Honda, Mercedes-Benz And SEAT Off-Roaders Get Top Marks For Safety

The first three cars tested by Euro NCAP in 2019 have all achieved the maximum five-star rating for safety.

The new SEAT Tarraco shares Volkswagen’s MQB platform with the Škoda Kodiaq, rated as five-stars by Euro NCAP in 2017. Against the more stringent protocols of 2019, the Tarraco’s five-star rating is notable, and its score of 97 per cent in adult occupant protection is amongst the best achieved by a car in this category.

The previous-generation Honda CR-V was tested as a diesel in 2013. In a sign of the times, this latest version is tested in petrol-hybrid form, anticipated to be the biggest-selling variant. The car performs well in all areas of safety and secures a top safety rating.

Mercedes-Benz’s rugged G-Class also comes in with a five-star rating, with Euro NCAP noting an “impressive performance” in each of the four areas of assessment.

Michiel van Ratingen, Secretary General of Euro NCAP, said: “Here we have three new vehicles, competing in the same segment and getting top safety ratings. That’s impressive enough but the fact that all three off-roaders are equipped with pedestrian and cyclist AEB systems really demonstrates the power of consumer testing, not only to encourage better performance but also to promote new technologies as standard-fit across Europe.”

End Of The Road For Car Museum

The largest collection of classic cars in the Southern Hemisphere is going up for Auction in April, with most cars completely unreserved.

The Gosford Classic Car Museum has closed its doors after a bitter dispute with the Australian Tax Office, based around whether the museum/dealership is entitled to the same taxation exemptions as other car dealerships.

More than A$30 million worth of luxury cars will go under the hammer after the owner of the classic car collection appointed Lloyds Classic Car Auctions as the exclusive worldwide auctioneer.

“Interest in this auction is already pouring in with strong bidding already commencing online and we’ve only published the auction on our website in the last few days,” said Lee Hames, Chief Operations Officer for Lloyds Auctions.

“This impressive collection of classics is highly important to motoring enthusiasts and collectors, and because there is such a wide range of cars from European, Australian and American classics, we are expecting thousands of people to show up even more than the Brock Collection Auction we ran in October last year.”

Cars within the collection include an extensive range of classic and vintage cars and motorcycles, including European, Australian and American classic cars. Ferraris, Aston Martins, Porsches, Fords and Holdens are all part of the auction.

The collection is now open for bidding online and will go up for auction in a simulcast live and online event on the weekend of 6-7 April at the Gosford Classic Car Museum. Further details can be found at www.lloydsauctions.com.au.

Collision Hub News Network CHNN – News For February 2019

Collision Hub News Network episodes provide in-depth coverage from leading industry experts on the news and information needed to stay current in claims and repairs. This episode of CHNN delves into issues currently facing the Collision Repair industry:
  • The National Association of Insurance Commissioners Names Committee Chairs
  • Multiple States Introduce Bills Affecting Collision Repair
  • Society Of Collision Repair Specialist (SCRS) Demands Response From The Department Of Insurance
  • IIHS Finds Problems With Headlights

I-CAR Presents Gold Class Insurer To IAG

Mark Czvitkovits, CEO I-CAR Australia, presented the new Gold Class Insurer plaque to Steve Fitzpatrick, EGM Motor Repair Model, IAG.

IAG was the first and for several years the only Australian Insurer to attain this internationally recognised status. Their ongoing commitment to training has seen IAG retain their Gold Class accreditation for six years.

To attain and maintain Gold Insurer status a minimum of 60 per cent of the company’s assessors must maintain their individual Platinum Status by completing 10 initial I-CAR training courses then a further two courses in the following years. Nationally in excess of 90 per cent of IAG assessors have Platinum status.

Automechanika Jeddah 2019 Announces Extended Hours And New Venue

The countdown to Automechanika Jeddah 2019 has begun, with more than 80 exhibitors from 15 countries making their final preparations ahead of Saudi’s dedicated trade fair for the automotive aftermarket next week in Jeddah.

Taking place at a new venue – from 26-27 February 2019 at the Jeddah Hilton Hotel – Automechanika Jeddah is set to present the latest trends and innovations from some of the biggest names in the global automotive aftermarket and services industry.

