 North West-based mobile

product is an in-car recording

communication specialist, Pama &

system, ideal for taxi drivers, driving

Co Ltd, exhibited their latest mobile

schools and commercial vehicles

communications equipment and

such as buses and coaches. The Plug

accessories at this year’s annual Gadget Show. The range featured

“N” Go Drive will be on sale by the time

a wide selection of the very latest in mobile phone accessories

you read this. In addition, Pama exhibited the

available in the UK market. As well as its own unique range, Pama

newly launched Cardo Scala Rider G4 from Pama’s ‘House of Brands’. The

offers a wide variety of top-of-the-range brands, and also exhibited

innovative product redefines the notion of high-end communication for

products from leading names including: Cobra, Barkan, Garmin,

motorcycle helmets. Encased in a rugged yet streamlined body, the Scala

Plantronics, Cardo, Ring, Parrot and Krusell.

Rider G4 offers bike-to-bike intercom at a remarkable range, which breaks

The latest product innovation to come from Pama was also on show.

the one-mile barrier. For more information on all the products exhibited

Coming soon to the consumer market and exhibited exclusively at the

contact Pama on the details below.

Gadget Show, Pama unveiled the Plug “N” Go Drive. This cutting-edge

Contact: Pama & Co. Ltd, 0161 4944210 or




The TomTom XL IQ Routes™ edition2, the

take and helping to make navigation simpler

XL IQ Routes™ edition2 is available now with

successor to the award-winning TomTom XL IQ

and even more effortless. The spoken street

a recommended retail price of £139 for UK &

Routes™ edition, sports a new simplified menu,

names feature, meanwhile, also helps drivers

Ireland and £159 for Western Europe.

along with features such as advanced lane

keep their eyes on the road as the name

Contact: TomTom, 0845 1610009

guidance, spoken street names, Map Share™

of the turning they need is spoken out loud.


and of course IQ Routes™.

TomTom also helps drivers navigate with the

To calculate the optimum route, TomTom’s

best quality map at all times. If a new map

innovative IQ Routes™ technology uses real

has been released within 30 days of first using

historic car speed measurements from the

their device, TomTom’s latest map guarantee

roads, plus analysis of the time and day of

lets drivers download it once for free via

travel, which can save time, as well as money

TomTom HOME. And with built-in Map Share™

and fuel. Via the large 11cm (4.3in) touch

technology, drivers can make corrections to

screen, drivers can access the new simplified

their map and download free corrections

start menu, which now features just two options;

made by millions of other drivers in the

‘Plan route’ or ‘Browse map’. This makes it even

TomTom community. Importantly, the new XL

easier to get going on the road. Advanced

IQ Routes™ edition2 is also fully compatible

lane guidance is also included, making light

with TomTom’s standard RDS-TMC Traffic

work of particularly complex junctions. This

service*, which transmits traffic information

feature displays all of the lanes on the device,

to the device and then plans an alternative

showing clearly which one drivers should

route when one is available. The TomTom



GARMIN’S NEW nüvi 3700 SERIES Garmin has announced their thinnest sat nav ever. The award winning sleek

using tools such as historical traffic information and period of day. This then

and blade-like design matches the new nüvi 3700 series user experience,

helps to ensure the user’s journey goes as smooth as possible whatever time

with its capacitive multi-touch screen, voice activation and multitude of

of the day it is. The all new PhotoRealTM Junction View also helps navigate

all new navigation features. The nüvi 3700 series, which includes the nüvi

tricky junctions by representing exactly what’s in front of the user, including

3760T and nüvi 3790T, finally makes personal navigation devices (PND’s)

junction signs, layout and what lane they should be in, to the finer detail of

truly personal claims Garmin. “The new nüvi 3700 series is really making

what the surrounding area is like, with trees,

navigation personal for you and the environment you are in,” said Garmin’s

bridges and even electricity pylons. With a

Automotive Product Manager, Colin Lee. “It’s like having a guiding angel

crystal clear LCD display thinner than a CD,

watching your every journey. The nüvi 3700 series also looks after you out of

that has a dual touch capacity screen with

the car by helping to guide the way on foot or when using public transport.

‘pinch’ gesture technology, the new unit is

This sat nav really has style, substance and personality which go beyond

as functional as it is stylish. Naturally the nüvi

anything available in the market today.” The top of the range nüvi 3790T

3700 series also comes with subscription-free

lets users name it and even create a voice for it. By giving it a name, such as

premium pan-European lifetime traffic alerts,

“Hello Angel”, they can wake him or her up and have a conversation. And

Bluetooth hands-free calling, Cyclops speed

if they want to take it one step further, users can even give it its own voice

camera alerts, ecoRoute™ to help drivers

using Garmin’s Voice Studio. Garmin also claims the nüvi 3790T gives users

save on fuel costs and reduce carbon

a truly hands-free experience; tell “Angel” where you want to go and you

footprint, “Where Am I?” safety feature,

will be looked after all the way. The 3700 series’ ultra-intelligent software is

expense reports through Excel, Park Position

tailored to meet users needs and find the best route designed specifically

Recall, full European map (44 countries), 60

for them. The innovative nüRoutesTM myTrends™ feature analyses their

Day nüMap Guarantee and optional public

driving behaviour and predicts where they are likely to go and then links to

transport and pedestrian navigation.

the trafficTrends™ application, which looks at what other people are doing

Contact: Garmin,

FOUR MASTERS CAR TRAKM8 REDUCE FUEL COSTS FOR CLINIC ON TOUR The FOUR MASTERS network of independent specialist car audio dealers, has been

delivering first rate installation techniques, expert advice and fantastic products for some years now. If you attend a mainstream modified car show you will always see


Trakm8 are reducing fuel costs by effective fuel management for

FOUR MASTERS shouting loud about what they live for! Now, as well as showing and

companies using the Trakm8 SWIFT fleet management system. Fuel

demonstrating great installations, they invite show audiences to have their installs

to most companies is one of the most expensive consumables

looked at by an expert to safeguard against ill-advised DIY installs, which seriously

used. It would be normal to assume fuel consumption is based

risk driver and passenger safety. “The first ever FOUR MASTER Car Clinic, held at

on mileage but the Trakm8 system also highlights how driver

the Auto Sound and Style show in March, showed us just how much dangerous

behaviour, engine idling and indeed effective route planning

practice goes on when unskilled installers are let loose on a car with insufficient

have a significant impact. Trakm8 have developed advanced

knowledge and equipment to carry out even the simplest of tasks” said Brian Parton

technology to connect to the vehicle CAN bus allowing driver

Co-Founder of FOUR. FOUR MASTER Paul Ellis of Source Sounds in Sheffield said,

behaviour to be monitored. Gear usage, harsh acceleration and

after a very busy day; "The market entry price for powerful amps and speakers

braking can all be monitored and reduced by driver education

has come down rapidly, drawing a new audience of DIY installers who really just

with the overall objective of reducing fuel consumption. It is also

need a hand with basic safety. Today, I have seen power cables run directly from

not realised by companies and drivers alike how much fuel is

the battery of a car through holes in a bulkhead, without using grommets, to a

used when a vehicle is idling. It is a common misconception that

powerful amplifier in the boot with no in line fuse! When, eventually, the sharp metal

leaving the engine on requires less fuel than a restart, in stops of

of the bulkhead wears through the power cable a serious incident will happen with

over 1 minute or more. For example Jamie Thompson, Transport

devastating consequences! Fortunately, those who took the opportunity to have

Manager for an existing customer of Trakm8 ‘Sydenhams’ building

their cars checked by us are now able to make slight but essential modifications to

merchants, who have 60 trucks, has been quoted to say; “Using

their installs to prevent this from happening." But, FOUR MASTER Car Clinics also offer

the Trakm8 software we have now reduced engine idle time,

huge benefits to the safety conscious. All FOUR MASTERS are trained, not only to

which in some cases amounted to 2-3 hours per vehicle per

install safe hi-fi but also great sounding car hi-fi and those attending with complete,

week. Our trucks waste 1 gallon of fuel per hour when idling

professionally installed systems are just as likely to go away with great expert advice

which equates to approximately £5 worth of fuel. By identifying

on how to squeeze more power and better fidelity from their equipment.

engine idling as an area for improvement we demonstrated an

Contact: FOUR, 0845 4501594 or

instant cost saving and a return on our investment for the fleet management system”. Effective route planning is the more obvious way of saving fuel and probably still the most significant, so Trakm8’s fleet management system can view where vehicles are, to enable businesses to plan effective routes using the impressive range of on screen reports. To find out more about how Trakm8 can help reduce your costs for any size or type of fleet contact the sales office now. Contact: Trakm8, 01747 858444 or





TUNING INTO POWER WITH THE FM E:CAN+ Modern technology, especially phones, enables people to stay

connected and entertained when on the move. The big problem is keeping them fully charged. In-car adaptors are available, but this can be an expensive option if buying a lot of different adaptors. An effective solution for customers is to have an inverter. An inverter provides 240v AC mains power from a cars 12v DC supply. Simply plug an inverter into a vehicles 12v power socket and you have 240v AC mains electricity supply for charging all mobile gadgets in-car. The new FM E:Can+ from Ring Automotive is an extension of the award winning E:Can+ inverter. It combines a powerful 150 watt power output, with a USB charging point and now a FM Transmitter. The USB charging point enables mobile phones and MP3 players to be recharged while at the same time using the 240v AC mains power. The FM transmitter allows users to connect to their MP3 player and broadcast tunes wirelessly at a frequency that can be received by their car’s radio. It’s as if their radio was playing music from a conventional radio station. Users can power their lap top, charge their MP3 player and play it through the car’s audio system all at the same time making it a cost-effective solution. The can shaped design along with a coiled cable allows the inverter to be positioned in most cars drinks holders for convenient secure positioning too. The unit is manufactured from scratchproof, shock-resistant ABS and brushed aluminium to match quality car interiors, and for safety the inverter incorporates overload circuit protection to protect the vehicle,

SELECT PRODUCTS UK TRAINING DAY More than 20 car audio and electronics professionals took part in the Select

the powered appliance and of course the consumer. While it may not

Products UK training day at Enigma Car Audio in Ashford, hosted by Rob

be an obvious addition to the mobile electronics retailer’s stock, it does

Garza of Select Products USA. Select Products is the quality installation and

offer an affordable solution to one of the problems consumers find

fabrication product division of AAMP of America. The full day of informative

today. Perfect for sales reps, or families on the move, the FM E:Can+ has

sessions covered topics ranging from custom car audio fabrication to speciality

a suggested retail price of £44.99.

installation techniques, including fibreglass and composite building, speaker

Contact: Ring Automotive, 01132 132000 or

pod building, router table usage and router bits and jigs, mould fabric uses,

vinyl wrapping and heat activated adhesives and Select speed glue. Rob Garza entertained and imparted his wisdom, and gave attendees a great


understanding of the quality, durability and extensive abilities of the Select

There’s a new appointment at Connects2 with Graham Johnson being

in their catalogue and on line (please phone or e-mail for a copy) there are

brought in as Business Development Manager. “We are excited to announce

educational videos with full instruction and tips for getting the best out of your

the appointment,” Connects2 told M.E.N, “Graham brings a wealth of

Select Products. On their next training day in August they are going to exceed

experience to the Connects2 team and will be a valuable asset for the

and excel by producing a world record breaking training seminar making

future”. Meanwhile, the company recently returned from the AMICOM show

this one training day you can’t afford to miss. With all walks of the auto audio

in Leipzig, Germany. This was their first time exhibiting at the show so M.E.N

industry attending they’re hoping to beat Rob Garza’s American record of 250

asked them for their thoughts. “The show was very successful for Connects2,

attendees; so whether you are a seasoned pro-installer, experienced car tuner

with many new and existing customers visiting the booth. The main feature

or dedicated DIY guy, you’ll definitely learn something new! Keep an eye on the

exhibited by Connects2 was the Vauxhall Insignia installation, which attracted

Select Products website for further information and details of their products, or

much attention. The vehicle interface and facia plate allows installation of an

wait to read about it all here in M.E.N.

