Interview Australia: Hi Anthony, it's great to finally meet you and to get out here and meet your team and to see your workshop and factory. Tell us about how Long Range Automotive (LRA) started and how it has grown?
Anthony Beimers: I first started building LRA replacement fuel tanks over 20 years ago. My brother Roger joined the business in 1989. We started off very small when we first started manufacturing replacement and auxiliary tanks for 4WDs to allow for greater distances to be travelled in the Aussie Outback where fuel was scarce.
We now have 17 employees and we build fuel and water tanks, catering for a massive range of vehicles both here and overseas for both the 2WD and 4WD markets. We also cater for the Australian off road racing scene with specialty built fuel tanks to handle the extreme off-road competition scene.
Interview Australia: What products do you have that are made in Australia?
Anthony Beimers: We manufacture all of our tanks here in Australia. The fully baffled tanks are manufactured from 2mm (14 guage) T125CQ Aluminized sheet steel cut with a Farley computer controlled plasma cutter with full penetration mig welds. Each tank features brass threaded hose barb fittings, stainless steel hose clamps and high tensile bolts with nyloc nuts in every kit. Each tank is fully pressure tested, etch primed and finished in silver hammertone enamel. This proven system of building tanks has seen LRA become a market leader in the 4WD industry.
Interview Australia: What makes your products stand out from the rest and what is your best seller?
Anthony Beimers: Some of LRA’s best selling tanks go into 4WDs that are being used for touring this great country. From 60 Series Toyotas through to the latest 200 Series Toyotas plus everything else in between, having the necessary fuel on board carried safely without having to carry Jerry cans is awesome. This added fuel range allows tourers to visit remote locations such as the Canning Stock Route or the Simpson Desert without wasting the space Jerry cans take up. This means more luxury items can be taken to make travel a dream.
Interview Australia: Tell us about your Australian made products
Anthony Beimers: LRA is totally Australian owned with all products being designed by myself and my team at our factory in Lilydale. To help design each tank to model specific LRA use a precision CAD/CAM system to draw up the tank design to exacting measurements. Both Roger and I believe in keeping our products wholly Australian to support the country with jobs and revenue.
Interview Australia: Do you export to the rest of the world?
Anthony Beimers: LRA export in to Europe via France, America via California and into countries such as the Middle East and Africa where a growing market is developing for the kits which are easily fitted and proven in the field.
Interview Australia: Why do you choose to make your gear here? Why is this important, are the products particularly relevant to Australian Conditions?
Anthony Beimers: We believe in supporting our country and the importance of manufacturing staying here in Australia. Yes, we could manufacture overseas and far more cheaply however that would cause the loss of jobs here at home. We are fiercely Australian and it’s important for us to support the industry we love.
Above: The Factory in Lilydale, Victoria where all of the long range fuel tanks are designed and built.
Interview by INTERVIEW AUSTRALIA, Monday 24th October 2011