News Update: Monroe & Walker ‘Drive’ Technical Training – UnderhoodService

News Update: Monroe & Walker ‘Drive’ Technical Training

The Tenneco DRIVE program, developed in 2005 by the Monroe and Walker brands, will target several new automotive vocational and high school programs this fall. Now in its third year, DRIVE continues to help enhance the preparation and education of the next generation of undercar technicians. “This program is a way to invest in the future of the independent aftermarket,” said Carri Irby, brand manager for Monroe and Walker, Tenneco Inc. “That investment begins and ends with the people in the aftermarket, specifically the service technician, and it’s critical that manufacturers like Monroe and Walker offer as much support as possible.”

DRIVE, an interactive training program, offers hands-on materials to enhance classroom instruction and technical training by providing instructors ride control take-aparts, mufflers cutaways, converter take-aparts, training posters and more.

For more about the Tenneco DRIVE program, write to: Tenneco DRIVE Marketing Program, One International Drive, Monroe, MI, 48161. Additional information regarding Monroe and Walker products is available on the brands’ respective websites: and

Josh Russell Named Vice-President of Brand Marketing for Affinia Group
Affinia Group, Inc. named Josh Russell vice-president of brand marketing for its Under Vehicle Group, with responsibility for brand strategy and marketing support in the U.S., Mexico and Canada. Russell will report to Jeff Stauffer, senior vice president of global group marketing for Affinia.

Prior to joining Affinia, Russell served as director of marketing for Old World Industries in Northbook, IL. There, Russell was instrumental in bolstering the PEAK brand through an innovative campaign that included a partnership with IndyCar Series driver Danica Patrick.

Update: The Auto Value/Bumper to Bumper Charity Cars Campaign
Launched last year by Auto Value/Bumper to Bumper, the nationwide program to help victims of domestic violence and abuse gain their freedom through the donation of refurbished cars continues to gain momentum, but needs more donated vehicles to continue its worthwhile cause.

This vehicle gift program is sponsored by the warehouses, parts stores and certified service centers that fly the Auto Value/Bumper to Bumper flags. To date, there are more than 650 Certified Service Centers (CSC) signed up to participate and refurbish a vehicle as they become available through donations. Many still await donated vehicles and are eager to help.

In an effort to obtain more donated vehicles, almost every participating CSC across the country has sent a direct mail piece to their own client database asking for vehicle donations. In addition, point-of-sale signage, local PSAs for television and radio broadcast, and some personal speaking engagements to local networking groups and Chambers of Commerce have been brought to bear as well.

Almost 200 cars have either been received or in the process of being donated, said Dale Leigh, Charity Cars campaign chairman. “Although vehicle donations to all charitable organizations are substantially lower in 2007 than in previous years, they still historically increase in the second half of the year,” Leigh commented. “What’s most important, however, is that whether the market is large or small, every vehicle gifted presents an opportunity to help at least one worthy recipient change her life and the lives of her children, which is the purpose of this Campaign.”

Grand Award Events, at which the refurbished vehicles will be gifted to local recipients through the auspices of local domestic violence shelters, in conjunction with The Original 1-800 Charity Cars organization, are now being scheduled for late summer and fall dates. For information on those scheduled events, contact Tricia Pawzun at the Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance at 210-408-4342.

To donate a vehicle to the Auto Value/Bumper to Bumper Charity Cars Campaign, call 1-800-CHARITY (1-800-242-7489), ext. 8116, and ask for Denise. Tell her that the vehicle is to be used for the Auto Value/Bumper to Bumper Charity Cars Campaign in your area (city, county, area). If your vehicle qualifies and is used in the campaign, you’ll receive a tax deduction for the full fair market value. If the vehicle is not used in the campaign, you will still receive a tax deduction for the amount the vehicle fetches when sold at auction.

Mitchell 1 Updates to Version 1.8
Mitchell 1 has updated it popular software to version 1.8. The v1.8 software release further enhances the OnDemand Live feature, allowing technicians to share real-world information within a repair article.

