Mohd Azad Jasmi

By: Azad Jasmi

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Thursday, 14-Feb-2008 08:12 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Thomas Jaeger

 
He had taught some techniques he used during his DTM and racing days. He was one of the instructors appointed by AMG Mercedes for Ultimate Winter Driving School.

http://www.thomas-jaeger.de/


Tuesday, 18-Dec-2007 09:20 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Two Men & A Plan

 
By Shamsul Yunos

They did not have pile of cash to impress the principal and they had to apparent political connection to convince the foreign partner to come into an agreement but what they did have was a plan on how to develop the brand.
The brand in question is Kleeman, a well known aftermarket tuner for Mercedes-Benz and the men are Khairul Anuar Abdul Rahman and Mohd. Azad Jasmi.
Passionate about cars and eager to make their mark in the world, they initiated contact with Kleeman in 2003 with the intention of becoming the brand’s distributor in Malaysia and Asia Pacific.

The first attempt did not result in anything as they were total unknown but several developments and a few years later, they received an e-mail from Kleeman asking if they were still interested in becoming a distributor.
That’s when they got into gear and came up with a convincing business plan but on top of that they also came up with some ideas on how they think the Kleeman should be developed.

“I think it was our plan on how to develop the brand that caught their eye,” said Khairul Anwar.
“They liked the idea that we were not just keen on selling their products but had a clear idea as to where the brand should be in the future and how it should be represented.
“That was how we convinced Kleeman to give us the distributorship for the entire Asia Pacific region including Australia, Hong Kong, China, Korea and Japan.

They may look like an unlikely duo to head a company dealing with a top automotive brand but Khairul and Azad share more than 30 years of automotive industry experience. Khairul was a Proton vendor in a previous business life, he also owned a Chevrolet franchise and dabbled in other areas of the automotive industry while Azad has had experience working with Proton, Naza and DRB-Hicom through Hicomobil, which was the Chevrolet distributor for Malaysia.
“We have been friends for a long time and since both of us had the love of cars in our heart, we thought it would be good to turn it into a business opportunity so when Kleeman agreed to work with us, it was a very exciting moment.
Before courting Kleeman they have also entered into an Agreement with Bajaj of India and the deal then involved re designing Bajaj products for sale in Malaysia.
However due to the high start-up cost, they needed to get financial support from bankers.
“Sadly we are new and no one would extend us financial assistance so the project was put on hold until we can find the money.
“Setting up Kleeman Asia Pacific is not too capital intensive and we feel it is an important step for us to understand how a top brand develops and markets itself.
Khairul and Azad saw the potential of Kleeman as a brand and had proposed to the principal how they think the name can flourish in the region and their idea was so refreshing that they decided to come in as a partner.
“We were pleasantly surprised when we learnt that they liked the idea so much that they not only want us to distribute their products but also become a joint venture partner.

Their company, Kleeman Asia Pacific Sdn Bhd a joint venture between Kleeman of Denmark and three local partners.
Kleeman holds a significant holding in the company but the combined equity of the local partners form the majority shareholding in the entity.
Azad said that their plan for Kleeman was extensive and it involved increasing their market and brand presence by offering world-class aftermarket enhancement for Mercedes Benz owners.

“There are other aftermarket tuners in the country but I think we are the only one that can offer such a wide range of services locally.
“Our offering includes cosmetic upgrades for the car and performance improvement packages that range from simple replacement of the engine management chip to installing kompressors to existing engines.
Azad and Khairul saw the potential in offering quality aftermarket upgrades that comes with a warranty, the first of its kind in Malaysia.

“What we want to do is unique in the sense that we are not concentrating on selling cars, instead we are offering our expert skills for quality installation of upgrades and also skilled craftsmanship in customisation,” Khairul says.
With so much emphasis on skills development, they are really working on the transfer of technology from the principal in Denmark to the local workforce.
“We are now training five technicians and installers and our Danish principal will continually send technical teams to help us upgrade out skills and by the time we launch our brand in Malaysia sometime in October, we will be able to do all the upgrading works in the brochure locally.
So far they have invested RM5 million in the company and this includesa considerable budget for training.

Azad says the ability to offer local performance upgrades for a high-end brand is a unique proposition in Malaysia but they are also a regional centre for Kleeman which means that others will come and learn from Malaysians, of they want to become Kleeman installers or agents.
“No other top end brand has used Malaysia as their regional launch pad and we are proud to be the first,” says Azad.

