A Tucson to train on
Chad Bryan, Gleaner Writer
Through a partnership brokered between the Miami, USA, arm of car makers Hyundai and Key Motors, the Jamaican distributor of Hyundai vehicles, a donated Hyundai Tucson enables Level Three students at the Jamaican-German Automotive School (JAGAS) to be more technically equipped for the workplace.
The partnership was initiated in February 2011 and completed in early 2012. A brand-new 2012 Hyundai Tucson, valued at $5 million and equipped with the modern common rail diesel engine, was handed over to JAGAS.
According to managing director of Key Motors Desmond Panton, Hyundai is keen on all their dealers having qualified, well-trained mechanics and technicians. Naturally, this means keeping a keen eye on the various training programmes available and providing assistance where possible. "We wanted them (the students) to be better equipped to meet the challenges of the new technology, which is being utilised by all manufacturers today," Panton said.
A common rail diesel engine is designed to supply constant fuel pressure, electronically controlled, to injectors, so the fuel supply is not dependent upon the engine speed. This system is made up of a number of components, with each performing a vital role to its smooth operation.
"The diesel would be more appropriate because it presented much more technical challenge. They visited the school to see how equipped they were and took the decision immediately that they would support JAGAS, not only to train technicians for Key Motors, but for the entire [automotive] industry," Panton explained.
Panton said that since the partnership was instituted, mechanics and technicians graduating from JAGAS have been heavily recruited by Key
Motors, however, there is still much for them to learn. "Even though they are well trained on a Hyundai vehicle, 80 per cent of our workforce has to attend further training at Hyundai and are certified by them," the Key Motors managing director said.
This additional mandatory training, which is
done three times a year, is to ensure that the Hyundai vehicles they
work on are serviced and repaired to the highest possible
A coordinator, facilitator of the Level
Three programme and senior instructor at JAGAS, Michael Sawyers, said
the Tucson is used to teach students diagnostics, among other
"We would ensure that the trainees get through
all the circuits on it. We would use a scan tool to interface with the
computer on the vehicle. We have also used the vehicle to teach the
engine. Any part of the vehicle is used for our training. It provides us
with an up-to-date training on what is actually out there," Sawyers