Products range, collected over some 20 years of auto audio installation. Select Products UK claim that all who attended came away from the training day informed and enlightened, with Rob’s excellent training ensuring that Select Products will stay at the forefront in the industry. For all products found

aftermarket unit, in a vehicle widely thought was far too complex”. Contact: Connects2, 0845 2575588 or




Contact: Select Products UK, 01233 623236 or


Autoleading the Way

Autoleads are cementing their position as the market leader in connectivity, and the man behind it, Mike Smith, tells M.E.N just how they’re doing it.

From the moment you delve beneath the skin of Autoleads’ new website you get the feeling something’s different. One of the key new developments is their ‘product finder’ facility, something that both dealers and end users can take advantage of. The site will ask what make of vehicle you have via logo selection, followed by what model it is via a vehicle image. But then it asks the simple question; “what are you doing today?”. Options like “fitting speakers” or “fitting a vehicle hands-free kit or music streaming device” appear, and users can click through to where it shows all the products they’d need to buy to carry out the job in hand. There are descriptions of each product plus photos that can be zoomed into so users can doublecheck visually that it’s the part they need. With updates to the site happening twice daily and with Autoleads’ massive vehicle coverage (including more obscure vehicles) this excellent new system makes life a lot easier and saves having to trawl through Excel documents for the right parts. It also signifies the direction that Autoleads is heading. As Mike Smith, the man charged with putting distance between

The message of quality is a huge part of this marketing strategy, re-emphasising

Autoleads and its’ competitors at the top, claims, there are a number of

the fact that a genuine Autoleads product ensures a quality fit, first time, every

changes that dealers will find with the brand in the coming months. The

time. 100% copper cabling, assured fitment connectors and custom tooled

first thing on the agenda is to increase communication, whether that’s to

facia adaptors are among the host of features that make an autoleads

sales reps, dealers or to the public about their product range and usage.

product stand out from the rest. Autoleads know that if consumers are assured

“Our catalogue is already the Bible of the industry,” Mike points out, “our

of the product’s quality it will also help create demand, which is great for

target is to be the Oracle of information for connectivity. If people want

dealers. Essentially, it will be a case of “it must be true, Autoleads say so”, which

to know something about it then they will come to us”. Like the product

is exactly the thinking consumers should have of a market leader. So when

search function on their website already demonstrates, Autoleads

their new, lower-priced Copper Coated Aluminium (CCA) amplifier wiring kits

believe people shouldn’t have to work hard to get the information

are released this month, they will point out the true specification. The kits will be

they need, and this is something they’ll continue to pursue. To this end

part of the new “Trugauge” wiring program that ensures the user that when

they’re constantly looking for dealer feedback to not only get them

Autoleads state specification, gauge and content of cable, it is fact.

involved in the business, but to make sure Autoleads is giving them the information they need. Already the communication regarding technical

Put all together, this makes for exciting times for Autoleads. With new energy

information has been significantly increased with their website and via

and a strong plan behind the brand, end users are sure to once again be

e-mail to dealers, and this is only set to increase further and help make

reminded of the many merits of the products and have their eyes opened

Autoleads the first port of call for connectivity. “By listening to dealers

up to a whole new world of Autoleads possibilities. For dealers this is great

and distributors we are looking to tailor our offering around the individual

news too as not only will the product offerings increase, but the strategy

business models of our customers,” explains Mike before adding this will

for Autoleads is going to reinforce it’s position as number one in the market

make it “easy to choose Autoleads!”.

and have customers accepting nothing less. If you’re not already offering your customers a

The next phase in the Autoleads plan has been to look at their product range.

genuine Autoleads

Not only have they enhanced and continue to enhance their current ranges,

product, perhaps

they’ve also been responding to feedback and are continuing to add new

now is the time to

products to the Autoleads range that may be currently missing. Not only

change that…

this, but they’re also looking to add ranges to the brand that nobody in

before you’re left

the market place offers, plus more bolting-on of key brands to support


the installation offering of Autoleads. A recent example of this was the Bojo tools for trim removal, which Autoleads now offers exclusively to its dealers as it was seen as a natural addition. Others will follow. With communication about the products and the products themselves looked at, the other area Autoleads is pushing hard in is its marketing. Everything from how the products are presented to display stands and interaction with the media are being worked on, with the ultimate aim of reinforcing Autoleads’ position as market leader. “We have the strongest brand so need to act like it in all areas,” explains Mike, “this will help create desire from dealers thanks to demand from consumers”.





THE UK’S LARGEST ACar U Audio, T O MMultimedia O T I V E & Navigation Repair

VAN LOCK S P E C I A L I S T Decodes & VIN Coding Aftermarket and OEM units repaired

MAC AUDIO COMES TO THE UK Connects2 have recently announced that they have taken over the UK distribution of Mac

Audio. The German brand offers a range of specialist replacement speakers designed for direct replacement of OE speakers. The custom fit speakers therefore allow for an upgrade without the need for speaker adaptors. Mac Audio also offers a range of bass tubes and bass reflex boxes, the carpeted enclosures combining superb quality bass with exceptional value for money. Contact: Connects2, 0845 2575588 or





Rockford Fosgate & Pro-Plus Authorised repair agent DIABLOCKS


CTH INTERFACE RANGE The new C2 Vauxhall Insignia CTH interface from Connects2 is the first on the new CTH interface range to

be launched. This gives aftermarket headunit performance while retaining factory convenience features in new car systems. Connects2 believe the range is the future of aftermarket car audio in modern vehicles with ‘modular’ factory systems, meaning aftermarket multimedia, audio and navigation are all possible. Up until a few years ago, to add an aftermarket headunit into a modern car, all that was required was a fascia plate and perhaps a simple resistive steering wheel control adaptor. But more recently, car manufacturers started to produce modular headunits with a hidden ‘hub’ brain unit, operated by a button panel and steering wheel controls, with information illustrated on a dash display. This ‘central brain’ is now not only responsible for the audio in the car, it’s the nerve centre for the parking sensors, warning tones and indicators, trip computer and other functions displayed on the dash. The Vauxhall Insignia is one of the latest to use this modular system and this type of design will only spread across other vehicles. Thankfully the CTH interfaces allow the car audio specialist to seamlessly add enhanced aftermarket audio, multimedia and navigation to these ultra-modern car systems. The CTH interfaces retain every electronic interior feature of the car as it left the factory, with no compromise, yet it opens up the benefits of aftermarket car audio for the customer. Working with the car manufacturers’ latest and incredibly complex car electronics system, Connects2 has given the specialist the product it needs to create new business and take it back from the main dealers. The Insignia is a prime example of this, for example if a customer doesn’t specify navigation from

020 7193 7985 01474 560077 email: for an information pack




the factory it can never be an option after that. The Connects2 CTH interface now opens up an opportunity for the installer to take that job on. For more information on the range contact Connects2 directly. Contact: Connects2, 0845 2575588 or

CONSULT THE ORACLE... As part of the new strategy for the Autoleads brand, Armour are pleased to announce the launch of the new Autoleads Product Finder. After months of development and testing we are confident that this is the product search solution you and your customers have been looking for.

With easy to navigate features including a “What are you fitting today” application filter, finding the right Autoleads product has never been simpler. See for yourself and give the new Autoleads Product Finder a try today at

STEP 1 Launch the Autoleads Product Finder by clicking on the product finder icon on the Autoleads website

STEP 2 Choose your vehicle manufacturer

STEP 3 Select your vehicle model and date range

STEP 4 Narrow down your search by choosing from one of the “What are you fitting today” filters, or select View All to see all the Autoleads product that are compatible with your chosen vehicle.


A Brand of 2010©



Breaking with tradition, the EMMA crew piled down to Auto Audio in Park Royal for the second round of the 2010 season. Auto Audio has always hosted the first event of the season, but Auto Sound and Style pipped them to that honour this year. This is a dealer event and therefore tends to be slightly less well supported than the larger car shows EMMA attends. Even so, with over 35 competitors there was plenty for the judges and back office staff to get through. As well as competitors old and new, Auto Audio proprietor, Greg Morrison always tends to throw up some surprise entries. This year, it was no less than three Ferrari’s (including a £1.2Million Enzo) all sat in a stately row and all featuring great sounding systems. Other highlights included Paul Sleigh’s freshly finished L200, which runs an extremely eclectic mixture of low to mid and high-end equipment which took many people by surprise! Ben Bouzan made a welcome return in Paul’s class and lost out slightly but seems also, to have regained the bug for competition. Jeremy Owen of Team Highdown finally took home a first place trophy which was well deserved. It has been a long hard road for Jeremy but an extremely educational one which should see him getting used to the dizzy heights of the winner’s podium at future events although, he may be chased hard by a Team Source FIAT Panda belonging to Paul Fallows which is sounding really good. The new competitors and potential future ones, all received a great deal of encouragement and advice from the seasoned ones as well as the judges and the ubiquitous Kenny Robinson, who was constantly demonstrating good sound principles in his personal car throughout both the Saturday and Sunday of competition.

On Sunday, the noisy boys came out to play. ESPL can get a bit rowdy in an indoor setting and so, with the sun blazing over clear blue skies, the competition was held outside at the front of the store. A slight delay in starting was due to a church meeting taking place down the road! Not wishing to incur the wrath of any all powerful deity, EMMA organisers duly waited until this finished before cranking up Ian Pinder’s Astra van which, seemed to be on fine form. All in all the season seems to be starting the way last season ended with lots of enthusiasm from competitors and much planning for the future. EMMA UK would like to offer a huge thank you to Auto Audio who looked after everyone fabulously and to Morel for sponsoring the event as well as all staff, judges and especially competitors for continuing to demonstrate a passion for car audio. Full results can be viewed at www.emma-uk. com. Next event is at the Modified Nationals at the end of May. Be there or don’t care! Contact: EMMA UK, 07779 76266 (Kenny), 07889 891513 (Carl) or

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Automonitor makes sense of Parking Sensors Automonitor, one of the UK’s leading suppliers of automotive multi media products, is going forward with a great range of universal parking and reversing sensors. Designed for virtually any vehicle, this exciting new range helps drivers to reverse, or park, in any tricky situation, efficiently and without difficulty, thus avoiding damage or injury. Supplied in 4 Sensor Kit form in a choice of matt or gloss black or silver for rear fitment, or matt black and silver for front installation, these sensors include an audible buzzer, which emits a warning sound, which increases in frequency the closer the vehicle is to the obstacle. The rear sensor is also available as an LED version. Each kit comprises 19mm detachable sensors with waterproof wire connectors and changeable 6o, 10o and 13o collars, to suit bumper contour. Specification: Full weather design; paintable sensors; rated voltage 12V DC; operating range: 10.5V ~ 16V DC; current consumption: 50mA ~ 180mA; detecting distance: 0.3 ~ 1.5m; ultrasonic frequency: 40KHz; working temperature: -20 ~ +70ºC.

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Unveiled back at the 2010 M.E.N Expo, the new GT-R demo vehicle for Vibe is something quite different for the brand. While highend demo cars are not alien to them with the likes of Lamborghini and Audi having been called into action before, this GT-R is their first Japanese manufactured demo vehicle. In fact, for Midbass Distribution and all of their brands, this is only the second car from the Far East that they’ve employed for demonstrator duties. There’s no real reason for this having been the case before, but there can’t be many better ways to get Vibe into that market place now than




with a GT-R. In fact, there are a lot of advantages to using a new GT-R as a demo vehicle and Midbass certainly realise this.

Vibe’s Nissan GT-R offers almost limitless opportunities for the brand and for Vibe dealers.

enthusiast, as they represent the new generation of an iconic badge. And crucially, while it may be in a similar price bracket as a Porsche 911 Turbo and has reviewers contemplating which of the two is better, the GT-R is ‘our’ car.

