Grading: Congratulations to our five-star workshops

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As you know, we place great emphasis on educating consumers around the importance of selecting an accredited workshop. Our goal is to make people understand how accreditation makes a difference, by pointing out the aspects we assess, from the workshop’s premises to equipment, administration, health and safety operation procedures, lighting, waste removal, ventilation, staffing and training. We also explain that consumers only have recourse to our industry association in the event that they are not happy with their service if the workshop is accredited.

Of course, grading plays a major role in assuring the satisfaction of consumers. Again, we highlight this as an advantage of using an accredited workshop. We’re pleased that we are making significant progress in grading our workshops since the programme was rolled out earlier this year. Having recently graded workshops in the Central and Free State regions, we’re proud that we have no fewer than 162 five-star workshops in the Central region, along with 36 four-star and seven three-star workshops. In the Free State, we have 81 five-star and six four-star workshops. Although we have only recently started grading workshops in the Western Cape, we so far have six five-star outlets. Grading has also commenced in KwaZulu-Natal, where we have 33 five-star workshops – and counting…

Spotlight on training: Oil training

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Using the incorrect oil, or an oil grade that doesn’t meet with an OEM’s specifications, can have severe implications for drivers and vehicles 

This is why MIWA member Cliffie Jacobs leveraged his relationships with Total Energies Marketing South Africa (formerly known as Total) and Midas Aftermarkets Parts, to host training sessions in East London recently on 23 November. 

The same workshop was replicated in Port Elizabeth and this time Peter Van Mosseveld oversaw all the arrangements on 24 November, focusing on technical training and oil. 

Workshop attendees learnt more about specific oil grades and specifications; knowledge that’s more important than ever now that Right2Repair has been enacted, as workshops that have carried out services are liable for any engine damage that comes about as a result of using the wrong oil.

The two-hour workshops were provided free of charge, and also gave participants a chance to become more familiar with the Total Energies brand and its products.

Tier 1 sponsor: Introducing MANN+HUMMEL

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Every month, we honour our Right2Repair Tier 1 sponsors by learning more about their businesses. This month, we take a closer look at MANN+HUMMEL.

MANN+HUMMEL Filters South Africa set up office just five years ago, with an aim to grow and expand our automotive aftermarket business in the southern part of Africa.  

MANN+HUMMEL is a German-owned company that was founded in 1941. This year, MANN+HUMMEL is celebrating its 80th anniversary.  Our motto is Leadership in Filtration.

Being one of the largest OE filter manufacturers globally, we saw the opportunity to sell these OE quality products in the aftermarket. This allows for the end consumer to fit the original part at aftermarket prices whilst still ensuring the vehicle is fitted with the same quality part.

With the three brands we currently have available in our market, namely MANN-FILTER, WIX and FILTRON, we offer the customer the same quality approved aftermarket product that has been approved for the European block exemption (SA’s Right to Repair) and meets the service interval as specified by the manufacturer.

We have, however, picked up that workshops don’t change the cabin filter as often as required. The research shows that the cabin filter must be replaced every 15 000km or 1 year, whichever comes first.  We have a wide range of cabin filters varying from the standard pollen filter, that stop pollen from entering the car’s cabin, to carbon activated filters that stop noxious gasses and even allergens from entering the cabin and keeping the occupants inside the vehicle safe.

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Right2Repair welcomes Ford on board

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We’re pleased to announce that Ford Motor Company Africa has become the second vehicle manufacturer to support Right2Repair South Africa.

Ford Motor Company Africa President, Neale Hill,  announced earlier in November that the company would honour warranties where customers had chosen to take their vehicles to an ISP for services, and unbundled the price of value-added products from the overall price of vehicles. Hill said that this is a sign of Ford’s awareness of consumers’ right – and growing desire – to have their car serviced, maintained or repaired wherever they pleased.

Ford joins Volkswagen as the second manufacturer to comply with the Guidelines to Competition in the South African Automotive Aftermarket since they were implemented in July; an encouraging sign since the slow dealer compliance has been a matter of concern.

“This is really great news for MIWA members and we are confident other OEMs will follow suit early in the new year,” says Pieter Niemand, national director of MIWA.

Calling all women: Keeping safe on the road

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South Africa’s 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence kicked off on 25 November. Women drivers are an easy target for criminals – due to distractions like small children – and are therefore often victims of smash-and-grabs, intimidation and hijacking, it’s a good time to brush up on tips for keeping safe on the road.

Andrea Bogner,
MIWA Regional Chairperson, Central Region

We asked our very own Andrea Bogner to provide us with some useful hints and tips to keep women safe while on the road. Andrea is also participating in a MasterDrive Chat this month and we will share a copy of that podcast with you early in the new year.

