Ultra Tune commenced trading in 1979 with a pilot store in Box Hill, Victoria and rapidly expanded across the country after businessman Bert Smart saw a specialist Fast Tune-Up store in Hawaii whilst travelling home from the USA. Through Smart’s vision, we established a franchise model that caused the new business to expanding rapidly into all Australian states except WA. Using the latest Dyno Tune technology, which enabled vehicles to be tuned whilst on “rolling roads”, Ultra Tune garnered a nationwide public acceptance in the competitive after-market servicing sphere.
By 1983, Smart realized the “tune-up only” offering was not viable in the long term for the network. Instead of redeveloping the franchise model to accommodate a broader range of alternative services he decided to sell off the franchise to new owners (predominantly groups of existing Ultra Tune franchisees) in Queensland, NSW, Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia.
In 1988 each of the franchisor entities (except for South Australia) merged and formed a new company Ultra Tune (Systems) Australia Pty Ltd. (UTSA). Within the following 12 months, UTSA opened its first franchise store in Perth, WA.
In the early-to-mid 1990s, the network experienced turmoil and faced financial ruin with several centres across the network forced to close due to high rental lease costs. Current Executive Chairman, Sean Buckley acquired management and then later shareholding control in Ultra Tune sometime after a public auction in 1994 and after receivers appointed to UTSA.
Ultra Tune Australia Pty Ltd under the Sean Buckley’s management and his innovative business model, including the acquisition of competing brands such as Car Care Clinic (1999) and Auto Masters sites in Queensland and NSW during the early 2000s grew the organization from around 70 mediocrely operating franchises into a successful national franchise network model.
Ultra Tune started with a fixed price tune and lube service initially. It now provides both fleet and private motorists with a full range of services, each designed to perform in a structured series of operating procedures which ensure faster, more efficient and cost-effective service.
Ultra Tune has subsequently expanded its range of services to include tyres and all tyre-related servicing needs.
Ultra Tune employs specialist personnel from all relevant disciplines to provide first-class back up and support to franchise owners. The key administrative staff are professionals from accounting, financial management and marketing backgrounds. The Franchisor’s technical and training staff are highly qualified; some were having previously owned and operated or managed an Ultra Tune franchise. They are constantly being updated and instructed on the latest technical innovations and procedures.
Today, Ultra Tune is considered the industry leader in its technical field.