Looking for a new, easy way to expand your customer base and increase income? Selling and installing Genuine Subaru Performance Parts and Accessories can rev up your bottom line.
In case you haven’t noticed; the performance tuning and appearance customizing of compact (mostly-Asian) vehicles has become the hottest activity in the automotive industry. “Tuning” has been popularized in movies and television shows to become a cultural phenomenon. It started as a way to personalize compact cars in a unique manner, but has expanded to include many facets of motoring. Tuners are now involved in Street Racing (legal or otherwise), Drifting (power-sliding under control), Booming (sound system competition) — or just looking and sounding cool — at an explosive rate.
Although generally thought to be the dominion of “Generation Y,” those born in the 1980s and early 1990s, tuning has grown to encompass people of all ages. It’s not just for male “twenty-somethings.” Visiting local car events and Subaru dealers, we’ve met men and women alike — of all ages — who are putting their personalities into their vehicles. I’ve spoken to firefighters, teachers, retirees and even a police officer who have become deeply involved in street racing. Tuners are in your town. They should be in your customer base.
If you’ve ever attended the SEMA (Specialty Equipment Manufacturers Association) Show in Las Vegas, read about it or seen programs about it on television, you are aware of the huge — and still booming — sport. All over the country, special events for the compact performance market are growing in size every year. Most notably, LA’s Hot Import Nights draws thousands of customized compact cars and trucks. SEMA predicts over $10 billion in performance, appearance, wheels and tire sales for 2006.
If you aren’t actively seeking business from this segment of the aftermarket industry, you are missing the opportunity to not only increase your income, but also change with the times. Tuners, and those who want to personalize their vehicles, are willing to spend money to make their rides look, perform and sound unique. If you can’t accommodate them, others will.
The great thing about this group of hobbyists is that they share information about where they get their goodies. Just by starting out in a small way in this segment, you can broaden your sales and customer base to help assure future income for your business.
SPT – Subaru Performance Tuning
Subaru of America has made it very easy for you to tap into this lucrative market. Subaru Performance Tuning — or SPT — is a collection of performance parts and accessories for upgrading your customer’s Subaru vehicle. The SPT collection includes performance parts from the top companies in performance engineering: STI, Bosal, KYB, Eibach, HKS and others.
The SPT lineup also includes an assortment of parts dedicated to the hot WRX and even hotter WRX STI. Subaru Tecnica International (STI) performance equipment has been tested and perfected in Subaru racing cars for the extremely competitive environment of the World Rally Championships. Many of these parts can be used on other Subaru models.
The best thing about using Genuine Subaru Performance Parts to upgrade a Subaru is that you can be assured that the parts are of high quality, fit properly, are mechanically correct and are approved (and endorsed) by the manufacturer of the vehicle. That kind of peace of mind does not come with other aftermarket parts.
Pump Up the Power
Several SPT components and kits are available from your local Subaru dealer to enhance the performance of WRX, WRX STI and other models. Here is a sampling:
Turbo Boost Gauge
This illuminated turbo boost gauge (P/N H5010FE055-WRX; H5010FE057-STI) mounts conveniently to the side of the steering column. It adds a slick performance look, as well as functionality.
SPT WRX & WRX STI Performance Exhaust System
This large-diameter, 3-inch stainless steel construction kit (P/N SOA8377900) replaces the stock intermediate pipe and muffler, resulting in enhanced exhaust sound and performance.
SPT WRX, WRX STI, Legacy GT & XT High Flow Air Intake
The SPT High Flow Air Intake (P/N SOA8431000 for WRX & WRX STI; SOA8431010 for ‘05-‘07 Legacy GT and XT) is constructed of 301 diecast aluminum and manufactured to ensure the smoothest high flowing bends. Each system includes a silicone-reinforced boot, anti-vibration mounting system, stainless steel t-bolt clamps, and a SPT 4-layer cotton gauze filter with a built in velocity stack for smooth air flow. The intake is coated in a new gunmetal gray-textured powder-coat finish.
STI Short Throw Shifter
This shifter assembly significantly reduces shift throw lengths for crisper shifts and sportier driving. The STI shifter assembly completely replaces stock shifter assembly for clean installation. It’s available for both the 5-speed (P/N C1010FA001-WRX; C1010AG000-’05-’07 Legacy) and 6-speed (P/N C1010FE003-STI) manual transmission models.
