Strange that even though in the course of any long-term ownership, and with a definite need to replace them, rare is the case where a car owner specifically seeks out an automotive replacement part – or sprout the info – by brand. Undoubtedly, there are those who do, but by and large the average user probably doesn’t notice the things that are under the hood or hidden away, let alone pay attention to a brand.

So, with that, how many of you have heard of Gates, the Corporation or the brand? Well, the company has been around for a good bit, 100 years actually, and it happens to be one of the world’s leading industrial and automotive parts manufacturers, primarily in the area of belt and hose products, systems and components.

The company started in 1911 in Denver, Colorado, when Charles Gates bought The Colorado Tire and Leather Company, and in the hundred years since, Gates Corporation – formerly known as The Gates Rubber Company – has charted a global course that has seen the company expand into 29 countries around the world, with now more than 100 Gates manufacturing, distribution, technical and sales/service facilities delivering innovative solutions from industrial and automotive original equipment manufacturers and replacement markets to agriculture, transportation, mining, oil & gas, construction, food processing etc.

In the field of automotive replacement parts, Gates is a supplier to major car manufacturers worldwide, which enables it to provide OE-equivalent products to the automotive aftermarket. The company provides a host of auto parts solutions, including V-belts, timing belts, auto tensioners, waterpumps, radiator hoses, hose fittings, crimpers, automotive hydraulics and power transmissions, across a wide spectrum of applications, from passenger cars, light trucks and heavy-duty to scooter application needs.

The company was the first to launch OE standard material into the aftermarket an EPDM-based accessory belt, EPDM is simply known as a type of rubber (ethylene propylene diene Monomer rubber) well known for its outstanding heat, ozone and weather resistance properties. In the case of the EPDM Micro-V, the company says that it exhibits high resistance to wear (and ozone), has low stretch, and has good resistance to oil drops, among other things.

Gates also makes timing belts for cars, and prides itself by being the only manufacturer approved by virtually every major OEM to provide timing belts for new engines – it also makes the Unitta range of belts, and Gates and Unitta timing belts are products of the same company.

As the world’s leading belt manufacturer, Gates has a long history of creating new products through innovation to meet constantly evolving requirements, and is also a major supplier of belts to the motorcycle market, one such achievement is equipping Harley-Davidson with the first generation of Poly Chain synchronous belt and through the years, Gates has also become an important supplier to numerous scooter manufacturers, such as Peugeot MTC.

At present, Gates offers an aftermarket replacement scooter belt which matches OE belt performance, the Gates Powerlink scooter belt, designed to provide top performance for CVT drives. The company hasn’t stopped there – today, Gates is also involved in bicycles by providing the innovative solution in the form of the Carbon Drive System, which trades messy chains and skipping with a super strong polyurethane belt.

Granted, it’s not something that you need to be studious about, unless you’re so inclined, but at least you’re that more in the know about things, and if your mechanic shows you a Gates OEM part that he’s about to fit into your car, you know you’re getting quality and recognition. Find out more by visiting the Gates website, and there’s a Facebook page for the Powerlink Scooter belt, if you’d like to know more about that one.