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Vehicle To Vehicle Communications To Be Scrapped? Part II

v2v2

Though there is so much at stake, Bozzella also held out an olive branch in his statement, saying he would be willing to work with legislators to find a compromise.

“We appreciate the Senators’ willingness to work with us to address our concerns with the bill,” he said. “It is critical that we continue to collaborate on ways to engineer, examine, and evaluate proposed spectrum sharing strategies to ensure that harmful, potentially life-threatening, interference does not occur.”

This article was written in the Fender Bender Newsletter and is news that I feel is relative to you because it is a part of the auto industry. It’s important that you keep up with news from our industry especially if a customer is trying to strike up a conversation about stuff they assume you should know.

When it comes to collision repair and the industry as the greater whole, there is never too much information. It’s your job to stay engaged and connected even if it has nothing to do with fixing a dent. We here at the King of Car Care are committed to your continued growth and try to always provide you with talking points and information that you can add to your website to encourage customer conversations. These are the types of stories that you can add your own spin onto and yes, be opinionated about them, even if your opinion isn’t a popular one.

Sometimes, playing the devil’s advocate is exactly what you need to do to put a thorn in the side of the complacent. You can follow up your story at a later date with how you really feel, which may not be quite as opposing as you made it sound.

Vehicle To Vehicle Communications To Be Scrapped? Part I

v2v2

A number of auto industry trade groups are unhappy with a proposed bill that hit the U.S. Senate last week, a piece of legislation that many say could compromise the future of vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication.

 

The bill, introduced last week by Sens. Marco Rubio (R–FL) and Cory Booker (D–NJ), is called the WiFi Innovation Act. The act would open up to the public 5.9 gigahertz of Internet access that has been set aside for short-range V2V communication since 1999.

 

Many tech groups support the legislation, including the Consumer Electronics Association, which released a report last week gauging the economic impact of devices that use unlicensed spectrums—like the 5.9 gigahertz up for grabs currently.

 

“Consumer demand for spectrum-enabled products that provide the ‘anytime/anywhere’ connectivity we want is now driving the need for even more unlicensed spectrum,” the Consumer Electronics Association said in the release. “Through the study initiated by this legislation, the FCC will be empowered to put our country’s spectrum to its most efficient use.”

 

But those in the auto industry say there’s more at risk than human connectivity, including safety factors from WiFi interference or unavailability, and even stunting innovation in the industry.

“The lifesaving benefits of V2V communications are within reach. Given what’s at stake, an ill-informed decision on this spectrum is a gamble,” said Association of Global Automakers (AGA) President and CEO John Bozzella in a statement last week.

 

Currently, thousands of vehicles with V2V communication technology are being tested on public roads, according to the AGA, and the Department of Transportation has agreed that the use of the technology could help drivers avoid nearly 4.5 million accidents a year.

 

In addition, many industry groups are concerned that sharing the 5.9 gigahertz could stunt V2V technology growth before it ever has a chance to get off the ground, according to Associations.

Marketing Trend Information Released for your Collision Repair Businesses

Marketing

 

Proof that marketing is absolutely fundamental to your business. If you have been on the fence about whether or not to get fully submerged in online marketing, perhaps these statistics will make it an easier decision.

Summit e-Marketing Sherpas outlined various statistics accumulated from multiple studies and marketing groups. Information found on Fender Benders site.

Key highlights included:

  • 77 percent of consumers prefer email as the main method of promotional communication
  • Email marketing generates a $40 return on investment for every $1 spent.
  • 88 percent of consumers search online before purchasing a local product or service.
  • 46 percent of consumers only use a mobile device to perform an online search before purchasing a local product or service.
  • 72 percent of Internet users are on social media.
  • 98 percent of consumers read text messages within three minutes.
  • The average consumer now spends more time on their smart phone than any other device.
  • 85 percent of consumers say they read online reviews for local businesses.
  • 73 percent of consumers indicated that good reviews make them trust a business more.

In light of the accumulated statistics, Summit e-Marketing said companies should use email, social media and text messages to market and sell to consumers. In addition maintaining a website and creating a customer feedback strategy are also important.

Pretty convincing right? You need to put together a plan that works for you. Don’t overwhelm yourself or you will quit before you have the chance to see the rewards for your efforts. We here at the King of Car Care, write on this subject often so take a look at our archives to find our topics covering social media and marketing.

In the beginning, it will take a little bit of time to set yourself up, but once you do, your efforts will operate like a well-oiled machine needing of course your weekly input and response to inquiries.

Aluminum Frenzy Still On The Up-rise Part IV

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More Ford vehicles

The F-150 pickup — the industry’s highest-volume vehicle — switches from a steel body to aluminum late this year. Once the two plants that build the truck are running at full speed, Ford will overtake Jaguar Land Rover as the industry’s largest manufacturer of aluminum-bodied vehicles, with expected volume of around 650,000 per year.

Rosner’s sources indicate that by 2017 Ford will be using aluminum bodies on five other pickups and SUVs: the F-250, F-350, Navigator, Expedition and Expedition EL.

