“Automechanika trade fairs for the automotive aftermarket are an integral part of Diesel-Electric’s marketing mix and the company has been an exhibitor at all the Automechanika shows held in South Africa since 2009,” says Fred Bengsch, a Director of Diesel-Electric and a person who has been deeply involved with the SA motor industry.
“Besides exhibiting at the Automechanika shows staged locally we also attend the biennial Automechanika fair in Frankfurt. We know that the aftermarket environment is always changing and therefore a one-stop shop supplier to the aftermarket retail trade such as Diesel-Electric needs to stay abreast of the latest trends and developments. Being international, business-to-business events, these trade fairs also provide us with ideal opportunities to source new products and services which we can then offer to our customers.”
Diesel-Electric will exhibit in Hall 6 at this year’s Automechanika Johannesburg, which takes place at the Expo Centre, Nasrec, from 27-30 September. This is the truck hall and indicates the importance of the truck market to a company such as Diesel-Electric, which represents many major product manufacturers.
Diesel-Electric has always represented Bosch at these trade fairs and besides this brand their display at Expo Centre this year will include 15 other brands this: Knorr Bremse, Meritor, Disa, Valeo, Hartridge, Sachs, Lemforder, MS Motorservice, Kolbenschmidt, Pierburg, BF Original, Gedore Tools, Valvoline, Diesel Truck Parts (DTP), Conti-Tech (previously RAM), Hella, and Delphi.
Each product line will have two specialists doing duty at the show to conduct demonstrations where applicable as well as being able to interact with existing and potential customers.
“Any customer queries we are unable to answer at the show will be followed up once we get back to the office and we will then give feedback to the show visitors concerned,” said Fred Bengsch.
“Several new products will be featured on our stand. These will include new Bosch KTS diagnostic equipment specially developed for trucks as well as new equipment from Hartridge, which is one of the world leaders in diesel fuel injection technology.”
Diesel-Electric has a long and proud history in South Africa explains vastly experienced Fred Bengsch, who joined the organisation 30 years ago, after working for Mercedes-Benz and subsequently managing the MAN truck assembly plant for 15 years.
Diesel-Electric was once part of the Robert Bosch organisation, which came to South Africa in 1906. It became an independent company in 1985, following a management buyout, and is now one of the largest wholesale automotive wholesalers in Africa. The company consists of 42 outlets in Southern Africa, most of them independently owned.
Diesel-Electric (Rand) owns five of the branches located in Pretoria, Brits, Polokwane, Germiston and Krugersdorp with the head office and massive warehouse located in Wynberg, Johannesburg. There are more than 300 employees at the five wholly-owned outlets and 120 people working at the head office.
“Our biggest challenge is supplying the right parts for the right vehicle, as there is now a proliferation of models on the local market and many running-changes are made by the manufacturers on an ongoing basis, which complicates matters further. Regular training sessions for our suppliers and the Diesel-Electric staff is therefore necessary to keep all the involved parties up to date on developments, as we are very aware of the cost of downtime when vehicles are off the road,” concluded Fred Bengsch.
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