As one of the most pro-active audio companies

That is, it is of Skyline descent, which is a car

in the industry when it comes to marketing it’s

favoured by tuners and the poster child of the

no surprise that they consider the relevance of

computer game generation. While Porsche’s

all of their demo vehicles carefully. Even at the

and Ferraris are the reserve of the seriously

M.E.N Expo they had a good range of cars to

wealthy and those afflicted by car snobbery,

cover the tastes of most audio and automotive

the Skyline’s Nissan badge has always made it

enthusiasts. Interestingly though, they claim that

the underdog…but one that can bite supercars

the GT-R may have been even more popular

quite viciously. That alone makes the GT-R

with dealers than with consumers who turned up

a great choice as a demo vehicle, not only

on the Auto Sound & Style day. For consumers,

appealing to those who are in the Porsche

it was the lure of the audio packed Citroen C2

Turbo buying category, but also to everyone

on their stand, or even the Fli Audio Civic (their

who has grown up (or is still growing up!) and

other Japanese demo car) that grabbed their

lusts after a GT-R badge. And while it may

attention, after all, consumers turn up to shows

alienate some people on the grounds that it

wanting to see the kinds of craziness not often

is still an expensive car, it’s probably a more

found out on the streets. The GT-R meanwhile still

acceptable sight for the younger audience

has a ‘wow’ factor of its own amongst any car

than a thoroughbred supercar.

From a dealer’s point of view the GT-R also adds

aftermarket audio install. For dealers too, there’s

performance ethos much better than

some interest as it promotes the Vibe brand in

not only the cache of Vibe products being in such

something more elaborate would.

an exclusive way (much the same as the R8 or

a car, but the simplicity of the install can be a

Gallardo have done previously). Big Vibe dealers

selling point to both drivers of similar level cars and

Never ones to rest on their laurels though,

can benefit from the extra cache of having a

those, perhaps younger customers, who don’t

the guys and gals at Midbass are already

car like this turn up at open days too, which is

want an extreme looking install and wouldn’t

contemplating another Vibe-filled demo car

always going to help to attract crowds. There’s

mind emulating what they’ve seen fitted to an

aimed at the younger and less well-heeled

also the way the install has been built that can

iconic GT-R.

section of the market. How many demo cars

please dealers, in as much as it’s a system that

that will make in total for Midbass’ fleet is

can pound but without being over-the-top in the

The other bonus of this demo car is that it gives

anybody’s guess, but clearly they see a value

looks department. While a big fibreglass install

the Vibe brand a way into the numerous,

in having such an impressive array. Despite

or wall of speakers can get major attention, it’s

heavily attended Japanese car shows in the

admitting that the tangible benefits of any

perhaps more difficult to fit audio equipment in a

country. While many attending these events

demo car is hard to assess in solid terms, the

stylish and simple way. While the two Space 12D4

will be more into the performance element of

fact that Midbass have continued to see their

subs in the boot take up a bit of space, the two

modifying, there’s no denying that the fact this

year on year sales increase through a difficult

LiteBox Bass 1 amps and LiteBox Stereo 4 amps

is a GT-R will get them coming in for a closer

2009 proves that they know how to get the

are neatly squeezed into the sides, allowing for

look. Manufacturers have sometimes been

end user spending. And you wouldn’t bet

some storage room still. The light coming through

accused by dealers of not doing enough to

against this GT-R persuading a few customers

the ported centre section of the rear seats adds

promote enthusiasm for their products amongst

to purchase Vibe products for their own

a nice touch, especially as the sub boxes have

the end-user, but this certainly isn’t a criticism

cars and helping Midbass and their

been made from heavy duty Perspex to help

that can be levelled at Midbass. As the GT-R

dealers achieve another

try and flood the boot with sunshine. Inside the

proves, they’re not shy about spending out on

successful year

cockpit there’s no big fuss, simply some beautifully

something they feel may open up their brand

in 2010.

installed speakers in the door cards, which could

to new customers, which can certainly benefit

almost be taken for OEM additions. With Vibe

dealers ultimately. It may not single-handedly

Critical Link cabling throughout, there’s plenty of

convert petrol heads into wannabe

Vibe products being promoted within this demo

audiophiles, but it may put the idea of

car…yet it remains reasonably understated and

audio in their heads, especially

in-keeping with a performance car. While cutting

as the understated

a big hole in a brand new GT-R for a port from

build suits the

the boot may be considered sacrilege to some, it’s a small price to pay for the end result and for the fact Vibe can, in all likelihood, claim to have the first GT-R in the UK with a full





When you look back at the mobile electronics market of ten years ago it was a very different environment. The handsfree market wasn’t there, since in the UK the hand held use of mobile phones in cars wasn’t banned until 2003. MP3 players weren’t about, so dealers were still busily offering expensive CD headunits or autochanger options. GPS based navigation was only in its infancy, certainly it was a rarity for any dealers to be selling PNDs in the year 2000. Meanwhile there were plenty of customers after CD players, amplifiers, subwoofers and speakers so dealers were making sure they were catering to this as well as possible.

In an ever-changing market, what will mobile electronics dealers be selling in a few years time? M.E.N looks into its crystal ball

Fast-forward to the present day and it’s a very

certainly there are still plenty of

different story for many. The ability to connect

older cars on the road that could benefit

iPods/iPhones to cars is a prime concern for

from better audio or sat nav, so it’s

customers now, while interfacing with modern

likely that these types of product will

CAN Bus wired cars is also a big part of things.

continue to keep dealers busy. On top

Navigation and hands-free systems are bread and

of those things there are products like parking

butter, alongside the supply and install of rear seat

sensors that are not often included as standard

entertainment systems. Parking sensors and rear

equipment plus rear seat entertainment that is

view cameras or the installation of security tracking

again sometimes an after-thought rather than a

products are also areas that the modern mobile

ticked box on the options list.

electronics dealer needs to be offering. There’s still The problem is though, like those wise souls who

these products, when at the moment they’re

but sound quality is now as much of a selling point

could see a recession coming, looking ahead to

getting by without them, yet with DRLs at least you

Clearly then, mobile electronics dealers have had to evolve massively over the last ten years, but how different might their offerings look in the next few years or by the year 2020 even? New cars now offer a massive challenge to the aftermarket, in as much as


The only tricky bit there is creating demand for

also a demand for additional audio equipment, as deep bass capabilities.


before this time.

“New cars now offer a massive challenge to the aftermarket, in as much as they often come with everything the driver might need.”

the future shouldn’t be

can appeal to the customer’s styling sensibilities.

limited to just the next year or the next three

The likelihood is though that the mobile electronics

years. For dealers who

aftermarket industry will have a rough ride in the

have built up a business

future. Smartphones are one of the areas that

over years, there’s a

give the biggest threat. Once all new cars have

need to look further

the ability to hook one up to the standard audio,

into the future to figure

then hands-free, sat nav and music storage can

out how they can still

all be taken care of by that one unit, potentially

be in business by the

taking a big slice away from what dealers are

year 2020 and beyond.

currently offering. More and more of the utilities

Clearly though, the

found at home, such as internet and multimedia

things this industry will be

players, are also finding their way into cars so these

they often come with everything the driver might

doing are dependant to a large extent on what

areas and catering for smartphones are sure to

need. Built in sat nav and hands-free, plus a decent

the car manufacturers will be doing, and much

be bread and butter stuff for years yet. In truth, if

sounding audio system that already comes with

of that is shrouded in secrecy. Two areas that car

you’re looking ten years into the future then the

iPod hook-up are not the stuff of dreams, even

manufacturers are going to have to invest in with

crystal ball actually gets a bit cloudy, as things

some relatively cheap new cars will offer all of this.

new cars, according to incoming legislation, are

continue to evolve at impressive speeds. The one

Many people may feel that this covers everything

daytime running lights (DRLs) and tyre pressure

thing you can be sure of though is that future

they could need which potentially leaves the

sensors. Within the next few years, cars will be fitted

evolutions should be pondered constantly in order

mobile electronics dealer out in the dark. Over

with these items as standard, but for the mobile

to stay ahead of the game, and that companies

the next few years though there will still be new

electronics retailer there’s an opportunity, no

in this industry and M.E.N magazine will be on

cars that don’t come with all of these things, and

matter how small, to retrofit these items to cars built

hand to make sure they help you to do this.


Nobody does hands-free better Fitting a hands-free phone kit to a car usually means wiring in a bolt-on device – unless you give your customers a MetaSystem solution. We are a Tier 1 Supplier to major car manufacturers, enabling our bluetooth phone kits to be fully integrated to your customer’s car. Your customers can then use their normal steering wheel controls and in-car displays to manage their calls safely, legally and to the highest quality. Become a MetaSystem dealer now by calling Patrick Rayner on 0208 867 2347 ( – you won’t find better.

Meta is Better innovation • quality • reliability Part of the Vestatec Group of Companies


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MEX BT3800U tBluetooth


tOEM stalk control

SSP : £199.99



KDC W3044 A/G tCD/MP3

tAux In

tPre Out

SSP : £99.95


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t5 line display tRear USB tVariable Illumination t3 x 4v Pre Outs

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£119.94 tHi res screen tBluetooth t EU Navi t6.1” screen tAV Input / Output tDVD / DivX

tCD/MP3 tBluetoothtUSB tUSB tAux In tPre Out tAudio streaming

KDC BT40U SSP : £209.95


tBluetooth tUSB tAux In tAudio streaming t3 x Pre Outs tOEM Stalk Input

KDC BT50U SSP : £249.95


tel : 0116 244 9845

DNX 5260BT SSP : £1,299.95


fax : 0116 244 9855


What Dealers Want From Suppliers When you’re running a retail business one of the keys to success is working with good suppliers. There are obviously other crucial areas that make a business run well, such as good promotion by the retailer, good service to their customers and naturally having quality products to offer. But without decent suppliers it would be an impossible task to run a business. As part of a two-part feature M.E.N looks at what dealers feel they need from their suppliers, with next month looking at things from the other side and finding out what suppliers look for in a good retailer.

Nav, AI Audio and Security Waz, B&B Audioconcepts

“I’ve always believed suppliers should do a rebate programme. Retailers aren’t really getting much back, so if you agree to sell a certain amount of product it would be nice to get a cheque

“Customer service is most important. We give it to our customers, so I want

back from the supplier as an additional boost. They can’t get much tighter on money, delivery

it given to me, like when I ring them they can tell me if it’s in stock and

is generally OK although stock levels at the moment don’t seem great. Not having products in

when I can have it. Also, when there’s a problem is the supplier going to

stock is bad for us, yet obviously suppliers don’t want to sit on a lot of stock at the moment as

help or run away from it? If a customer has a problem with a product, can

that’s what can send companies bust. But the big problem at the moment is enthusiasm. Suppliers

I look at it and see if it’s a manufacturing fault then replace it with a part

need to help enthuse retailers again because of the recession, and while I know it’s about profit,

from my stock, knowing my supplier will replace that? I’m not interested in

if they made a little less it would make retailers and customers happier, then we’d sell more and

the cheapest product, I’m interested in service. I don’t care how good the

make everyone happy. Also suppliers should try and help retailers more when it comes to getting

product is, if the service is crap then that’s it. Secondly I look for the back-

into car dealerships, they might not pay much but it’s bread and butter stuff. One of my biggest

up they give as in PR. I look at companies that support you, are proactive

issues though is trying to get accounts with some of the big guys…they don’t give you a chance.

in mags like this one and taking ad campaigns. Thirdly, is awareness of

You may not be spending a million pounds a year with them, but if you don’t give a little guy the

staff. Celsus are good at this, I know if I phone them up I can speak to

chance then you don’t know how big they could be. I don’t think a lot of suppliers are supporting

anyone from the packing guy to the MD, if you’re only given one person

the little guys.”

to talk to and you don’t click then it can be tough.”

