While ride control experiences a number of developments in the strut assembly category, the separate shock and strut business continues to provide opportunities. Of particular note has been the increasing importance of import nameplates to the service industry. Tenneco, which offers the Monroe brand of ride control to the industry introduced the OESpectrum line specifically to address this growing market. AutoServiceWorld.com had the opportunity to sit down with Tenneco’s Bill Dennie, director of ride control channel management, North American Aftermarket, Tenneco at the AAPEX event in Las Vegas to discuss the growth in this market. “The purpose of the OESpectrum product line is to help Monroe customers – distributors and installers – grow their shares of the foreign nameplate ride control market,” said Dennie. “To achieve this goal, we needed to create a technology that offers clear advantages over other ride control products for this market segment. Our pre-launch field testing indicated that OESpectrum was the solution we were looking for, and our first year in the market has absolutely exceeded our expectations. “There are even installers who would never put on Monroe shocks before now putting on nothing but OESpectrum. “And OESpectrum will be expanding to light trucks, SUVs, and minivans in 2012.” Introduced earlier this year, Monroe OESpectrum units feature an exclusive Twin Technology Active Control system that helps deliver original equipment-style control while filtering out the road-induced NVH commonly encountered on vehicles with lighter-weight suspensions and low-profile tires. This solution, now available for virtually any popular late-model foreign nameplate passenger vehicle, is based on advanced valving technologies originally developed for Tenneco’s global OE customers. Tenneco now offers nearly 800 Monroe OESpectrum units, providing coverage of more than 92% of leading Asian and European vehicle applications. The company will expand coverage with dozens of new SKUs in early 2012. Tenneco’s engineers are also targeting industry-first coverage of a number of 2011 and 2012 foreign nameplate applications. The Twin Technology Active Control system within each Monroe OESpectrum unit comprises Tenneco’s latest track-tested Impact Control Valve (ICV), which delivers exceptional control under virtually all driving conditions, and a patented Low Speed Tunability (LST) piston design that isolates impact-related noise, vibration and harshness. “Our engineers have essentially doubled the number of tuning points in each shock or strut, which allows us to deliver an excellent blend of comfort and control for each application,” he explained.