Experience, R&D lead to high-quality products
With more than four decades in the automotive industry, ACCEL Performance Group is well known for its various ignition and charging system components for cars and trucks. But its powersports division isn’t new to the game either, with 30 years under its belt serving the V-twin motorcycle segment.
ACCEL creates ignition coils, charging components, spark plugs and other products for V-twin motorcycles. Its most recent product is the Stealth SuperCoil, which features a cast aluminum cover that holds the coil in place while also acting as a functional heat sink, pulling heat away from the cylinder head.
“What the Stealth SuperCoil is is a ‘coil unplugged,’ as we refer to it in the auto industry, a coil mounted directly to the spark plug, with no wires connecting them,” said Jason Ellison, product and sales manager, powersports. “Some of the metric bike manufacturers are using that technology, but it’s never been put into play on an air-cooled Harley.”
Like much of ACCEL’s powersports products, the Stealth SuperCoil was inspired by a similar product from the automotive division of the company. However, on the automotive side, the coil has been sold primarily for performance upgrades, while on motorcycles, the Stealth SuperCoil has the added benefit of hiding the fins in the head, losing visual spark plug wires.
“On the Harley, for sure, it’s a lot more visible, so I think the biggest selling feature on it is the aesthetic feature, rather than the performance features,” Ellison said.
Custom builders, especially, have been drawn to the Stealth SuperCoil as they’re often trying to hide wires on their designs. The product has been a boost for ACCEL, which has seen customers need fewer coil replacements as OEMs produce higher-quality products.
“We think with this new technology, it gives guys a reason to take their existing coil off that’s probably in good condition and working just fine and put our product on,” Ellison said.
Through OEMs have upped the quality ante, ACCEL still takes pride in the premium product it sells. All ignition coils and charging system components come with lifetime warranties.
“We have an extremely low return rate on those lifetime guarantee programs because our quality is very good, and therefore we can afford to offer a lifetime warranty,” Ellison said.
ACCEL also has confidence in its products — a majority of which are manufactured in the U.S. — as it puts extensive R&D into each component it brings to market.
“We’ve got an excellent electrical laboratory here in our office in Cleveland,” Ellison explained. “For instance, the Stealth SuperCoils were run on a machine here in our laboratory for 800 hours.”
ACCEL also works closely with nearby PowerSport Institute, installing its products on some of the more than 500 bikes the students work on and fitting product to staff bikes for longer-term testing.
“We sponsor the school and we do a lot of testing at the school, fitments and things like that,” Ellison said. “They were involved in the development of the Stealth SuperCoil, as a matter of fact.”
When Harley-Davidson comes out with new bikes, Ellison also works with a local Harley dealer to look at the parts manuals to see what’s changed from the previous model year.
That constant research, along with drawing from its own experience and that of the automotive division, keep the V-twin product performing to ACCEL’s expectations.
“We’ve been in the business of manufacturing coils just with the ACCEL brand for over 40 years,” Ellison said. “We know what makes them work.”
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Copyright 2014 Powersports Business