Paul, A1 Audio Designs “The main reason I deal with a company is if there’s an individual person to deal with everything I need. When Chris Woods from Axis/Four first came down for example he wasn’t pushy, he didn’t stay too long

Chris, Huets Worthing

as he knows dealers are busy and he makes it very personal to the point of becoming friends. I know I can

“Exclusivity of product so the supplier isn’t giving it to

phone or even text him with orders at most reasonable times of the day. Companies do give incentives, but

everyone is important. Also delivery, we’ve got two

to be honest it matters more that the price is right. It’s not very good if you give a customer a quote and then,

branches and some companies are constantly sending

like we all do, they go online and look at prices there, then come back to you and ask you to match them. I

to the wrong one despite specifying when ordering,

know we’re all in competition but we should stick together on pricing, otherwise it gets to the point where a

which can put you off. Other suppliers you can phone

product’s not worth selling. Credit’s also another good thing suppliers can offer, meaning you can phone up

up when in the proverbial, and they’ll get it to the

and get the product the next day. If you don’t have credit there may be a one or two day delay as payment

right place the very next day, which certainly brings

goes through, which is no good for the customer. Essentially, so long as you get good service, a good price

loyalty. If we receive good service then we can give

on the product and you don’t get the customer coming back saying they’ve found it much cheaper, then

good service. It’s also good is they don’t have ‘big

that’s a sign you’ve got a good supplier.”

company syndrome’ and actually have someone you can talk with to resolve issues. It’s rare to get an issue but when you do you want good after sales support. For


example, if it’s a case of having to give a new product as a replacement to the customer, it’s good to know the

One of the over-riding things to come from dealers was that they weren’t obsessed with massive profit margins.

supplier will credit that, it’s basically suppliers supporting

Customer service from their suppliers was a key concern. The realisation of those in the business for the long-term

what we do. Some companies also have four or five

is clearly that if they can give their customers great service, then those customers continue to shop with them and

day delivery times, which isn’t really good enough when

help build a trusted reputation for their business. To do this though they need the support of their suppliers, which

you have a customer wanting it now.”

essentially comes down to excellent communication. For suppliers to succeed with dealers they need to have up-to-date stock information, quick response time and the willingness to back dealers up in the case of problems with their products. Naturally making a profit is also a concern for dealers, but again that doesn’t mean massive margins necessarily. Suppliers who are more picky about their dealers (in as much as they won’t supply dealers willing to make very little profit on each item and therefore drive the ‘value’ of the product down) are more likely to inspire loyalty from established dealers. For the long-term good of the industry this makes sense too, as dealers making very little money from products won’t last too long. By the time they go out of business the suppliers will have lost the custom of those dealers who didn’t see the value in supplying their parts any longer, and getting them back on board would be a tough battle. Clearly though, there’s a fine line here as the price also has to be right for the end customer, but if everyone is selling at similar levels then nobody loses. Price fixing is obviously illegal, but ceasing to supply dealers who consistently under-value a supplier’s products is not.




It will be interesting to see the views from the other side of the fence next month when suppliers tell us what they feel makes a good dealer. In the meantime, if you’re a dealer and feel there’s something not covered here about what makes a good supplier, contact us at and let us know, that way we can publish those thoughts next month too.





01268 754 897


MEN is now Mobile... s Read the magazine online s Access the online trade directory s Keep up to date with the latest industry news

And much more


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Product Focus:

Hands-Free Solutions M.E.N takes a look at the latest Bluetooth hands-free solutions available to your customers


to 150 voice recognition tags. Parrot’s selection

internal storage space for iPod, iPhone or USB

Parrot’s offerings come in an array of formats as

of combined hand-free and digital music players

memory stick. Naturally it’s able to play music

you’d imagine. The Parrot Minikit Slim is perhaps

is also strong, with the MKi9000, MKi9100 and the

from these sources, as well as from SD card or

the easiest way into Bluetooth hands-free, a

MKi9200. The MKi9000 and MKi9100 can connect

A2DP mobile phones and has similar Bluetooth

standalone portable device that can pair with up

to iPod, iPhone, MP3 player, USB memory key or

hands-free functionality to the MKi9200. It also

to five devices, and has automatic phonebook

A2DP mobile phone to play music through the

has a similar colour TFT screen on the removable

synchronisation. With advanced automatic

car’s speakers. The MKi9200 has all of this but

front panel which also looks great. All of these

voice recognition, tagging up to 1000 contacts

adds SD card playback ability. All of the systems

Parrot products also have upgradeable software

for making calls without touching the phone

come with a wireless remote control, automatic

allowing for increased compatibility with future

and its ability to read out phonebook contacts

phonebook synchronisation and advanced

devices which is

to the user, it’s a great and safe solution, which

automatic voice recognition tagging up to

good for customers

can be used outside of the car just as easily. The

1500 contacts each! The MKi9100 though also

to know.

CK3000 Evolution and CK3100 are fitted Bluetooth

comes with a removable, high-resolution OLED

hands-free systems, both of which offer sound

screen, which displays phonebook, caller ID,

through the car’s audio system. The former can

track details and playlists, while the top-spec

be paired with up to three phones while the latter

MKi9200 employs a removable colour TFT

can differentiate between five. The CK3100 also

screen to do the same jobs plus display

has automatic phonebook synchronisation with

album cover art work. For those after a

most phones, storing up to 1000 contacts per

replacement headunit with built-in Bluetooth

paired phone, which is impressive. However, both

hands-free Parrot also offers the slick-

kits also have built-in voice recognition, storing up

looking RKi8400, which uses an innovative

MOTOROLA Motorola have the new TK30 and MOTONAV TN series for dealers to get their hands on. The five key reasons why the TK30 should be a first option for end users are that it’s ‘Made for


iPod’ and ‘Works with iPhone’, has advanced Multipoint performance (meaning two phones

Utilising Parrot Bluetooth hands-free

can be kept connected at once), has phonebook download and spoken text messaging,

technology(the new CK-5050 module), the

offers audio reminders if they’ve forgotten their phone or iPod and it works with each car

Kenwood KDC-BT60U may not be the cheapest

speaker independently giving a richer sound (both with music and during calls). For a high

way into hands-free calling while on the move,

quality hands-free experience the TK30 also has Motorola’s cutting-edge noise cancellation

but it’s one of the more stylish. The replacement

technology, which eliminates background noise in the car. Another nice touch is the fact it

headunit comes with a built-in microphone

turns incoming text messages into speech, even pronouncing common text slang into real

making it one of the more seamless solutions

words, which makes a big improvement in safety over having to read texts. On top of this it

to hands-free calling, but can also play music

offers quick and easy ISO installation with a full installation test provided to help deliver the

via iPod, iPhone or USB port and AUX in jack.

service that customers expect. Once installed, the TK30 is fully integrated, so vital parking aid

There’s also the ability to play music files stored

and navigation announcements can still be heard, even during calls.

in A2DP compatible devices. On the phone side

The MOTONAV TN series is something a little different for dealers selling hands-free solutions. This

it has multi-language text display on the five line

innovative new range combines sat nav with hands-free and can be professionally installed,

screen (three lines if large font), 2-way telephone/

meaning directions, calls and texts can be heard through the car speakers and a permanent power

navigation mute and simple controls to make

source can be enabled, eliminating any messy wires. The four models vary in spec but briefly run

calling and receiving calls on the move a piece of

as follows: TN550 – a 4.3in widescreen with UK and ROI mapping, TN555 – a 4.3in widescreen with

cake. There’s also a nice touch of having variable

Western Europe mapping, TN760t – a 5.1in ultra widescreen with UK and ROI mapping and the TN765t

illumination on the controls and display meaning it

– a 5.1in ultra widescreen with Western European mapping. All have multi-view displays and advanced voice menu control to allow for safer use while on the move (the TN700 allowing even destinations to be spoken), plus Motorola offer connected services that give Google search, weather, flight updates and fuel price check. The TN700 series also offers real-time traffic reports, as does the TN500 series when professionally installed, making for a great selling point from an installers point of view.




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The new CK-200

Two products from iO that dealers should take note of are the iO PLAY and the iO

from Nokia is a

Visor kit. The PLAY is an innovative Bluetooth music streaming car kit, which allows

professionally installed

users to simultaneously make and receive phone calls while streaming music from a

kit. Nokia claim it’s

second portable device. It’s compatible with MP3 players, mobile phones and can

easier than ever to

even be used with Sat Nav, allowing for the playback of each through the car stereo

fit with no wiring for

simultaneously and wirelessly using the Bluetooth technology. On the phone side, the

the remote control and

PLAY stores upto five mobile phones in its memory with the auto connect function and

no external microphone

is compatible with all mobile phones which have Bluetooth. The small control console

needed. The only wire

for the PLAY is uses a very thin 4 core wire and is mounted by iO designed fixing pads,

to deal with is that going

making it relatively easy to install just about anywhere inside a car. The iO Visor Kit,

to the display, plus it also

on the other hand, is completely wireless. With a built in microphone and speaker,

has a small interface unit to make things even easier. On

users simply clip it to their visor and are ready to make calls. With noise and echo

the features side of things one of the key selling points is the

cancellation features and the ability to pair the kit with a voice dialling equipped

multipoint connection, allowing for two mobile phones to

phone, users need not touch their phone at all to make a call. Alternatively, the

work with the kit at once. This is ideal for business users who

iO Visor’s simple one touch functionality makes answering,

have a separate phone for personal use, or even for couples

redialling, rejecting and ending

travelling together. Switching between the two connected

calls quick, safe and easy for

phones enables the phonebook contacts, unread messages

users with phones not equipped

and call log of both phones to be accessed, with automatic

with voice dialling. With 6 hours

phonebook downloading enabled for both too. Nokia point

of talk time and 250 hours of

out that the CK-200 offers excellent audio quality with DSP

standby, plus a ‘text to

and embedded 9mm microphone (with optional external

speech’ function that

microphone installation possible for challenging environments).

gives spoken updates

The kit comes with a 2.5in display, with thousands of shades

during use, the Visor

of backlit display colours available, making it likely to match

kit is a simple option

any dashboard. The screen is also easily removeable in

for customers, with an

order to add software updates via USB connector when at a

attractive suggested

computer. With attractive retail pricing and a relatively straight

retail price of £39.99, yet

forward fitting process, the new CK-200 should prove to be a

a still healthy profit margin

popular choice with both installers and for customers needing

for dealers.

a quality hands-free car kit.

DENSION The Dension Gateway Five gives Bluetooth connectivity for handsfree calling as well as for music streaming (via A2DP) via the radio or steering wheel controls and displays the relevant information in the cluster between the dials. Currently Gateway Five is only available for VW vehicles featuring the RCD 300 and 500 headunits, fitted with a text capable cluster, but there are further compatibilities for later model

MUTANT For customers after an affordable headunit upgrade with Bluetooth hands-free capabilities, the Mutant MT2300BT CD/MP3 player is one possible answer. Phones can use Bluetooth to make and receive handsfree calls via the unit and can also stream music from their phone or any other A2DP equipped device directly through their car audio system. With an external hands-free microphone included, plus a remote control, a 4x50W power output plus a USB port, MMC/SD card slot and CD/CD-R and CD-RW playback capabilities, the MT2300BT is an attractive and relatively inexpensive option for those wanting to make calls hands-free.

VWs, Audi, Opel and BMW models due this summer. Gateway Five also connects to iPod or USB storage device to the original radio, providing music playback, menu based control and charging. On top of this it incorporates the new Hotkey functionality, allowing users to assign CD changer buttons to a desired folder, album, song or menu position.



provides access to the

While it’s not the ultimate solution, it may be worth offering customers the

phone book and the

choice of Kicker’s earbuds, even if it’s not for in-car use. The EB101M and

call logs (received,

EB71M earbuds offer great sound and comfort within the ear, but crucially

missed, dialled).

come with a multi-function button for calling and listening convenience, plus

A basic version of

a lightweight in-line mic

Gateway Five will be

with positioning clip

available with a trial

that is simple to use

version of the hands-free

and transfers voices

support. This product

clearly. Even as an

provides 50 free calls

add-on sale these

and can be upgraded

could work well

via a software update

for dealers and

to the full version.

customers alike.


