None Shall Pass – 2012 APR Distributor ConferenceMarch 15, 2012
While I worked at Wolfsburg Automotive, I was given the chance to attend the 2012 APR Distributor Conference. Even though APR hosts an annual barbecue GTG in October that is open to all, this event was for APR dealers only.
After arriving a little late Friday, we played catch up on both our beverages and our small talk with industry leaders. 2012 is going to be a great year!
Around 11pm, Founder and CEO of APR — Stephen Hooks, gave us the boot, with good reason of course, to ensure we all got enough sleep to be attentive during the seminars and announcements, starting early Saturday morning.
It was extremely tough not to stay up at the hotel with the crazy Canadians from VAG Motorsport. Those guys were amazingly entertaining! Looking forward to seeing you guys at events this season!!!
The attendance over last year’s conference had nearly doubled! Keith and Steven opened with some great announcements of things to come for 2012, which would be later explained in detail in the various seminars. The finale was an interruption by the APR TTRS, for which a Stage 3 application was released at this event.
This news is extremely exciting; a 2.5T pushing over 500HP!!!
We hear this may be without changing the factory intercooler, so there should still be room for more power with the addition of a few other APR add-ons.
Have a quick look at this demo from APR:
After introduction and announcements, our next stop was PRODUCTION.
Along the way, you’ll find the walls lined with various awards and plaques, displaying articles by magazines from all over the world, covering APR built vehicles, as well as the hoods from a couple of well known APR cars from the past.
The hood on the right, you may recognize from the old Teckademics – Gumball 3000 video…
Getting to see how many of the APR parts are made in person will really show the quality and the time that goes into every product at APR.
Dave Robel shows us a few freshly completed oil fittings.
A new addition to APR’s production department, is the Centroid A532, which will allow APR to provide cylinder head porting services, with a reasonable turnaround time.
Don’t be surprised if you see heads and long blocks show up for sale on the GoAPR.com site in the near future!
Next stop was Sales & Marketing
At last year’s APR Distributor Conference, APR announced the development of an Iphone app that would allow customers with vehicles 2006 and newer to purchase a device that connects to the diagnostic port on the car and communicate via WIFI to the APR app.
|In addition to program switching from your phone, customers would also be able to record logs from various measuring blocks, very similar to how logs in VCDS are taken, amongst many other features.We hadn’t heard much about this tool since last year, but it looks like this app will be available quite soon.
Dealers attending the conference who had an Iphone or Ipad were given a beta version of the app to view the features.The diagnostic port plug is not yet available, which I think is whats holding the official release back.
APR announced that they are now a distributor for MOTUL Lubricants and had a representative from MOTUL give an extremely informative presentation on the different variations of their oils. MOTUL will now be available from GoAPR.com and participating APR dealers.
Closing out this session is the announcement of APR partnering with Volkswagen Racing!
Formerly VWMotorsport, Volkswagen Racing began as the official performance division of Volkswagen. Today, Volkswagen Racing participates in racing events around the world, representing the Volkswagen brand and even runs the Volkswagen Racing Cup. Volkswagen Racing products will now be available from APR and from participating APR dealers, including suspension and brake upgrades and apparel.
Because of licensing in the U.S. the product line available to us in the states may be a bit different than products sold elsewhere. Look for Volkswagen Racing‘s Raceline products to hit the market here in the states very soon.
Conferences like this are extremely important in performance industry, for a few different reasons; to name a few – bringing like minded shops together to build relationships between cities, providing information on new products and advancements in the industry, as well as maintaining enthusiasm on the commercial side, which of course, can greatly affect the enthusiast world. APR does its part by having this conference for it’s distributors and also by supporting races and shows, year round.
Look for APR at enthusiast events and races around the country and make sure to stop by and say hello!
Lastly, if you run into Evan or Ryan from APR, call them a ‘fluffy bunny’ at some point during your conversation
Check out the rest of the photos from the conference below!