  • Make sure the basics are in place: women should always drive with a fully charged phone (equipped with a GPS and with emergency numbers saved) and a charger just in case, and a full tank of petrol. It’s also a good idea to carry jumper cables and a tow rope, a torch and triangles, an emergency first aid kit, water, oil, antifreeze and a blanket.
  • It’s important to have some fundamental knowledge around cars, like how to change a tyre, how to refill a water bottle or radiator, how to top up engine oil and how to jump start a car. This means that you don’t have to depend on anyone in case of minor accidents or vehicle fails.
  • Plan the route before leaving home, always choosing the most familiar streets.
  • Try not to drive alone, especially at night and in unfamiliar areas.
  • Be aware of your surroundings. Pay attention to street vendors and pedestrians – knowing which people are around you and what they are doing can prevent you from becoming a victim of a hijacking or smash-and-grab.
  • All doors should be locked when you drive, and windows must be closed.
  • If someone tries to flag you down or signal that there is something wrong with their car, don’t stop unless you were already aware of a pre-existing issue. Drive to the nearest filling station if you suspect that there really is a problem.
  • Keep an eye out for people following you as you drive.
  • Stay off your phone to avoid distractions, and make sure that your children are buckled in. Remind them to not to make a noise, so that you can concentrate on driving.
  • Keep a safe distance from the car in front of you when stopped at robots, so that you can make a quick getaway if you have to.

MIWA members in the community

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Dewald Ranft, Dynotech

You may know Dewald Ranft as our Association National Chair, or from his work at Dynotech, which specialises in dyno tuning, servicing and repairs, and rebuilding engines. What you may not know is that Dewald is also a member of the Schoemanspark Speedway Club, where he is a titleholder and has been described as a ‘legend’ in the hot rod class! More than that, he recently helped the kids supported by Angel’s Arms enjoy the sport by organising a Children’s Challenge. The charity has indicated its gratitude for his donation. Congrats Dewald – we know our MIWA members all have huge generous hearts!

The year that was…

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Between the third wave, loadshedding and riots, it’s hard to remember that 2021 wasn’t all bad. Before you get ready to slam the door on the year, let’s reflect on some of the wonderful things that happened – because, believe it or not, there were plenty. Here are our favourites:

  • Tatjana Schoenmaker broke a world record to win gold in the 100m breaststroke in the Tokyo Olympics.
  • Nine of South Africa’s universities made it onto the list of the world’s best, according to the Shanghai Ranking Consultancy.
  • Two Cape Town restaurants, La Colombe and FYN, were named amongst the Top 100 on the World’s Top 50 Restaurants.
  • Professor Thuli Madonsela, former public protector, was a Knight of the Legion of Honour by France’s president, Emmanual Macron.
  • Nine of South Africa’s rugby players were named amongst the world’s 50 most influential people in the sport, according to Stuff magazine.
  • Local documentary ‘My Octopus Teacher’ was nominated for an Oscar award.

For more feel-good stories and news of our heartwarming achievements, head to Goodthingsguy.com.

SA flag photo: flowcomm on flickr

MIWA in the media, November 2021

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We received outstanding media coverage during November; in fact, the past two months have seen our brand stand out across several news platforms. Here are some of the stories you may have seen:

Kormorant
Don’t let your windscreen wipers let you down

Bedfordview and Edenvale News
Worn shock absorbers should not be ignored

Automotive Business Review
Beware the danger of driving with worn shocks

Rosebank Killarney Gazette
Ladies – listen up!

Sandton Chronicle
Worn shock absorbers should not be ignored

Northern Natal News
Don’t let your windscreen wipers let you down

AutoForum
5 essential car checks to do before going on holiday

AutoForum
Expert tips for women buying a used car and some key safety reminders

From the Director’s Desk, November 2021

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Just when we thought we were coming out of the woods, scientists reported the discovery of the Omicron variant. Understandably, the public – both locally and abroad – has responded with panic. In many ways, this cannot be helped – there is, after all, so little we know about this variant. What we do know though, is that most hospitalisations are occurring amongst the unvaccinated, which points to a simple fact: despite the vagaries of this variant, vaccination remains our very best line of defence. We urge you to keep yourself, and your families, safe by having the jab as soon as you can. 

The more people who vaccinate, the lower the likelihood of a lockdown. This is important because business remains unpredictable. With electricity shortages and loadshedding adding to our woes, some analysts are saying that it may take as long as four years for our economy to recover.

How is this going to affect us? For one thing, it’s interesting to see that there has been sustained growth in used car sales; in fact, 2.4 used vehicles are sold for every new car that leaves the showroom. This shows there is strong demand for more affordable, economic vehicles. 

This bodes well for MIWA, and for the RMI as a whole. Throughout the storms of the year, we have shown massive resilience and adaptability. Our healthy financial state places us in a strong position to continue with the projects we have planned, and many are back to full scale, which means that we are able to add value to businesses. 

It is all thanks to you, our members, that we find ourselves in this position of strength. Our gratitude goes to every one of you for your ongoing, active support. 

As this is our last newsletter for the year, I would like to take the opportunity to wish you all a very happy festive season, and safe travels. Look out for us again in the new year, when we will send you all the news for December and January in a combined newsletter.

Pieter Niemand,
MIWA National Director