Installing turbochargers, superchargers and nitrous oxide on customers’ vehicles, including race cars and tow vehicles, can provide a tremendous opportunity for a business to connect with both existing and new buyers.
Blane Burnett at NOS in Bowling Green, Kentucky, explained that providing installation can absolutely aid the sales of nitrous oxide kits themselves.
“There are a number of customers that would be more at ease with purchasing nitrous for use at the track if the seller could also offer the install,” he said. “As with a number of performance-related products, sometimes customers are reluctant to take on the install of it themselves, and want to leave that to the professionals.
“Another important item to consider is EFI installation and tuning services,” Burnett continued. “The closer you can get to being a one-stop shop for installing power adders, integrating it with EFI, and dyno tuning, the more business you’ll find yourself bringing in.”
Before selling nitrous systems, though, it’s important to address misconceptions about their safety, experts said. “For the unseasoned performance enthusiast or racer, there seems to be a lot of misunderstanding and reluctance of use concerning nitrous,” Burnett noted. “These unsubstantiated claims are based on the idea that it is unsafe or dangerous. However, when installed properly, nitrous oxide is a perfectly safe way to augment the performance of a vehicle.”
A nitrous fill station represents one of the better investments a local performance shop can make, according to Matt Patrick of ZEX in Memphis, Tennessee. “It keeps the racer coming back to the shop on a regular basis, and gives the shop owner opportunities to sell additional racing parts,” he said.
As for turbo manifolds, “adding [those] sales to your portfolio can bring in a new clientele and benefit your bottom line,” Sergio Barbosa Jr. of SPA Turbo, Newbury Park, California, told us.
And, when selling superchargers, Justin Starkey of VMP Tuning & Superchargers in Deltona, Florida, advised retailers to gather as much information as possible: “What kind of racing or driving is the customer going to do with their late model Mustang? Are they going to go open track or are they going to just drag race? Is it auto or manual? Each different type of supercharging system, whether it’s a Vortech or a positive displacement supercharger kit like ours, has different pluses and minuses,” he said.
“The shops really need to be well educated, and they need to be able to offer the customer turnkey solutions,” Starkey added. “Our kits come with tunings, so it’s something they can install in a day or two, and then send the customer on their way to go faster.”
Ainsley Jacobs of Precision Turbo & Engine in Hebron, Indiana, emphasized the importance of truly understanding the customers’ goals. “Then, work toward developing a package that will meet their needs, both with regards to power as well as budget,” she said. “Educating the customer on how the products work, and how they will impact their car’s performance, as well as other supporting systems—such as oil, fuel, brakes, etc.—is also always a good idea.”