SPT WRX, WRX STI and Legacy GT & XT Sedan Power Packs
SPT Power Packs are an easy way to add horsepower and torque to your customer’s WRX,WRX STI, or Legacy GT & XT Sedan. The kits consist of a Performance Exhaust System, a High Flow Air Intake and a Heat Shield (P/N SOA8431030-WRX, STI; SOA8431040-Legacy GT & XT). Power Packs have been dyno-tested and produce up to 45 hp and 24 lb-ft. of torque on a stock 2006 WRX STI. A 2006 WRX can gain up to 18 hp and 20 ft-lb. of torque. We expect similar results as on a WRX for a Legacy GT or XT Sedan.
A vast selection of other SPT Performance Parts is available for other Subaru models including:
- A billet aluminum Battery Hold Down kit, anodized in gunmetal gray and laser-etched with the SPT logo.
- A billet aluminum Oil Cap, also laser-etched with the SPT logo, in anodized gunmetal gray.
- Inverted Adjustable Struts and Springs to lower the vehicle 15mm. Front spring stiffness is increased 35% over stock; 30% on the rear.
- Performance Exhaust System for the 2.5 GT Sedan coming soon. This cat-back system is constructed of T304 stainless steel. It’s designed to minimize back pressure, improve exhaust flow and produce a rich, mellow tone.
- A low-stretch STI performance timing belt that cuts valve timing error from 1% (that can represent over three degrees) to .07%, which should make it popular with those who want to wring every last horsepower out of their boxer engines. It carries a 70,000-mile replacement recommendation.
- Stiffer transverse link bushings for tighter, more responsive handling.
- All kinds of sporty suspension components from lower springs and improved links to adjustable struts and thicker anti-sway bars.
- Really cool shift knobs in titanium, aluminum and carbon fiber.
- Stainless steel pedal pads with cherry-red rubber grip inserts.
- A stainless steel mesh clutch hose that resists bulging for more precise clutch action, and looks great too.
- A set of stainless steel mesh brake hoses that inhibits expansion under severe braking, and has a polyolifine coating that prevents dust and ice accumulation.
- A high-volume air cleaner element that’s a drop-in replacement for the stock unit, yet flows up to 30% more.
- An STI hood scoop that rams almost a third more air through the intercooler.
- Several different clutch sets that can handle the hard acceleration of beefed-up engines. A lightweight flywheel can be added for quick revving.
- A high-temperature red silicone air duct hose that connects the intercooler to the intake plenum — besides dressing up the engine, it won’t blow off under high boost.
- Strut tower braces in steel, carbon fiber and aluminum to reduce strut deflection to promote quicker steering response. There’s also one for the rear.
- Ground-effects spoilers and strake kits.
Other SPT Goodies
STP also offers lots of other goodies for the Subaru enthusiast. A vast assortment of key fobs, mugs, license plate frames, valve stem caps, CD cases, towels and other merchandise is available – even golf balls! Apparel is also offered in the form of t-shirts, jackets, caps and more. Your Subaru customers can really look sharp sporting SPT gear while driving their special SPT-outfitted ride. We know one shop that even gives these items as gifts to its best customers, or as a way to say “Thank You” for those high ticket jobs.
What about Emissions Regulations?
Being a professional automotive repair facility today is more than just being able to service cars and trucks. You must be up-to-date on all the laws that govern your business. Always be aware of the standards set in place by the U.S. Clean Air Act regarding emissions. Be sure to also adhere to all state and local regulations when you are working on air conditioning or exhaust systems, or handling hazardous waste materials. These laws contain very specific language about what you, as an auto service professional, cannot do to a customer’s car. Installing performance parts is no different. Be informed and use common sense.
What about Liability?
There’s probably very little liability difference between performing the-day-to day service you do on a regular basis and installing performance parts. Consult your insurance agent and legal counsel if you have any questions or doubts.
Is there a Warranty?
As with any performance components, the warranty offered by Subaru of America varies, depending on the type of product. Some Genuine Subaru Performance Parts are covered for 1 year against defects in material or workmanship whereas others are sold “as is” without any warranty coverage, or are covered by the Limited Warranty for Genuine Subaru Replacement Parts & Accessories.
Some parts are intended for off-highway application only. As these parts may bring vehicle out of compliance with safety/emissions standards, they can only be lawfully installed by the end user and are not warranted.
Complete detailed warranty information on Genuine Subaru Performance Parts is available from your Subaru Dealer.
2006 Genuine Subaru Performance Parts Catalog
Be sure to get a copy of the new 2006 Subaru Performance Parts Catalog. Contact your local Subaru Dealer for your copy, or visit www.spt.subaru.com.