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Changes to the driving test which are due to come into force on 4 December could present a significant opportunity for workshops and garages, according the UK’s leading alloy wheel protection system manufacturer.

In the new test, the much-feared “reverse around a corner” manoeuvre has been scrapped, a move which AlloyGator believes could lead to even more damaged wheels.

“It’s not uncommon for even the most experienced of drivers to scrape their wheels along the kerb, especially when reversing around a corner or performing a parking manoeuvre, causing unsightly damage,” comments Curt Rathbone, managing director, AlloyGator. “With these moves being scrapped from the driving test, it’s possible that the standards of basic car control from new drivers may fall as they may be unfamiliar performing such moves. Without this experience, accidental damage to alloy wheels could therefore become even more common when they have passed their test and are driving in real world conditions.”

Indeed, according to figures published by the Driver & Vehicle Standards Agency, control during the reverse park manoeuvre, has been one of the top ten reasons for failing a driving test every year since 2006.

To help both learner and experienced drivers alike prevent costly and unsightly damage to their alloy wheels, AlloyGator’s super tough nylon protection system sits between the alloy wheel and tyre, reducing the risk of damage to the rim caused by scuffs against kerbs. Available in a range of 15 colours, from discrete black and silver to bolder options including red, yellow and even glow-in-the-dark, they can be fitted on wheels from 12 to 24 inches in size.

Workshops joining AlloyGator’s approved fitting network are supported with a comprehensive range of marketing resources, technical back-up and next day delivery service.


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Two new live features are set to fuel discussion when the CV Show opens its doors later this month at the NEC, Birmingham.

The new initiatives, which will debut at the show between April 25-27, are the Innovation Hub presented by respected industry title Motor Transport, and interactive Twitter Lounges, on which visitors and exhibitors can tweet their experiences and news live from the show.

The focus of the Innovation Hub is on exploring the latest developments in fuels, autonomous vehicles and logistics planning.

The 45 minute sessions will include expert speakers from Iveco, TRL and Transport Systems Catapult leading the discussion on innovation, followed by facilitated debate with speakers and attendees to explore the future developments and generate feedback from the audience.

The Innovation Hub will be housed in Hall 3 and will be free to attend – there’s no need to pre-register, just turn up and take a seat.

The panel of expert speakers, which will be announced ahead of the show, will lead discussions on the following topics:

Fuels – the future thinking in diesel, electric, gas and hydrogen power sources. Is diesel really yesterday’s fuel?

Autonomy – the big industry issue of the future. What benefits will the connected truck bring to the industry?

Logistics – reviewing the freight models of the future. What are the opportunities for data management and collaboration?


The Innovation Hub is organised by Motor Transport in conjunction with the CV Show and sponsored by Smart Witness, Guests, TRL and Transport Systems Catapult.

Meanwhile, Twitter walls will broadcast visitors’ and exhibitors’ tweets live, if the handles @theCVShow and #CVShow are used. It’s a great way for exhibitors to get their messages across, following three exciting years of growth in the show’s social media presence.

CV Show Director, Rob Skelton, said: “One of the things we’ve tried to do in recent years is develop the way in which show visitors and exhibitors can communicate with each other, both with their news, and with pressing issues where the industry can benefit from a shared voice and a balance of opinions.

“The new Innovation Hub will be the perfect platform to bring together key figures in the road transport and logistics industries to discuss current issues in an open forum environment, while our Twitter walls are a great way for exhibitors and visitors to share their experiences in an immediate and visible manner and increase their social media presence.”

Visit the website to register to attend the CV Show for free and find out more about the Show’s many features, including some new live elements – details of which are to follow – and a full exhibitor list and floorplan.


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Mike Smythe.

Autoparts UK has appointed industry expert Mike Smythe as its new Group Aftermarket Parts Buyer.

Smythe has more than 30 years’ experience in the automotive aftermarket having worked previously as a buyer at Solid Auto and Andrew Page.

In his new role at Autoparts UK, he will be responsible for working with the motor factor’s supply base, ensuring the 17-branch network of Autoparts UK, Midwest Motor Factors and Monmore Auto Parts continues to receive the best possible service and support.

Craig McCracken, Autoparts UK Group Factor Manager, said: “I’m delighted to have Mike join the Autoparts UK team. His experience will prove vital in maximising our partnerships with a wide range of suppliers for the benefit of customers.”

Commenting on his new role Smythe added: “I have watched the growth of Autoparts UK in the past 20 years and I’m delighted to have an opportunity play a part in its future. The motor factor is not in the habit of switching suppliers readily but instead delivers growth to all companies through a long-term partnership. With our exciting plans, I look forward to working very closely with suppliers and leading industry brands to deliver accelerated growth.”


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