PROMOTIONAL ARTICLE ON BEHALF OF TRW
Following the launch of its latest ‘True Originals’ product campaign, which this time is focused on brake discs, TRW Aftermarket’s UK Marketing Manager, Kevin Price explains to CAT online how through innovation and R&D, a first to market approach and an unrivalled understanding of the market, the business retains its position at the top of the table for painted brake discs.
Almost a decade ago, TRW led the market by introducing a small, niche range of black painted discs. The special paint used was developed in-house, in conjunction with a major VM to reduce corrosion.
Fast forward to today, and as a direct result of customer demand, every one of the 12 million brake discs supplied each year by TRW is black painted, as standard.
The idea for painted discs for the aftermarket was born after research showed that IAM customers wanted an offer which mirrored that of the Original Equipment Supplier (OES) channel. TRW already manufactured painted discs at OES level – grey discs for Volvo and black for Ford.
By reflecting this in the aftermarket, we raised our credibility and forged a closer link to OE.
The niche programme was launched in 2007, but it became quickly apparent that there was a gap in the market – motorists and garages alike wanted this product. Only a year later and we had converted 60 percent of our range, and at Automechanika, Frankfurt in 2008, we not only announced our intention to offer a bigger range, but in effect, in due course to offer ONLY painted discs.
Making the decision to be the first aftermarket supplier to offer a painted-only range not only strengthened our braking portfolio, it reinforced our position as an innovator across Europe.
The brake discs are coated in a special black paint. This was specifically developed by TRW to create a unique surface that adds a protective barrier against rust. Aesthetically, the paint has a special finish, which was pitched at the more ‘discerning motorist’. This was important in 2007 and is a vital differentiator nearly 10 years down the line as drivers are more and more aware of the ‘look’ of automotive parts.
As a leading automotive safety expert, it’s important to TRW to retain as much control over the manufacturing and testing processes as possible. In line with this, the business manufactures more than 70 percent of TRW branded discs in-house at TRW’s global manufacturing plants, including its leading European facility in Frydlant, Czech Republic. Every disc is rigorously tested to the highest standard. Tests include: Dyno tests, salt spray tests and car tests.
The discs are packaged in a special VCI (Volatile Corrosion Inhibitor) paper which takes the place of an oil film coating. This eliminates the need to laboriously degrease them prior to fitting, saving time in the workshop.
As a pioneer in the design, development and manufacture of complete braking systems for vehicle manufacturers (VMs), the TRW brand has more than 100 years’ experience; and for the past 20 years, we have directly transferred this knowledge and experience into our aftermarket offer.
Our OE experience affords us innate knowledge of how each part operates within a system and how systems interact with each other. By manufacturing parts that work in harmony with each other, and within that particular system, we are able to provide the perfect braking solution every time, for every class and weight of vehicle.
All of this has made us the aftermarket partner of choice for the past 20 years. With a philosophy to forever push the boundaries of innovation, in order to best serve the customer, TRW is always one step ahead. Always the one true original.