COTTMAN Announces Eco-Green Initiatives to Promote Cleaner Running Cars and Environmentally Friendly Service Centers

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Rigorous certification program promotes environmental responsibility and energy efficient alternatives for customers at hundreds of Cottman centers across America

Cottman logo authorized for publication with press release.

We have taken a corporate mandate and given our individual franchisees the ability to convert their centers into the cleanest car repair businesses in the world

COTTMAN has announced that it will participate in the Eco-green Auto Services Certification program launched by its parent company, American Driveline Systems, Inc. The Eco-Green Auto Services Certification program is designed to protect the environment, reduce vehicle emissions, and promote alternative fuels among the thousands of motorists that COTTMAN serves annually. Eco-Green Certification will be awarded to qualifying COTTMAN centers across America based on a stringent set of criteria that reduces the centers' environmental footprint, while giving COTTMAN customers a new range of services that cut emissions, improve mileage, and reduce the hazardous waste associated with owning and maintaining their vehicles. The certification is the first of its type in the automotive aftermarket industry.

Eco-Green Certification seeks to move COTTMAN centers to a zero-waste operating model that recycles solid and liquid waste, uses recycled products wherever possible, and promotes energy efficiency. For example, Eco-Green certified centers will recycle used oil for heating fuel, ensure waste water doesn't enter sewer systems, install energy-efficient lighting and heating, use water-based alternatives to hazardous cleaning chemicals, and recycle used filters. They will also work to improve vehicle efficiency by promoting alternative fuels, higher mileage oil and air filters and components, proper tire inflation, and new technologies that result in cleaner-burning vehicles.

"We have taken a corporate mandate and given our individual franchisees the ability to convert their centers into the cleanest car repair businesses in the world," says Todd Leff, President and CEO of COTTMAN. "COTTMAN's business model has always been based on recycling and rebuilding motorists' transmissions to new car standards. But now with the Eco-Green program, we're doing even more. We have created a closed-loop environment for our centers, where whatever comes in is reused, and whatever goes out has little or no environmental impact."

As part of the Eco-Green initiative, participating COTTMAN Centers will use waste oil heaters that burn waste transmission fluid cleanly, generating BTUs and reducing the centers need for heating oil. Eco-Green certified dealers are also expected to provide special services for customers to help make their cars more fuel efficient and earth friendly.

Much of the impact will be seen in green services and products COTTMAN offers motorists. For example, COTTMAN's new Ultra-Green Tune-Up uses a lifetime air filter and an extended life oil filter to reduce landfills. Synthetic oil avoids the use of limited natural resources, while platinum spark plugs help burn fuel efficiently. And special checks of engine control sensors assure the highest possible mileage. Not only is the tune-up environmentally friendly, it makes economic sense since the new COTTMAN tune-up extends traditional service intervals by five times.

"Our goal is to maximize engine performance to its peak efficiency, reduce pollutants, and prolong engine life," COTTMAN's Leff says. "But that's just for starters. We have many more industry leading services on the horizon."

In fact, COTTMAN just announced a partnership with Flex Fuel U.S. to install EPA-certified E-85 Flex-Fuel Smart-Box conversion kits at its centers nationwide. The conversions will initially be focused on fleet vehicles -- the Ford Crown Victoria, Mercury Grand Marquis and Lincoln Town Car models, which are the most widely-used vehicles for livery, municipal fleets and police departments. COTTMAN's E85 conversion kit lets the car use any blend of ethanol, without flipping a switch or emptying the gasoline tank. Currently, COTTMAN is working with Flex Fuel U.S. to launch E85 conversion kits for more automotive models such as the Dodge Charger, Chrysler 300, the Ford F150, and the Ford Expedition.

E-85 fuel makes it possible for fleet managers to help America reduce its carbon footprint and dependence on foreign oil. It also costs 17% less, on average, than gasoline. And some states offer substantial tax breaks to operators who convert their fleets to E-85. COTTMAN's E-85 conversion kits are scheduled to be available as part of the company's Eco-Green initiative during 2008.

"With hundreds of centers across the country, COTTMAN has the real opportunity to dramatically transform the automotive aftermarket industry into a fundamentally cleaner, more environmentally-respectful business," Leff says. "Our Eco-Green program is our commitment to lead the industry and raise the benchmark of a good corporate neighbor. We're taking a stand for the environment, and our customers. We hope that other auto care businesses will decide to follow."

About Cottman Transmission Systems, LLC
Founded in 1962, Cottman Transmission is the nation's leading chain of transmission repair centers. With hundreds of locations coast to coast, Cottman specializes in every phase of transmission work, including manual and automatic transmissions, American and import vehicles, and front-wheel and four-wheel drives. Cottman technicians undergo regular, rigorous training and use the latest state-of-the-art electronic diagnostic equipment. For more information please visit Cottman's website at

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