International Leather Repair Guild To Host Inaugural Meeting At Mobile Tech Expo – Las Vegas

The newly formed International Leather Repair Guild will hold its first meeting during the Mobile Tech Expo in Las Vegas. The inaugural meeting is scheduled for 5:15 p.m. on Friday, September 6 at the South Point Hotel & Casino.

The Mobile Tech Expo kicks off at South Point with Education Day on September 5, with Show days on Friday and Saturday, September 6 -7. The International Leather Repair Guild meeting will begin immediately following Show closing on Friday.

According to meeting organizer Dean Fitzgerald, former owner of Fitzgerald’s Restoration Products, the gathering is open to all. Industry pros with related experience or who are interested in learning about leather/interior restoration are invited to attend.

Attendees are also encouraged to bring before-and-after photos of their work along with any historical or memorable photos or related memorabilia to share with the group.

“Join us in Las Vegas during Mobile Tech Expo to learn the history of our industry and get helpful technical tips and information on leather and vinyl repair services through networking with experienced techs,” said Fitzgerald. “Don’t let this dyeing industry become a dying industry,” he added. For questions or more information, email to

Orange County Detailer Awarded Master Certification

Master SONAX trainers (L-R) Sergio Fierro, Dimitrios Habermeier and Rigo Santana. Santana, owner of Xtreme Xcellence Professional Detailing, and Fierro were recently awarded master detailing certification from SONAX USA.

Rigo Santana of Xtreme Xcellence Professional Detailing was recently awarded a master detailing certification from SONAX USA, a leading supplier of high-performance car-care products.  Earning a master certification is no mean feat. It takes years to attain, is based on in-field experience, continuous training, and in Santana’s case, a focus on specializing in classic, custom and exotics car care.

Rob McCrary, managing director for SONAX USA, said the company is proud to announce the certification of both Santana and Serio Fierro, a Santana protégé, as Master Trainers. “We have known these guys for some time and have grown to respect what they do and how they do it,” he said. “We are happy that they have selected SONAX as a partner and are now trained on the SONAX line of products to the point where they can support others while working with the brand.”

From humble beginnings washing cars in Los Angeles to mastering the art of detailing and paint correction, Santana’s achievements are an American success story, a testament to his hard work and involvement in the industry.  Besides a long history of working with SONAX—most recently with the SONAX team as a member of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum (IMS) Preservation Team—he is also a member of the Air Force One Detailing Team at Seattle’s Museum of Flight as well as the McCall’s Motorworks Revival and the Quail Detailing teams at Monterey Car Week.

“Sometimes I have to pinch myself to believe how far I’ve come from sponge-washing cars at a car wash in South-Central Los Angeles,” said Santana. “But most of all, I want to thank SONAX for the opportunity to work with them on so many prestigious detailing projects. They have given me the opportunity to hone my skills and think on my feet.”

From humble beginnings washing cars in Los Angeles to mastering the art of detailing and paint correction, Rigo Santana’s achievements are an American success story.

Haskins Automotive, Geico Insurance Donate Refurbished Vehicle To Needy Family

Haskins Automotive, a family-owned business now celebrating its 90th year of service to its Wellesley, Massachusetts, community, recently teamed up with Geico Insurance to donate a refurbished 2012 Toyota Highlander XLE in conjunction with the National Auto Body Council Recycled Rides® program. The Highlander was presented to a local family of five who share one unreliable, high-mileage car for work, school and other transportation needs. 

The NABC Recycled Rides is a unique program in which businesses representing all facets of the collision repair industry team up to repair and donate vehicles to individuals and families in need of reliable transportation. Since the inception of the Recycled Rides program in 2007, members of NABC have donated more than 2,100 vehicles valued at more than $36 million.


The racing- and aeronautic-inspired Stingray’s exterior has a bold, space-age appearance with mid-engine proportions, conveying a sense of motion and power from every angle.

Amidst a media blitz and enthusiast acclaim, the first-ever production mid-engine 2020 Corvette Stingray has made its much-anticipated debut. The racing- and aeronautic-inspired Stingray’s exterior has a bold, futuristic appearance with mid-engine exotic proportions. It’s lean and muscular, with an athletic sculptural shape, conveying a sense of motion and power from every angle, according to Chevrolet.

