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Stirling Accessories maintains stringent quality and safety standards

Stirling Accessories Manufacturing PlantStirling Accessories Manufacturing Plant
Pinetown, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
In spite of the influx of imported low quality, automotive accessories into South Africa, Stirling Accessories maintains its pledge to manufacture reliable components that meet stringent quality and safety standards.

“One of the toughest challenges facing the local automotive sector is the urgent need to combat inferior imported components, which are being accepted as ‘dependable’,” says Keith Russon, CEO, Stirling Accessories. “The reality is that these ‘copy cat’ replacement parts, which include low quality mirrors, lamps and reflectors, are manufactured from inferior materials and do not meet SABS quality and safety specifications.”

“In spite of the current trying exchange rate, which has a significant effect on pricing, Stirling Accessories continues to make a significant investment in using high quality, locally sourced materials and the latest technologies and machinery to manufacture automotive accessories that are safe, reliable and offer extended service life. We are also committed to skills training and job creation for the locally community.”

“We have also recognised a need to educate the local market about the importance of selecting quality automotive accessories over the preference for ‘cheap and nasty’ inferior components. For example, the glass used in automotive mirrors should be 3 mm thick, with shatterproof features for optimum safety and an accurate convex radius. Mirrors, with a 1,5 mm - 2 mm mirror glass thickeness, are flooding the local market, with no shatterproof protection and most consumers are completely unaware of this.”

“Consumers - including original equipment manufacturers, the specialist replacement sector and general commercial users - need to be educated about which automotive components are safe to use and why it is worth spending a little bit extra to ensure optimum safety on our roads.”

Stirling Accessories ensures that all components in the range that require legal specifications, have been awarded SABS certification.

This certification provides a basis on which the market is assured that control programmes at Stirling Accessories are maintained at the highest standards to meet stringent requirements laid down by the listing scheme.

As part of the company’s commitment to maintaining world class standards, Stirling Accessories launches new products to keep abreast with global trends. A new range of LED lamps, designed and manufactured at the KwaZulu-Natal plant, is soon to be launched. This range, is the first of its kind available in South Africa, that is fully flexible to offer all requirements of indicators for tail, stop and reverse features.

Another new development, in keeping with the global trend to shift from the use of metal to plastic materials, is the launch of newly designed plastic mirror backs.

The company recently launched the M3000C Class II external side mirror, which has been designed and manufactured to allow for mirror glass curvatures ranging from 1 400 mm to 2 000 mm. A key factor is the mirror back can be used on mirror arms with diameters ranging from 16 mm to 28 mm.

“These new backs are designed to accommodate all dimensions required by vehicle manufacturers and are fully compatible with existing mirror arms,” says Cyril Pillay, factory manager for Stirling Accessories. “We anticipate that curvatures of glass will be reduced to an even smaller radius in future, to accommodate a wider field of vision for enhanced safety.”

“Key advantages of these newly designed plastic backs over the previous model design include enhanced aesthetics, extended life, shape and colour retention, as well as impact and corrosion resistance.”

Plastic also has environmental benefits as there is less waste during manufacture. Plastic, which can be recycled, helps in the reduction of scrap metal production.

Unlike raw metals, plastic materials require no processing and offer faster production and installation times. An added advantage is the use of plastics contributes to keeping prices stable for longer periods.

The full range of replacement parts includes mirror and mirror arms, lamps and beacons, as well as electrical and general components. Reflectors, chevrons and warning triangles, as well as carrier roofs and fishing rod racks are also available.

Stirling Accessories has maintained its rating as a AAA Level 2 contributor to broad-based black economic empowerment (B-BBEE) according to the DTI’s ‘qualifying small enterprises (QSE) scorecard’. The company aligns itself with the broad-based black economic empowerment (B-BBEE) of the country and sees this commitment as an opportunity to work alongside some of the emerging dynamic leaders who are making a positive impact on the economy.

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