State Rep. Haley Stevens, of Michigan’s 11th district, visited The Farmington Garage in Farmington, Michigan Jan. 13 to discuss the future of aftermarket automotive care.
Founder and CEO of The Detroit Garage, Curtis Andrew Massoll, was joined by several others from the Auto Care Association to share information and concerns regarding the changes and future developments in automotive repair.
With 286.8 million vehicles on the road today, the automotive aftermarket industry is responsible for employing 4.7 million people. Independent service centers maintain eight out of 10 vehicles currently in operation as well as perform 70% of repairs falling outside of the manufacturer’s warranty. Michigan’s 11th congressional district is responsible for providing more jobs in automotive aftermarket care than any other district in the country, the company says.
Modern vehicles have begun wirelessly transmitting data — straight to vehicle manufacturers — using a technology called telematics. Some may transfer up to 25GB of data per hour. Unbeknownst to many consumers, vehicle owners neither own nor have access to the information that their cars are generating. Unfortunately, this could leave consumers in an extremely vulnerable state, with manufacturers controlling who sees that data and how it is used, The Detriot Garage says. The company says by 2022, 87% of vehicles will be transmitting data. Members of the auto care industry depend on this crucial information to assist with maintenance and repairs, but without action, consumers will be extremely limited to where they may take their vehicle to be serviced. The Auto Care Association believes drivers should demand the right to transparency around the data collected from their vehicles, including what was collected, how it was used and with whom it was shared.
Stevens’s visit concluded with a tour through the repair shop, explaining how data is pulled from control modules, the on-board diagnostics process and why this information is essential.