One-stop performance manufacturer takes another step

By Kate Swanson

Straightline Performance acquires turbo company

While the snow in Minnesota has only been gone for a few months, the folks at Straightline Performance Inc. are already planning for a busy 2017-18 season at their headquarters in Forest Lake, Minnesota. Recently, the snowmobile and ATV aftermarket parts and accessories manufacturer announced it is acquiring Mountain Performance Inc., a snowmobile parts company based in Draper, Utah, that caters to the mountain segment.

Jason Houle, president and founder of Straightline Performance, sees the merger as a great opportunity to move into the turbo segment. “We had talked about moving into the turbo industry for years. … To have the opportunity to work with a company that we believe is truly one of the best out there hands down, to be able to sell current manufacturers like Yamaha and work with Ski-Doo racing is a huge advantage.”

“We are very excited to combine technology and gain access to Straightline Performance’s industry-leading manufacturing, sales and support,” Mac Randolph, owner of MPI, said in a press release. “Both companies focus in the powersports industry, combined with the mutual commitment to customer satisfaction, reliability and performance will make the team even stronger in our ability to satisfy our customers.”

Straightline Performance’s Spencer Cowing (left) and president Jason Houle in “The Heartbreaker” Dyno Center in Forest Lake, Minnesota.

Straightline Performance has built 20 years of history in the powersports industry, manufacturing performance parts and operating a dyno center for snowmobiles, ATVs and UTVs in Minnesota. “Straightline has been around for 20 years. We’re not purchasing, discussing or buying companies that aren’t going to substantially compliment what we currently have. That’s the biggest decision out there,” said Houle.

“The Heartbreaker” Dyno Center is Straightline Performance’s key to getting the best results from its performance products.

Straightline Performance also acquired Race Shop Industries (RSI) a year ago. RSI is mainly a controls company that produces handlebars, risers, grips, repeaters and bar pads, but also miscellaneous accessories like seat covers. Now with the addition of MPI’s products, Straightline is poised to become a one-stop performance manufacturer. 

“I honestly don’t think there is any company in the powersports industry that has this same amount of power that we have now. I don’t know anybody that could do the entire machine from one end to the next,” Houle added.

Looking ahead, development will continue at MPI’s Utah location for high-altitude kits, while the sales, marketing and low-altitude product development will move to Straightline’s Minnesota location. “Being able to have a facility at elevation now is going to be a huge advantage. Whether that be for Straightline product, RSI product or one of the MPI products, we’re going to be able to have that capability out there,” said Houle. 

The partnership will further advance the already popular and race-proven MPI Ski-Doo 850 E-TEC high elevation turbo system, and also add a new low-elevation 850 E-TEC-based system to the lineup. The high-elevation turbo kit for the Arctic Cat C-TEC2 complete system is also available. Straightline Performance currently has a promotion on pre-ordered turbo kits. With the purchase of a turbo kit, customers will receive a clutch kit available free of charge if they order before July 1. 

All manufacturing and fabrication for Straightline Performance parts happens in its Minnesota facility.

In addition to promotions and new campaigns, Houle said Straightline Performance looks forward to supporting its dealer programs as well. “We will still have phenomenal dealer programs. With this acquisition, we’ll definitely have some great opportunities for dealers,” he added. 

The company will continue to uphold its high standards and dedication to customer service. “We make sure the customer is taken care of from beginning to end. Whatever they may need … we want to be on the forefront of that trend moving forward,” said Spencer Cowing, marketing and sales for Straightline Performance. “We want people to leave here knowing that they’ve gotten the best customer satisfaction and the best product for their money. We want that repeat business because that’s what we are here to do.”

The merger between Straightline Performance and MPI will take place over the next three years. Straightline Performance will also be able to use its on-site dyno center to test turbo engines. With years of experience testing and with its extensive tuning capabilities, Cowing said the company is excited to take turbo testing one step further and “truly show the Dyno numbers and the facts behind it.”

“Gaining the trust of our clientele is probably one of the biggest differences that we have with the bigger companies. We steer them in the right direction, understand their budget, and know what they want to achieve, listen to them and then help them make decisions,” said Houle. “Taking care of our customers is the ultimate goal.” 

 

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