As work on their showroom in Ampang progresses, the two men are busy making all the necessary arrangement to launch Kleeman in Malaysia.
“There are many things that we still have to work out including the very unique warranty package for any performance upgrades. Customers can choose to install the components without any warranty or they can opt for the package which includes warranty coverage,” says Khairul.
“We want to focus on offering existing Mercedes-Benz owners a chance to upgrade their cars without worry about quality and in this sense we are unique and are not competing with anyone.
“You can buy performance upgrades or performance models from other tuners and we can still find ways to complement your vehicle with our range of upgrades,” Azad says.
Kleeman Asia Pacific offers performance upgrades that start around RM20,000 that consist of engine re-chip and new compressor pulley set. Those with a thicker wallet can spend upwards of RM100,000 for a more extensive tuning that includes everything from the exhaust system to a new engine management computer.

At the moment Kleeman holds not approved permits to import cars so they will focus on the performance upgrades but if customers want the complete Kleeman treatment they can comply by working ground-up on a locally available model.
“A buyer can tell us that they want a MC200 Kompresor with the full Kleeman treatment and we will find the car for them and propose the package, if the model they want is only available as a reconditioned car, we will offer them the same service.
“If you buy a reconditioned car, you get no warranty but if it has gone through the full Kleeman treatment and you have opted for the package that includes warranty coverage then even the reconditioned car will be delivered to the customer with our own warranty.

Their faith in the Kleeman brand is not unfounded, even before they have launched the business, enquiries from Indonesia, Hong Kong and Korea had begun to flow in.
“Some of them called Denmark directly but were told to contact us at Kleeman Asia Pacific and work out the details.
“This would not have happened if we are merely a distributor but as equal partners in the venture they also wanted to help us develop Malaysia as their regional hub.
This is the first time that Kleeman has become a joint venture partner with a distributor, in the past distributors worked on their own.
“Kleeman has given us three years to set up the regional network so right now we are focusing on Indonesia, China and Hong Kong.
“During the first year of operations we will focus on developing the Malaysian network of installers and dealers, once the home market is table we will quickly pursue business opportunities in the countries mentioned earlier,” says Azad.
With a good long term plan and dedication, Khairul and Azad is confident that they will enjoy strong support from the market.

Both share Enzo Ferrari as their idol, not because the name is a glamorous brand but because the founder was determined to make something of himself and become a force in the automotive industry.
“When people ask me what brand of car is my dream car, I tell them I want to build my own brand and most of them would laugh because it is such a monumental task and it is a huge undertaking but with a plan and willingness to work out the problems one by one, we believe that nothing is impossible.
“Enzo Ferrari used to work for Alfa Romeo when he told people his dream brand was Ferrari. Alfa Romeo used the be a very famous brand but now Ferrari is more famous and more prestigious due to his vision and persistence. Why can’t we share that dream,” saks Khairul.


Tuesday, 18-Dec-2007 05:22 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Kleemann GTK

GTK Rear View
GTK Sideview
GTK Front View
FARUM, Denmark — Kleemann, the Danish tuner, says only the doors, roof and glass are carried over from the standard Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG on its new GTK. Even the high-performance AMG engine has been modified to produce more power.

The GTK is a concept study, designed by Christian Brandt. Hood, deck, fenders and fascias all have been radically changed from the original. Kleemann says the concept will likely influence the styling of its future specialty models.

Kleemann added one of its superchargers to boost output to 540 horsepower and torque to 516 pound-feet. Power is fed to the rear wheels through the stock Mercedes 7G-Tronic automatic gearbox and a Kleemann limited-slip differential. The tuner claims 0-60-mph acceleration takes less than 3.7 seconds, with top speed electronically limited to 187 mph.

Kleemann also upgraded the brakes and fitted 20-inch wheels and ultralow-profile tires.

Well-known Mercedes tuner Kleemann has released the first official rendering of its own car, an in-house production called the Kleemann GTK. The carbon fiber skin is wrapped around an SLK body, and the design language is "based on the unique Kleemann design code of elegance and simplicity acknowledging the Nordic design traditions of simple and organic shapes." That apparently means a Reventon (again with the Reventon) snout, a Castagna Aznom front fender treatment, and sharper SLK lines from the A-pillar back.

The GTK is actually based on the SLK 55, and gets a Kleemann Kompressor system, 20-inch Kleeman wheels and 8-piston Kleemann brakes in front and 4-piston out back. That "kompressor" means the little roadster puts 540 HP and 516 lb-ft through its 7-speed auto box. Twenty-inch Kleeman rims ride rubber slivers called Toyo T1-R tires designed specifically for the car. According to Kleemann, it gets to six-oh in 3.7 seconds and runs up to 180+ MPH. Kleemann isn't going to do mass production, so for those of you with the means (lots), place your call now.
KLEEMANN GTK, danish design, world performance

In 2004, KLEEMANN made ambitious plans for creating unique and exclusive KLEEMANN sportscars. Now, after 3 years of design and development, KLEEMANN bring their vast technology know-how and experience to the next level by introducing the GTK concept car.

