The 62nd Anniversary of the 2015 PGA Merchandise Show, held January 21-23 in Orlando, FL was teeming with crowds of people looking to see the latest and greatest innovations in the industry, whether it was the advancement of lithium technology to unique technology that manages golf car diagnostics. The usual exhibitor displays of golf car accessories were abundant showing off recently introduced products along with some potential game-changers.

With more than 41,000 PGA Professionals, retailers and industry leaders from every U.S. state and 79 countries in attendance the 2015 PGA Merchandise Show saw exciting product introductions in every sector of the business, a six percent increase over 2014, in PGA Professional attendance and 12 hours of live television coverage by the Golf Channel to provide an insiders’ look for consumers. The top five countries (outside of U.S.) represented in attendance were Canada, United Kingdom, Japan, Korea and Sweden. The top five U.S. states represented in attendance were Florida, California, New York, Georgia and North Carolina. A focused marketing campaign by both the PGA Show and buyers attending the PGA Show ended up creating a more valuable business to business environment with more qualified buyers to impact exhibitor business.

“We are pleased to have welcomed even more PGA Professionals to the PGA Merchandise Show as they are important influencers to the business of our exhibiting companies,” said PGA Worldwide Golf Exhibitions Senior Vice President and General Manager Ed Several. “As ‘The Major of Golf Business’ for our global golf industry, the 2015 PGA Merchandise Show was a tremendous start to the new year and a valuable way for our community to meet face-to-face to be inspired by each other and make a positive impact on the growth of the game and the industry.”

FIRST TIME EXHIBITORS

Eagle Parts & Products of Augusta, GA displayed their popular Eagle 288 Cooler, a much less expensive alternative compared to a refrigerated unit. With a 56 gallon capacity and insulated throughout, the Eagle Cooler holds 144 cans per side (288 total) with drains on each compartment. The Eagle 288 Cooler is great for golf tournaments with great accessibility and easy mobility. Color options are dark green, tan, grey and blue. For more information call 706-790-6687 or visit www.eagleproducts.us.

Fullriver Battery USA of Camarillo, CA displayed the very popular Delta Q’s QuiQ high efficiency battery charger. The QuiQ charges AGM, flooded or GEL batteries using its 10 selectable charge profiles. Sealed to endure the elements, the QuiQ can be used on or off board and even has the flexibility to be plugged into any 110 VAC or 230 VAC source for worldwide operation and comes with a 2-year warranty. Also on display was their line-up of golf car batteries with superior range without the inconvenience of needing to add water or clean corrosive acid residue off the batteries. For more information call 800-522-8191 or visit www.fullriverdcbattery.com.

Garia of Denmark garnered much attention with their unique and extravagant display of golf cars and LSV’s. Right away you can tell these are not your typical electric vehicles! On display was the Garia Via street legal LSV with optional Samsung Lithium Batteries and a built-in refrigerator with a range of 40-60 miles. The Garia Golf Car Mansory Edition and the Garia Mansory Currus (Limited Edition 1 of 7) also made their debut featuring genuine carbon fiber components, high-end leather seating, Alcantara dashboard panels, and a performance pack with lowered suspension. If you want an electric vehicle that is truly unique, this is it. For more information call their Houston, TX office at 281-923-0291 or visit www.garia.com.

Pro-Fit provided a demonstration of a break-through technology providing the ability to monitor your golf car in real-time with Smart Link. With a free download of the Smart Link app to your smart phone, checking your battery charge level, monitoring recharge time, receiving maintenance reminders or identifying your exact location via GPS are just a few of the many diagnostic capabilities available with Smart Link and is compatible with Club Car, E-Z-GO and Yamaha models. Very intuitive with a lock-out feature, Smart Link works via Bluetooth and mounts via a phone mount providing real-time information. For more information on the Smart Link system, call 844-360-5524 or visit www.pro-fitparts.com.

Evolution Electric Vehicles of Palm Desert, CA presented several of their golf car and LSV vehicles. The Traveller 4 & Forester 4 garnered much attention with their practical styling. The Traveller series features a powder coated chassis and a Curtis programmable controller and regenerative braking, carrying 4 passengers and a maximum speed of 25 MPH. The Forester series features a hot-dipped galvanized chassis and a Curtis programmable controller and regenerative braking, carrying 4 passengers with a maximum speed of 19 MPH. Other included features are battery meter, functional front and rear bumpers, parking brake and a foldable windshield, just to name a few. For more information call 844-556-6666 or visit www.ev-ev.com.

Superior Enclosures of Fort Myers, FL displayed their all new golf car enclosure utilizing a unique rail system allowing ease of use for opening and closing the enclosure. Made with high quality components such as UV rated marine vinyl, authentic Sunbrella material and weather-resistant hardware, it slides open and glides to a close and secures magnetically. Available for most makes and models, for more information call 239-564-2278 or visit www.superiorenclosuresofficialsite.com.

