- FWR – owned by bike racer Bob Collins – has installed a brand-new MOT station at its London depot
- The business is one of the longest standing motorcycle tyre dealers in the Michelin Quality Centre programme
Michelin approved motorcycle dealer FWR is reaping the benefits of a major depot refurbishment, including the installation of a brand new two-wheel MOT station.
The business is one of the longest standing motorcycle partner dealers in the Michelin Quality Centre (MQC) network and is now run by owner Bob Collins – a well-known name on the bike racing circuit.
Like so many others, the company was severely affected by the coronavirus pandemic. However, Collins and his team used the time wisely – renovating its site in Kennington Road, London.
He says: “Business is really picking up again now, getting better month by month. It was slow during lockdown, a lot of our customers are commuters and people just stopped coming into London. But rather than standing still we used that time to get the MOT bay built.
“It was something we have tried to do for a number of years, but we never got there for one reason or another. We had to change the front of the depot slightly to accommodate the bay and needed to get permission from the council, so during lockdown I wrote to our local MP. He got on the case, and it all happened pretty quickly from there.
“It’s been a huge boost to the business; giving us an extra string to our bow and it’s certainly helped us get through this period. We’ve got a good reputation in the biking community and the work is starting to snowball again now.”
FWR has been a Michelin approved dealer for more than 20 years, and Collins says the partnership with the manufacturer has been hugely beneficial to the company he took over in 2010.
As part of the MQC programme, the dealer benefits from on-site staff training and guidance from Michelin’s expert technicians, support to strengthen its digital presence, as well as discounts and promotions it can pass onto its customers.
“We stock a wide range of tyres but I would say Michelin is our most popular brand,” says Collins. “In terms of the volume we sell, we must be one of the largest independent Michelin two-wheel dealers in London. Being an approved Michelin centre gives us a certain gravitas and we always get great support from the Michelin team. It’s a very good quality product and very popular with the biking community.”
Collins himself is a familiar name in the two-wheel world, having enjoyed plenty of success on the racing circuit during the past two decades – starting off with a trophy-laden spell in the club racing scene, moving up to the Superstock 600 and 1000 series, before a full season in the British Superbike Championship in 2006.
“I’ve raced all around Europe and at Phillip Island in Australia, against the likes of Cal Crutchlow and Tommy Hill back in the day,” he says.
“I’m probably a bit past it now but I still enjoy getting the leathers on. I’ve been racing classic bikes for the last 12 years. I’ve won quite a few trophies over the years and competed in some pretty cool places.”
Established in 1998, FWR supply and fit an extensive range of motorcycle and scooter tyres and parts including air filters, batteries, brake pads and chains, as well as racing products. Open six days a week, its trained workshop team carry out full servicing, maintenance and MOT work.
Michelin, the leading mobility company, is dedicated to enhancing its clients’ mobility, sustainably; designing and distributing the most suitable tyres, services and solutions for its clients’ needs; providing digital services, maps and guides to help enrich trips and travels and make them unique experiences; and developing high-technology materials that serve a variety of industries. Headquartered in Clermont-Ferrand, France, Michelin is present in 170 countries, has 123,600 employees and operates 71 tyre production facilities which together produced around 170 million tyres in 2020. www.michelin.com
More information on how Michelin assists transport businesses achieve its sustainability goals and run more efficiently can be found at business.michelin.co.uk.