KLEEMANN, best known for their long experience in Kompressor technology and exclusive styling products for Mercedes-Benz cars, now enters the battlefield of the exclusive sportscar manufacturers. This was made possible when KLEEMANN employed the internationally experienced car designer Christian Brandt. Christian has headed the top secret GTK design project, which was not only a sportscar project, but also a design and technology development platform for future KLEEMANN performance and styling solutions for Mercedes-Benz cars.

"The KLEEMANN styling solutions have always been designed with the deepest of respect for the elegant, powerful and exclusive design of the Mercedes-Benz cars. In order to go to the next level of KLEEMANN design, we felt that we needed to create a complete car. Designing a complete car enables us to create styling solutions for the Mercedes-Benz cars from a much bigger perspective than we have done previously by creating enhancements for production cars," says Christian Brandt, and adds:

"The GTK design project has been a big inspiration for both current and future KLEEMANN products. The wheel of the GTK has inspired the new TS-7 wheel with its unique directional one-piece design, and elements from the GTK design are similar to some parts of the current styling solutions for the KLEEMANN S-class and CLS-class. Current design projects planned for launch in the next 6-12 months for new Mercedes-Benz models will feature significant shapes and details from the GTK design. As all other KLEEMANN styling solutions, the design of the GTK is based on the unique KLEEMANN design code of elegance and simplicity acknowledging the Nordic design traditions of simple and organic shapes. The positive feedback from the market over the past couple of years confirms us in the belief that the KLEEMANN design direction we set in 2004 is right and appealing to the international market," Christian Brandt concludes.

The KLEEMANN GTK features carbon fibre body panels as well as many existing high performance KLEEMANN products, such as Kompressor system, alloy wheels, brakes etc. These new products have been developed and tested since 2005 in a Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 AMG and the GTK is structurally based on the SLK.

"When we chose to base the GTK on the Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 AMG, we wanted to offer exclusive sportscar design with the built-in everyday reliability, safety and comfort of the Mercedes-Benz cars. That way we could focus on developing specific elements making the car's design and performance unique for KLEEMANN," says technical director Claus Ankjaer and adds:

"In the creation of the GTK we faced several new challenges, and the experience we gained from solving these challenges, enable us to develop and manufacture even more sophisticated and reliable performance solutions for existing and future Mercedes-Benz car models," Claus concludes.

Featuring the normally aspirated SLK 55 AMG engine fitted with a complete KLEEMANN Kompressor system, the GTK boasts 540 HP of power and 700 Nm of torque. This power is transferred to the road through a 7-speed automatic gearbox, a KLEEMANN limited slip differential and ultra low profile Toyo T1-R tires on 20" KLEEMANN alloy rims designed specifically for the GTK, giving the driver maximum performance and control on the road. Being a safe, reliable and everyday usable sportscar reflects the Comfort Power slogan of KLEEMANN, and set it apart from many other race bred sportscars.

The raw performance data for the GTK places it at the very front of the competition: The 0-100 km/h acceleration is done in only 3,7 seconds and the GTK continues the brutal acceleration right up to the electronically limited top speed of 300 km/h. The high performance KLEEMANN brake system featuring 380 mm. vented discs with 8 piston fixed aluminium callipers front and 345 mm. vented discs with 4 piston fixed aluminium callipers rear ensure fast and secure stopping power from any speed.

KLEEMANN is currently not planning mass production of the GTK



Tuesday, 18-Dec-2007 05:19 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Malaysia's Auto Industry To Have Kleemann's Technology Soon

Interview with Bernama
By Ahmad Farizal Hajat

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 24 (Bernama) -- Danish- based tuner for the Mercedes-Benz, Kleemann, wants to transfer its technology to Malaysia through a special programme likely to be known as the "Kleemann-vendors programme" or an academy in Malaysia soon.

Kleemann Asia Pacific Sdn Bhd's managing director Mohd Azad Jasmi said the move would accelerate Malaysia's desire to be a regional automotive hub by bringing the much needed know-how in upgrading luxury and premium branded cars.

Kleemann Asia Pacific, a joint venture company between Kleemann A/S with its partners in Malaysia, aims to embark on the transfer of technology as early as next year, he told Bernama here Wednesday.

"Our job is not merely marketing and distributing the CBU (completely-built-up) Kleemann cars in Malaysia and the Asia Pacific markets, but we also plan to transfer the Kleemann technology from Denmark into Malaysia.

The soft launch for Kleemann Asia Pacific would be held here this Friday where two Kleemann cars -- the E55 and ML500 would be introduced.

The company has targeted to market 3,000-4,000 units of the spruced-up cars in the next 12-18 months in view of the growing demand by Mercedes Benz owners to upgrade and custom-fit their cars as well as interest by potential buyers.

