August 2018 INDUSTRY BRIEFS
Superior Restoration to Host Annual “Fun in the Sun” Seminar
Mark your calendars, restoration specialists, trimmers, detailers and PDR techs! Sacramento, California-based Superior Restoration Products is gearing up for its annual Fun in the Sun seminar, slated for Saturday, August 25, at the company’s headquarters.
The one-day event will offer a lively learning experience, complete with numerous booths showcasing and demonstrating the latest repair techniques and products to sharpen technical skills and expand product knowledge. Attendees can choose from a diverse array, from steering wheel repair, leather, vinyl and cloth repair to dash repair, headlight refinishing and plastic welding to sewing techniques and color theory used for color matching, plus much more. Attendance is limited. To register, contact John Davidson, 800.760.9130, or visit the company website, www.superiorrestoration.com/events.
Industry Mourns Passing of FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and Ferrari CEO Sergio Marchionne passed away on Wednesday, July 25. An outsider initially hired by the Agnelli family at a time of crisis for Fiat, he became known as a visionary and influential figure in the auto industry. Marchionne, 66, is credited with saving Chrysler from bankruptcy and combining it with the once-flagging Fiat (where he had already staved off bankruptcy) to create the global automaker FCA. Mike Manley, who had led the company’s Ram and Jeep brands, was appointed his successor.
Marchionne’s FCA accomplishments are legendary. He inspired the Dodge Challenger Hellcat, which, with its 707HP, helped to revive interest in modern-day muscle cars. He led the charge for the Ram 1500 Rebel known for its superior off-road capability, and was the vision behind the revamped 2018 Jeep Wrangler, along with several notable high-performance Alfa Romeos and Ferraris, among others.
“NADA is deeply saddened to learn of the tragic passing of Sergio Marchionne,” said Wes Lutz, chairman of the National Automobile Dealers Association and president of Extreme Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep-Ram in Jackson, Mich. “He was a force of nature and a true visionary within our industry. Franchised dealers will always be grateful for his unrelenting drive and incredible focus, which not only helped steer one of the world’s most iconic brands through some pretty dark days, by through foresight helped position that brand for success and growth in a changing market.”
Marchionne also left his mark on the 707HP Ram 1500 Rebel, known for superior off-road capabilities comparable to a Jeep®.
Hot Wheels Sponsors Syracuse Nationals Car Show
Hot Wheels Car Care Products was the presenting sponsor of the nineteenth annual PPG Syracuse Nationals held at the New York State Fairgrounds, July 20 – 22. The yearly event is the largest classic car show in the Northeast, attracting more than 8,000 hot rods, 450 vendors and nearly 100,000 enthusiasts from across the U.S. and Canada who come together to celebrate the collector car hobby.
During the show, the Hot Wheels Car Care Crew was stationed near each entrance, helping to educate, demonstrate and sell the company’s line of professional appearance products. The Hot Wheels Car Care Proving Grounds also featured a special display of classics and muscle cars valued at $1.8 million.
“We (were) excited to have an amazing brand like Hot Wheels Car Care Products as a partner this year,” said Rob O’Connor, president of PPG Syracuse Nationals. “The Hot Wheels brand is synonymous with the car culture. Any car enthusiast will tell you their love of the car hobby started with Hot Wheels.” www.AmericanaPro.com/hotwheels.
Hot Wheels Car Care Products, presenting sponsor of the 2018 PPG Syracuse Nationals, used the occasion to display super-size replicas of its new logo-enhanced bucket featuring 20-oz. bottles of the company’s professional appearance products.
Airforce One Detailing Team Marks Milestone Anniversary at Museum of Flight
For the fifteenth consecutive year, master detailer Renny Doyle’s Air Force One Detailing team made its annual trek to Seattle’s Museum of Flight. The hand-picked team—comprised of successful detailers trained and certified by the International Detailing Association (IDA), as well by Doyle–is responsible for restoring and preserving the exterior paint and brightwork of the first presidential Air Force One.
The team also took its first shot at preserving the museum’s newest acquisition, a Boeing B-52-G Stratofortress Bomber known as the Midnight Express. Built in 1960 as a nuclear-armed Cold War platform, the aircraft saw extensive service during the Vietnam War. Also on the agenda: polishing the B-29 Super Fortress, a WWII bomber the team began restoring in 2011; and polishing the supersonic Concorde Alpha Golf, which the team has been working on since 2014, along with numerous other aircraft on exhibit at the museum.
Renny Doyle’s Air Force One Detailing team has been restoring and preserving rare vintage aircraft at Seattle’s Museum of Flight for 15 years.
COMPACT PICKUP IN FORD’S FUTURE
According to the latest news, Ford may have an ace up its sleeve in the form of a compact pickup truck. The company, which will soon roll out its midsize Ranger, is reportedly developing a compact pickup to be built on the next-generation Focus platform. The truck, projected for release in 2022, is said to be based on Ford’s small Courier pickup currently sold in Brazil.
Ford’s compact Courier pickup shown here is sold in Brazil. A U.S version, based on the next-generation Focus platform, is projected to hit the market in 2022.
Nostalgia Abounds at Blue Suede Cruise
Set against a backdrop of oldies rock n’ roll, the 17th Annual Lingenfelter Performance Engineering Blue Suede Cruise, held on July 13 – 17 at Summit Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio, was reminiscent of pompadours and poodle skirts.
Awash with pre-1972 and earlier street rods, muscle cars and resto mods, the event featured a variety of activities: nostalgic drag racing, a burnout contest, a manufacturer midway, a nighttime concert and fireworks, plus door prizes from Summit Racing, Mickey Thompson Performance Tires & Wheels and Trick Flow Specialties, among others. Additionally, a 1934 Ford Roadster roller, built by ScottRods Custom Hot Rods and Fiberglass and valued at $22,000, was given away during the show.
The annual Blue Suede Cruise, held at Summit Motorsports Park in Ohio—home to Summit Racing’s NHRA Nationals—included an action-packed burnout contest.
Industry Veteran Rejoins Innovative Creations Team
Thirty-two-year industry veteran Michael Stanifer was recently appointed VP and director of sales for Peoria, Arizona-based Innovative Creations Inc. Stanifer previously spent 13 years at ICI as national sales manager, during which time he served two three-year terms on the select committee of the Professional Restylers Organization, a SEMA council.
“After spending 13 years with a great company like Innovative Creations…I felt I needed to spread my wings and work in a different category of the automotive aftermarket,” said Stanifer. “My decision (to return to ICI) was based on the opportunity to see all the great new products that the company has been launching, a positive culture, (and) my history with the company and their commitment to their loyal customers.” www.icionline.com
Following a three-year hiatus, Mike Stanifer has rejoined truck-accessory manufacturer ICI as VP and director of sales.