Quiet Kat of Eagle, CO introduced the ultimate portable electric golf vehicle. A great option to the traditional golf car, the Quiet Kat is a portable, powerful lightweight 3-wheeled vehicle that provides great maneuverability and not only quickens play on the golf course but enables more time to focus on that next shot. The engineering behind the Quiet Kat includes amenities of a traditional golf car while increasing engagement and decreasing time on the course. Lithium battery technology powers the Quiet Kat providing years of efficient, clean and reliable use. For more information call 970-328-2399 or visit www.quietkat.com.

Oakridge Global of Melbourne, FL displayed the future of golf car batteries with their new Pro-Series lithium batteries featuring technology that provides more rounds per charge and more miles per charge compared to not only the leading lead acid batteries, but other leading lithium battery competitors, as well. With a battery company comprised of golfers they truly have the consumer base in mind for what the needs are in the industry. Conserving energy, maximizing drive-time and minimizing the carbon footprint are just a few of the principals of Oakridge Global. An intelligent battery monitoring system automatically balances each cell overnight providing maximum power availability and this technology also acts as an anti-aging solution, providing extended operation year after year. For more information, call 321-610-7959 or visit www.oakg.net.

HIGHLIGHTS FROM SOME OF THE OTHER EXHIBITORS

Cart Buddy displayed the highly touted unique padded sleeve for hip restraints on golf car seats that will take you down the path of style and comfort. Getting in and out of the golf car just got more comfortable as the cushioned sleeve easily secures over the hip restraint providing a more comfortable solution without bumping into a solid hip restraint. Installs easily in seconds and incorporates high quality design with attractive stitching on marine grade vinyl exterior with a waterproof inner liner, shock absorbing foam padding and made in the USA. For more information call 800-275-1847 or visit www.cart-buddy.com.

Yamaha displayed several models including the all new Yamaha AC Drive, providing more power and efficiency. The AC Drive has been often called the “King of the Hill”. Unlike other golf cars, the AC Drive technology provides enough power to prevent slowing down when encountering a slope or hill. And the AC Power technology is not just limited to the Drive models but is also available in the new Adventurer Two AC – a true work-horse with enough power to get the job done. The Adventurer Two AC features 40% more horsepower and larger seats and interior. For more information, call 866-747-4027 or visit www.yamahagolfcar.com.

Club Pro Products displayed what is certainly one of the top of the line enclosures, the Encompass Golf Car Enclosure. This enclosure revolutionizes the way we use our golf cars. Ease of installation and a seamless fit give it a “made-from-the-factory” appearance, rather than an after-thought like some of their competitors. A high-end appearance, unique styling, all weather performance and constructed to fit Club Car, Yamaha and E-Z-GO golf cars has already given the Encompass Enclosure the attention it deserves. For more information, call 800-467-2844 or visit www.golfcartsystems.com.

Flow-Rite displayed their line of Single Point Battery Watering systems and flip top watering caps for electric golf cars making battery maintenance easier than ever.  Fill batteries faster, safer, and more reliably than ever before with the Pro-Fill On-Board Watering System!  This system consists of automatic shut off valves interconnected with tubing that replace the existing vent caps.  A quick coupling allows the system to be connected to a water supply.  Once connected, water flows into each cell until it reaches the correct level. The entire process takes just 30 seconds per battery and will save time and money whether it’s an electric car enthusiast or a fleet of cars at the local golf course. For more information, call 616-583-1700 or visit www.flow-rite.com.

Star EV, a division of JH Global Services, displayed several popular electric vehicles. The Magellan is not your average golf car, featuring a powerful AC motor, aluminum chassis and roof supports with a walk away braking system and front independent suspension and up to a 60 mile range on a single charge. The Diablo is quite the Off Road vehicle featuring a built-in roof rack, rear flip seat, S/S brush guards and an automatic battery charger. The Magellan and the Diablo are available in Metallic Silver, Passion Red, Ocean Blue and Metallic Black and Aqua Green. For more information call 1-877-818-8833 or visit www.starev.com.

Trojan Battery displayed the all new Reliant AGM sealed golf car battery. Designed as the only true deep-cycle AGM batteries, the Reliant is engineered with an advanced technology feature which provides maximized sustained performance, consistent quality, enhanced durability and an increased total energy output. Test results show a 13-17% energy increase over the competition. And, they are built in the USA at the Trojan Battery state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Sandersville, GA. For more information, visit www.trojanbattery.com.

