Auto Serve 2012, a focused exhibition on the automotive aftermarket business organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), was held at the Chennai Trade Centre from November 16-18. The event was a showcase of a wide array of products and services in the automotive care, maintenance, service parts, garage equipment, diagnostic instrumentation, collusion and repair equipment, tyre and lubricants and pollution control equipment.More than 100 exhibitors showcased products and services in the automotive care and maintenance event. But many bigger players were missing in the three day event. This shows the negative growth of the industry and for the first time, both vehicle manufacturers and aftermarket industry witnessed negative growth.Delivering the welcome address, R Dinesh, Conference Chairman and Joint Managing Director T V Sundram Iyengar & Sons Ltd, said Auto Serve 2012 was being held against the backdrop of an apparent slowdown in India's economy and in particular, its automotive sector where most OEMs have seen significant dips in volumes. In such a scenario, the role of the aftermarket industry, which is much less cyclical than the overall economy, becomes critical for players looking to maintain growth and profitability, he said.Mr Dinesh further said, "The Indian automotive replacement market is likely to grow to around US$ 9.4 billion by 2015 from the current US$ 3.7 billion. With the proliferation of vehicles in India crossing 110 million and growing at the rate of ten to 12 per cent a year, the automotive aftermarket business in the country is heading for a humungous growth."In his keynote address, Marc Nassif, Country Head and Managing Director, Renault India, said, "India is one of the important markets when it comes to automobiles. Indian market has tremendous scope and potential for the automobile industry and has witnessed stupendous growth in the last couple of years."According to a CII study, the automotive sector is gaining attention internationally and turning out to be a reference point for emerging markets with its growth potential. The projected growth rates are favourably higher in stark contrast to the mature western markets where flat growth rates are observed. The stakeholders of the automotive sector seek stronger measures and initiatives to support this growth trajectory."India offers conducive environment for industries to invest and has emerged as a fast growing market for various investors. There is a huge scope for collaboration between India and UK in the automotive sector, particularly in the parts and aftermarket products," said Deputy High Commissioner, British Deputy High Commission, Mike Nithavrianakis in his address. Earlier Mr Nithavrianakis, released a report prepared by McKinsey and Company for CII Auto Serve 2012 on Ã¢â‚¬ËœScaling the Indian automotive aftermarket: Path to profitable growth.'According to the report, the Indian automotive aftermarket industry is likely to maintain its robust growth trajectory and is expected to grow from Rs 28,000 crore (FY2012) to Rs 37,000 crore by 2015. The market structure of the automotive aftermarket in India would begin to consolidate to realize scale benefits, for this, it will be necessary for players to make smart granular choices on "where to compete", and "how to compete" to achieve sustainable and profitable growth. The study further emphasised spare parts dealers and distributors to tap the potential of vehicle electronics. The evolving features in cars include navigation device for directions, internet connectivity, traffic control system, collision alert and emergency calls. Electronics are also used to enhance fuel efficiency in internal combustion engines and in alternative fuel technologies such as CNG and electric cars.The three-day event saw many companies launch state-of-the-art and futuristic equipment and parts. Notable among them were Manatec, Madhus Garage, radial Trading Centre, Orient Body Shop Solutions India, Aro Equipment, Marvel Tools & Accessories and Frisol that launched new products. The event attracted around 15,000 business and trade visitors and generated business enquiries worth Rs 125 crore. Over 37 sectoral associations from India and overseas participated at the show besides representation from Italy, Japan, UK, Germany, China and USA.
Madhus Garage Madhus Garage Equipments, Bangalore based trading company, launched the HawkEye Elite wheel aligner from Hunter. The HawkEye Elite comes with a completely redesigned set of wheel adaptors, which are much easier to use and also avoid metal-to-metal contact with the rim on which it is mounted. It is made out of tough polymer material to withstand tough workshop life and is nearly 50 per cent lighter in weight than previous target and clamp assembly. The new design also features a narrower profile, making it easier to use in restricted or cramped bays. In order to measure and solve the road force related problems, Madhus Garage has launched Hunter's Road Force Touch balancer, claimed to be the first balancer in the world to measure road force and tyre pull. It is faster and can do a complete balancing, along with road force measurement in the same time it takes a normal balancer to balance a wheel. The balancer also can measure and solve road force related problems and tyre pull related problems.The company also launched a new entry level Konfort 710R air-conditioning refrigerant recharge station. It provides all the essential functions like leak detection, electronic refrigerant weighing and automatic timed oil and UV tracer injection.Manatec Puducherry-based garage equipment manufacturer Manatec launched its Fox 3D Auto Boom and Jumbo 9000 wheel aligner for commercial vehicles. Auto Boom model features vision based advanced digital imaging technology and intelligent software for automatic camera movement synchronised with the movement of the lift with the vehicle. The Jumbo 9000 series comes with RF technology and can align multi-axle vehicles. The sensor arms are specially designed to suit modern low body vehicles and cover up to 24 inch rim diameter. The company's Managing Director R Mananathan said, "When we launched our Fox 3D wheel aligners, it was well accepted by both global as well as domestic markets.With the addition of this Auto Boom model we can now cater to the premium segment of the market. With the addition of these two products to our range we will definitely surge ahead of our competitors both in India and the global markets."Radial Trading CentreChennai-based Radial Trading Centre launched electronic wheel alignment systems for commercial vehicles - AXIS 4000 from Haweka of Germany. The camera radio system helps users in faster measurement of total and single toe, steering gear middle position, caster, camber, KPI, thrust angle, maximum steering turn as well as out of squareness and offset of the axles. The specialty is that the measurements are taken as in the 'driven positionÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ eventually avoiding the vehicle to be lifted. The magnetic feet enables faster fitting on the steel rims and the patented ProClamp clamping device with grapplers are also suitable for aluminium rims that may come in to the country in future. The 360-degree rotating camera helps record actual data instantaneously, which is displayed on the monitor.The measurement can be done within 15 minutes for a five-axle truck while it will take about couple of hours in the conventional machines. With additional adapters, toe, caster, offset and out of squareness the equipment can align wheels of trailers too. With couple of additional tilting the equipment can align even rigid trucks with twin steerable axles.Maha IndiaMaha India Automotive Testing Equipment launched TruckCam and Headlamp alignment system at Auto Serve 2012. The 'all in oneÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ software of TruckCam enables multiple measurement functionalities in one package including wheel alignment, frame check, twin-rolling, ACC radar adjustment, vehicle database and multi-rolling diagnostics. The software allows the operator to perform measurements of frames and chassis without adding any additional hardware. Frame deformations like side sway, vertical bend and torsion are measured electronically in the shortest time possible. The spider wheel adapter that comes with the equipment is designed to fit on most types of rims in sizes up to 24 inches. Its lightweight and stepless adjustment enables simplified attachment to the rim. The companyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s General Manager, Market Development, Rengarajan said the spider wheel adapter is suitable for rolling measurements as well as for run-out compensation, as the reference axle is adjustable. The TruckCam frame gauge that comes with the unit, works on self-centring principle. Due to compact mounting of extension bars and reflective targets, the application time of the frame gauge to the truck or bus is significantly reduced, he said, though he did not put a number to it. The uniqueness is that by shifting the extension bars to the outside, the frame gauge can accommodate different widths of light and heavy commercial vehicle without repositioning the reflective targets.