The phone option



Parrot Reaching Out to Independent Dealers Parrot leads the way for independent dealers and installers to share in their success.










Results from the GfK Group, a leading specialist in independent

increase further. Parrot know that this success could not be achieved

research, showed that in 2009 Parrot accounted for 88 percent of the

solely on the excellent quality of their products though, and are keen

fitted Bluetooth hands-free car kit market. This incredible figure grew

to point out the contribution dealers have made to this. “The dealer

from the 66 percent Parrot achieved in 2008 and takes into account

channel is the key to success for our company”, explains Asif Gillani,

the whole of 2009’s sales in this market. Interestingly Parrot also

Parrot’s UK and Ireland Sales Director, “this success is really down to

claims that the second half of 2009 was even stronger for them than

installers, so a massive thank you to them for their commitment and

the first part, so 2010 may well see their dominance in the market

continuing loyalty”.


forthcoming newsletters for certified installers.

hands-free but also iPod or iPhone connectivity

With their Certified Installer Programme, Parrot

It’s no wonder then that so many independent

(either of which can be stored in a compartment

continues to demonstrate just how important

dealers and installers continue to take advantage

within the unit, connecting to it to play music while

dealers and installers are to them. Having rolled

of the benefits offered by the Certified Installer

also being charged). Parrots UNIKA steering wheel

the scheme out to dealers already, 2009 saw them

Programme. Parrot UK now have the Republic of

interface can also be used with the RKi or MKi

introduce it to mobile installers, and once again

Ireland in their portfolio too, so the programme

products, allowing for an excellent OEM level of fit

the uptake was significant. Four road-shows saw

is set to be rolled out over there soon. Keep your

and functionality.

between fifty and one hundred mobile installers

eyes peeled for more information on this in M.E.N.

the Certified Installer Programme and meet the



team at Parrot. For many mobile installers this was

The multi M.E.N. award winning CK3100 and

Parrot continues to warn dealers about the pitfalls

their first chance to meet Parrot representatives in

CK3000 Evolution car kits from Parrot are, for many

of buying non-UK destined product, being bought

the flesh, unlike dealers with premises who have

installers, the default choice to offer customers,

by dealers believing it may have saved them a

regular visitors from either Maxine or Magdalena,

due to their proven dependability and price

small amount.. Dealers have been caught out and

depending on their geographical location.

points. With great quality and, as with all Parrot

are finding that voice functions, for example, are

Installers were also given a test upon arrival to

kits, upgradeable software to keep them “future

language specific, rendering them useless in the

assess their levels of knowledge about Parrot

proof”, its no wonder they continue to be so

UK. Dealers have been left with angry customers,

products. “We were pleased with the level of

popular and the product of choice for fleet users.

a tarnished reputation and a bill for un-installation

knowledge of products”, confirmed Asif Gillani,

Meanwhile the MKi range has opened up a new

and supply of new product. A non-official product

“but the most common thing they said was that

area for Parrot, providing the consumer with more

may initially save you a few pounds, but it will

the presentation by Stuart, our technical manager,

than just a hands-free car kit thanks to the music

always end up costing much more in lost time

was the most useful part. They learnt hints and tips

access it allows as an Apple certified “Made for

and money. To identify genuine UK product,

they didn’t know before plus answers to the most

iPod, Works with iPhone” product. As dealers have

Parrot has placed ‘55’ in the serial number (e.g

common questions. Some installers didn’t even

no doubt found, the market for these is great with

PF150055AD8Z123456). The barcode label states

know we had technical support dedicated to

no hard sell needed, the functionality does all the

“Genuine UK product destined for sale in the UK

them”. With around 35 per cent of Parrot’s global

selling for you. There’s also the MINIKIT SLIM, a visor

only”. Under Consumer Law, your customer is

work force dedicated to engineering, their car

mounted car kit that installers may shy away from,

entitled to a full refund and you will be faced with

kits are famed for their reliability anyway, offering

as there is no installation needed. However, the

the job of uninstalling an inferior product at your

compatibility with every brand of mobile phone

portable functionality and low price point makes

cost, so make sure you buy genuine UK product.

and with regular software updates available on-

it a great add-on sale to customers who may

Buy genuine, buy once! Contact: To find out more

line to ensure the kits are “future proof”. This means

want an inexpensive hands-free solution for their

about the Parrot Certified Installer Programme,

that the hints and tips for fitting were universally

partner, for pool cars or for hire cars. Conversely,

spotting a non-genuine product or to become an

claimed to be the most useful aspect, so much

there’s the RKi head-unit from Parrot, offering a

installer, contact Parrot: 0844 472 2360 or visit

so that Parrot will continue to offer them in their

replacement head-unit with radio and Bluetooth

turn up to each one, eager to find out more about





What Can


Do For You? M.E.N looks at just how far the digital age can help independent dealers and installers

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful:

Websites. They’ve been around for ages and by now you, as an independent dealer or installer, should have a well-established one. The beauty of a website is not only can you sell products or pitch your services to visitors, you can also publish answers online to plenty of frequently asked questions. This in turn can save you valuable time by reducing the amount of phone calls you have to deal with covering those very same issues. For these reasons a website is an essential tool for any business, but it can go much further than that. Firstly though, have you got your website right

products bought from you. People generally trust

help really show people what you can do. Take a

already? Like any sort of communication via a

these reviews as the are perceived as genuine,

shot with the camera on your phone the moment

certain media you have to know who you are

so if they can then feel good about a certain

you finish installing new speakers to a customer’s

aiming your content at. For example, if you only

product after reading the reviews left by others,

car and it can be in front of thousands of potential

deal with business customers, a very formal and

you may be more likely to convert those still

other customers within seconds. Speaking of

professional looking website is the key. Correct use

debating a particular product into customers. For

phones, something worth considering is how well

of language and clear explanations about how

installers who feel confident about what they do,

your website works on a device like an iPhone.

you can help their business are essential, whereas if

a similar review section about their work could also

Often sites needing Adobe Flash won’t work, or

you’re aiming at private customers the approach

prove to be fruitful. Traditionally word of mouth

navigation through a site is somehow impaired.

can be different. You may find that a vibrant,

has been an important way for installers to get

Considering how important and well-used smart

picture-filled site aimed at the youth market

custom, this is exactly the same, except it’s done

phones are to customers nowadays, it makes

doesn’t work for you when it comes to attracting

online from their home instead of in person down

sense to ensure your website presence on them is

interest on things like sat nav or hands-free kits.

the pub. And the extra bonus of it being online is

as slick as it is on your customer’s laptops at home.

With a wide market at which you can aim your

that it opens up the good comments to far more

products and services, you need to make sure

people than one bloke in a pub could ever do.

As we all know, technology continues to develop

you don’t alienate particular sectors. While a funky

User-generated content like this then is potentially

at a rapid rate which means that not only the

homepage with a thumping soundtrack may

an excellent idea, even some manufacturers

products that dealers sell change, but also the

look great to younger users interested in audio, it

employ this user review system on their websites

way in which they sell them does too. It doesn’t

may put off the thirty five year old housewife trying

and generally claim it’s a very successful addition.

have to be about online activities either, simple

to find a hands-free kit. The secret here is either

The one other benefit of this is that reviewers need

things like product and service information given

to divide your services between two different

to create an account, which in turn provides your

away to customers on a USB memory stick, or even

websites, both linked from one homepage, or

company with a valuable database of consumers

having your company logo appear on start-up

alternatively have a relatively neutral homepage

who you can occasionally give product or deal

screens of relevant headunits you fit are all extra

but add the funky bits when people click through

updates to via e-mail.

little ways to promote yourself in the modern age.

to the audio pages.



Technology changes everything, from the way Outside of your own website the digital age can

we shop to the way we are entertained, and from

That’s all pretty basic stuff though, and most of you

still be employed to your benefit. Social networking

the way we sell to the way we give information.

will have already figured this out. Presuming that

sites such as Facebook give companies potential

Even things like magazines or TV programmes are

your website is how you want it and is working well

access to countless customers with minimal effort

becoming more accessible through digital media

for you then, how can you add more value to your

or set-up time. They can be a great place to grow

and this is only set to become more prevalent

business via the digital media. User-generated

the number of people who know about your

in the future. For dealers and installers this can

content is one catchphrase nowadays that

business, and they can also allow for you to post

level the playing field when battling for business

can really add something to your business. The

up relevant news. For example, if you are offering

against bigger or multi-national companies, as

best example of this is by allowing for reviews of

a deal or have a new product, you can tell

it promoting your company doesn’t have to be

the products featured on your website. With an

people almost instantly. From an installer’s point of

about who spends the most, it’s as much to do

‘out of five’ rating and a small section to make

view, pictures of completed jobs and even videos

with who can use the technology on hand the

comments, users can give their own opinions on

of finished installs (particularly for audio builds) can

most effectively.



The New World of

M.E.N visits the UK division of Cobra Automotive Technologies S.p.A to find out just what they can offer to dealers “The Cobra that once was is very different to the Cobra that is today”,

a new area to profit from. For example, the latest Spyball 6829 Thatcham CAT 1

explains Andrew Smith, MD of Cobra UK Limited at their Sale-based

accredited motorcycle alarm system with two immobilisers is designed with all the

operational headquarters for their CobraTrak and NavTrak stolen

potential theft hazards that motorcycle riders encounter factored in, using unique

vehicle tracking services and other location based services. From

patented technology to offer the very best protection for two-wheeled vehicles. There’s

here native speaking operatives from an array of European countries

also the HelloBiker Bluetooth intercom system, which not only allows for conversations

support dealers installing Cobra products. Elsewhere in the UK, they

between up to six separate motorcyclists but also acts as a hands-free phone system

have two Secure Operating Centres (SOCs) – and secure is what I

when paired to a mobile. Both of these products come with the same quality of all of

mean; windowless, bombproof buildings to comply with stringent

Cobra’s offerings and could be a great way for dealers to expand their proposition,

Home Office regulations for providers of security services, from where

backed up by a company they can trust.

operators liaise with Police forces working to agreed procedures when tracing stolen cars equipped with Cobra tracking systems. In

On top of all of this Cobra are also innovating in other new arenas, such as Coverbox

fact, Cobra have a network of SOCs across 36 European countries as

car insurance, which cleverly utilises their tracking technology. With five insurance

well as in Russia. This level of investment in European coverage and

companies already part of the scheme and more on the way, Coverbox enables

infrastructure has significantly helped to establish the company as

subscribers to pay for their car insurance in a similar way to their mobile phone bill,

the European market leader for stolen vehicle tracking and location

essentially based on usage. Aimed at low-mileage users or young drivers (where

based services. Cobra is in fact the approved supplier of stolen vehicle

restrictions on things like the time of day they can drive can help reduce their monthly

tracking and recovery services at pan-European level to Audi, Bentley,

premium) it can offer customers a much fairer and cheaper way of insuring their cars.

