Auto Service World
News   November 4, 2020   by Allan Janssen

AAPEX Day 1: Industry meets in virtual space

The annual Automotive Aftermarket Parts Exhibition (AAPEX) opened its virtual doors yesterday, with a town hall meeting and scores of workshops, demonstrations, and training sessions.

Thousands of automotive professionals are expected to take part in the three-day event, co-hosted by the Auto Care Association and the Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers Association (AASA).

While the virtual event got off to a great start, Auto Care Association CEO Bill Hanvey admitted that organizers are looking forward to the day when the industry can meet again in person.

Check out some of the activity on Day 1 of the Virtual AAPEX Experience.


Auto Care Association president and CEO Bill Hanvey (left), and AASA president Paul McCarthy officially opened the first-ever Virtual AAPEX Experience by recapping the extraordinary year that has been 2020, and by celebrating the resilience of the industry during a global pandemic. “We are here today because we are all essential,” said McCarthy. Hanvey echoed the industry’s importance to everyone from pizza deliverers to first responders. “All of these men and women rely on us for safe and reliable transportation,” he said.

John Zentz, senior VP of global sales for Hunter Engineering (left), tells Vic Tarasik of Shop Owner Coach about the new partnership between Hunter and Bosch Diagnostics to provide automotive service professionals with an integrated system that demystifies ADAS calibration and allows technicians to improve efficiency on those jobs. Built on Bosch’s diagnostic scan tool technology and Hunter’s advanced wheel alignment systems, Zentz said techs won’t have to be intimidated by ADAS calibration. “No plum bobs or measuring tapes. All of that goes away through automation and the integration of these two pieces of equipment,” he said.

John Dixon a Garage Guru trainer, offered multiple case studies to show that interpreting scan tool data offers the shortest and quickest path to accurately diagnose a problem vehicle. “Putting all the pieces together during an engine diagnostic is a lot like reading a road map,” he said. “The key to success is finding the shortest path to the destination without getting lost.”

In a session on effective business leadership, management trainer Bill Haas of Haas Performance Consulting said the first step is recognizing that leadership is a full-time job in itself. “Some owners are so busy doing the work of the business that they can’t don’t have the time or the ability to pay attention to the things that the owner should be paying attention to,” he said. “That’s where the leadership comes in.”

Jim Wilson walked participants through the daunting task of setting up a labscope and getting a stable pattern.  He covered everything from the basics to the advanced, offering a step by step approach to engine diagnostics: analytical troubleshooting. Wilson described the class as an in-depth study guide of how to spot problems before they are problems.

Ryan Rouser of Coats (right) demonstrates the features and benefits of the company’s newly redesigned 80X tire changer during a Joe’s Garage session hosted by Vic Tarasik of Shop Owner Coach.

Ryan Weems (right) and Cody Lyons of BG Products demonstrate the use of the company’s Platinum Air Intake Valve & Combustion Chamber Cleaner on GDI engines, followed by 44K Fuel System Cleaner.

Cecil Bullard, CEO of the Institute for Automotive Business Excellence, took a hard look at business numbers, offering insights into formulas that can whip those numbers into shape. He stressed that when you understand your numbers you better understand where your biggest opportunities are, and where your biggest problems are and this can be the difference between getting by and earning 20% net.

Bob Ward, president of Wardden, LLC (doing business as Perpetual Business), offered a class on evaluating businesses in preparation for sale, and the complexities of succession planning.

Scott Schreiber of Babcox Media (left) speaks with Ed Prange, vice-president of sales for the independent aftermarket in the Americas, Bosch Automotive Service Solutions, about the latest service solutions from Bosch.

Vik Tarasik, president of Shop Owner Coach, speaks with Ben Johnson, director of product management at Mitchell 1, to learn more about how Mitchell 1’s suite of products work together to improve shop efficiency, and diagnostic accuracy, as well as attract and retain customers.

Michelin held a demo outlining the features of its new tire health app, which automatically notifies the driver when any tire-related issues occur. With the app, drivers can request roadside assistance, receive an update on their tire status, and access a list of service providers to find the closest Michelin garage.

Vik Tarasik (right), president of Shop Owner Coach, speaks with Rob Christy, president of John Dow Industries, to learn more about the three divisions of product available to aftermarket professionals.

Dimitri Manoukis, product manager, NAPA, held a demo to explain the process behind remanufacturing NAPA’s hybrid batteries, which are a necessity as more hybrid vehicles enter the market.

Vik Tarasik, president of Shop Owner Coach (right), sits down with Sunil Patel, CEO of TekMetrik, and P.J. Leslie, director of business development, to discuss how the company’s feature-filled software will improve shop owner’s organization and boost profits.



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