CARDONE Industries becomes ‘complete product supply solution’
Philadelphia—As the industry turned its page to a new year, CARDONE Industries has refocused its identity from primarily being a remanufacturer to a broader vision as a leading replacement parts solutions provider. It is also concentrating on newer vehicle technology and providing high-tech aftermarket product solutions to satisfy industry fuel economy and performance goals.
“Reman is still a core part of our business, but we don’t want to be known as only a remanufacturer,” said Raquel Wenger, CARDONE’s marketing director, adding that the company now also offers new-manufactured products. “We’ve become a product supply solution for a lot of parts that are difficult to find, especially in high tech and newer vehicle models with complicated electronics.”
Wenger said CARDONE is capitalizing on offering remanufactured products installed on newer model vehicles that are still protected by a current patent. “A new-product aftermarket manufacturer may be prohibited from making replacement parts with patented technology, but a remanufacturer can sometimes repair a component without infringing on intellectual property. Our reman products offer a competitive value rather than a shop having to acquire new OE. Our reman hybrid batteries, for instance, cost at least half of a new OE replacement.”
CARDONE introduced batteries as recently as few years ago with limited SKUs, but now the company is gaining momentum and adding coverage. “That’s also the case for a lot of our newer product lines, which have expanded to offer excellent packages,” she said.
The CARDONE Innovation Team focuses on introducing new and reman products based on research they conduct to determine what parts are failing on today’s vehicles. “When we first launched the Innovation Team a couple years ago we introduced new products, but only a small handful of SKUs,” Wenger said. “Now, they’ve hit their groove and our lines have become increasingly comprehensive.”
Recent releases include air suspension products: struts and springs, ride-height sensors, shock absorbers, conversion kits and compressors. “We have a full line program now, just in air suspension alone,” she said.
As lines are introduced and expanded, they migrate to CARDONE’s product management division, where they are maintained and SKUs added. The Innovation Team then refocuses on new product development opportunities, new or reman products.
Reman turbochargers gain traction
One of CARDONE’s latest product introductions are remanufactured diesel particulate filters — “we have eight SKUs that target applications with known high-failure rates” — and instrument clusters.
And while CARDONE has offered reman turbochargers through the years, there’s been renewed focus on the products as they are being widely used in today’s vehicles. “Over the past year, we’ve been very aggressive with adding SKUs,” Wenger said. “The demand for aftermarket turbochargers has grown 18 percent, year over year. The market for four-cylinder gasoline turbochargers has expanded, whereas before it was primarily diesel, for power and fuel economy. They present a huge opportunity.”
Oil-feed lines attached to turbochargers can often become coked and cause failure, so, where applicable, CARDONE replaces those lines with improved materials, Wenger explained. “In other cases, the OE design is excellent and we’ll return the product to original OE specs.”
CARDONE also provides shops with installation videos and related hardware for the install. “We have instructional installation videos, which we’re concentrating on making more robust. Turbochargers are an expensive replacement, and because oftentimes the cause of failure isn’t the turbo itself, but rather some ancillary issue, such as improper lubrication or debris, the videos are valuable to prevent further issues. Debris really affects their tight tolerances.”
What are the advantages for a shop to use a CARDONE remanufactured product over an OE? “There’s a huge price difference,” she said. “And quality. We thoroughly take every component apart to determine what needs to be replaced to bring it back ‘better than new.’”