South Bend Clutches are a great choice when it's time to upgrade your vehicle’s clutch. Whether you are looking to tow more, drag race, or just get to work with more power, there is an appropriate clutch for your application. Remember, modified vehicles, including those with aftermarket performance or high-torque clutches, may drive and sound different than the factory system. But, then again, that's what a lot of our customers want.
Where Is South Bend Clutch Located?
Like the name implies, South Bend Clutch is located in South Bend, Indiana. Mishawaka, Indiana, to be more specific. South Bend Clutch is family owned, and while they do not manufacture their products in the USA (in fairness, there are no major clutch manufacturers in the United States), all of their products are spec'd, engineered, and designed in Indiana.
Is South Bend Clutch A Good Company?
If by “good” you mean committed, knowledgeable, and dedicated to quality, then “yes.” South Bend Clutch is a family-owned business, and has been for four generations! Customer reviews like this one say it all: “If you are looking for helpful staff that wants…you [to] reach whatever goal you have with your vehicle and not just sell you parts, then you have found the right place. Please buy a clutch from South Bend. You will be as happy with your purchase as I am. Thanks, Peter.”
One important fact to keep in mind is that the number of clutches on the road is shrinking. Fewer and fewer new cars are sold with clutches each year in the United States. The fact that South Bend Clutch has managed to grow in a shrinking market should tell you a lot about their quality, reliability, and value.
South Bend Clutch vs. JMH Performance - Which Is Better?
Here on XLR8Performance.com we sell only high-quality clutch kits and clutch parts from a few different companies including South Bend Clutch, JMH Performance, Sachs Performance and others. When it comes to comparing South Bend Clutch and JMH Performance (LINK) specifically, we can easily say both brands are great brands.
Generally speaking, JMH clutches tend to be pricier. They also offer more lightweight aluminum parts, like flywheels, as well as a larger variety of parts beyond clutches whereas South Bend focuses specifically on clutches. Even more specifically, South Bend focuses on performance - even beyond European and Exotic vehicles. Many know South Bend for its offerings for diesel trucks. While that’s not what we do here at XLR8, we can still appreciate this review from Motortrend.
“...this clutch has yet to show weakness. While you still can’t slip it like a factory clutch, and—despite the noise-damping efforts—you can still hear the clutch doing its job, it’s hard to argue with the reliable holding power afforded by this particular South Bend clutch system.”
What Is The South Bend Warranty Like?
Warrantying a clutch is very difficult because everyone - and every vehicle - is different. Sometimes clutches wear quickly because of the way you drive, and sometimes they wear quickly because your engine is rated higher than the clutch. If you have any concerns about premature wear, please don't hesitate to contact us and we can provide some recommendations for you.
However, as long as you buy your South Bend Clutch from an authorized dealer like us, and you register your parts with South Bend within 30 days of purchase, your clutch parts are covered for 12 months or 12,000 miles.
How Long Will A South Bend Clutch Last?
It's difficult to say how long a clutch will last because there are so many different reasons clutches wear. However, there are some things you can use to maximize clutch lifespan:
- Don't "hold" your vehicle on the clutch, and/or engage and disengage the clutch to stay in one place. If you're on a hill, it might be tempting to use the clutch to roll forward, then slowly roll back, then engage the clutch again, etc. While this can be fun, it's a great way to wear down a clutch. Same goes for holding the vehicle in place with the clutch (again, something you can do on a hill). Use the brakes instead.
- Avoid dumping the clutch. Revving the engine and dumping the clutch is a good way to spin the tires, but it's hell on the clutch friction material.
- Use your nose. Anytime you get a hint of a sniff of hot clutch, rest the clutch as best you can. Clutch wear accelerates dramatically when the friction material is hot. And you can smell hot friction material pretty easily if you pay attention.
- Make sure your clutch is spec'd correctly. It might not seem like a big deal, but if your engine is producing an "extra" 20 horsepower over the clutch power rating, that could cause the clutch to wear prematurely. Therefore, it's always a good idea to make sure the clutch is rated for the engine power or higher. If you're not sure what the clutch rating is, contact us.