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Cats & Exhausts

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.

For more information: www.qh.com

 

 

Local auto parts supply specialist and GAU member Manchester Motor Factors has re-profiled, re-categorised and replaced its entire current stock of replacement exhaust components in order to improve stock levels, availability and quality consistency for customers. The huge task has been completed in just one day, without any disruption in supply. The entire new stock, including the logistics and profiling work has been supplied by the UKs leading manufacturer, Klarius Group. Manchester Motor Factors (MMF)

MMF owner Asif Fazal is committed to delivering customer value, as well as quality, and these have been the main driving factors behind the decision to change supplier and to take on the challenge of completing the operation in one sweep.

‘The business has grown organically based on hard work and looking after customers, we knew that the range and quality of the products on offer from Klarius was excellent and we support the idea of stocking only type-approved exhausts and CATs. Klarius are also constantly introducing new products to the market, which allows us to keep ahead of customer demand.’

‘The issue with changing supplier for a large range of products was always with how to change out the stock and all the product references without spending a huge amount of time on administration. The flexibility and support shown by Klarius in assisting with the changeover and taking responsibility for the removal and disposal of the old stock meant we could make a clean break without disrupting the excellent customer service levels we have spent so long building up.’

Commenting on the operation to replace the stock, Klarius Key Account Manager Mark Norris explains, ‘We have replaced the entire stock for distributors before, as well as stocking new warehouse facilities from scratch, which is something we have done several times over the last six to eight months in the UK and abroad. Hence, we have a professional team on hand that is used to working quickly and taking care of all the small details that can slow things down and provide frustration on the day. It is this experience which has led us to offer the stock profiling, labelling and logistics service.’

‘It is unusual to complete the entire process in one day though; this includes the removal of several hundred items of scrap and the careful refilling of the storage space with over 2,000 items of profiled stock for immediate availability. We have supplied over 1,500 brand new exhaust pipes and silencers, plus over 500 catalytic converters to cover short-term demand, we will continuously monitor the stock from now on and make daily deliveries of replacement stock available from our own fleet of trucks operating our own logistics system’.

The fact that Klarius does operate its own delivery fleet, and logistics operation, means that over 90% of its deliveries are completed by Klarius trucks and drivers. Having both UK based manufacturing and a huge dynamic stock of emission control products, held at a state-of-the-art national distribution centre in Cheadle, means Klarius is likely to be the only company in the UK that is able to provide the type of service MMF has received.

MMF can also expect on-going support that includes access to a dedicated technical support team and same-day delivery direct from stock on a range of emission control products that covers over 97% of the vehicles on UK roads today.

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