Valid™ Instrument Cluster Case Study

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Newell Coach specializes in the production of high-end, customized motorhomes. The company wanted to improve the reliability of their digital dash to incorporate the latest technology available in this field. High on their list was a supplier with a reputation for providing excellent technical and customer support, as well as the technical expertise to provide the level of customization required. With this goal in mind, Newell approached Valid Manufacturing Ltd., a company with whom they had collaborated with previously for leveling systems. The result of this partnership was a new digital dash for Newell coaches that featured increased customization, backed by Valid’s unbeatable 24/7 customer support.

Newell approached Valid with the request to see if they could create an improved dash that was reliable and customizable. The result: a new digital dash for Newell coaches, increased customization for customers, excellent customer support and a great working relationship between Valid and Newell.

Valid Manufacturing Ltd is an engineering and advanced manufacturing company specializing in designing innovative solutions for industrial, commercial and recreational and transit vehicle applications. Newell had previously worked with Valid on its leveling system for their coaches, so knew the breadth of their engineering services as well as the excellent service provided by their customer support team.

“To improve our dash, we were looking for ‘What’s the next thing?’” says James Neatherry, VP Engineering at Newell Coach. “Valid is one of our best and most innovative suppliers in terms of what they provide in engineering support and services. The breadth of what they can do in both their mechanical design and electronics design is very impressive. So we asked them what they could create to help us provide custom solutions for our customers.”

Next level customization

In response to Newell’s requirements, Valid developed the Instrument Cluster, which is more flexible and customizable than traditional instrument clusters. Using intuitive design, the dash eliminates the need for separate controls, and its customizable display relays important vehicle and chassis information to the driver. Valid’s Instrument Cluster can display:

  • Engine gauges
  • Transmission
  • Battery capacity and voltages
  • Camera video – bird’s eye view, back into the vehicle, back up camera
  • Air system
  • Brake system
  • Tire pressure
  • Suspension and leveling/kneeling
  • Fuel and trip information
  • Onboard Diagnostics
  • Step and door status

The design process between Valid and Newell was one of collaboration.

“It was an engaging process building the dash with Valid. There are government regulations on what you have to have in a vehicle dash and there are also other features and indicators that are important to have. But how do you take all this and put it together in a way that’s visually appealing and functional for our customers?” says Neatherry. “We gave Valid some mock layouts of what we were looking for, things that our customers expected in our coaches. And then Valid took that input and went to work.”

The end result of this collaboration, Valid’s Graphic Instrument Cluster, can now be found in every coach that Newell produces.

“We now have more control of the buttons and the layout. The display font sizes can be adjusted which is important for our customers. They layout is intuitive so that drivers aren’t digging around through menus to get to simple tasks while driving. And Newell can now control the layout for each vehicle which is important for us to be flexible in customizing the product for our customers. Valid did an excellent job and they continue to work with us and develop the infotainment system today,” says James.

Valid’s engineering team has a long history of working hand-in-hand with customers on product development.

“It’s important for Valid that we take input from our customers and use that while building components for them,” says Justin Scherba, Product Manager with Valid. “We want to ensure we are working with customers like Newell to provide high quality, custom products and solutions that will meet their customer’s needs, versus them having to buy something off the shelf and make it fit into their products. Every customer and every vehicle is different and Valid understands that and customizes solutions to each of our customers.”

Innovation backed by Support

While Valid’s Graphical Instrument Cluster met Newell’s requirements for customization, innovation, and intuitiveness; their customer support services helped seal the deal. Valid’s service department provides 24/7 support, with customers able to speak to a real person at any time.  

“Valid’s customer service is second to none. They are one of the few suppliers we work with who will provide a customer service directly to Newell’s customers if necessary,” says Neatherry. “They are one of the best companies to work with.”

About Valid Manufacturing Ltd.

Valid Manufacturing Ltd is an engineering and advanced manufacturing company specializing in designing innovative solutions for industrial, commercial and recreational vehicle applications. Valid Manufacturing Ltd also supplies specialized electrical control products. Innovation, quality
and customer service are integral to Valid. Valid’s 150 employees work in 4 manufacturing facilities totalling more than 100,000 square feet available for product innovation and creation. Valid is a fully approved wiring and assembly shop (CSA and UL approved). Valid prides itself on providing superior products and services, and by building mutually profitable and beneficial long-term relationships with its customers and employees. For more information on Valid please visit www.validmfg.com.

About Newell

Since 1967, Newell Coach has always been at the forefront of motorhome evolution. Newell prides itself on its industry-leading style, engineering and performance. Newell creates innovative, quality motorhomes and is known for its exemplary customer service. Newell’s success can also be traced to its commitment to its highly-skilled and talented workforce who put the customer first in everything they do. Newell’s craftsmanship and dedication to the customer separates a Newell coach from any other motorhome. For more information on Newell, please visit www.newellcoach.com.

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