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Cats & Exhausts

Merityre Specialists Limited is a tyre retailer and fast-fit business that operates 24 branches across southern England, offering a range of tyre services along with quality independent vehicle servicing. Formed in 1961, for over 50 years the company has strived to offer service that exceeds expectation. This focus on quality and development has recently seen a number of Merityre Specialists branches become fully accredited Klarius emissions centres – offering a higher level of technical proficiency and type-approved quality Klarius emissions components to motorists.

Dene Arnold, Director Merityre Specialists continued: “We are a predominantly ‘fast-fit’ business. While our main emphasis is on tyres, we have been fitting exhausts for 20 to 30 years. As a company, we prefer emissions components that we can fit easily and cause us no trouble through recurring faults. We don’t want to be engaging in investigations regarding improper parts, so that’s why we choose Klarius. In our opinion it’s one of the best quality products out there in the aftermarket.”

Despite offering customers a high quality of service and dependable parts, Dene felt Merityre Specialists could be doing more. “We decided to join the Klarius Accreditation Scheme as we felt emissions was an area where we needed to know more. It was an opportunity to grow our knowledge base, and also re-familiarise ourselves with the latest combined emissions systems on vehicles and how they work.”

Klarius’ Accreditation Scheme, while promoting independent garages of outstanding service and facilities, also provides members with Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) accredited emissions training. Taking place around the country, the courses cover the function, failure modes and governing legislation of exhausts, catalytic converters (CAT), diesel particulate filters (DPF) and additive systems.

“We found the course to be very thorough, and were pleased to be working towards a recognised qualification,” Dene explained. “Those who conducted the training were also very knowledgeable and accommodating. As a result, we have sent 12 of our technicians on the course over 2 separate events.”

“While I can’t put exact figures on it, we are experiencing a steady rise of sales in emissions components,” Dene concluded, “but one of the most important benefits is that through the Klarius scheme, we can offer our customers a heightened level of professionalism.”


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Toby Massey
Toby Massey

BM Catalysts has been shortlisted in the Family Business of the Year category of the Midlands Family Business Awards 2013. The company, which employs up to 300 staff, has been nominated for this prestigious award after demonstrating continuing development, success, commitment to innovation and excellent governance.

This is the second year BM Catalysts has been put forward as a finalist, with the Nottinghamshire based manufacturer picking up the award for ‘Manufacturing Excellence’ at last year’s awards ceremony. News of the latest nomination was welcomed by managing director, Toby Massey, as he confirms: “Having won an award for ‘Manufacturing Excellence’ at last year’s ceremony and finding out that we have been shortlisted at the Midlands Family Business Awards for a second year running is not only a great boost for the company, but is hugely satisfying to be recognised for our family values and success as a family run business.

“We are proud of our family heritage and this award reflects that. The success of our business is down to our ability to manufacture aftermarket parts of the highest quality using state of the art machinery, as well as continually meeting on-going market demands. We are determined to continue investing in our people and facilities to ensure we become a leader in the EU aftermarket.”

Toby Massey is the third generation of the Midlands-based family to lead the business. His father passed him the role of managing director in April 2012, after taking the company from being a local fast fit operation and turned it into Europe’s largest independent manufacturer of aftermarket catalytic converters, diesel particulate filters and front pipes.

Nomination for this, rounds off a great year for BM Catalysts, after expanding its manufacturing facilities, investing in high-tech machinery and announcing that its export sales now account for over 50% of its overall sales. Along with this, BM Catalysts has recently launched its new range of Selective Catalytic Reduction products at this year’s Equip Auto show in Paris.

The overall winner and runners-up in each category will be announced at a prestigious dinner at Birmingham University in The Great Hall on Thursday November 14. The Midlands Family Business Awards is a not-for-profit event and all proceeds raised throughout the awards and at the ceremony will go to The Prince’s Trust.

The R&D team at Klarius has developed a new replacement Citroen C1 exhaust that offers a marked improvement over the OE item, both in terms of robustness and noise reduction. The replacement, among other features operates 1dB quieter when compared to the OE in tests, which is a highly desirable in 3-cylinder cars.

“More importantly,” States Doug Bentley, Klarius Group Head of Product Development for Emission Control Products, “the ‘note’ for the exhaust is much improved so subjectively we have made a system that is both quieter and more appealing to driver perception.”

The huge increase in 3-cylinder engines being used in passenger cars is being driven by demands for better fuel economy and reduced cost, both to manufacture and maintain. Although the design has been around commercially for a long time, with various manufacturers such as Daihatsu, Suzuki and Chevy in the US using them, they only truly reached mass market use in Europe with the small eco-cars such as the Smart, VW’s Lupo and more recently Toyota / PSA shared platform models including the Aygo and C1.

One of the key problems with the three cylinder four-stroke engine is that it is inherently unbalanced and tends to produce a lot of vibration in use, it’s also noisy. Most current 3 cylinder engines employ balancer shafts to counteract the engine vibration*, but on early cars there was an issue with internal exhaust baffles coming loose on some of the PSA vehicles.

The new Klarius exhaust, UK product number CN549J, has been designed to address the issue with the baffles on OE items, with a more robust design and internal welds for durability.

“This also gave us the opportunity to ‘tune’ the exhaust at the same time,” Explains Doug Bentley. “We always test noise as part of the development work we do on each new exhaust design, and it is independently witnessed by a VCA engineer during the type approval test**, carried out at the Klarius test track.

“What we have been able to do is work on the gas flow within the silencer and gain a more appealing note to the exhaust in addition to controlling the noise from the engine and carefully matching back pressure to ensure maximum performance and economy. During the development we focussed our efforts on reducing the low frequency drone this vehicle suffers from”.

The replacement C1 exhaust design has full government type approval (as do all Klarius exhausts) providing total customer reassurance that they are buying a quality product that will maintain the economy and reliability of their vehicle. There has also been a lot of work done to ensure the fit and profile of the replacement is super accurate, as there is often little room to work on compact cars such as this and tolerances have to be extremely tight.

The entire Klarius emissions range is included in comprehensive paper catalogue format, electronically on Tec Doc.

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