That would bring Ford’s aluminum bodies to more than 1 million units per year, he said. He added that the five vehicles will move to the F-150 platform.

Alcoa expects automotive demand for aluminum to double by 2025, while Novelis expects to increase sales to automakers 15 percent per year for the rest of the decade.

“When automakers decide to move into aluminum, they do that three or four years in advance of the model year,” Tom Boney, general manager of automotive for Novelis North America, told Automotive News.

“In that time, the aluminum industry is quite capable of capitalizing to meet those requirements. Novelis has spent more than $550 million to increase our capacity. We’ve done that in the United States, Germany and China.”

I think without a doubt, with this report found in Automotive News, those that had doubts about the future of aluminum need to reconsider their stance. There is no escape and if anything, the walls will start to close around those body shop owners that refuse to get ahead of these changes.

Manufacturers are quite competitive when it comes to this subject. The question becomes whose is bigger and better. Kind of reminds me of Tim Allen but instead of power we’re talking aluminum and who can get their mpg lower first. This competition is great for the consumer because its heated state will drive prices down, something none of us would complain about.

Are you preparing for the inevitable? Contact us to find out how we can help you get on board through training. Be prepared and don’t get left behind.

Aluminum Frenzy Still On The Up-rise Part III

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GM product chief Mark Reuss said he worries about repair costs.

“I read in Automotive News about the tools required to fix an aluminum truck. I saw those costs. We know it’s expensive,” he said at a technology conference in Detroit last week.

Aluminum-free Ram

At Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, CEO Sergio Marchionne said last month that the Ram pickup is not the best use of aluminum in the Chrysler Group lineup.

But he hinted that the next-generation Jeep Wrangler SUV, due to start production in 2017, could be the first Chrysler vehicle to get an aluminum body.

Chrysler has made big strides in boosting the fuel economy of the hot-selling Ram. With a V-6 gasoline engine, the Ram is rated at 25 mpg on the highway, highest for any full-sized pickup with a gasoline engine.

The Ram with an optional EcoDiesel engine is rated at 28 mpg on the highway, the highest ever achieved by a full-sized pickup.

Emmanuel Rosner, an analyst for CLSA Americas, says the increased capacity being installed by Alcoa and Novelis doesn’t necessarily mean that an automaker has committed to another aluminum-bodied vehicle.

The higher volume could be used for stamped body parts instead of entire bodies. “If they don’t go for full aluminum bodies, they may try to achieve similar outcomes through a combination of high-strength steel and some aluminum panels. For that, you don’t even have to make a major redesign,” Rosner says.

“If you just go for the hood, like the current F-150 has, you don’t need to change the entire production process. It becomes somewhat less effective, but also a less onerous type of bet.”

Aluminum Frenzy Still On The Up-rise Part II

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Japan’s Kobe Steel is in talks with Toyota Tsusho Corp., a trading company affiliated with Toyota Motor Corp., to form a joint venture to make automotive-grade aluminum sheet metal in the United States.

In April, Novelis Inc. broke ground for an automotive sheet metal line at its plant in Nachterstedt, Germany.

Outside of Ford, other mass-produced aluminum-intensive vehicles on the road or on the way include:

• Jaguar’s new XE compact sports sedan: Scheduled to begin production next year and reach the United States in 2016, the car will compete against the Audi A4, BMW 3 series, Cadillac ATS, Mercedes-Benz C class and numerous Asian luxury cars.

• Tesla Model X and small sedan: The Model X crossover is the next Tesla aluminum-bodied vehicle to begin production, which kicks off in late summer 2015. The following year, a new small aluminum sedan is scheduled. Tesla’s lone production vehicle, the Model S, sold 6,457 units globally in the first quarter, up from 4,900 a year ago.

• Chevrolet Corvette: The sports car, redesigned for the 2014 model year, uses an aluminum frame that weighs 360 pounds. It is on track to sell more than 36,000 units in 2014, more than double 2013’s volume of about 17,000.

• Range Rover and Range Rover Sport: Jaguar Land Rover will build about 100,000 of the aluminum-bodied SUVs this year, about the same as last year. The company is working on plans to boost capacity in 2015, the company says.

• 2015 Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon mid-sized pickups. Due this fall, the pickups will have aluminum hoods.

General Motors is expected to decide within a year whether it will use aluminum bodies on the next-generation Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups, due around 2018. GM has developed aluminum welding technology that could simplify bonding and riveting.

 

Aluminum Frenzy Still On The Up-rise Part I

car-body

You may as well get used to the aluminum frenzy because I can tell you that it is not going away. Those of you that thought that this was a passing trend are in for a big surprise. The auto industry is in the middle of their own competitive nature and are aggressively looking for the way to make aluminum work for them and across what countries will this impact production? What’s coming down the pipeline and how will these changes continue to affect you?

Manufacturers are only just warming up and there is far more coming our way. Already there are vehicles made with more aluminum body panels, such as the doors, roofs and trunks. We already know about the Ford F150 coming out this fall with a projected annual sales of $650,000.  Ford has said that by 2017 they will make more than 1 million vehicles with aluminum bodies.