Among the key enhancements that will be available in Version 1.8 are:

  • Displaying the 10 newest tips in the product for users to reply to the tips as they are written. Now users can see the numerous tips input every day;

  • Ratings are instantly refreshed after a tip is created so there is an instant indication that their input has been received into the system; and

  • Partnering with the Automotive Training Group to provide thousands of tips in the product based upon literature from the aftermarket’s leading technical training group.

To find out more, visit

ACDelco ROLLS OUT Winter ‘Routine Maintenance’ Promotion
Underperformed vehicle maintenance exceeds $60 billion annually, according to the Car Care Council. ACDelco is hoping to put a dent in that figure by offering service centers an opportunity to participate in its “Winning Hand” consumer rebate promotion through which customers can save on ACDelco automotive replacement parts.

ACDelco Total Service Support (TSS) shops and Independent Service Centers (ISCs) that install ACDelco parts are eligible to participate in the promotion, which focuses on winter routine maintenance. “Winning Hand” rewards customers with a $10 mail-in rebate with the purchase and installation of ACDelco parts. The repair invoice must total at least $70 in ACDelco products.

Participating ISCs can enroll in the “Winning Hand” promotion between Sept. 10 and Oct. 19, 2007. The Winter Routine Maintenance promotion for consumers begins Nov. 1 and runs through Dec. 31, 2007.

NTI Students Win Jeff Gordon Racing School Package
James McMahen and Joshua McMillan won a special contest for NASCAR Technical Institute (NTI) students attending the eighth-annual MAHLE Clevite Engine Builder Showdown. They each won a Jeff Gordon Racing School package valued at $399.

Several hundred students from NTI joined the crowd of nearly 1,500 fans on hand to watch the final round of the MAHLE Clevite Engine Builder Showdown, in which the final two NASCAR engine building teams faced off in a race to build and successfully run a NEXTEL Cup 357-cubic-inch Ford engine in the shortest time possible.

During a break in the Showdown action, Bill McKnight of MAHLE Clevite Inc invited all NTI students with a 4.0 GPA to join him on stage. Almost 20 students joined McKnight, who then separated the students into two groups — one group of students from Mooresville and other North Carolina communities, and the other group of students attending NTI from out of state.

McKnight asked the students in both groups to guess how many fasteners are used in the NEXTEL Cup 357-cubic-inch Ford engine they just saw assembled. McMahen, who is from Sublimity, OR, and McMillan, who hails from Deep Gap, NC, came the closest in guessing the correct answer of 184 fasteners.

Get Free Champion 100-Year Commemorative Cabinet With Qualifying Spark Plug Purchase
For a limited time, aftermarket professionals can receive a free Champion 100-year commemorative cabinet valued at $125 with a qualifying purchase of 200 Champion Double Platinum Power and/or Champion Platinum Power spark plugs from Federal-Mogul Corporation.

Celebrating 100 years, the Champion brand has launched a variety of new products, packaging, promotions and a virtual-reality global website, Also available is a limited-edition special pack assortment of Champion Double Platinum Power spark plugs for the automotive trade. The special assortment features a commemorative over-pack highlighting Champion milestones of the past century as well as a custom-designed Champion anniversary die-cast race car.

The new Champion 100-Year limited-edition assortment includes 20 Double Platinum Power spark plug four-packs and commemorative packaging as well as an in-pack 1/64th-scale race car. The 20-pack assortment covers the most popular applications on the road.

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BendPak Founder Don Henthorn Passes Away

Grew company from small machine shop to global leader in car lifts and garage equipment.

Don Henthorn, owner and founder of BendPak Inc., peacefully passed away at home Thursday, March 28, at the age of 85. Under his leadership, BendPak has grown from a small machine shop to one of the world’s leading manufacturers of car lifts and automotive service equipment.

Management and operations of the privately owned company are unchanged. 

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