Ferrari, Infiniti, Lamborghini, Maserati, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Porsche,

For the panel of insurance companies the tracking technology also offers them the most

Renault and Tesla – giving an impressive testament to the quality of

in-depth data about their customers’ usage that they’ve ever had access to. The breadth

their products and service. It is not unusual for a vehicle stolen to order

of Cobra’s product range today underlines the strength and experience of the company.

to head very quickly towards Eastern Europe. Cross-border recoveries involving a number of Cobra SOCs and international Police co-operation

It’s not just Cobra’s tried and tested tracking and security products then that dealers can

are a frequent occurrence these days. The fact that Cobra Automotive

benefit from. Cobra UK Limited, as a wholly owned subsidiary of Cobra Automotive

Technologies S.p.A was listed on the Milan Stock Exchange back in

Technologies S.p.A, has the technology, depth of product and customer back-up that

2006 further reinforces just how large and successful the company has

can make the difference to any dealer in the mobile electronics market. Whether it’s

become. Significant new investment has gone into new product R&D and

their market leading tracking products or their quality solutions for parking, collision

new technology at their already state-of-the-art production facilities in

prevention, rear seat entertainment or Bluetooth hands-free communication, Cobra can

northern Italy’s equivalent to Silicon Valley.

certainly offer dealers far more than they may have realised. With further innovations on the way, such as E-Cruise for CAN-Bus cars, now’s the time to start talking to Cobra

Cobra now has its own wholly owned subsidiary in the UK – Cobra UK Limited, with

if you aren’t already. For more information on how Cobra can help your business

two sites – Sale in Cheshire for tracking and location based services and Sunbury for

contact them using the details below.

electronic systems. From Sunbury, Cobra distributes a whole range of electronic systems for both production line and aftermarket fitment. These include products such as the well

Cobra Automotive Technologies S.p.A

known and respected range of Cobra anti-theft systems, Cobra ParkMaster parking

Formed in 1975, the parent company of Cobra UK Ltd was the pioneer of car alarms

aid systems, Rosen retro-fit in-car DVD systems, BlueConnect Bluetooth hands-free

and they continue to design and manufacture their wide product range at their state-

systems and E-Cruise aftermarket cruise control and speed limiters. On top of these

of-the-art production facility in Northern Italy. This factory was painstakingly designed

there are other innovations such as Mobileye, an extremely clever Collision Prevention

to exceed the most stringent standards stipulated by the world’s leading vehicle

System, which is the only one on the market to offer the combination of Lane Departure

manufacturers, to whom Cobra is a major parts supplier. These high standards are

Warning, Forward Collision Warning and Headway Monitoring and Warning. Again,

one of the reasons why Cobra products are so well renowned for their excellent

the fact that this product is already fitted by the likes of BMW, Volvo and General

quality and reliability.

Motors at OEM level tells a real story of its quality. There are also dedicated products for the motorcycle market that can offer dealers




Contact: Cobra Sales, 01932 772400 or

Cobra - celebrating 35 years of vehicle security and safety excellence Cobra was a pioneer in the vehicle security arena as far back as 1975, designing and manufacturing some of the world’s very first alarms. Today, Cobra remains at the forefront of vehicle security design, directly supplying vehicle manufacturers with many of the world’s standard fit security systems, and using this know-how to develop bespoke solutions for aftermarket installation. In the UK you can rely on Cobra for a complete range of vehicle security and electronic systems. Our product range extends from Cobra anti-theft alarms for both cars and motorcycles, to Cobra ParkMaster aftermarket parking sensors, Rosen retro fit in-car DVD systems, BlueConnect Bluetooth handsfree systems and E-Cruise aftermarket cruise control and speed limiters. Cobra is the European market leader for GPS stolen vehicle tracking with full European coverage as standard, and the new CobraTrak First range reduces fitting time by up to 50 percent. All of Cobra’s alarms and tracking solutions are Thatcham accredited and recognised by major insurers.

Call us now for more information or to apply to become a Cobra installer: 01932 772 400


West Country car wizard works his magic

To some, a car is simply functional, to others a passion, but to 26-year old Oliver Ashley, fourwheel fever knows no bounds.


We can fix it! Sometimes things go wrong, when they do, support is only a phone call away. All Clarion aftermarket and OEM units repaired or exchanged under our industry leading service and support plan, at a price that won’t have your customers ending up broke. Want to know more about our services? Call 01285 861861 for an information pack, or email




Since 2007 Oliver, a senior technical manager for a Mercedes-Benz dealership in Bristol, has been building a car from the ground up, forsaking a normal social life to fulfil his dream of creating a truly unique automotive masterpiece. It started with an approach to Swindon-based Clarion, who Oliver suggested might like to showcase its award-winning audio, multimedia and satellite navigation equipment in his project. Four years later, after 4,000 hours of spare time toil, patience, immense skill, and an almost obsessive drive for perfection - not to mention £70,000 of his hard-earned cash and savings - Oliver’s unique K1 Attack sportscar is wowing crowds at shows across the country. Starting with a crudely-finished chassis, makeshift body panels and a variety of components, delivered in a box from a factory in the Czech Republic in 2006, Oliver set to in his garage, building his dream car in stages. “I have actually assembled the car four times since starting the project”, said Oliver. “I had an original concept firmly in mind, and the design and specification evolved as I went along by building the car, checking the fit of every new component, dis-assembling, making modifications and so on, until I was happy with every element.” Oliver’s parts list, created as the build progressed, included a whole host of one-off items specially produced for the car - which he designed and had made, all echoing his fanatical desire for individuality and quality. These include linear actuators and mechanisms for opening the driver & passenger doors by remote control, carbon fibre bodywork and interior detailing, colour-coded cabling, polished hoses and pipework, chromed suspension and a full bespoke leather/Alcantara cockpit, detailed with his exquisite design and styling touches. But as Oliver explains, attention to detail doesn’t come cheap: “For example, I chose Asanti wheels from the USA, at £2,000 each, because they are just the greatest. I spent many thousands of pounds more on the composite bodywork styling, hand-crafted seats and interior, suspension, lighting, right-hand drive conversion, even chroming hundreds of nuts and bolts…the list is endless.” Along with Clarion, who have supported Oliver from the outset with a feast of state-of-the-art mobile entertainment and navigation systems, other major brands have assisted in the build, including MOMO, who dipped into their treasure chest of interior styling products to add Italian flair to Oliver’s creation, and Yokohama, whose legendary high-performance tyres now grace the car. With a 250bhp Honda Civic Type R 2.0 litre 4-cylinder engine and six-speed manual gearbox installed midships, ultra taut race-bred suspension and formidable Brembo braking, the car’s performance is more than a match for its stunning looks, which are capped with a sumptuous Lamborghini pearl white paint finish. Amidst all the attention, Oliver is frequently asked what he’ll do now the car is finished. “I’ve actually been offered a lot of money to sell it but I plan to enjoy it for a year or so, and after that? Well, building a speedboat from scratch could be fun,” he mused, suggesting this isn’t the last we’ll hear of the West Country wizard.

Burnt out?

There’s nothing new about feeling burnt-out, charred and cheated, but when business is far from hot, you need to be ready to make the most of every deal on the street. And work with the best people to help you with the products, support and commitment to get you through. As others pull out or pull back, Clarion remains the most experienced, sustained and committed brand to the UK aftermarket, and to its appointed dealers. Red hot in fact.

Want to know more? Call 01793 870400, or e-mail and we’ll e-mail you a free copy of Clarion Active, the dealer guide to get you on the road to better business. Clarion (UK) Ltd, Unit 1, Marshall Road, Hillmead, Swindon SN5 5YU


Distributors offered a profitable future with Quartix Pay As You Go vehicle tracking Quartix, one of the UK’s leading telematics

tracking-system distributors.”

providers, is setting up a distributor network

Last year, against a market backdrop that saw

dedicated to its popular pay-as-you-go service.

a serious decline in tracking-unit volumes and

The move follows strong demand from established

the failure of many vehicle tracking firms, Quartix

distributors seeking a competitively- priced PAYG

registered sales growth of 5% - thanks largely to the

product for customers.

launch of Quartix Pay As You Go.

Andy Walters, Quartix’s managing director, said:

Today, with widespread and increasing recognition

“The demand is being driven by distributors’

of the importance of flexible rental contracts,

existing telematics suppliers being unable to meet

Quartix is confident of a highly profitable future for

customer requirements, especially in relation to

its pay-as-you-go channel partners.

pay-as-you-go. “We are filling the gap by offering an attractive commercial proposition – one that has been warmly welcomed by some of the country’s top

Well-established distributors sought

Andy Walters, managing director of Quartix, one of the UK’s leading telematics companies.

Information at a glance: a section of Quartix’s new on-screen dashboard

Quartix Pay As You Go’s nationwide network will consist of a select group of experienced, well-established distributors with a proven track record in telematics. Among ten companies already signed up are the Scenic

Quartix Pay As You Go – the background

More about Quartix

Veetrack, Pro-Comm Business Solutions and F16 Consulting.

In April 2009, Quartix (www.quartix.

grown to become the UK’s most successful vehicle

net) became the UK’s first telematics

tracking service provider.

Group, Fresh Thinking Vehicle Tracking,

Mr Walters added: “We are continuing to

provider to introduce pay-as-you-go,

take on experienced organisations.

adding it to its lease-finance and

Today, more than 2,000 customers across a wide range

outright purchase options. Since

of sectors – including government organisations, housing

“Our proposition provides excellent

then the company has become

associations, construction, hospital trusts, the emergency

short-term rewards for successful

the UK’s first to provide PAYG with

services, SMEs and large British brands – use the online

distributors, together with long-term

Google Maps and the first to offer a

service, with the company’s unique, own-design tracking

partnership and support through

unique on-screen ‘dashboard,’ giving

unit currently installed in more than 23,000 vehicles.

profit sharing.

at-a-glance, real-time information about a fleet’s performance.

“It also provides financial assistance to



Founded in 2001, Quartix ( has

The Quartix system provides users with a fast, efficient, ‘point-and-click’ source of real-time information, together

help in migrating customers to Quartix

During 2010, thanks to innovative

with tailored e-mail reports. Highly flexible, the service has

from legacy systems.”

features such as the latest Speeding

scope to meet the demands of large corporations and

Reports, Quartix anticipates PAYG will

owner-managed businesses alike.

For further information contact

account for 80 per cent of sales, with

Andy Walters on 0870 013 6663

lease-finance and outright purchase

Contact Andy Kirk on 0870 013 6663, email andy.

or email

taking up the remaining 20 per cent. for further details.


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INSTANT EXPERT This Month we have been lucky enough to get a sneak preview of Nokia’s new CK-200 car kit. Nokia tell us that this is the best car kit they have ever made, so with the incredibly successful Cark-91 to follow, this sounded like an extremely bold statement to make, and with this in mind, we couldn’t wait to get our hands on one!Nokia say that this product is aimed squarely at the middle of the market, which for a number of years has been dominated by the Parrot CK-3100. In so doing, Nokia would seem to be going after a large chunk of business here, so the Ck-200 has its work cut out!The product itself has a few key features which are worth mentioning before we show the installation. Firstly the screen:

First thing we noticed was that it looks to be of a good quality. Large enough for the text to be clear and legible but small enough to fit neatly in a number of positions without dominating the dashboard. It is removable from the small bracket for security, and the power cable is nice and small, which makes it easy to run through the interior panel gaps. Certainly a good improvement on the bulky CK-600 cable! The reason for this small cable leads us to one of the biggest selling points of the kit from a trade perspective; the configuration..... The screen holds all the memory, software, settings, Bluetooth chip and even a 9mm microphone. Nokia tell us that this mic is better than the normal Nokia microphones, but we’ll come on to that later in the review. Having all the important stuff in the screen not only allows the cable to be small but completely removes the need for expensive service calls. Under the dash, there is only the standard ISO cable and a very basic junction box. In the event of any issue or need for a software update, only the screen needs to be accessed, so no need to remove interior trim again. Nokia say that service calls can even be done remotely, by simply sending the customer a replacement screen in exchange for their old unit. Software updates are done using the micro USB port on the bottom of the screen, and can be done with the screen completely removed from the car, so no more plugging into the junction box in the customer car with a laptop balanced on your knees! Another advantage of this system is that drivers can take their own screen into any car with the base wiring installed. This could be a good option for companies with drivers using different vehicles as their settings and contacts can come with them. The control button is wireless on this kit, powered by a watch battery and Nokia say this has a lifespan of 9-12 Months depending on usage level. Included in




Review of Nokia Car Kit CK-200 by Vernon Craig

the box is a steering wheel mount, but the standard 3M sticky mount is also supplied so it can be mounted pretty much anywhere, just like the Parrot Mki remotes.