The new location of the 6.2 –liter small block V-8 LT2 engine is the focal point of the car’s design, visible through the large rear hatch window, which showcases the engine. Additional design elements include low-profile headlamps, hidden door, hood and hatch releases, large, side-air intakes for engine cooling and aerodynamic performance, quad exhaust tips and dual-element LED taillights with animated turn signals.

The new mid-engine layout, according to Chevy, gives the Stingray better weight distribution, the fastest zero to 60mph of any entry Corvette ever—under three seconds when equipped with the Z51 performance package—along with a race-inspired view of the road and Chevy’s first eight-speed dual-clutch transmission, which provides lightning-fast shifts and superior power transfer.

According to the automaker, customers can customize the Stingray with a choice of 12 exterior colors, six interior colors, six seat-belt colors and two optional stitch packages.  Customers also have a choice of three seat options.

The sporty GT1 seats focus on comfort and support for performance driving, while the GT2 seats feature a racing-inspired look for comfort on long trips, complete with carbon-fiber trim, Mulan leather bolsters, two-way lumbar support and other upgrades. The third option, the Competition Sport, is designed for serious track-focused drivers, with aggressive bolsters, Napa-leather seating, carbon-fiber trim on the headrest, heating and ventilation, plus an all-new durable performance textile inspired by Kevlar vests.

Design elements on the new Stingray include totally hidden door, hood and hatch releases, low-profile headlamps designed around all-new projectors, large side-air intakes for engine cooling and aerodynamic performance, and an A-pillar shape that assists in visibility.

SoCal-Based Visual Imaging Corp. Partners With The Tint Pros

Vic Hernandez, owner of Southern California’s Visual Imaging Corp. has announced a new partnership with The Tint Pros, a window tint and paint-protection film company. According to the announcement, Hernandez has dissolved the Visual Imaging name, and the two companies are now situated in the same location at 1590 Newport Blvd. in Costa Mesa .

The partnership is a new division of The Tint Pros known as The Tint Pros Graphics or TTP-GFX.  TTP-GFX offers tint, paint-protection film, wraps, and design as well as large-format-related services, including building wraps. Hernandez’s entire crew has moved to the new location, and he anticipates a smooth transition for all of his former company’s clients. The Tint Pros Graphics website should be up and running soon; in the interim, the company can be reached at 949-642-1121.

2020 GMC Pickups Sport New Styling, New Features

The next generation of GMC pickups boasts the addition of innovative features to the Sierra 1500 and mid-size Canyon, as well as the launch of an all-new Sierra Heavy Duty. The 202 Sierra, for instance, offers premium, segment-leading features with the addition of the 3.0-liter Duramax turbo-diesel engine and the expansion of its carbon-fiber bed and 10-speed automatic transmission. It’s also the first full model year availability of the CarbonPro Edition with the carbon-fiber bed, available on the AT4 and Denali.

Other new features include an upgraded ProGrade Trailering System that offers 15 total available camera views, including a segment-first transparent trailer view. Adaptive Cruise Control-Camera, also new, features a single high-mounted camera behind the rearview mirror, which can bring the Sierra to a complete stop.

The new Sierra HD marks the introduction of the first-ever Allison 10-speeed automatic transmission mated to GM’s 6.6-liter Duramax turbo diesel. Other features include an enhanced ProGrade Trailering System, smart trailer integration through the myGMC mobile app and a segment-first 15-inch diagonal head-up display.

New features on the GMC Canyon include a standard Tire Fill Alert that provides audible, visual indication when tire pressure is added, as well as a new remote locking tailgate. The All Terrain trim expands package and feature availability by adding a Driver Alert package, Forward Collision Alert and Lane Departure Warning. The addition of a Carbon Black Metallic exterior color rounds out Canyon’s model-year upgrades.

The next generation of GMC pickups boasts the addition of innovative high-tech features to the Sierra 1500 and mid-size Canyon, as well as the launch of an all-new Sierra Heavy Duty.

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