The Mustang Club of Tampa visited BMR Suspension for a tour
By Steve Turner
Photos by Steve Turner and courtesy of BMR Suspension
You might not realize it, but there could be an aftermarket manufacturer operating near where you live. If you’ve only loved aftermarket upgrades, but never thought about how they were made, it’s worth taking a little time to see how a part is born. We’ve seen many operations, but for the Mustang Club of Tampa it came as a surprise the BMR Suspension was doing its thing in nearby Seffner, Florida.
As it turns out a freelance writer among the club’s circle alerted the club to their aftermarket neighbor, which prompted club officials to contact BMR about the possibility of a tour. It’s not something that happens often, as only a couple of Brand X clubs have paid a visit to the suspension company in the past.
“Normally it isn’t something we do, but in this instance we thought it might be a great opportunity to open the doors to our customers so they can see what goes into the parts we make,” Pete Epple, Marketing Tech at BMR Suspension explained. “We opened the event up to about 50 people and 40 cars and the club arrived in force! It was pretty impressive to watch the entire group pull in at once. We really weren’t expecting that.”
If you don’t live near the Tampa, Florida, area, you might not be familiar with this club, but apparently it is one of the more robust clubs on the MCA roster.
“We proudly rate as top 10 in the chapter of Mustang Club of America and are continuing to grow our membership. We have approximately 170 families as members within our club. A few are original founders and our members range in age from teenagers to retired individuals. Their cars range from 1964 ½ to 2015 and regardless of the decade, everyone shares the same enthusiasm about Mustangs,” Paul Strausbaugh, a member of the Mustang Club of Tampa board of directors, explained.
We had fun tagging along with the club. It’s easy to get jaded having seen manufacturing facilities big and small across the country. However, when one of the club members turned and said, “How often do you get to see something like this?” we were reminded how cool such an inside look really is. Apparently, the entire club enjoyed the visit just as much as he did.
“Everyone we spoke to really enjoyed it. Many in attendance took the opportunity to purchase some of BMR’s fine products. BMR has done an outstanding job making the company survive in tough economic times and is now successfully growing the company. We were very impressed with their formula to train and promote from within to develop their employees and create a succession plan to ensure they continue to provide the best product available,” Paul said. “It is obvious that Allan (Miller, BMR President) is an entrepreneur at heart, he has a keen eye and able to strategize through obstacles. The team is knowledgeable, passionate and proud of their company and the products they make. We were captivated with their on-site R&D that leads to the quality of their work.”
With a crowd of potential customers on hand September 19, it was only natural that BMR offer a traditional show discount, and many of the attendees took advantage of the offer. The basics were most popular, but some club members were inspired to really step up.
“We sold a lot of lower control arms for S197 Mustangs. This is about what we expected as they are inexpensive and simple to install. There were a few people who bought enough parts to significantly change the handling characteristics of their car,” Pete added. “It was awesome to be able to sit down with people, discuss their car, help establish what their goals are, and get them the right parts to help get them there. It’s always a great day when people leave your place happy!”
Yes, a small cruise-in and car show combined with a tour of a thriving aftermarket facility is a great way to start a Saturday.
BMR Mustang Cruise-In Gallery