The remote has the standard answer & end buttons plus a rotate button which can also be clicked to select items on the screen. In addition to these two lower buttons, there is a voice dial / mute button but voice dialling is only done via the phone itself, there is no dedicated voice function. The final button on the remote is a “phone switch” button, and this brings us on to the kit’s headline feature for end users: “Multipoint” This feature allows two phones to be connected simultaneously and simply means multiple connection points.

We were sceptical about how this could be done in an easy to use and seamless way, but early signs look good. The CK-200 guides the user through the pairing process with simple on screen prompts and connects automatically to both phones, then downloads the contacts from the phone book. One additional feature on this kit versus previous kits is the ability to manually send contacts to the CK-200 memory if the phone does not transfer them automatically. Nokia seem to be pushing the universal compatibility of their kits nowadays and We’ve seen a few phones with contact transfer problems recently, so hopefully the CK-200 can deal with them in this way. Once both phones are connected, there will always be one primary phone, and the other sits in the background. Both can receive an incoming call at any time, but the primary phone will display its network name, signal strength, battery strength and contacts in order to make an outgoing call. By pressing the “phone switch” button, the phones will swap positions on the screen and the alternate phone can be used to make an outgoing call. We found this switching process very easy to use and it takes a maximum of 3 seconds with a nice graphic on the screen to tell the user what is happening. The installation of the CK-200 was a breeze. The connections are actually similar to a CK7W with the familiar 4 way power molex connector and 3.5mm jack plug for audio. Add

in the cable for the screen and that’s it! We noticed that the control box also has a connector for a standard Nokia carkit microphone, which could be useful if a customer wants the screen mounted away from the direction of their voice. There is also a connector for a charging cable for a phone. Nokia say they will have micro usb and the Nokia 2mm connector available but our sample did not have these with it. Both the charge cable and mic are not included but Nokia told us they will be supplying a range of separate component parts for the CK-200 and their other kits. Importantly they confirmed that screens will be sold separately, so we were already thinking about service stock! The installation itself was one of the easiest we’ve done in a long time. The control box is pretty small and has clever little cut outs for cable ties to be used to secure it. We used a standard SOT with the inbox ISO cable and correctly aligned the movable mute feed to suit the car. With no mic or remote cable to run, there was just the screen cable which as we told you earlier on, fits easily through most interior panel gaps.

We connected a few different phones to the CK-200 and all connected first time and downloaded contacts without any fuss. We also managed to get a quick test drive in, and were pleasantly surprised by the call quality from the screen mounted mic. We tried to fool the kit by calling both phones at the same time, but the on screen menu coped with everything we could throw at it, giving options to ignore, answer or swap calls. As you can see from the image below the screen cable is that small it will fit in the tightest of gaps between the vehicle trim. In summary we were really impressed with the CK-200. Only time will tell if it can knock the Parrot CK-3100 off its perch but first impression is that it definitely a worthy contender. REVERSING CAMERAS



Available in 2, 3 & 4 sensor versions

Surface mount reversing camera with CMOS or CCD sensor, infra red night vision and 5M power/video cable.

Activated automatically when the vehicle is put into reverse gear the on dash display will warn the driver visually and audibly how far they are from an object


£35 £59

FLUSH MOUNT CAMERA Flush mount reversing camera with CMOS or CCD sensor, infra red night vision and 5M power/video cable.


£35 £59

3.5” LCD MONITOR & BRACKET Compact monitor with dual video input and adjustable bracket for dashboard or console mounting.


Wide angle detection ultrasonic sensors with temperature compensation to keep consistent range in extreme weather conditions.

MIRROR WITH BUILT IN 7” SCREEN Clip on, dual video input.



Very easy installation, sensors and display just plug in to the main unit with only 2 wires to connect to reversing light! Includes fitting kit, hole cutter drill bit and installation instructions.

Also available with digital distance display & 4 sensors





electronics WORLDWIDE



HID xenon conversion kits containing everything required to convert one set of lights. Easily fitted in under 5 minutes!

£22 PER PAIR These stylish, flexible LED strips are supplied as a pair & can be used internally or externally. Each strip 50cm long with 30 LEDs per strip and can be cut to length. The LEDs emit a bright white light from the side of the flexible waterproof strip making them ideal for fitting to your headlights as Daytime Running Lights to give your car that modern look as seen on Audis and VWs. Front Facing LEDs

Supplied singly and available in white, red, green and blue these 60cm long flexible strips emit light from the face of the strip.

Designed in UK

5 Year Warranty on Ballasts


H1, H3, H7, H8 H9, H10, H11 HB3, HB4

Flexible strip with strong 3M adhesive backing.

£59 H4

Also available per metre or on a 5 metre roll at £10 per metre.


electronics WORLDWIDE





Tel: 01928 759 239

Login: trade Password: global All prices exclude VAT & delivery.



Photos courtes y of Luke at Luck y13Pix

The International Styling and Tuning Show hit Silverstone for the first time in its illustrious history…but was it an improvement? Silverstone is a tried and tested venue for big car shows. Every year shows like Trax and Ford Fair fill the arena, even Live Promotions (the company behind ISTS) hold the Japanese Tuning Show there already. So after three years at Donington Park, which came with mixed reviews and appeared hampered by the circuit’s desire to renovate in order to hold Formula One there, it seemed like a good move to take their flagship event to the expansive Silverstone. After all, TRAX is the only other multi-marque event held there and that doesn’t happen until the tail end of the season, so ISTS can quite happily establish themselves there at the beginning of the year. While there were detractors across the web when the news was announced of the venue change, many citing that it would be just the same as TRAX and generally reminiscing how much fun the old Donny Shows in Doncaster (where ISTS started) were, the good thing was that the show did actually happen. While the Fast Show at Santa Pod may be stealing some of the ‘season opener’ glory, for many ISTS is still the place to unveil the fruits of a winter’s work.




On the enthusiast side of things the show

some FLI built cars, the Clarion sponsored K1 and

also be better should it stay at Silverstone next

was certainly buzzing, with new creations on

others. In a slightly muddled trade area there

year as feedback from those actually taking

show and a heady mix of car clubs battling

were none of the big audio stands you would

cars to display was that it wasn’t as good as

it out for the accolade of ‘best stand’ and

expect which was disappointing considering ISTS

they hoped it would be. Certainly ISTS has the

the accompanying cash prize. There was

promised a biggest ever ICE village. It was also

name and an excellent place on the show

the expected plethora of scantily clad girls in

disappointing that audio companies weren’t

calendar and with Silverstone there’s a venue

attendance too which is always a welcome site

supporting the show with its new venue, but

that is capable of holding a knockout show

for the mainly male event goers. Being held at a

there were no doubt reasons for this as it’s likely

too. Compared to TRAX later on in the year at

circuit, track time was also on offer, giving visitors

these companies will be seen at other shows in

the same venue though ISTS at Silverstone has

the chance to take their own cars around the

the near future.

its work cut out if it wants to keep its ‘must visit’

circuit, plus there was drifting on display to help fill the air with atmosphere generating tyre smoke.

tag with consumers. On the basis of 2010’s show On the positive side of things though, installs

too it may have its work cut out convincing the

were still visible throughout the show in the car

audio companies to come back, but there’s

From an audio point of view the show may have

club areas proving that the desire for good

no doubting the nice people at Live Promotions

been a bit of a disappointment for some. Last

sounds is still there. While they may not have

will already be planning for a bigger and better

year we reported on ISTS (at its old venue) and

been able to look at latest audio products

ISTS 2011.

the ICE area was severely depleted compared

from manufacturers, it’s still an

to the year before. In fact, it was only Armour

integral part of many peoples car

and Midbass that really had any presence from

modifying, it’s just a shame there

a manufacturer’s point of view. TRAX had been

wasn’t a massive amount of audio

better with those two plus the likes of Pro Plus, In

on display to keep inspiring them.

Phase, Kenwood and Maxxsonics turning up with

M.E.N will report on future events

stands, so the hope was that this same venue

and hopefully this problem won’t

would attract the same level of support. In reality

be the case, perhaps even ISTS

though none of the audio companies had their

in 2011 will see a return to form

own specific stands but instead there was a

for the show when it comes to

scattering of audio cars including those from

their ‘ICE village’. Speaking of

Sextons, Ian Pinder’s Astra, In Phase’s van, some

2011’s show, hopefully the layout

Armour Audio filled cars like the Kicker Civic,

and organisation of ISTS will be

“On the enthusiast side of things the show was certainly buzzing, with new creations on show and a heady mix of car clubs battling it out for the accolade of ‘best stand’ and the accompanying cash prize.”




For as little as £17 per month, you can list your

company details here. For more information, contact

0870 444 3531 or e-mail


Alpine Electronics of UK Ltd Contact: Keith Holness T: +44 (0) 2476 719623 E: W: Brands: Alpine Armour Automotive Limited Contact: Sales T: 0800 783 9125 E: W: Brands: Autoleads, CTi, iO, Mutant, Radiomobile, Veba, VI, Avital, Clifford, Focal, Hornet, Kicker, Orion, Viper Anglia Fleet Services T: 01493 888017 M: 07760196088 W: E: Brands: Anglia Fleet Services Ltd offer a One stop shop. Vehicle Conversions Specialists. Customer operations and national vehicle installation services of the highest quality including a  wide range of accessories such as Racking, Roof Racks, Tow Bars, Graphics, Van Vaults, Bulkheads, Light Bars, Beacons, Hands Free kits, Tracker, Sat Navs.


CSS Aftermarket Division Contact: Mick Barber T: 01332 669920 E: W: Brands: Parksafe - Onyx Audio Rhino Mat Sound Deadening - Main UK Distributor Sub Boxes UK Only Parcel Shelves - Accoustics Carpet - Facia’s, Iso Leads, RCA leads Meta Distributor - UK’S GT Alarms ice Products

Bazooka (Flagship Products) Contact: Greg Morris T: +44 (0) 20 8838 8844 E: W: Brands: Bazooka, Morel

Clarion (GB) Limited Contact: Sales at Clarion T: +44 (0) 1793 870400 F: +44 (0) 1793 875881 E: W: Brands: Clarion Cobra UK Contact: Cobra Sales T: 01932 772 400 E: W: Brands: Cobra offers a complete range of vehicle security and electronic systems: CobraTrak stolen vehicle tracking systems, Cobra alarms and immobilisers, Cobra ParkMaster parking sensors, Rosen retro fit in-car DVD systems, BlueConnect Bluetooth handsfree systems, E-Cruise aftermarket cruise control and speed limiters, Coyote live safety camera alert systems, and Mobileye Collision Prevention Systems

Car Audio Supplies Ltd Contact: Pav / Rejjy T: 01604 601500 / +44 (0) 7810652661 Email address: W: Brands: Earthquake, Audiopipe & Mobile Spec

Audio Wave LTD Contact: Grant Hanan T: +44 (0) 1702 589722 E: W: Brands:  Audio Wave - Handcrafted bespoke amplifiers

Axis Contact: Chris Woods T: 0870 350 2460 E: W: Brands: DLS, CDT Audio, Massive Audio, Skinz

CKO International Contact: Mark Scarff T: 020 8863 8333 W: Brands: CKO, Eurologics, Necvox, Nesa/ VST, Rosen

Car Audio Security Contact: Reno or Allan T: 08707 220011 E: W: / Brands: UK Wholesaler for JBL, Infinity & Harman Kardon. Authorised Dealers for: Alpine, Kenwood, Pioneer, Sony, JVC, Vibe, Fli, Boss Audio, Orion, Clifford, Snooper, Hertz, Rainbow, Fusion

Canm8 Ltd Contact: Colin Palmer T: 08452266283 E: SALES@CANM8.COM Brands: Canm8 range of can bus interfaces can bus custom design

Automonitor Mobile Multimedia Ltd Contact: Hugh J McTernan T: +44 (0) 116 275 2020 E: W: Brands: Automonitor, SAVV, Necvox, Visteon and Vizualogic


Bravox Audio (Hexen A.D) Contact: Ajay Maisuria T: +44 (0) 20 8904 7099 E: W:, Brands: Bravox & BSA Speaker Systems

Audiovox Incaar Systems GmbH Contact: Ian Rosevear T: 01483 722531 E: W: Brands: AIS, Incaar

Audiopipe Contact: Pav / REJJY T: 01604 601500 / +44 (0) 7810652661 E: pavkapoor@hotmailcom W: Brands: Audiopipe, Earthquake & Mobile Spec

Chameleon Codewing Ltd Contact: Kent Stabler T: 01206 500 848 M: 07702 565100 E: W: Brands: Authorised Distributor for THB Bury, Parrot, Motorola, Kram Radio Mutes, Scorpion, Dashmount, Brodit, Steelmate, Alpine, Kenwood, Snooper & Nokia. Plus Trade & Corporate Nationwide installation.