The rush to aluminum is chock-full of complexities. Aluminum is more expensive than steel. Manufacturing plants need to master how to bond and rivet aluminum parts. Body shop repair technicians need extra training to work on aluminum.

And the industry has many competing ways to boost fuel economy. The Ram 1500 pickup fitted with a diesel, for instance, gets 28 mpg on the highway, tops for full-sized pickups.

But for now, aluminum is hot. To meet growing demand:

Alcoa Inc. is expanding a Tennessee plant to boost production of automotive-grade sheet aluminum used to make hoods, doors and other stamped body parts. The company has applied for a Department of Energy loan to pay for the expansion, which is expected to be completed next year.

Alcoa officials say the company has secured long-term contracts for the aluminum that will be produced at the expanded plant.

How To Remove Motorcycle Tank Dents: It’s A Miracle! Part II

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Now if your tank has a single wall, or metal skin, then the job just dropped from possibly impossible to very simple. Simple at least for a PDR Technician. First, the technician attaches an object that appears much like a flag into the emptied tank. This has a flexible mounting so can be adjusted to any angle necessary. The flag itself is like a rectangular card with parallel black lines running the length of it on a white background.

The flag is reflected in the shiny paintwork of the motorcycle gas tank. If the tank is in perfect factory condition, then the reflected black lines will all be smooth. If on the other hand the tank is dented, then the reflected lines will converge, balloon and be distorted where the reflected dent is.

As the dent is massaged and caressed from the inside, using a special tool designed for removing dents in motorcycle gas tanks, the reflected black lines in the region of the dent will become less and less ballooned and distorted. By the time the technician has completely removed the entire dent, the reflection will be smooth and perfect.

The actual surface of the motorcycle tank is constantly checked as well for smoothness but the reflections of the black lines is the most efficient way to get the best visual and actual guide as to the presence of other dents. If properly performed, the dent will vanish completely and the repair will be completely invisible. This will be the final judgment of a PDR technician and their expertise. There will be nothing left to see if done correctly.

The futile attempts made in the past to fix a motorcycle are behind us. No more removing the tank, rubbing it down or removing the paint with stripper, then applying filler, rubbing that down before re-spraying the entire tank. All gone!

Paintless Dent Removal techniques are the way of the future. Sign up for classes now.

How To Remove Motorcycle Tank Dents: It’s A Miracle! Part I

motorcycle dent

Motorcycle dents have been the thorn in the side of body shops for longer than you can imagine. Well, for as long as there has been motorcycles and side-car bikes I would imagine this has been a problem. For as long as this has been a challenge, customers who accidentally knocked their bike off of it kickstand, only had one option and that was to replace the tank. This, especially in our times, is a very expensive solution and can cost in excess of $400 dollars.

Welcome to the 21st Century, now there are Paintless Dent Removal Technicians who have the skill set and industry tools necessary to remove those accidental dents for a small fraction of the cost of replacing the tank. The techniques that are used are like magic. In fact, you need to stick around to see how it’s done just to witness the miracle touch.

Depending on the extent of your damages, the technician will use their well-honed expertise and finesse the dents into submission from either the inside, outside or both. What you end up with is a tank that looks as if you never had a moment of bad judgment.

The process of dent removal can be tricky depending on the bike. You will always find the gas cap at the very top to allow the complete filling of the tank. Unfortunately, the caps are not a very large opening.

You will need to figure out quickly if you are working with a double skinned tank because the process changes considerably if it is. A double skinned tank is much like a metal tank within a metal tank. This type of tank makes it very difficult to remove the dent from the inside as you will be applying pressure to the inside metal skin and not the outside skin where the dent is.

 

Nine Easy Steps For Beginning A Blog Part VI

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Ninth: When blogging, you need to take advantage of some very basic services to retrieve scale-able results for your blogging efforts. One of the best is to use Google Analytics which is constantly upgrading graphs and other important information. They even offer free training so that you can understand what you are looking for and how each applies to your needs. These graphs will show you how many people are reading your blog and even from which area of the world they are reading it from. There are many other options other than Google Analytics. Just like there is an App for everything, you will find that there is a plugin for that too. It just takes a little research and you will find exactly what you are looking for.

Developing your blogging strategy is key. As mentioned, the more exposure the better the hits. These hits can translate into subscribers and eventually clients so it’s in your businesses best interest to stay engaged with these metrics and let them help you to continue to redevelop your writing until you hit the sweet spot.

The bottom line is simple, everything you do to forward your efforts in blogging and the reach of your blogs will help you to propel your businesses success. It really makes no sense to blog at all unless you have a method set up to spread the news the minute you hit enter. There’s also no sense in blogging if you have no intention of putting in the work. There are many thousands of people that set up a blog on a daily bases, but there are much less that stick to it and take full advantage of the opportunities they can present. Failure generally comes from not having set a plan in place. Hopefully, you will follow these simple suggestions and create a blog that will be successful beyond your expectations. Good luck.