The Automechanika brand’s Sub-Licensor Messe Frankfurt Middle East and Saudi-based organiser ACE Group also announced extended timings for the biennial event, with thousands of expected Saudi trade buyers and auto professionals granted free entry from 10am – 9pm on both days.

“The extended timings will ensure visitors can maximise the time to meet more exhibitors over these two days,” said Nathan Lloyd, Chief Operating Officer of Messe Frankfurt Middle East. “There is plenty to look forward to, including innovative product launches, industry workshops, seminars, and of course valuable business networking.”

Automechanika Jeddah returns with its Truck Competence initiative for products dedicated to the entire value chain in the truck sector, while the global presence is underlined by five country pavilions from Turkey, Korea, China, Taiwan and Hong Kong.

Also returning is Automechanika Academy in partnership with Autolink and Institute of the Motor Industry, where C-Level recruitment in the automotive industry and developments in electric and hybrid vehicles are among the key topics discussed by industry experts.

More information is available at www.automechanikajeddah.com.

Citroën Unveils AMI One Concept

Citroën says it has marked 100 years of innovation and boldness with the unveiling of the Ami One Concept, an all-electric vehicle that “places digital technology at the heart of urban mobility”. The company will exhibit the concept at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show.

A full electric vehicle concept car capable of carrying two people, the French car manufacturer says the Ami One is faithful to the brand promise “Inspired by You”, and is the company’s response to new customer behaviour and the “challenge of the energy transition in urban environments”.

Designed to be utilised without a driver’s licence in France, the Ami One is accompanied by a global digital ecosystem “fostering a modern, cheerful and broadly accessible mobility experience”.

The concept aims to rethink the customer journey, offering ‘on-demand’ use ranging from five-minutes to five-years. This would cover a range of scenarios from car-sharing and rentals to a full-blown purchase.

The Ami One includes a mobile app that motorists can use to “manage their relationship with the vehicle”, providing access to a portal of services tailored to each journey.

I-CAR Australia Awards Gold Class To More Shops

I-CAR Australia Gold Class Coordinator Gary Wood announced that Sommerville Smash Repairs in Nerang, Queensland and Wayne Phipps Smash Repairs in Midland, Western Australia have been awarded the prestigious I-CAR Gold Class Collision status.

“Chris first approached us just over 12 months ago with an interest in becoming Gold Class accredited,” said Wood. “Following the training plan created for his shop, the staff have been regular participants in virtual training sessions and have been a pleasure to deal with. I look forward to continuing the relationship with Chris and the team at Sommerville Smash.”

“On behalf of the Sommerville Smash Repairs team, we are mighty proud of our latest achievement of I-CAR Gold status, we thank all the I-CAR team for their assistance throughout the journey, and a special thanks to Axalta,” said Chris Agnew.

“It has been a great month for everyone involved at Wayne Phipps Smash Repairs,” added Wood. “Along with achieving I-CAR Gold Class status they have also become part of the Holden Certified Repairer Network. Wayne Phipps Smash Repairs join an exclusive group of repairers who continue to set high standards in the industry.”

“Wayne Phipps is extremely proud to have achieved I-CAR Gold status,” said Wayne Phipps. “It has taken some time and energy but has been worth the ride. Staff at Wayne Phipps Smash Repairs have been enthusiastic and competitive during the journey.

“All of us at Wayne Phipps Smash Repairs look forward to working with I-CAR on our journey of continuous improvement.”

Wayne Phipps Smash Repair
Wayne Phipps Smash Repairs.

The 2019 Collision Repair Expo – SAPE’s Biggest Ever Display

The SAPE Group (Sydney Automotive Paints & Equipment) says it is proud to, once again, be the official major sponsor of The Collision Repair Expo (CRE), held concurrently with the 2019 Australian Auto Aftermarket (AAA) Expo from 4-6 April at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Building on the success of the Collision Repair Expo in recent years, the SAPE Group says it has committed to expanding its presence at the show, doubling its footprint with four stands spanning 216 square metres – one of the biggest displays at the event.

Stand AD2 and AE2, located near the show entrance, will span 180 square metres and display the latest collision repair technology, products and equipment from international brands such as Celette, GYS, Jollift,  Autorobot, Innovative Tools, Prowotech, Kamatec and IRT/Drester.