BF.UK (The Bass Factory Ltd) Contact: John Nutting T: 01902 458 010 E: W: Brands: Custom built bass boxes made to manufacturers specifications for all makesof subwoofers. Plus large Universal range. All made in the U.K.

20:20 Mobile Contact: Marc James T: 01270 411838 E: W: Brands: Nokia, IO, BlackBerry, Sony Ericcson, Jabra, Motorola, LG

Commercial Electronics Contact: Salim Ali T: +44 (0)208 404 7105 F: +44 (0) 208 404 7104 E: W: Brands: Designed & engineered in UK.  Est. over 25 years. OEM service available.  Hawk Car Alarm, Hawk Reversing Angel, Hawk Motorcycle Alarm, Hawk GPS, Demon Alarm, Demon iReversing , Demon Motorcycle Alarm, Demon Tracking. Connects2 Contact: Andrew Simner T: 0845 257 5588 F: 0121 522 5589 E: W: Brands: Connects2 – Interface solutions for O.E.M and after market systems, Includingadapters for iPod, USB, MP3, CD, MD, Aux, Stalk inc CAN-Bus, Stalk &Display, Telemute, Parrot and MOST fibre optic iPod & Bluetooth hands free interfaces

Cellular Trade Accessories (CTA) Contact: Sales T: 01296 425831 E: W: Brands: Nokia, Sony Ericsson, Parrot, Motorola, Autoleads, Scorpion, Jabra Celsus UK Limited Contact: Sales T: +44 (0)1202 664 390 E: W: Brands: Celsus Accessories, Calearo, CANBus, Dynamat Europe, iPod Integration, Jehnert, JL Audio, MTX Audio, Stinger Electronics, PAC Audio, Stinger DSI CEL Trade Contact: Andrew Marsden T: 01162 449846 E: W: Brands: Becker, Blaupunkt, DriveSync, Garmin, Navman, Road Angel, Snooper, Sony, TomTom


Daltec AI Ltd Contact: Peter Dallas T: 0208 515 7820 E: W: Brands: Authorised distributers for Dice IPod, Dension, Steelmate, THB Bury, Nokia, Brodit, Bluetooth car kits and much more….. Dashmount Contact: Steve Taylor T: +44 (0) 208 391 1911 E: W: Brands: Dashmount

For less than £17 per month, you can list your company details here. For more information, contact 01268 754 897 or e-mail 44



DIRECTORY Directed Electronics Contact: Armour Automotive T: 01420 476 767 E: W: Brands: Clifford, Viper, Hornet, Avital, West Coast Customs, Directed Audio, Orion, Directed Video, Directed Mobile Media Drive Contact: Ben May T: +44 (0) 1943 882724 E: W: Brands: IO Play, Hirschmann, Brodit, Bloomice, Steelmate, Plantronics, Parrot, Nokia, Sony Ericsson, Motorola, Siemans, THB Bury, Autoleads, Visorblade, Wallen, Plantronics, Road Pilot Micro Go, Laser Park Pro, Snooper, Smartnav, Trackstar, Connects2, Antenna’s, Consumables Drivesync - Tracking Contact: Andrew Marsden T: 01162 449846 E: W: Brands: Drivesync - Tracking.


Earthquake Contact: Pav / REJJY T: 01604801500 / +44 (0) 7810652661 E: W: Brands: Earthquake, Audiopipe & Mobile Spec Electronics Worldwide Ltd Contact: Chris Williams T: +44 (0) 800 083 1893 +44 (0) 1928 759239 E: W: Brands: Falcon Alarms Systems, DE Multimedia






Parrot UK Limited T: 0844 472 2360 E: W: Brands: Parrot

Kenwood Electronics UK Limited T: +44 (0) 1923 816444 E: W: Brands: Kenwood T: 0871 871 9747 E: W: Brands: Audiovox InCaar Systems, Becker, c~quence, Dension, Flash2pass, i-sotec, Parkology, Paser, Vizualogic



Select Products Contact: Matt T: 01233 62 32 36 E: W: Brands: Select Products

Navigon AG Contact - Anthony Mills T: 01189 635 965 F: +49 40 370 88 480 E: W:

SmarTrack Ltd - Global Telemetrics Contact: Andrew Newman T: 0845 833 6971 – 07787 106493 E: w: Brands: SmarTrack – MotoTrak – TOADTRAK - uTrack

Navman Contact: Andrew Marsden T: 01162 449846 E: W: Brands: Navman

Fusion Electronics UK Ltd Contact: Roy Bryan T: 01268 889580 E: W: Brands: Fusion

Novus Systems Ltd Contact: Nigel Carter T: 0845 659 0959 E: W: www.novusgps.comm Brands: Novus speed camera detectors


Origin Technologies Ltd Contact: Steve Doyle T: 0203 010 1000 E: W: Brands: Pogo and Origin

Sailes Marketing Ltd Contact: Matthew Sailes T: +44 (0) 1386 554210 E: W: Brands: Manufacturer and Distributor of CAN Bus interfaces, Electronic Interfaces, Automotive Transducers, Data Logging Systems and SpeedWatch Scorpion Automotive Ltd Contact: Petra T: 01257 249928 E: W: Brands: Scorpion Security, Scorpion Parking Systems, Scorpion Stolen Vehicle Recovery Systems, Scorpion Cellular Accessories, Scorpion Multi Media, Scorpion Reversing Cameras

Morel (Flagship Products) Contact: Greg Morris T: +44 (0) 20 8838 8844 E: W: Brands: Morel, Bazooka

Frequency Telecom Ltd Contact: Stephen Donovan T: 020 8397 2222 E: W: Brands: Jelly Communications,, UK Car

Gemini Security Direct UK Ltd Contact: Kelly Pee T: +44 (0) 1354 695 946 E: W: Brands: Manufacture of Car Alarms, Can-bus, Wireless Sensors, Parking Sensors Cellular Accessories.

JKM Entertainment Limited Contact: Matthew Wing T: 01298 808230 E: W: Brands: JKM G4 (Double Din Car PC) and JKM S3 (Single Din Car PC)

Locks4Vans Ltd Contact: Sales T: +44 (0) 1474 560077 F: +44 (0) 1474 561112 E: W: Brands: L4V, Diablock, Bodyguard, Containerlock, Deadlocks, Slamlocks, Defender

Panorama Antennas Ltd Contact: John Thomson T: +44 (0) 20 8877 4444 E: W: Brands: Manufacturer of antennas for DAB, Mobile Radio, Tetra, 3G Broadband and other wireless technologies. Paragon Auto Electrics Contact: Paul Culling T: 0845 33 00 600 E: W: Brands: Alpine, Kenwood, Pioneer, JVC, Clarion, Sony, Rockford, Connects2, Autoleads,TR Speed Detectors,Hirschmann

Contact: Kevin O’Byrne T: 0118 9701612 E: W: Brands: The trade association of independent specialist retailers

Focal See Armour for contact details



M Mobile Media Specialist Association Ltd

Fli Audio T: 0870 765 8423 E: W: Brands: Fli

Four Contact: Jas Dahele/Brian Parton T: 0845 450 1594 E: W: Brands: Audiocontrol, Audison, Hertz, Rainbow, Connection & Poket

In-CarPC Ltd Contact: David Hitchings T: 0117 972 1775 E: W: Brands: In-CarPC, Mini Intel Atom Automotive PC, Mini Intel Core 2 Duo Automotive PC, Mini Via C7 Automotive PC, Pico Automotive PC

Steelmate Automotive (UK) Ltd Contact: Kevin Kay T: 01582 475677 E: W: Brands: Steelmate Parking sensors, TPMS, HID



Twd LTD Contact Name: Smudge T: 07980 594 579 F: 01902 863 999 W: Brands: Crunch, Hifonics, MB Quart, Toxic, Audiobahn Vibe Audio T: 0870 765 8423 E: W: Brands: Vibe

For less than £17 per month, you can list your company details here. For more information, contact 01268 754 897 or e-mail MOBILEELECTRONICSNEWS.EU




Anybody Seen My

Camel? Adam Rayner has to travel by train and doesn’t like it …

Older readers will recall Jasper Carrott and Ben Elton from their days in stand up comedy before they became media moguls. Both had public transport based segments in their acts. Jasper’s was all about The Nutter On The Bus and how he always managed to have the on-the-edge-of-inappropriate-behaviour passenger settle next to him, riding the bus but not the full ticket. Ben’s was about a double seat and how you would pretend to be asleep on the train as the carriage fills up, so that others would have to end up sharing their double seat while you got to ride with some personal space. And then, there are the Mike Myers Austin Powers

do the week’s shopping before the merest fluttery

decide that the pretty girl at the four seater has

movies wherein we are asked for sympathy for

sound from behind the dash was (I found out later)

the short straw but that I’ll be gallantly absent and

the wife and family of the casually murdered

an indication of the heater running out of water.

simply not intrude with so much as eye contact.

henchman. We are asked to see it from his side….

And so I was on my own driveway and able to

Next thing I know, the nutter is there, ten minutes

do all my packing of clothes and fishing tackle

into the journey and pounces, asking prettiness to

My lovely old Daddybus

as I had decided to try to sort out a feature for

move her bag so he can sit down. Embarrassed

Volvo has a problem

the Anglers Mail as well, who I am lucky enough

and horrified, all I can do a half hour later as nut

but like a sweet old girl,

to work for sometimes. So, while the AA man

job admires the ceiling above and behind his left

decides to pop her hose

strapped tape around my hose before following

shoulder, is to finally make eye contact and mouth

close to home on the

me to the garage, I also booked a train ticket….

“I’m SORRY!” at her!

night before Gadget

I get to the platform and this ferrety-looking bloke

Anyway, this bloke is right on the edge of

asks, “What’s in the box?” because I am carrying

inappropriate and is joining happily in with my

a Fox rod case. I tell him and it begins. Questions

phone convos about passes for Metallica’s sound

now see this from mine…

Show Live. She had let us go

and more questions and you don’t wan to be rude but by the time the train has arrived, he’s me mate but I have

left it late, panicked and only just got off at the right stop, I never said any more to her but she came round the show on the Saturday and found me and was very good about the whole thing and

But when you are me, wobbling up the

even forgave me for applying the nutter to her!

aisle in a train or plane, imagine the long-

Meanwhile, the Gadget Show Live crowd was

haul horror of the Fat Bloke being your fellow

awesome. A fully sold out show, with Kenwood

passenger. I see their faces fill with ill-concealed

and Pioneer the only mobile electronics outfits

fear, turning to utter relief when I go past. But

there. I reckon space at the show won’t have

some poor bastard has to be that person and I

been cheap but the atmo was like a sort of UK CES for the public. I know they had some spaces

But it hurts a little, so I am sensitive. I get to the table in the train and there’s a young couple sat on either side of the table I am booked at, luxuriating in all the room. So I think ‘poor loves’ and


person working on the Gadget Show as well. As I

next to him and besides, I have a

feel for them.


transpires that the impinged-upon lass is a promo

decided I really ain’t riding booked table seat.


engineer and my ex pole dancer mate and it

unsold around the Pioneer stand so next year there may well be more exhibitors. In all my years, I have never heard of a sell-out in advance. More of you shoulda been there……

Take care, now and avoid the old BOOMPH tinkle…

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