Ask the average automobile owner what brand comes to mind when they think of shock absorbers and most will say "Monroe." Today the company is part of the Tenneco Automotive Group and they are arguably the most recognized brand name shock in the world. Monroe has been making automotive products for over 90 years and unlike many other early entries in the automobile industry, the company was not named for one of its entrepreneurial founders. Instead, the company was named for the town where it was born, Monroe, Michigan.
In the early 1900's automobile suspension systems were essentially the same as that found on horse drawn carriages. Driving on roads meant for horse and buggy travel was rough on tires and flats were an all too common occurrence. Early drivers carried patch kits and air pumps in their vehicles so they could do their own roadside repair. That's where Monroe entered the market -- they were an early leader in the manufacture of tire pumps. By the 1920's service stations were appearing everywhere, offering free air, and automobile manufacturers started including spare tires as standard equipment. Faced with the prospect of declining tire pump sales, Monroe's engineers applied their expertise with air pumps towards improving suspension systems. The world's first shock absorber, the Monroe Shock Eliminator, was introduced in 1926 and Monroe has been an industry leader ever since. They were the first to expand shock absorber technology to specialized vehicles, introducing shocks for railroad passenger cars in 1938. Let's take a look at two of Monroe's contemporary offerings for specialized use.
Monroe Max-Air Shocks
Anyone with a hitch on the back of their vehicle is confronted with universal towing dilemma: the rear end of the vehicle has a hard time handling the weight of the trailer being towed. Monroe Max-Air Shocks eliminate this problem by allowing on demand inflation and deflation, even after the vehicle is fully loaded. With a psi range from 20 to 150, a level riding height can be maintained, all the way up to a 1,200 pound tow load. Check the Internet for reviews of these shocks and you'll find they can be installed by anyone with the right tools and a little automotive knowledge. They are sold with all the air fittings and air lines you'll need and come with a fill kit as well.
Monroe Reflex Shocks
For SUV, Mini-Van, and Light Truck owners who want a firmer ride than that offered with Monroe's Sensa-Trac shocks, the Monroe Reflex is the preferred choice. With its patent pending Impact Sensor this shock actually "self-adjusts" when the vehicle encounters road bumps or potholes. In addition it dramatically reduces the risk of body roll in these vehicles during evasive maneuvers and handling extreme road curves. If you own or are thinking about owning one of these high center of gravity vehicles, you know they have some safety issues. Monroe Reflex Shocks are designed to increase safe operation and control of the vehicle without compromising the comfort of the ride.