How are EVs changing garage equipment
O.ME.R. developed ELEKTRUM, a new patented garage lift designed for zero-emission vehicles.
The car market is quickly moving towards a widespread electrification. Although numbers are still small, the market will increasingly turn towards cars equipped with electric engines and no hint of an ICE. In the first 8 months of the year, zero emission cars grew by 109% thanks to 6,453 registrations, compared to the same period in 2018, reaching 0.5% of the total market. In addition, the ever-growing offer of mild-hybrids, traditional hybrids and plug-in hybrids along with the arrival of new electric models will usher in a long list of new types of garage equipment needed for routine car maintenance, starting from garage lifts designed around the characteristics of EVs. For this reason O.M.E.R, a company active in the field of car lifting equipment for over 40 years, recently came up with ELEKTRUM. Unveiled for the first time in Bologna during the last edition of Autopromotec, this innovative lift promises to meet the needs of specialists working on full-electric vehicles as well as vehicles with a traditional combustion engine. Working on an electric car is profoundly different from traditional models, where most of the activities take place inside the bonnet. On the contrary, on a BEV (BatteryElectricVehicle) model it is essential to be able to easily remove the battery pack, an operation that requires generous manoeuvring space under the car and therefore a traditional two-posts lift can prove to be an obstacle. Another fundamental aspect comes from the opening angle of the doors: on a traditional ICE vehicle it is not essential to get on board when the vehicle is on the lift, however, on EVs most of the diagnosis is performed through the car's on-board instruments.
A collaboration with Tesla
The birth of the new ELEKTRUM car lift stems from a long collaboration with Tesla, which, over the years, has been using O.M.E.R. equipment throughout its global network of dealerships. Several years ago, O.M.E.R. started supplying lifting equipment to Elon Musk’s creation through its US subsidiary. How did this important milestone come about? Thanks to the supply of a 3.5 ton lift (FLY 35), which out-performed five other competing models from around the world. This long-standing collaboration with Tesla has led O.ME.R to understand the need to develop an innovative idea dedicated to electric cars. In fact, the battery packs, protected by a metal cage, often need to be disassembled before being checked for accidental impacts.
Reinventing the two-posts lift
If the collaboration with Tesla led to the idea of a new two-posts bridge, the development of ELEKTRUM confirmed the innovative spirit of the company directed by Orietta Rossato, president and general manager. "In over 40 years of activity we have obtained more than 60 patents at international level and we are able to offer a range of products fit for any market demand. In 2006 we invented a new lift (KAR 4.5 – 5.5 – 2.5 tons) with innovative patented post design, thanks to which we entered markets such as Norway and Sweden with excellent results. Now with ELEKTRUM we have reinvented the two-post lift which, despite maintaining the traditional contact points under the vehicle allows the operator to comfortably open the door", underlines the daughter of the founder Eride Rossato. The new lift leaves the front area of the vehicle completely free, thus making it possible to work effectively also on heat engines. Something unique on the ELEKTRUM, contrary to what happens on other models already on the market, is that it was designed from scratch with electric models in mind, and not simply modifying lifts already on the market. In fact, inside the large Mirano factory, there is an "off limits" area where new products are studied and designed. Here new vehicle lifts and automated parking systems are created and often customised according to one's needs, to be supplied to companies such as Scania, Volvo, Iveco, Mercedes and Ferrari.
O.M.E.R. SaS came to life in 1978 as the creation of Eride Rossato and his family. Under the impulse of the founder, O.M.E.R. started the production of car lifts including VEGA, still in the company’s catalogue. The 80's led to the development and production of the first "heavy duty" lifts, thus opening up a new market, seeing that up to that point "pits" were used to work on commercial vehicles. From then on, also considering the good results in economic terms, O.M.E.R starts exporting its products and becomes a listed company. Since 2000 the company has progressively changed, including a change of leadership. In fact, the founder left the helm of the company in the capable hands of his daughter Orietta Rossato who took on the role of president and general manager, starting a phase of operational reorganization with investments in research and development. Soon after, the Kar range saw the light. From 2014, O.M.E.R. starts strengthening its presence abroad, leading to record sales in 2018 with 80% of the total production being exported.