Stenten’s Golf Cart Accessories has always drawn crowds to their displays in past years and this year was no different at the 2015 PGA Merchandise Show as they showed off many of their highly popular accessories from LED light bars to the Silver Wolf 4-Wheel Drive System to Suite Seats upholstery to Stenten’s new 3-Point Harness Seat Belts, it was almost endless with high quality accessories. And with Stenten’s, it doesn’t stop there. Started in 1986, they have become a leading supplier of golf car accessories in the industry, committed to providing the dealer with the highest quality and greatest selection of products. For more information call 1-800-541-8333 or visit www.stenten.com.

US Battery displayed the XC2™ deep cycle battery with “Diamond Plate Technology”. Lasting longer and providing improved charging profiles will save time and money and ultimate compatibility with the wide range of chargers used in the field. These are just some of the many benefits stemming from over two years of internal testing and coordinating with independent testing to ensure that XC2™ is working as promised. The results achieved with the XC2™ formulation are impressive and set new standards for deep cycle battery performance. For more information call 800-695-0945 or visit www.USBATTERY.com.

Club Car exhibited several vehicles including the very popular Precedent i2 with Visage technology. Visage lets you see the condition of every vehicle in the fleet and foresee problems that could impact a customer’s enjoyment. You can also control the speed and boundaries of where the vehicle goes. Establish no-go zones and set cart path-only areas, a Visage-equipped fleet is totally at your command anywhere on your property. Need to send a message to any or all of the cars on the course? Not a problem! Ultimately, raising productivity, protecting assets and increasing revenue for your operation is what Visage can do. For more information, visit www.clubcar.com.

E-Z-GO displayed the Cushman Hauler Pro Utility Vehicle with 72-Volt AC Drive System, Lifted Suspension & Limited Slip Differential with the power to keep your team working for up to 50 miles between charges. Equipped with a quiet, zero emissions 72-volt AC electric drivetrain, the Hauler PRO will keep you both environmentally and financially green. With its lifted suspension, the Hauler PRO has the endurance to climb your course’s most rugged topography. Its standard on-board charger, impressive 900 lb payload and optional limited slip differential gives the Hauler PRO a never quit attitude for tackling the toughest of days. For more information, visit www.ezgo.com.

Club Protector presented the highly popular patented retractable roller enclosure available in a pull chain. Simply pull a chain and they roll up in seconds – no more rolling up by hand. The enclosures are made of the finest outdoor awning fabric available, Sunbrella canvas with durable double-stitch sewing. When rolled up, all you see is smooth, wrinkle-free canvas and with the window vinyl rolled up under the canvas, protection from the sun provides longevity. Also introduced was the all-new patent pending lighted Glow Valance, which will certainly add that unique touch to your golf car. For more information call 800-338-8749 or visit www.clubprotector.com.

Go-Pro flexed their muscles with the “Jaws Flex Clamp” for their Go-Pro cameras. Strategically mounted to any structure of the golf car you can now video your 18 holes of golf. Available mounts are not only the flex Clamp but suction cup mounts, as well. Other accessories are curved and flat adhesive mounts, pole mounts and roll bar mounts. For more information, visit www.gopro.com.

Golf Skate Caddy displayed an innovative and fun way to drive the course with the Golf Skate Caddy, a purpose-built, single person golf transport device. Gentler on the course and quieter than a traditional golf car it’s apparent that there is a “fun factor” to this product. High reviews are commonplace as users have compared this to “surfing the turf”. Essentially, the Golf Skate Caddy has fused the fun of a skateboard with a golfing purpose. It’s one of those rare products that will have you thinking, “Why didn’t I think of that?” The Golf Skate Caddy is powered by a 30ah lithium battery and able to carry a player, full pro bag, clubs and accessories with a mere 60-second learning curve. For more information call 844-300-GOLF or visit www.golfskatecaddy.com.

Electronic Kaddy presented a unique product that provides yet another option to the traditional golf car for carrying your clubs. Operated via a hand-held “Kaddy-Link” remote control, the Electronic Kaddy provides complete control of speed, turning, braking and stop/start functions. The latest version of the “Kaddy-Link” remote control gives the golfer an unprecedented operating range of up to 150 yards avoiding any mishaps resulting from loss of control. The exceptional hill climbing ability is due to the Dyna-Steer system which is a twin motor with gear reduction drive units and the wider wheel-base provides more stability, especially on steep inclines. For more information call 800-267-0098 or visit www.kaddy.com.

FUTURE SHOWS

The 2015 PGA Fall Expo is scheduled for the week of August 17th, 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The 63rd Annual 2016 PGA Merchandise Show is scheduled for January 27-29, in Orlando, FL at the Orange County Convention Center. The 2016 Golf Industry Show will be held February 10-11, 2016 at the San Diego Convention Center in San Diego, CA.