"Kleenmann has immense high tech skills and know-how. We plan to leverage on Kleemann's technology and in the process facilitate Bumiputera or Malaysian vendors in maximising their potential effectively.

"This is not merely about screwdriver technology, this is a very high-tech system, purposely-built, highly-engineered where you have to calculate, design and so on," he said.

"So, this is what we mean by transfer of technology. We want to bring several of Kleemann's technologies here, educate Malaysian vendors, leverage on whatever we have in Denmark in Malaysia. This is our development plan for the country," he said.

Through the vendor or academy programme, he said Kleemann hopes to share its knowledge in the upgrading of engine and wheels in Malaysia for both the domestic and Asia Pacific markets.

Mohd Azad felt such technology transfer would compel other players in the local automotive industry to further enhance their automotive engineering and quality assurance which would indirectly help elevate the industry's benchmark.

Kleemann Asia Pacific, capitalised at RM3 million and having made an initial investment of RM5 million, was established specifically to carry out various projects, including restyling, upgrading, optimising and customising vehicles for existing Mercedes-Benz owners.

The objective of the company is to penetrate the Asia Pacific market through the distribution of products with Malaysia as a hub or headquarters for Asia Pacific.

Besides increasing the power output, Kleemann also offers brake, suspension, wheels and chassis upgrades for Mercedes-Benz automobiles.

-- BERNAMA


Tuesday, 18-Dec-2007 05:12 Email | Share | | Bookmark
KLEEMANN Asia Pacific Sdn. Bhd. - KLEEMANN in new joint venture

Kleemann Team
KLEEMANN Asia Pacific Sdn. Bhd. - KLEEMANN in new joint venture for the Asia Pacific region

KLEEMANN Asia Pacific Sdn. Bhd. - A hub for the Asia Pacific regionA luxury automotive company specializing in the development, design and manufacture of exclusive performance and design solutions for Mercedes-Benz automobiles has established Kleemann Asia Pacific Sdn. Bhd. as joint venture company with a local team in Malaysia as a regional hub for Asia Pacific market.

Kleemann Asia Pacific Sdn.Bhd. Has appointed its Chairman, Datuk Subhi Dziyauddin and Encik Khairul Anuar Abdul Rahman as its Executive Director, said its President Mr. Jess in a press release from KLEEMANN headquarters in Farum, Denmark.

According to Mr. Soren Jess, many companies have registered their intention to be the distributor of KLEEMANN cars in Malaysia. However, they have decided to choose a team with the same brand direction which shares the similar business mantra and philosophy.

The objective of this JV company is to penetrate the Asia Pacific markets through the distribution of products with Malaysia as a hub and residence of Asia Pacific HQ.

With the current Malaysia economic environment and the political stability, KLEEMANN believes Malaysia will be a strong start for the regional hub in the luxury and premium segment.

Malaysian automotive industry will benefit through the transfer of the world-class technology that will give a good platform for the locals in the auto sectors to further enhance their automotive engineering, quality assurance that will elevate the local industry benchmark.

Under the slogan Comfort Power KLEEMANN offers the most efficient engine performance solutions available on the market, and current Mercedes-Benz owners in Malaysia shall benefit from its technology of intensive research and development.

KLEEMANN accessories have around the world become synonymous with professional engineering, unique performance and the highest level of quality. Over the years KLEEMANN has expanded its product range from core engine up-grades to also containing exclusive accessories such as custom-made alloy rims, high performance brakes and sport suspension kits.

KLEEMANN engineers can transform your Mercedes-Benz into your personalized dream car with careful detailing, paying strict attention to your specific requests.

Global sales of the Mercedes Car Group developed very positively in 2006, with a three percent increase of passenger vehicles to the record level of 1,260,600 units (2005: 1,221,000).In 2006, Mercedes-Benz celebrated the most successful year in its history: Worldwide deliveries of vehicles rose seven percent to the record level of 1,148,500 units (2005: 1,078,000). This growth outpaced by far that of the global automotive market in 2006.

The brand with the star was also particularly successful in the Asia-Pacific region, where DaimlerChrysler delivered 126,200 Mercedes-Benz passenger vehicles, an increase of 11 percent from the prior year. Mercedes-Benz sales in Japan also rose 11 percent this year, to 47,800 units, and sales in the growth market of China (including Hong Kong) increased by 33 percent, to 21,100 units (2005: 15,800 units).

KLEEMANN anticipates to capitalize approximately 3% of the current Mercedes-Benz owners to upgrade their vehicles with the KLEEMANN parts,accessories and upgraded performance kits and technology.

The company also plan to execute the aggressive marketing, branding and promotional activities in order to increase 5% sales of KLEEMANN complete cars in Asia Pacific market by end of 2008."We shall announce the details soon", added Mr. Jess



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