The Reifen 2014 International Trade Fair in Essen, Germany, is over, but Modern Tire Dealer's coverage of the event isn't. This is the second post-show "bonus" article from John Stone, an esteemed international journalist based out of the United Kingdom.
This one, written in Stone's inimitable British style, is on Hunter Engineering Co. Look for Stone's final report on the show in MTD's July issue; appropriately enough, it will appear in the European Notebook column.
Having given a short, "live" report on St. Louis-based Hunter Engineering Co.'s presence at the Reifen 2014 Show in Germany, I decided more was necessary. I spoke at length with Pete Liebetreu, Hunter's senior product manager, who travelled to Germany to work alongside the company's European office in Munich, Germany, to present an extensive range of products on the booth.
Pete explained that as an ongoing supporter of the Reifen Show, Hunter's primary objective at this year's event was to introduce two products, the new, Revolution tire changer and truck alignment system, which were both making their European debut having been initially launched at the SEMA Show last November.
The new revolution tire changer is fully automatic and specializes in ease of use with the main features of the equipment including a leverless tool head, space saving wheel lift, powered press arms and special "go" pedal controls progress system. With so many automatic features, a minimal amount of operation is required by the machine technician.
An impressive touchscreen interface monitors the ongoing progress of the equipment, plus a powerful pneumatic clamp facility avoids damage. And the inflation process is considered to be 33% faster than traditional foot pedal inflation systems.
The all-new Hunter Truck Alignment System was also very well received throughout the show, with particular interest being shown in the equipment's special six sensor rolling compensation facility, which is "breaking new ground" in the industry through its ability to significantly reduce alignment set-up times for trucks. With many other Hunter products on display and ready for demonstration, including the Hunter Force Balancer and Smart Weight Balancer, the booth was a constant of activity and interest.
Pete explained that in Europe, Hunter considers itself to be significantly strong within the dealership market, but the next company objective is to further extend its presence in the tire shop sector, and the show enabled Hunter staff to meet a good cross section of end users and discuss the benefits of all the products.
When asked about future developments, at Hunter, Pete said, “As usual, we will continue to lead the industry in product development, which is backed by 70 R&D engineers based in St. Louis whose prime objective is to look at ways to make Hunters products even swifter and more efficient.” For additional information on all Hunter products and services visit www.hunter.com.
To read Stone's first "bonus" story, check out "Vee Rubber focuses on European-growth."
To read Stone's pre-show and on-the-scene reports, check out these links:
Bob Ulrich was named Modern Tire Dealer editor in August 2000. He joined the magazine in 1985 as assistant editor, and has been responsible for gathering statistical information for MTD's "Facts Issue" since 1993.