Volume 8 | Issue 4 | Year 2005

Mobile Climate Controls Industries, Inc. (MCC) is a company with its roots in Europe. Back in the1970s MCC founder and chief executive officer, Gunnar Mannerheim, started a company he called Climate Systems in a town just outside of Stockholm, Sweden. An engineer, Mannerheim became well known for tackling some of the toughest climate control systems applications. He began building and developing climate systems for just about any one who requested one and no request was too difficult or outlandish. Whether it was an ambulance or a forestry fire truck, forest harvesting equipment, snowplows and other off-road vehicles, Mannerheim’s unique designs helped establish him in the industry and build a solid reputation.

Climate Systems did well. However, Mannerheim had bigger ideas and left the company to move to Toronto, Canada. There, he started what is known today as Mobile Climate Control Industries, Inc. It proved to be a very successful venture and in 1996, he was able to buy back Climate Systems and formed the Mobile Climate Control Europe Division.

Building Strength
Today, MCC prides itself on taking on the most challenging climate system problems and providing solutions that exceed its customers’ expectations. MCC’s main headquarters and a second plant are located in Toronto, Ontario. The company’s Europe Division operates from offices in Norrtälje, Sweden and the company also boasts a Fairmont, Minn. location.
The total square footage of all facilities combined is an impressive 250,000 with 400 employees at the helm. MCC facilities include design and engineering departments, wind tunnel testing labs, and climate chamber testing facilities departments to ensure its products are the most innovative and durable available. Capital investments are made regularly and MCC does spend a fair amount on tooling equipment. “Our owner has an engineering background and he feels long-term investments pay off. We’ve made investments of $300,000 or more in tooling equipment. We’ve never been afraid to do that because it pays off in the long run in keeping costs down and quality control in-house and that’s kept us very competitive,” says Tim Hested, marketing manager for MCC.
Poised for future growth and in anticipation of the growing bus market segment, MCC acquired a company known as Uwe in 2004, which builds convectors for buses – a part of its business it wants to increase. To that end and in response to the Buy America Act (which requires 60 percent of the content of a manufactured product be built in the U.S.), MCC’s Fairmont, Minn. facility was created to continue providing products to bus manufactures in the US.

Off-Road & On
MCC specializes in HVAC and heating systems solutions for major off-road and specialty vehicle customers and ships its products all over the world including Brazil, Europe, and Mexico with hopes of soon expanding into the Asian market more extensively.

MCC provides its customers with every climate control type product including complete air conditioning systems, defrosters, heaters, convectors, a full line of automatic temperature controls and complete system design. “Our business isn’t particularly complicated. We essentially make heaters and air conditioners. However, it’s in the application and solutions we provide that we excel. No matter what size, specifications or conditions a vehicle operates under, we find a way to make it work,” says Hested.

MCC has handled a variety of military contracts and received significant orders from companies like Textron Land and Marine System. It also has done a lot of work for Bobcat(r) and its popular skid-steer loaders. When MCC originally started working with Bobcat in the 1990s no on was offering heating and air conditioning for such a small, tight application. “We were able to do it and fit the tiny cabins of the Bobcat so even its smallest machines could offer comfortable climate control for users. We take the space and make it work no matter what,” says Hested. “Now Bobcat operators can sit in the machine and work all day and that increases productivity no matter what the application.”

MCC’s fastest growing market segment in the bus industry involves large, medium and small inner-city buses, intercity motorcoaches, and school buses. Companies like New Flyer and Motor Coach Industries, as well as the City of Chicago and New York City Transit buses rely on MCC products.

“MCC takes a total systems approach to bus HVAC,” says Hested. “It supplies the bus manufacturer with a single source, customized, HVAC package that addresses all facets of the bus interior climate. This means the entire system is completely integrated, well balanced for maximum performance, extremely cost effective and warranted by a single supplier – MCC.”

Among the many components manufactured by MCC are low-profile, roof-mounted (as well as traditional) heating and air conditioning units, convectors, defrosters, step well heaters, and blowers. All are custom designed and fabricated at MCC for each particular bus or off-road application. MCC’s design and engineering team has also recently just completed the development of an innovative roof-mounted, heating and air conditioning system for mass transit vehicles.

This ISO: 9001-certified designer and manufacturer of fully integrated, mass transit bus HVAC systems draws from its extensive background in off-road and marginal terrain HVAC applications to provide a design/manufacturing philosophy that focuses on building each system for reliance, ruggedness and serviceability.

“Because transit authorities count on a 10-15 -year life expectancy for their vehicles, serviceability is a major concern. They know MCC has the products and services to meet their needs. Once companies get to know our key players, our manufacturing technology, and our service, we are recognized as an industry-leader,” says Hested.

MCC is aggressively seeking new customers to add to its already impressive and satisfied list of clientele. “We’ve become an extension of our clients’ engineering departments. No request is too odd. No project too impossible,” says Hested. “We’re not afraid of any project. We welcome the tough ones. Our success is founded on quality, a teamwork approach to manufacturing, product dependability, innovation, confidence, progress and vertical integration.”

MCC is focused on investing in its unique coil production and heat transfer technology in the future. “It’s our philosophy to maintain the highest standards of quality control at all times, eliminate any problems before they arise and continually strive to improve our products, methods and materials. We subject each product to rigorous testing prior to and during manufacturing. We just want to see that look on a customer’s face when we’ve done what they thought couldn’t be done. That’s what they rely on us for and we like that.”

Previous articleMastering the Elements
Next articleGauging Success