Centerline Acquires International Auto Parts - Page 4 - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums

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post #46 of 144 (permalink) Old 09-02-2015, 10:22 AM
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Originally Posted by mcola View Post
I recently came across a couple posts mentioning Alfissimo on the forum....I believe he's a relatively new start up....Give him a chance?
they've been going for quite long actually....

Jason is a BB member, here is a 2005 post from him
Alfissimo offering Powerflex again!

Dom - Alfa Spider 1990 S4 - formerly: Alfa 101 Sprint, 2600 Sprint, Montreal - family classics: Jensen Interceptor II, '58 Hooper RR Silver Cloud I, Shadow II, '60 Corvette.
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post #47 of 144 (permalink) Old 09-02-2015, 10:29 AM
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Maybe Paul at IAP was ready to retire and simply sold the business.

Ed Prytherch
79 Spider
85 GTV6 3L
76 Suzuki GT500

A little government and a little luck are necessary in life, but only a fool trusts either of them. - P.J. O'Rourke
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post #48 of 144 (permalink) Old 09-02-2015, 10:41 AM
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Cool Placed my first Centerline order today

Have time for shopping since my brakes went south on Sunday. They will pump up and stop (eventually). Pulled the tires and checked all wheels and under hood, under car and see no leaks. Also the fluid level is still at the top max line. So I have ordered a new Master Cylinder.

Added a replacement badge for the boot lid as the clear layer on the top is going fast.

Stopped by Harbor Freight for some nitrile gloves, shop rags, and their brake bleeder last night. Grabbed a couple of pints of brake fluid at the neighborhood parts store this morning.

Will be sitting out, dodging the heat over the long weekend while I await my shipment.

Was really glad that I was a block from home when the brake issue started. We made it to Stow, MA and back, last Thursday for Italian night at Minuteman Airfield. That was a blast. Good turn out of old and even a couple of new Alfas! Well done!

John

John R
So. NH, USA --'87 Spider Veloce 'Beige'
other current members of the fleet
2009 VW Jett TDi - latest addition to the fleet
2006 Subaru Outback - almost a driveway requirement in VT & NH
2004 VW Jetta TDi - have owned long enough to ease the wallet pain of the Land Rover, see the filling station 1 time a month.

previous
1984 Mercedes 300TDT wagon, rust took that one
1972 Mercedes 280SE, got in straight swap for the Discovery
2003 VW Jetta TDi, son totaled it on a wet, local street
1996 Land Rover Discovery
1992 Volvo 740 wagon, non-turbo, awful in snow
1986 Volvo 740 Turbo Wagon
1974 Volvo 164E - a beast
1984 Mazda 2 Dr. 626
1980 Ford Fiesta - car that would not die
1969ish Olds Cutlass Station Wagon
1966 Chevy Bel Air - inherited family car
1962 VW Bug - 6 volt
1974 Triumph Spitfire - wobbly driveshaft kept destroying stuff
1972 Triumph Spitfire - got totaled while parked at DMV
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post #49 of 144 (permalink) Old 09-02-2015, 10:56 AM
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Many, if not all, industries go through game-changing shifts from time to time. The Classic Alfa business model has taken its toll. Outstanding customer service, very wide parts availability for even the unusual models, super-competitive prices, and delivery speed and cost that apparently can't be matched by domestic vendors. I recall a company I once worked for that did a lot of things very, very well, but a direct competitor was enough larger that they negotiated a deal with UPS that EVERY package that shipped would be charged something like $5.00 without regard to size or weight. To get this, the competitor just had to guarantee they would pay a flat rate for an entire container of boxes every day. We couldn't make that volume, so had to pay the going per-box rate. It was a powerful inducement.

A lot of old-line parts vendors grew up believing that a warranty claim should be honored only if it was truly defective, and that returns would be limited and charged a restocking fee. Customers would be challenged for the honesty and accuracy of their claims. While these things make perfectly good sense, the "Wal-marting of America" has changed customers' expectations, particularly in the retail market.

So, whatever drove this acquisition, it is in the normal scheme of things. Industries will always consolidate from time to time. The overseas competitors are stronger than ever right now, given the exchange rate imbalance, and some of our cars are enjoying upward trends in market interest.

Not a bad time to be restoring an Alfa, I think.
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Don P
Carson City, NV

Past Alfas...
59 102 Touring (first Alfa $500 running)
65 Sprint GT (2nd Alfa, $500 daily driver)
102 Sprint (never did anything with it, but wish I had)
74 Berlina (first new car - now certainly rusted into oblivion)
61 Giulietta Spider G-Prod Race Car (where is it now?)
84 Spider Veloce (rarely drove it, so sold it)
86 Quadrifoglio (Dull car - no more 115s for me)
1971 Montreal "The Full Monty". Fair winds and following seas

Current Alfas
59 102 Touring Roadster - restoration complete, enough Alfa for any rational man. Or irrational, for that matter
And past...
Two 1946 Stampe SV4C (c/n 294 "Rocinante" - wife's favorite airplane. RIP), and c/n 235 "La Bon Temps Femme" (gone to a new home, but never forgotten)
Zlin 50LA (+9 -6 gees, titanium spar, 1200 lbs, 260HP rumored to now be in Brazil)
1946 Luscombe 8A
Starduster Too (recently spotted at the Nevada City, CA airport - over 20 years and an entire continent separating it from our stewardship in Binghamton, NY)
1955 Cessna 170B (wife taught me to fly tailwheel in this)

And present...
64 Mooney M20E ("Rambo". My faithful steed for over 30 years) Nearly 50 years old, and just returned from a trip to Argentina in him
Newest in the fleet
1967 Piper Super Cub on Wipline amphibious floats (a true "all terrain vehicle")
2010 Triumph Thunderbird


You can snap roll an Alfa only one time...
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post #50 of 144 (permalink) Old 09-02-2015, 04:03 PM
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As an Aussie that has to order most of his parts internationally you guys are lucky to have such well stocked and knowledgeable suppliers. We have a couple of smaller operators but they have no where near the range.

