November '15

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10 The Shop November 2015 He notes that WELD offers wheels made from aircraft-grade forged alloys, "because this combination of material and manufacturing process provides the lightest and strongest wheels along with the most repeatable result. The forging process elimi- nates weak spots in the alloys, making them very durable and consistent." Bovis next addresses another important, yet complex factor: communicating the right fit. "Many cast and flow-formed wheels are designed to fit a variety of vehicles, while true forged wheels offer the benefits of custom fitments based on the customer's specific desire," he says. "While being able to offer an infinite number of custom wheels is impressive, the customer only sors, plus proper installation using spe- cialty equipment, lug torque and lug type as well," he believes. "Truck tires and ultra- high-performance, low-profile tires require additional techniques." On Display Aftermarket shops have approached sales of wheels and tires in a variety of ways. Some partner with local shops that offer mounting and balancing services and carry a wide range of brands, while others take advantage of the opportunity to order wheel and tire sets ready to mount right from certain suppliers. For those shops that wish to become full tire and wheel centers, from displays to installation services, there's plenty to learn and prepare for, plus space requirements to consider. "Wheels are a very visual and individual- ized purchase," Bovis says. "Being able to display samples of wheels is very helpful in the sales process. In addition, being able to show what the wheels look like on the customer's type of vehicle is important to allow the customer to visualize what their Installation of quality wheels and tires can lead to additional cus- tomization requests for drivers looking to individualize their rides. (Photo courtesy Timberland Tires) Aftermarket shops are in a position to serve the needs of custom- ers looking for upgraded wheels and tires. (Photo courtesy Timberland Tires) cares about the one that fits their car. Communicating this specialized fitment as well as properly defining the customer's vision of their new wheels can be chal- lenging." Companies like WELD produce exten- sive fit guides that offer the most common sizes for a specific vehicle and its options like brake kits, as well as the maximum dimensions that will fit under the car. "However, while this can be a challenge to communicate, it does provide the cus- tomer with the optimal performance and overall look," he adds. Jess Hoodenpyle, VP of sales and cus- tomer service for Coker Tire Co., offers a tire manufacturer's viewpoint. "One of our biggest challenges is when a customer wants plus- size tires and wheels. It take a little longer to make certain the right product is selected." And Don Sneddon, advertising manager for Mickey Thompson Performance Tires & Wheels, agrees that education is the key. "Training is the big- gest challenge. Not just sales training, but training on proper fit- ments, load capacity, inflation, TPMS sen- Quality wheels can completely change the look and feel of a custom car or truck. (Photo courtesy Forgeline Motorsports)

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