A contingent of international guests will be on hand to discuss the latest products on the market. Confirmed guests include Pierre Nicolau and Ratan Youti Samal (Celette France), Cédric Ouguergouz  (GYS France), Jarkko Venäläinen (Autorobot Finland) and Andrea Callini (Jollift Italy).

The first of the smaller stands, AF14, will span 18 square metres and showcase SAPE’s consumables range including Juice Polishes, POR-15 and Scangrip. The company will launch new products, including the much-anticipated Juice Endurance and N-Cut, plus new detailing and work lights from Scangrip.

The second of the smaller stands, AE52, also spans 18 square metres and will feature Roar Advanced Finishing’s automotive range of compounds, glazes and buff pads.

“The Collision Repair Expo is a great flagship event for our industry,” said SAPE Company Director, Paul McMartin. “This year we aim to display many of our popular range of products along with some new and innovative ones which will span over four large display spaces.”

VW’s Dune Buggy Is Back… And Now It’s Electric

At the beginning of March, Volkswagen will reveal the first fully electric version of a new buggy. Taking its cues from popular American dune buggies, the concept vehicle is based on the Modular Electric Drive Matrix (MEB) – designed to demonstrate how multifaceted the new platform truly is, according to Volkswagen.

The company says the concept of the fully electric buggy is based on the historical predecessors that found their home in California and Australia. Back then, the chassis of the Beetle served as the basis; now, the MEB platform is apparently proving to be just as flexible. This reinterpretation of a proper buggy has no fixed roof or conventional doors, while the free-standing wheels fitted with off-road tyres and open side sills dominate the overall look.

VW says the new MEB concept vehicle shows that the fully electric platform can be used for more than just large-scale series production models. Like previous Beetle chassis, the company feels MEB has the potential to facilitate the development of low-volume niche series.

The company notes that the history of recreational vehicles and its technology is a long one – from the Beetle convertible and special bodies produced by companies such as Hebmüller and Rometsch, to fully open designs of the kind embraced by the Meyers Manx buggy, the Beetle chassis allowed for creative – and sometimes exclusive – custom solutions for decades. Globally, around 250,000 individual vehicles were built as one-offs or at low volumes through to the 1980s.

The fully electric concept buggy will be revealed for the first time at the 89th International Geneva Motor Show (7 to 17 March 2019).

Fix Network World Announces Launch Of Fix Auto Masters Programme

Fix Network World has announced the launch of Fix Auto Masters, an all-new technical skills and knowledge competition programme aimed at “celebrating the skills of technicians” from across the global Fix Auto network. The first region to take part in the Fix Auto Masters programme is Fix Auto UK.

Fix Network World Operations Manager Nick Spiers says he believes a platform such as Fix Auto Masters is an important step in showcasing the talent of front-line technicians, while helping create a closer global community within the Fix Auto network.

“At Fix Network World, our people are the key to our success, and celebrating skills and performance is something we are most passionate about,” said Spiers. “Many of our technicians around the world have been instrumental in our growth and continue to have an important impact on our consistent performance. This is our way of recognising them and bringing together the best of the best.”

The programme is also supported by Thatcham Research in collaboration with 3M and AkzoNobel. Fix Network World says it is designed to measure performance in one of three categories: M.E.T., body repair and paint. Qualifying applicants will first undergo a written exam and those with the highest scores will move on to a practical assessment. The top performer in each category will be presented an award by Fix Network World at Fix Auto UK’s upcoming national conference, while automatically qualifying for the future global Fix Auto World Masters competition.

“It’s a great pleasure to support the Fix Auto Masters programme,” said Dean Lander, Head of Repair Sector Services at Thatcham Research. “We are delighted to be developing the tests and assessments to recognise the skills and dedication of body shop technicians.”

The programme is being rolled out nationally by Fix Auto UK, making the group the first region to launch a national search for top talent in its network.

“The Fix Auto Masters programme will provide us with the opportunity to show our colleagues from overseas who make up the global Fix Auto family just how skilled we are here in the UK,” said Fix Auto UK’s Ian Pugh.

More Fix Auto Masters regional launches will be announced in 2019. For more information on the Fix Auto Masters programme, visit fixauto.com.