I must say IAP always looked like they had great parts etc but their international shipping was insane compared to Centerline, hence I have bought a fair bit from Centerline and Spruell. A pretty website also helps and I have always found Centerline's easy to navigate. Best wishes for the future Joe and I hope the merger only makes your business stronger and more successful. +1 on the vetting of repro parts too. No one wants to pay for something that nearly fits....
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Derek Entesano
1966 Giulia Super(Biancospino) 90% Restored
1967 GT Veloce(Rosso) Hibernating Project
1972 Montreal (Arancio) Restoration Project

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Lots of NOS 105 series parts for sale (always adding more)
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post #51 of 144 (permalink) Old 09-02-2015, 07:25 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the kind words!

Thank you also to those offering advice and criticism. We are listening.

We will in fact be honoring returns and cores for things sold by IAP. Nobody wants to leave customers hanging or dissatisfied. There are some procedural issues to be worked out, but we will definitely make sure everyone gets what they were expecting.

Centerline International - Alfa Romeo Parts & Accessories

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750-ALFA
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post #52 of 144 (permalink) Old 09-02-2015, 07:29 PM
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Massive undertaking Joe! Thanks!
Best, Gordon


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post #53 of 144 (permalink) Old 09-03-2015, 04:15 AM
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Let's not forget that Alfa Romeo did not stop producing cars after 1994. They just got out of the NA market.

Up here in Canada we are starting to see more and more 916 GTV/Spiders. In 5 years, these will be legal for import to the US.

This fresh blood should be enough to replace the pre-1994 Alfas that are being broken for parts and maintain a demand for Alfa parts IF US suppliers adapt.

Marc
1980 Spider, 1997 Fiat 175 Coupe, 1966 Giulia TI, 1982 Lancia Beta Zagato
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post #54 of 144 (permalink) Old 09-03-2015, 04:32 AM
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How many semi's did it take to move the inventory?

John Stewart
74 Spider
91 164S
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post #55 of 144 (permalink) Old 09-03-2015, 09:09 AM
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Centerline buys IAP

I'm assuming many of you saw the news earlier this week.
This is from their Facebook page:

Centerline Products is excited to announce that we have acquired International Auto Parts (IAP) of Charlottesville, VA.
To commemorate this change, and to honor IAP’s long history, Centerline Products will become Centerline International. All operations will remain based out of Centerline’s longtime Colorado location.
For nearly 40 years, Centerline and IAP have engaged in friendly competition. With this acquisition, Centerline International will continue our quest to passionately serve our customers by providing products and service worthy of the Alfa Romeo marque. Whether you drive a classic Giulietta, GTV or Spider, or have a brand new 4C you can look forward to increased staffing, new and innovative products, and the largest inventory of Alfa Romeo parts and accessories in North America.
At this time, I would like to encourage all Alfisti to thank IAP founder Paul Opiela for his many years of dedication and hard work, and to wish him well in his future adventures. There are also many other members of the IAP staff who have provided excellent service to our community over the years. They have all asked me to express their gratitude to the many long-term customers and friends they have met along the way.
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post #56 of 144 (permalink) Old 09-03-2015, 09:22 AM
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The restoration supply market was a little crowded and there just wasn't enough demand for their regular parts. There aren't too many older Alfas and FIATs on the road, comparably speaking. There's probably 1 vintage Alfa or FIAT in 10,000 cars you see? 20,000? Anyone's guess.

Also, I don't think there aren't enough vintage racers driving Alfas much anymore which was one of their other big area. The rules have changed in vintage racing and it costs a lot more now, at least that's what my Alfa friend told me at Sebring back in March. He quit because the cost tripled, thanks to Bill France (NASCAR) having bought Sebring and Road Atlanta in a package deal from Panoz. There were no Alfas in the historics race that weekend. The previous year, there had been 3 or 4 Alfas.

So, how many vintage Italian cars are actually on the road or are in garages and are either in restoration are road worthy?

Correct me if I'm wrong about things.

-Clark
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post #57 of 144 (permalink) Old 09-03-2015, 11:40 AM
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It's too bad that the competition has been reduced, but I'm honestly not surprised. Frankly, I was astonished when I bought my Spider that there were as many different parts suppliers as there are for a brand that hasn't been imported for 20 years.

Unfortunately, the number of people owning and maintaining classic Alfas is only going to go down over time. That dwindling number can only support so many businesses.

1986 Spider Veloce Turbo
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post #58 of 144 (permalink) Old 09-03-2015, 02:35 PM
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Perhaps Centerline will use the opportunity to upgrade their website.

Because IAP's website functionality is quite good, while Centerline's is well,...less than good.
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'77 Spider with SPICA
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post #59 of 144 (permalink) Old 09-03-2015, 07:00 PM
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I'm a little surprised at how fast it happened. Usually the things like core charges and credits etc are worked out before hand. Not after like one person posted about.

I'm not saying anything bad about core credit issue. Centerline honored it. Just commenting on how fast IAP went away.
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post #60 of 144 (permalink) Old 09-03-2015, 07:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Boccaccia View Post
Perhaps Centerline will use the opportunity to upgrade their website.

Because IAP's website functionality is quite good, while Centerline's is well,...less than good.
I agree completely. I found myself shopping at IAP more than centerline because IAP was easier to find what I was looking for and easy to order. Their shipping was also quite prompt.

Hope Centerline steps up to the plate, web wise.

Don - 1984 Spider Veloce
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